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Employ Server Monitoring to Avoid Downtime

Your reputation lies in the performance and availability of your website. Consistent and reliable server monitoring can help ensure that it’s always up, always performing optimally, and always secure from potential attacks.

If your business relies on the availability of your website, the losses resulting from only minutes of downtime could make or break a small business — enterprise businesses could also lose thousands in just a few minutes.

The cost of website downtime:

According to research by Gartner, the average cost of downtime is approximately $5,600 per minute, which translates to $300,000 per hour. Further, Avaya research states that 80% of companies lose revenue when their network is down, and that cost could range from $140,000 to $540,000 per hour.

Depending on your industry and line of business, the actual amount of money you lose during a downtime varies. In healthcare, a downed network could mean the difference between life or death, however, a website outage for an ecommerce business could be financially catastrophic — not to mention significant long-term impacts on reputation.

How to calculate your cost of downtime:

To get an idea of how much your website crashing could cost you can be calculated  by first determining your average revenue during a specific time period. This could be per minute or per hour, but you can absolutely get an idea of how much your downtime is costing you.

Besides the estimated profits lost (based on your average sales for that period of time) other things to consider, include:

  • The investment required to repair your reputation (based on good faith investments, new marketing, or customer service reparations)
  • Marketing investments lost — for example, if you have a pay-per-click campaign running, the average spent during your time period. You also want to consider the negative impact that downtime will have on your SEO and organic traffic
  • The cost to repair. This could include man hour, hardware replacements, etc.

Downtime is a nightmare

Server and network downtime can affect entire populations of people, seemingly right when they need it the most. Some horrifying examples of downtime that should give any CIO nightmares include:

  • During a severe thunderstorm, the National Weather Service failed to warn residents of D.C. and much of the American Northeast — risking the lives of residents during the 2014 storm.
  • Earlier this year, the JetBlue data center experienced a network-wide failure that grounded all flights and stalled all operations.
  • A 31 minute server failure caused Facebook to crash in 2014, losing them $24,420 per minute, totalling $854,700 in total revenue lost.

What’s also worrisome, is that according to the Avaya study, 1 out of 5 companies fired an IT employee after a significant downtime event in 2013.

Instead, consider the cost of server monitoring

Once you’ve seen your business’ personal cost of downtime, it could (and should) shock you. However, you don’t have to run around and hire a giant team to provide around-the-clock maintenance. Server monitoring software can detect overloaded servers, slow response time, and low availability. Most server monitoring software feature customizable alerts and workflows so it can then notify the right team members, immediately.

The benefits of server monitoring & management

  • Early diagnosis: Acknowledging potential problems and performance issues before they become downtime events
  • Customizable: Send alerts to the right person (admin may want text, call, or e-mail) — quickly perform damage control by instantly communicating issues and resolutions with your team or with your customers
  • User/management friendly: Installed in a matter of minutes does not interfere with your firewall.
  • Accountability: Hiring a team doesn’t necessarily mean that your server is monitored 24/7/365  (outsourcing, for example, guarantees this and provides a clear accountability path as part of a disaster recovery plan for server failure)
  • Cost-reduction: Monitoring identifies overuse so that you can establish precautions to avoid the overuse that breaks down your systems and equipment over time. You can also make better decisions to reallocate functions that can slow the rest of your system down

A comprehensive server monitoring software will cover all aspects of your network to ensure that everything is running optimally. One weak link could bring down the whole tower…

When searching out server management tools, make sure that you check for full capabilities to monitor and organize your entire network. You’ll want complete control and visibility over:

  • CPU resources used as well as memory usage statistics — both during normal and peak times
  • Hardware functionality
  • Analytics into all of your server services such as website data, databases, emails, FTP, etc.
  • Servers require resources to keep a site or an application up and running, but website traffic can increase so keeping load times reasonable are integral to the success of your online visibility
  • Load balancing with the capability to make quick changes
  • Performance reports for future planning

If you’re struggling with server monitoring and maintenance, outsourcing these functions to a reliable server management company can ensure 99.9% uptime.

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