Network Downtime Cost: How Can You Protect Your Website?

Industry News & Information

Do you know how much network downtime your website experiences in any given week?

When was your network last down? Can you correlate these crashes with particular events?

Are your clients and customers reporting downtime? Can you validate those reports?

Knowledge is power.

This means, a lack of knowledge is a loss to you and your business.

Fortunately, there’s a solution. But first, let’s talk about the actual cost of network downtime.

1. Network Downtime Cost: Real Dollar Amounts

Depending on how big or small your company actually is could determine how large a chunk network downtime can pull from your income.

In a survey of over 200 companies, CA Technologies found that network downtime costs companies a total of $26.5 billion in one year. 

Breaking it down even further shows that small companies lost around $55,000 each year. Medium-sized companies lost  $91,000. Large companies? They lost upwards of $1,000,000 because of IT failures.

Suffice it to say, from small businesses and across the field to big data centers, the real dollar to minute cost of network downtime is horrendous.

2. Network Downtime Cost: The Cost to You

If you want to estimate your own downtime cost in real dollar amounts, we’ve created a simple formula for you to follow:

Assume your revenues are $150,000 at 98% uptime.

At 98% uptime (for which you would need a reliable API to determine), you would multiply the hours in a quarter (1536) by your downtime (0.2 or 2%) to get 31 downtime hours in a quarter.

.02 Downtime Percentage * 1536 Hours in a Quarter = 31 Downtime Hours

Subtract the number of downtime hours from the total hours in a quarter to get your uptime hours.

1536 Quarterly Hours – 31 Downtime Hours = 1525 Uptime Hours

In this case, you now have 1525 hours left in the quarter. Now, divide your quarterly revenue by the hours left in the quarter to get your hourly income for that quarter.

$150,000 Total Quarterly Revenue/1525 Uptime Hours = $98 Per Hour of Revenue

Now multiply the dollar amount per hour of revenue by your downtime hours.

31 Downtime Hours * $98 Per Hour of Revenue = $3,038 Potentially Lost Revenue Per Quarter.

The key takeaway here is the realization that, even at 98% uptime and a with a modest revenue, the cost to your business can still be sizable.

And this is only taking into account sales revenue, not even lost customer base.

3. Network Downtime Cost: Reputation loss

Imagine if a brick and mortar business shut down for a collective “break” for a few minutes to an hour during its busiest time each day.

Is that “closed” sign causing people to huff and puff and walk away, never to return again?

How long do you think your reputation could survive network failure? If you run a time intensive business, perhaps some online app with fierce competition from other sites, even a few minutes of downtime might send someone away from your service to the next guy.

In August of 2013, the New York Times’ website went down for a mere two hours during the middle of the day. How did it impact their customer base? Stocks dropped, and the Wall Street Journal took advantage, dropping their paywall just to soak up the Times’ customer base.

Moving up in the world of internet domination, we see that when Google went down for a total of five minutes back in 2013, total internet traffic dropped by 40%. Of course, Google is too big to fail in this instance, but imagine the impact this had on a myriad of businesses across the globe.

How many customers might be patient enough to click refresh a few times? With some APIs, you might be able to mitigate this problem with a special apology to your customers.

Again, you may not see a few minutes of network failure as a problem, but first impressions are important, and your competitors are right next door waiting for your website to fail.

4. Network Downtime Cost: SEO and SERP

Depending on how often downtime occurs for your website, you may or may not experience a change in your SERP rankings. And how often and when Google crawls your site really depends on many factors other than downtime.

But if left unattended, your network problems could quickly become much larger bouts of network failure, leaving your rankings in danger of dropping dramatically.

According to some anecdotal data, Google has responded to queries about dropped rankings by saying that if they are unable to access a page more than a few times in a row, they drop the site from their index altogether.

Now, the more traffic a site gets, the more the Googlebots crawl, so, again, you may experience very little change in your rankings because of network downtime.


Now that we’ve painted a dire enough picture for you, let’s mitigate these risks, at least a little bit.

As we mentioned before, to know how much uptime, and ultimately how much downtime, your site experiences, you need a reliable and affordable API to augment your current dashboard.

Our new SiteUptime Website Monitor API 2.0 can create up to six monitors which you can access from a single widget.

Check out our demo account.  Here you see that we offer a wide range of graphic reports making it easy to see when your server was down, how often, and even average response times.

As you know, how long a site takes to load may determine how long a customer stays on your site. If each page on your site takes ages to load, how likely is it a customer is going to continue to browse your site. Now you can monitor whether those animations on your site are an attractive burden or not.

Now you can monitor whether those animations on your site are an attractive burden or not.

And as you fix your downtime problems, Uptime’s new API will give you a chance to communicate to your customers with a customizable public status page, which will hopefully assuage any damage to your reputation.

From a wide monitor load to an excellent graphical interface, you now have the tools in your hand to find and root out any problems causing network downtime for your website.