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How to Prevent and Survive Website Downtime

Well, this is good timing.

Just after writing my last post on Twitter’s ongoing issues with technical and capacity problems, I came across a handy KissMetrics infographic that helps drive my point home about the impact of website performance:

“[Downtime] can seriously affect user confidence, loyalty and ultimately eat into our bottom line.”

Well said, KissMetrics, well said.

While I’d love to see some updated stats — the website downtime chart is based on data from 2007 — the rest of the infographic brings clarity to why sites go down, and what you can do to survive downtime on your own website.

Some interesting observations:

  • At four hours and 47 minutes, the website with the most downtime was formerly I wonder where Twitter would rank in comparison this year, especially with the epic extended crash it experienced at the beginning of summer?
  • “Soft” downtime can be manifested as slow load times — which aren’t as critical as completely dead pages, but severely affect performance anyway.
  • Amazon lost an estimated $3.47 million during a time it was down for just two hours.
  • It’s not just about customer confidence either. Downtime can kill your reputation with investors, and cut your search engine rankings.

And some things you can do to help prevent your website going down:

  • Back up your database. Always. Forever.
  • Auto-renew your domain to avoid registration snafus.
  • Use appropriate error codes.

And lastly, if your website does go down, use social media or email to let users know!

Read on for the full scoop!



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