When you own a website, it’s crucial to ensure that the site is available to your visitors. Otherwise, the visitor can consider it as unreliable and never come back. That’s why it’s essential to know how to check your website status.
So, how to check the availability of a site? In this article, I will show you various tools to get the task done. I’ll also explain the difference between uptime and downtime.
What is Uptime and How Does It Affect My Website?
Uptime is a term used to describe a period when your site is accessible for all of your visitors.
Generally, web hosting providers offer high uptime rates, the standard has become a 99.9% uptime guarantee. Though the ideal uptime is 100%, it’s really not possible with today’s technology, as it can be affected by multiple factors, such as network outages, human errors, or natural disasters.
The best case is 99.99% (that less than a tenth of a percent is incredibly important), at which it’s still best practice to monitor your site to figure out when downtime occurs.
Downtime is the exact opposite of uptime – it shows the timeframe when your site is inaccessible. This is calculated by measuring how long your website is unavailable in a single year.
Below, I’ll be covering some common consequences of downtime.
You will lose revenue if your site is down, especially if you’re dealing with transactions on that same website.
The visitors can’t see what you offer, and they can’t access what might solve their problems. It can give a bad impression either for your new or frequent visitors.
Overall, downtime will make you lose potential customers, prevents transactions, and lowers the engagement rate with visitors.
Waste of Resources
Aside from losing revenue, having downtime will make your resource usage ineffective.
If your site represents a business, there are some fixed and overhead costs that you have to take on, such as human resources cost, rent cost, and utility costs. Those costs will still there even though your site experiences downtime.
If new visitors can’t even see the landing page of your site, they’re not going to stick around.
Potential customers will definitely prefer to seek a solution from another site with better credibility and accessibility. Therefore, preventing downtime is the same as preserving your site’s reputation.
Damaged Business Relationships
Aside from disrupting your reputation to the potential customers, downtime can also interfere with the relationship between you and your business partners.
By experiencing downtime, your online service will not able to operate for a certain time. If your partner’s performance depends on your operation, it will become an unpleasant experience for them.
If you own an ecommerce site, the merchants and the buyers won’t be able to continue the transaction, which might end up with them looking into other alternatives other than your website.
Most web hosting providers offer uptime guarantee on their SLA (Service Level Agreements). It is to ensure that the provider can provide stable performance as promised.
If the provider can’t reach the uptime rate as per the agreement, they have to give financial compensation to the user following the SLA.
Since there are plenty of providers offering a 99.9% uptime rate, it pushes the providers to be more consistent on stabilizing their performance.
Negatively Impacts SEO
How often did you enter a site that was ranking in the number one spot but was inaccessible? That’s exactly what Google wants to prevent, therefore it affects your site’s rank on SERP.
There’s also the risk of being removed from the search results pages entirely.
However, Google will still tolerate sites that experience temporary downtime, if your site is getting HTTP code 503 (Service Unavailable) instead of HTTP result code 404 (Not Found). The logic behind it is to not lose a good site just because of temporary downtime.
Regardless, it is better to avoid downtime at any cost. You can start by choosing a reliable provider that offers more than 99.9% uptime SLA.
How to Check if My Website is Down?
Now you know that uptime is an essential factor for a site. Then, how to check the availability of the site?
There are a lot of uptime checker tools you can choose. The tools will bring you information such as the availability, regional uptime check, and load times.
So, I’ve compiled some of the best uptime checker tools below. Check them out!
It is a simple tool to check website status. All you have to do is type the site’s address and click the Check Server Status button. You can check up to ten sites simultaneously.
Afterward, it will show the result which contains information about the site’s HTTP code and status. Therefore, when a site’s down, you can find out whether it’s temporary or not from the HTTP code.
Is It Down Right Now is a tool that provides comprehensive information about site availability, by checking the URL, measuring the response time, and monitoring the last time the site went down.
Moreover, they also provide a graph visualizing the site status sorted by the last ten automatic checks. It can expose problems related to the stability of your site’s uptime.
Another great feature is a troubleshooting knowledge base. It provides quick and easy steps to resolve a lot of common issues that might cause downtime.
So, this is a recommended tool if you want to measure uptime and find solutions to access the site, rather than wait.
Uptrends is a great tool to check website status from various angles. You can check the load time and availability of a site from different servers, such as ones located in Europe, South America, North America, Asia, and Australia.
You can also compare the results of each endpoint. This way, you can find out what’s the total load time from each point with a glance.
The total load time is the accumulation of three metrics, which are the Resolve time, Connection time, and Download time.
Each metric has different functions:
- Resolve time – shows how long it takes to translate a domain name or URL to an IP address.
- Connection time – is the time needed to connect with the IP address of the site.
- Download time – represents the time when the download request is performed. It marks the completion of the page.
This tool not only can check website status, but also various metrics that cover load time.
It shows a graph which consists of website availability metrics, there are four metrics used:
- DNS – is the time used for the server to resolve DNS to the IP address.
- Connect – is the time needed to set up the connection between Site24x7 with the addressed site.
- First Byte – represents the time when waiting for the webserver to send data.
- Last Byte – is the time when all of the contents have been downloaded.
By comparing the times of each, you can find out the logic behind the site’s load time and where’s the bottleneck.
You can also check the site from various areas. This tool provides checking from plenty of cities spanning from North, South America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. The checking results then can be compared based on the metrics on the graph.
If you need another simple alternative, you can try IsItWP. As the name implies, the provider’s main feature is to check whether a site is using WordPress or not. Aside from that, they have an uptime checker feature as well.
You will only get some basic information from this tool, such as the availability of the site, highlight of the front page, the site’s theme, and its hosting provider.
Keep Your Website Up and Running
Now you’ve understood the importance of uptime. Therefore, it is essential to choose a web hosting provider that guarantees over 99.9% uptime rate.
You can also check website status and load time through some of the best uptime checker tools listed in this article. Let’s quickly recap:
- SmallSEOTools – a simple tool which provides the site’s status and HTTP code
- Is It Down Right Now? – provides status history graph and troubleshooting instruction
- Uptrends – can check site’s load time from various checkpoints
- Site24x7 – provides a graph with website availability metrics
- IsItWP – delivers simple information
That’s it! Keep your site up and make sure it can reach all of your site visitors!