A website is experiencing an outage when it can’t perform primary user tasks or is completely inaccessible. During this period (commonly known as website downtime), the site isn’t fully functional.
A website outage is a severe threat to the success of your business in today’s world. It leads to a tarnished company image, customer dissatisfaction, and lower search engine ranking. Therefore, you risk losing potential customers, which threatens your bottom line.
In this article, we take a comprehensive look at the top signs that your website is vulnerable to outages. Also included are the common causes of website outages and how to prevent them. Read on to ensure you minimize your website’s outages.
Top Signs Your Website is Vulnerable to Outages
Slow Loading Time
Regarded as one of the first signs of vulnerability to website outage; slow loading time usually occurs due to increased website traffic. Your server is unable to handle the sudden spike in user activity on your website. It is a common occurrence when you have an unreliable website host. Equally, a slow loading website impacts your brand negatively by frustrating the users.
Bandwidth Allocation Limitation
Do you have bandwidth limitations due to the ‘fair usage’ policy by your provider? If so, then you are at a higher risk of experiencing website outages. You will experience temporary downtime unless you have a hosting company that offers unlimited bandwidth. Luckily, most hosts provide unlimited bandwidth at a pocket-friendly price.
Poor Security Features
Having poor security features on your website could leave you vulnerable to website outages. For starters, you risk malware attacks that not only cause website downtime but also expose private data. Therefore, poor security features hurt your brand’s reputation.
Insufficient Storage Space
Although storage varies from website to website, it is vital to have more than sufficient storage space. Having insufficient storage space will interfere with your site’s ability to produce and develop results. Thus, you will be prone to multiple website outages from time to time.
Common Reasons for Website Outages
- Malicious Website Attack
It is vital to stay watchful of sudden spikes in website traffic. Unusually high traffic usually means that your website is under attack from malware or hackers. DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) is a malicious attack on your website that sends high amounts of fake traffic, thus causing downtime. Therefore, you need top security protocols on your site to reduce malware attacks and safeguard your data.
- Server Overload
Is your website hosted on shared servers? What this means is that you will most likely experience outages whenever there is a huge surge of users. Your host will likely take your site off to safeguard the remaining sites. Equally, your site will face downtimes whenever other sites on your server have high traffic. Other times, your server host will bring down your website to carry out a system update.
- Miscellaneous Causes
Did you know that almost 40% of website outage occurs due to human errors? These could include improper server handling, accidentally unplugging a server or poor code review. Uncontrollable issues — including natural calamities — could also affect your services.
- Software and Hardware Issues
Lack of periodic software and hardware maintenance could lead to unexpected failures, thus resulting in downtime. For instance, incompatible or older versions of themes and plugins could make it difficult for users to access your website. Power failure is also a major cause of website outages across the globe.
Preventing Website Outages
Pick a Reliable Host
The host you choose will determine whether you experience multiple website outages. For starters, you need a host that can handle high traffic volume across your website. Choosing a cheaper, low-quality host means you risk serious downtime whenever you experience an increase in traffic. Ensure you select a suitable host that can guarantee 99.9% uptime at an affordable price. It will also help to stick within your budget when choosing a host that best suits your needs.
Outages can still happen despite the numerous proactive measures you integrate into your website. Therefore, you need to store and backup all vital data in the cloud or locally. Several hosting providers can help you achieve this by offering tools to help backup your website data. Doing this will get you a bit of cushion should a crisis emerge. It will also help to set up a different hosting account that acts as a backup. However, ensure you use a different provider to ensure your data is on a secondary server.
Use a Content Delivery Network (CDN)
It is vital to have a layer between your users and the site’s servers, thus increasing ease of access and speed. A CDN works by storing pieces of cached data on caching servers across the world to ensure your users quickly retrieve information. Therefore, it works as a buffer that guarantees your website is online and active even during an outage. Equally, a CDN denies website access to malicious bots that could cripple your network. It filters traffic by analyzing user IP addresses, thus mitigating the risk of DDoS.
Leverage a Website Monitoring Service
Monitoring your website will ensure you get timely alerts when outages occur. Website monitoring services will inform you whenever your website is down. Although it won’t help prevent the outage, at least you get to be the first to know about it. Therefore, you can take the necessary steps to ensure your site is up and running within a short period. Doing this is an excellent way of ensuring there is no long-lasting damage to your brand’s reputation. You will also find it easier to keep up with customer expectations since you can inform them about the outage promptly. However, ensure you include a timeline of when the issue will be resolved.
Eliminate Website Outages Today
Do not let technology issues deter you from what matters most — running your business. At Ndevr, we offer a “Worry Free” service that allows you to focus ON your business and not your website to eliminate website outages. Ensure you contact us today to safeguard your bottom line and brand reputation.