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Why you should care about your business's uptime

Your uptime percentage indicates how long your website was available without any interruption. Find out in this article why you should care.

Jelle De Laender - 15 September 2020

Your uptime percentage indicates how long your website was available without any interruption. In this article, we explain where you can find your uptime percentage, how should you interpret it, and - more importantly- why you should care.

What does uptime mean?

Uptime is the official term for the time your website was up and running without interruption. It is the exact opposite of 'downtime', which is the time your website was not working or loading as expected.

How is my uptime calculated?

People usually express uptime as a monthly percentage. So if you have a monthly uptime percentage of 99.8%, that means that your website was online 99.8% of the time. That may seem reasonable until you realize that 99.8% uptime means that your website was offline for 1.5 hours that month.

How should I interpret my uptime?

If you want to know how your uptime percentage translates into lost hours or minutes, this table can be useful.

Availability %Downtime per yearDowntime per monthDowntime per day
90% ("one nine")36.53 days73.05 hours2.40 hours
95% ("one and a half nines")18.26 days36.53 hours1.20 hours
97%10.96 days21.92 hours43.20 minutes
98%7.31 days14.61 hours28.80 minutes
99% ("two nines")3.65 days7.31 hours14.40 minutes
99.5% ("two and a half nines")1.83 days3.65 hours7.20 minutes
99.8%17.53 hours87.66 minutes2.88 minutes
99.9% ("three nines")8.77 hours43.83 minutes1.44 minutes
99.95% ("three and a half nines")4.38 hours21.92 minutes43.20 seconds
99.99% ("four nines")52.60 minutes4.38 minutes8.64 seconds
99.995% ("four and a half nines")26.30 minutes2.19 minutes4.32 seconds
99.999% ("five nines")5.26 minutes26.30 seconds864.00 milliseconds
source Wikipedia

Why does uptime matter?

As a business owner, you cannot afford to neglect your uptime. Your online presence is becoming increasingly important, and every minute of downtime can have a severe impact.

  • For your SEO ranking
    Imagine that your website is offline when a search engine like Google or Bing is trying to index it. If that happens frequently, the search engine will drop you in its ranking because it assumes that your website is not reliable. Search engines want to offer their users the best possible experience, and that includes ensuring that the top results are not only relevant websites but also websites that are always available. So even if you have optimized your website for SEO and are using all the right keywords, you can still end up with a lousy ranking because of availability issues. And if you rank low in the search engine results, fewer people will be able to find you.
  • For your revenue
    If a customer clicks a button and the result does not appear fast enough, you have lost a sale. And what if your website is offline when someone visits it for the first time? Most likely they will go straight to the competition, never to come back.
  • For your reputation
    Your website is an essential part of your online reputation. The more errors or difficulties your visitors encounter, the less professional you look. If you cannot keep your website under control, why should they trust that you can process their order professionally?

Where can I find my uptime?

By now you are probably wondering about your own uptime. The only way to know your uptime percentage is to monitor your website for a month and see whether it goes offline. And that is precisely what our monitoring tool Semonto does. But it does more than that. Semonto also alerts you immediately when your website is having problems so that you can quickly resolve the issue before your business is affected.

Screenshot of an uptime report in Semonto

What can I do if my uptime is bad?

Your website is running on a server. The company that is managing that server is called a hosting firm. The person who built your website may also be your hoster, but sometimes your website is being hosted by a third party. In any case, your web developer can usually tell you who your hosting partner is. Via the monthly uptime reports, you can easily review your average uptime of the last months and check if your web hosting company is delivering what is promised. Not all web hosting companies are sharing their performance openly. With the objective uptime report Semonto gives you, you can make your own conclusions based on trusted data.

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Do you want to know the uptime of your website or webshop? Get a free trial of Semonto and find out!

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