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How to survive website downtimes

Website downtime can affect user
confidence and user loyalty. It can also have a negative impact on your
bottom line. What can you do to avoid downtimes and what should you do
when your website is down?

What
is downtime and what are
the causes of downtime?

website monitoring will help you

A website is ‘down’ when it cannot be
accessed by its users. This can happen for a variety of causes:

  • Planned downtime:
    Planned downtime happens when you update your server hardware or
    software. Usually, this doesn’t cause problems because you can do this
    when not many people access your site. Usually, short downtimes at 4
    a.m. aren’t a problem.
  • Hardware
    failures:
    Hardware failures are the number one of cause
    for many downtimes. The air conditioning fails on a hot day, an
    excavator in your neighborhood damages an electric cable, etc.
  • Software
    failures:
    Software updates of some server components are
    not compatible with other components, patches do not work as expected,
    malware or viruses change the software, etc.
  • Human
    error or malicious users:
    Someone could accidentally
    delete important files on your server, an unskilled operator changes
    the server settings, hackers or malicious users damage your server
    configuration.
  • Disasters:
    Storms, floods, earthquakes and other natural disasters damage your
    servers.

The four types of downtime

Website downtime can have many
manifestations. All of them aren’t good for your business. There are
hard downtimes, when your website cannot be accessed at all, and soft
downtimes, when your website is very slow:

  • Hijacked page (hard
    downtime):
    Your website URLs have been hijacked and they
    display the content of another website and/or redirect to other URLs
    and malicious content.
  • HTTP
    error (hard downtime):
    Your website shows a “503 service
    unavailable” error message or another error message instead of the
    actual content of your site.
  • Dead
    page (hard downtime):
    Your website isn’t loading at all.
  • Slow
    page (soft downtime):
    Your website has a bad performance.

The
negative effects of
website downtime

Website downtimes are bad for your
business.

  • Downtimes can cost a
    lot of money:
    Several years ago, Amazon.com was down for
    two hours. This single outage cost Amazon $3.48 million.
  • Downtimes
    affect customer satisfaction:
    If your website is down,
    people will buy the product elsewhere. If customers anticipate
    technical problems when they access your site, they probably won’t
    trust you to give you their money.
  • Search
    engine rankings:
    If your website is consistently down
    for a longer period of time, your search engine rankings will suffer
    dramatically.

Things
that you should do
before your website goes down

It is better to avoid long downtimes.
Do the following when your website is up and running:

  • Backup your files:
    Make frequent backups of your website files and your databases.
  • Make
    sure that your domain name registration is up to date:

    Many websites are down because the owner forgot to renew the domain
    name registration. Set the domain name on auto-renew or buy the domain
    name for several years in advance.
  • Check
    your pages with the website audit tool:
    Check your
    website with the website audit tool in SEOprofiler
    to make sure that there are no technical errors that can cause problems
    in the near future.
  • Monitor
    your website:
    The Uptime Monitor tool in SEOprofiler informs you about website downtimes
    as they happen. That enables you to react quickly so that downtimes are
    kept to a minimum.

uptime monitor overview

What
you should do when your
website is down

If your website is down, do not panic.
Do the following to solve the problem:

  • Confirm that your
    website is down:
    It might be your Internet connection.
    Check your site with the Uptime Monitor to make sure that
    there really is a problem.
  • Find
    the cause:
    Try to find out why the website is down. Is
    it a technical error, has your domain registration expired, is there a
    DNS problem?
  • Call
    your web host:
    Call your web host and ask them for help.
    Most hosts can solve downtime problems quickly.
  • Notify
    your users:
    Use your social media channels (Facebook,
    Twitter, etc.) to inform your users about the outage. Do not leave them
    in the dark.
  • Don’t
    panic:
    Most downtimes do not last long if you react
    quickly. Help your team to solve the problem and stay calm.

Website downtimes are bad for your
business. Use the Uptime Monitor in SEOprofiler to make sure that you
keep downtimes to a minimum. If you haven’t done it yet,
create
your SEOprofiler account now:

Try it now

SEOprofiler offers many more powerful
tools that help you to improve your web pages. If you haven’t done it
yet, try SEOprofiler now:

Test
SEOprofiler now

Article source: http://newsletter.seoprofiler.com/newsletter749.htm

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