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My Website is down and I found out from a customer!

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Website monitoring

The importance of website monitoring

A website that goes down or performs poorly, demands quick action. However, unless you are constantly refreshing the website in your browser, you may not be aware of a problem for hours or even days. It is an awful feeling to wake up and think "my website is down".  Unless you know your website is down within minutes of its occurrence, quick action is impossible. Here are five reasons why having a website monitoring system is critical:

Loss of Customers

Few people will patiently wait for a website to come back online. While die-hard fans of a particular brand may do this, most will look for the product or service on another website. Loss of customers doesn't just happen when a site goes down, a slow website will do the same thing. Problems with the server hosting your site can dramatically slow down its loading speed. People today expect fast loading times. Speed is especially important for mobile traffic whose Internet access networks already have a fair amount of lag time. Any sluggishness of your site only adds to this.

Revenue Loss During Critical Periods

If there are times of the year that account for most of your revenue, monitoring will be especially important. For the business that relies heavily on holidays such as Christmas, downtime can be disastrous. This is why even websites with seemingly high uptimes like 99% can't afford to get complacent because the 3.65 days of downtime can happen during critical revenue events.

SEO Penalties

Chronically down and slow page load speeds affect your website's ranking in Google's search engine. For Google, user experience is everything and chronically down websites detract from this. Google also factors in visitors' behavior on your site. If they quickly leave because it's too slow, this behavior will affect your site's search rankings.

Hacked Website

One of the most damaging things that can happen to a website is getting hacked. The consequences include complete defacement of the site, insertion of malware, and redirection of traffic to "unprofessional websites." When this happens, previous customers will be reluctant to visit, let alone make purchases. This reluctance will persist long after you have repaired the damage. Developing consumer trust is difficult as it is, without having it demolished by a hacking event.

Sometimes a warning appears in the search results next to the hacked site's listing. Web browsers such as Chrome often display a warning advising the user to stay away from the site they are about to visit.

If you believe it won't happen to you because there is safety in numbers, think again. Prolific hackers use software that scans the Internet for websites with specific vulnerabilities. The software is fast and efficient and if your site meets their criteria, they will find it. Think of it this way, there are billions of email accounts in the world, yet most of these get unwanted spam. For the email account holder, there is no safety in numbers. Spammers always find them.

Damaged Reputation

Word spreads fast in the online world particularly in social media where most people have accounts and readily express their frustrations. How customers react to a problem website depends on many factors. Consistently slow load times or downtime frustrate consumers and they will freely speak their minds about this. Word about security breaches or a site hacking gets out even faster.

A company's reputation is an asset that affects its current and future earnings. It even affects a company's market value. That's why a quick response to threats to your brand's reputation is necessary. Quick action starts with knowing about the problem as soon as it occurs.  You don't want the customer to tell you that your website is down!

These reasons demonstrate why it's critical to have a website monitoring system. Quick detection and rapid response not only saves your business from lost revenue and a damaged reputation, it gives you a big advantage over your competitors who are less proactive than you. For more information about monitoring your company’s website, contact us today.

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