One of the best things about a website, is that is is accessible 24/7. This allows people to browse, shop, read & interact in their own time. This is why it is absolutely vital for the website to stay online, especially though periods of heavy traffic.
Why is downtime bad?
Why is is bad for a website to go down for short periods you ask?
- It can impact on how a customer sees your brand
- It can lose you money. For example, if your site is making $20,000 a day in sales, but is down for a hour a day, over a year that is a loss of over $300,000.
- It can impact on your search engine position and rankings. This is because a search engine may visit the website during downtime, find it offline and penalise it.
- It shows unprofessionalism.
- It could potentially impact a customers life. For example if you sold goods that a customer required ASAP, this customer would most likely end up going to a competitor because of the urgency.
What can you do about it?
The good news is there are many ways you can improve your websites uptime.
- Implement a website monitoring service. These are great for alerting you as soon as the website goes down.
- Prepare for high traffic periods. Make sure sales, promotions etc are scheduled for times when staff are on hand to fix any issues with the website.
- Have a great website development team. This can make all the difference. It is one thing knowing your website is down, it is another having the skill and expertise to fix it.
- Invest in reliable, scalable hosting.
- Keep on top of security fixes, patches and improvements to your chosen platform.
- Make sure you are using the correct platform for your websites needs.
- It can also help in times of real urgency to speak the language of your web server. If customer support is taking a long time to respond on server downtime, maybe you can connect via SSH and fix the issue yourself! It could save you thousands.
- Evaluate your current providers. If they are not performing, responding slowly to requests or become un-contactable in times of need….it might be time to look elsewhere.