Just as your face gives you a distinct identity from others and makes you recognizable, your website does the same for your business. Your website plays a crucial part in making your business differ from your competitors. It doesn’t matter whether you mostly function online or offline, your website acts as a face of your business and its performance is very important. One thing that can be a big obstacle in the performance of your website is its downtime.
Downtime is an inevitable hurdle that almost every business owner faces at some time or another. Downtime is basically a span of time in which a system or application fails to function properly. No access to your website or website downtime for just a small period of time can cause havoc to your business. Whether you handle your website by yourself or you have hired a professional team to look after its functioning, make sure your website functions properly. Website downtime may result in numerous serious issues creating disasters to your business.
Effects of Website Downtime
The inconsistent performance of websites can have following effects.
- Loss of revenue- Website downtime reduces potential customers of your business resulting in loss of profit. Even minutes of downtime can cost in millions. The impact can be more severe if all your business functions online only. However, the impact may also depend on whether you are a small business holder or a giant business.
- Bad user experience – No matter how elegant your web design is or how good your content is, all your digital marketing strategies are effortless if your website is non-accessible or loads slowly. Visitors always like to visit sites that can service them faster and better. Why will they stick with your website when your competitors can offer them faster service?
- Fewer customers – No matter what quality and services you deliver, a downtime is the best opportunity for your competitors to please your loyal customers. Website downtimes generally have a large impact on customers’ satisfaction.
- Reduced search engine ranking- The performance of your website plays an important role in search engine ranking. Frequent and constant website downtime contributes a lot to reducing your search engine ranking.
However ensuring 100% uptime and having zero downtime is almost unattainable. There are various causes of website downtime that may differ from websites to websites. Monitoring and reducing the effects of website downtime can be only achieved by completely knowing the factors responsible for it.
Causes of website downtime
- Planned downtime: Often websites slow down or are non-accessible because of various upgrades which are done by web hosts. Due to various system and software updates, your website may be often unavailable followed by normal functioning afterwards. However, being informed about these updates can lessen the impact.
- Component failure: For the proper functioning of a system or server, components such as hardware and software need to function efficiently. Some downtimes are due to inefficient functioning of these components. Any fault in hardware and software eventually leads to website downtime.
- Hackers or unskilled operations: Many websites also suffer various downtimes due to intentional or unskilled operations. Some websites are often targeted by various hackers leading to downtime or slow performance of websites.
- Natural disasters: Natural disasters are inevitable. No one has control over nature and natural disasters. Earthquakes, landslides, hurricanes, and many disasters have potential to contribute a lot to website downtime.
After knowing the causes of website downtimes you need to think of various measures to control them. As we know website downtimes cannot be stopped completely but its effects can surely be reduced.
Measures to control website downtime
- Have a DNS backup service: DNS backup service acts as a backup for when your main server is not functioning. It grabs your DNS data and provides uninterrupted function.
- Have website monitoring service: Sometimes you may not realize your website has been down until hours after it occurred. This situation can impact your business. So you should have a professional website monitoring service that can instantly notify you about your website downtime and slowdowns.
- Always have a backup of your database: As prevention is better than cure, you should always have a backup of your database and other important data.
There is no need to panic during website downtimes. During such scenarios, identify the factor and contact a professional team to fix the problem soon. Some downtimes are fixed within hours after detection, but some may even take a day or weeks to fix and resume proper function. Be in direct contact with your support team to fix it as soon as possible. Another important step or measure you need to take is to inform your loyal customers about the problem. If it is a planned downtime, notify them in advance about it. This helps in reducing severe impacts and, also helps in maintaining trust.
So next time your business faces a website downtime be ready to face it with all safety measures and tools to reduce its impact on your business. Be calm during these cyber problems, as they occur with businesses of every size.