Why a Proactive Approach to Fighting Website Downtime Is the Right Approach

We often discuss the many reasons why downtime causes unwanted headaches for online businesses. Those who have been paying attention recognize that website downtime equates to increased customer frustration, decreased consumer confidence, and eventually a serious hit to a business’s bottom line. However, while most professionals do agree that downtime is the bane of all online businesses, many are still taking a reactive approach to fighting website downtime rather than taking a proactive approach. This month we will explain the difference between the two and give some practical tips that will help you implement a proactive approach when it comes to maintaining your business’s website uptime.

Two Polar Opposites, Neither of Them Feasible

Oftentimes, online business owners and IT professions perceive website downtime as either something that should never occur or as a necessary evil that is a part of doing business online. Neither view is feasible or helpful to an online business. It is literaly impossible to avoid any and all instances of downtime. The best one can do is prepare for the worst and have failsafes in place to mitigate any damage that downtime may cause. On the other hand, looking at downtime as an inevitable part of doing business online without taking preventative measures is asking for a hit to a business’s bottom line. What, then, is the answer?

The Approach That Makes Sense

The first step to being proactive in terms of fighting website downtime is to build up resiliency. Call it a “chaos” approach to engineering. This approach, combined with constant and continuous testing of your system and evaluating how your system responds to various stressors, is the best way to locate and address any issues that need to be addressed before those issues become a real-time problem.

“Chaos” engineering may be somewhat counterintuitive to some. After all, who wants to purposely create system failures? The fact of the matter Is that by doing so, and doing it in a controlled environment, you can prevent errors from occurring before they actually interfere with the experience visitors may have while at visiting your website.

If purposely taxing your system and integrating stressors and errors that may or may not actually occur in the “real world” seems to be a waste of time and resources, consider how much time and money your business can save by preventing just one of the issues you might address by being proactive in your fight against website downtime. The time, energy, and money that goes into preventing website downtime can pay for itself if even just one incident of downtime is prevented as a result of your efforts. Add this to the fact that you can damage how consumers view your business if you wait for the failures to actually occur, and a proactive approach becomes much more sensible and cost-effective than a reactive approach. In a proactive approach you control the chaos. In a reactive approach, everyone is scrambling to fix a problem after it rears its ugly head.

Implementing a Proactive Approach to Maintaining Website Uptime

If you want to take a proactive approach to fighting website downtime, start with something small. Introduce smaller errors and stressors. Then work your way up as needed. You will either find a problem that can be fixed before it hurts your bottom line or you will have verified that your system can indeed handle any and all failures that you introduce. Either way, a proactive approach to fighting website downtime is a sound investment in terms of both time and resources and may also help your company save face in addition to saving its profits.