Would you know if your website went down? What would a potential customer think if they tried to access your website and found that it was offline? Would they return for a second time?
Almost all businesses maintain some sort of online presence, and even for companies with large IT teams, it is simply infeasible for an individual or team to manually monitor the status of a particular website.
Even the very largest organisations use external monitoring services, because:
● It’s expensive, both in time and manpower, to build your own website monitoring software and maintain it.
● Internal website monitoring software will have to be hosted on a whole new set of systems, as if the software is running on a company’s internal systems, it will be unable to send an alert when it goes down itself.
● Hence, even monitoring systems will themselves have to monitored by an external service, such as StatusCake.
Website uptime monitoring is essential for any business who cares about the security of their website, and the perception of their brand among new and existing customers. A dedicated uptime monitoring service will provide you with virtually instantaneous alerts by email or SMS the moment your website goes down, allowing you to take the necessary steps to get your website back up and running.
In this article, we take a more in-depth look at some of the ways uptime monitoring can help your business.
Avoid Lost Sales or Leads
Almost all websites have some transactional element built in. Whether it’s a sale, a booking, or simply a form submission, there is often a specific action (a conversion) that you will want visitors to your website to take. This ‘conversion’ can be seriously impacted by any period of website outages, no matter the size of your business. There are two variables that determine how severely website downtime will impact conversions – traffic volume and period of downtime. A website that receives relatively low volumes of traffic, and is down for only a short period of time, may experience little or no volatility in conversion rate, for a company like Amazon, however, any period of downtime can be extremely costly. Indeed, Amazon suffered losses of $4.72 million after their website was down for less than two hours in 2013!
Maintain Search Rankings
SEO is one of the cornerstones of online marketing. Unless you are paying to advertise your website online, often the only way to attract new visitors to your website is through search engines such as Google or Bing. Such is the importance of SEO, that businesses often dedicate a large portion of their online marketing budget to optimising their web pages to appear for relevant search terms.
There are many factors which determine a high ranking webpage, and one of the most important is bounce rate. If a user visits a webpage, and immediately ‘bounces’, Google takes that as a signal that the page either was not relevant or provided a poor experience to the user. If this happens frequently, Google will devalue this particular in its search engine.
There is no poorer experience for a user than to click what appears to be a relevant result in search, only to find that the website itself is offline. Clearly, if your website is experiencing a period of downtime, and visitors to your site are bouncing back to the search results when the website fails to load, your website is quickly going to tumble down the search rankings!
Protect Your Brand
With the online space so competitive, a strong and consistent brand image is crucial to maintaining a positive perception in the eyes of existing and potential customers. Online, your website is the face of your business, and if the first encounter a user has with your website is 404 page, they are likely to form a negative perception of your brand. The image of your brand is formed on a multitude of factors, but one of the most persuasive is customer satisfaction, and if a customer frequently finds your website to be unreliable, they are unlikely to be satisfied.
Website availability monitoring can protect your brand image by ensuring that you’re the first to know about any period of downtime, giving you time to minimise the potential for customer dissatisfaction.
Monitor Website Security
Cybersecurity is one of the greatest challenges facing online businesses in the present day. Data breaches as a result of a cyber attack continue to rise at an alarming rate, with a 2018 UK government survey reporting that 43% of businesses and 19% of charities experienced a cybersecurity breach in the previous 12 months.
The security of your data should be considered one of the top priorities of your business. The introduction of the GDPR in 2018 ensured that all businesses take a proactive stance to prevent data breaches, or else risk fines of up to €20 million, or 4% annual global turnover – whichever is greater.
Website uptime monitoring services can help you to maintain the security of your website by alerting you the moment your website goes offline. Should this unexpected downtime be the result of a cyber attack, you can minimise the response time and deal with the threat effectively.
To ensure that your website is providing the best possible experience to all visitors, it is imperative that you take steps to keep downtime to a minimum. The most resource effective way to do this is by employing a specialist website uptime monitoring service to alert you in real-time when your website goes down.
StatusCake provides a suite of performance monitoring tools which are easy to set-up and use, and provide you with invaluable insights into how your website performance is impacting your customers’ experiences. Our free plan includes a range of free tools, including page speed monitoring, while our paid plans include SSL Monitoring, Server Monitoring, Domain Monitoring and Virus Scanning.