If you’ve been working with websites for some time, you’ve probably come across the occasional "website down” error message.
This can be frustrating, especially if you don’t catch it in time. Not only do unexpected website outages impact the credibility of your website, but they also result in lost revenue.
Fixing the problem as soon as possible is the best way to reduce the damages. But how do you even know if your website is down in the first place? Is it just you, or is everyone experiencing downtime on your website? Is this important, or can you brush it aside? What caused the issue?
In this article, we’re going to talk about how you can check the status of your website regardless of where you are in the world and help you to help resolve website downtime as fast as possible.
Why Should You Worry About Your Website Status?
A website is down when it is entirely unreachable or incapable of serving its users' needs. When you visit a website that is down, you'll likely be met with a message that says there’s something wrong with it and to check again later.
The period when your website can’t do anything is called website downtime. Downtimes can be disadvantageous in many ways:
● Leads to unhappy customers
● Leads to lost revenue
● Can damage the brand's reputation
● Can hurt your SEO
Since your website serves as the public face of your company, it's frequently the first and most crucial point of contact a customer has with you. This means one thing: your website should be accessible to your audience all the time.
Why Is Your Website Down? Common Reasons
Before we help you determine whether your website is down or not, we first need to understand what leads to website downtime in the first place. There are four common reasons for website downtime, which we will discuss in this section.
Reason 1: Server Overload
If your host is hosting your website on a shared server, anytime there is a significant increase in traffic to your site, your host may suspend or remove your site to protect other sites.
Plus, the availability of your site may be impacted if other websites on the server have high traffic levels due to the "bad neighbor" effect.
If the host can’t handle this sudden surge in traffic, the website could crash or lose much of its functionality. Server overload can also be caused by your server host updating their system, so you must temporarily shut down your website.
Reason 2: Malicious Cyber Attack
You need to keep an eye out for irregular occurrences like a sudden increase in traffic.
An unusually high traffic volume on your website might be an attempt by malware or hackers to bring about a severe disruption. This is called a distributed denial-of-service attack (DDoS).
In a DDoS attack, hackers target your website with so much traffic that your server can no longer handle it, leading to website downtime.
Such an attack is often used as a way to extort money from website owners. Hackers will threaten to launch a DDoS attack unless you pay them a ransom.
The best way to protect yourself from such an attack is to have a website security plan in place. If your site's security mechanisms are down, it becomes highly exposed to attacks.
Reason 3: Hardware and Software Causes
This might be a no-brainer for some, but surprisingly, power failure is still the leading cause of website downtime worldwide.
For example, just last year, Amazon’s cloud service experienced downtime because of power outages, causing major service disruptions to the US’ technological infrastructure.
Sometimes, hardware is not maintained correctly and does not have a regular maintenance schedule. Hosts might also forgo regular, professional service programs, leading to early degradation of their equipment and the subsequent website downtime that their clients experience.
On the other hand, software issues can also cause website downtime. A good example is outdated WordPress plugins that malfunction when new audiences look at your site.
Reason 4: Other Causes
Surprisingly, human error accounts for a significant amount of website downtimes. Things like accidental unplugging, bad handling resulting in accidents, and code errors cause downtime in the server, which means that your website could suffer from issues outside of your control.
However, even if these things are out of your control, you should still do your best to stay on top of website downtimes to minimize the hours in which your website is not doing anything.
But how can you do that? That’s what we’ll talk about in this section.
How to Check for Your Website Status
You must know when your website is down or not to provide the proper remedies for it. There are multiple methods you can use to check the status of your website, which we’ll talk about in this article.
Method 1: Check With Website Down Checker
Website Down Checker is a practical, lightweight, and accessible tool that you can use to check the status of your website. Websites like this are good for you because they contain whether or not your website is down in real-time.
Follow the steps below to learn how to use Website Down Checker.
- Go to the website checker page.
- You should find a URL bar in the middle of the screen. Enter the URL of your site that you want to check on that bar.
- Click the blue Check button on the side to see whether your site is experiencing downtime.
- If your website works fine, you should get a report like this. However, if your website is not working, it will say that your website is not available. This means that your website is experiencing downtime.
This method is easy and accessible – and almost everyone can do it, which is great for regular users. However, keep in mind that it doesn’t give you many details about what kind of errors your website might face if it is down.
Method 2: Check With Host Tracker
Host Tracker is a website monitoring service that provides more details about your site’s status.
This website can determine the page speed, HTTPS, ping, trace, port, health, and security. Plus, this website checker application will send you automatic notifications if your website goes down.
However, keep in mind that this is a paid service. You’ll need to register for a free trial or pay $9.92 to $74.92 annually to use their detailed feature.
Follow the process below to discover how you can use the host tracker.
- Go to the Host Tracker website.
- Scroll down to see the Check Site bar.
- This functionality will check for the page speed by default, but that’s not what we’re here for. Instead, change the setting by clicking the Ping button above. This will check site availability worldwide.
- Next, fill in the required information, such as your website domain and the test location.
- After that, click the green Check button.
- Wait for the information to load. Once it does, you should see details about whether your website is available in multiple locations and other information, such as packets and replies.
Host Tracker is a helpful tool with comprehensive results, but you’ll have to pay to get the full version of the results. Nevertheless, even the free version already has some details you can use.
Method 3: Check With Site24x7
Another helpful page to know when checking your website’s worldwide availability is Site24x7.
You can check the availability of your website with Site24x7 from more than 60 different places, including China, Barcelona, London, New York, and Sydney.
This website checker verifies that your site is online and provides precise details on the entire response time, the time it takes to connect and resolve DNS, and the first-byte and last-byte times.
Here’s how it works.
- When you visit Site24x7, a field for entering your website's domain appears immediately.
- Click "Ping Now" after entering your domain or URL.
- Wait a little while before all the data is obtained. A table with details of the ping will then appear.
If the Status for each location shows a green arrow pointing upwards, your website is accessible from those areas of the world. Alternately, if the website is offline, the Status and IP columns will display dashes and Host Unavailable.
This page gives you some information that might not be available from the other checks on this list, which makes it a good option for checking your website.
Method 4: Check With HideMy.Name
By using a proxy server to direct your website to several locations and examine its status, HideMy.name provides a novel solution to check the status of your website.
As you may know, using a proxy server to visit a website can ensure it is accessible from a different location.
This is feasible because the connection first travels through a proxy server situated in a different country, after which the server sends a request to the website, which is then displayed on your screen.
Using the preceding scheme here is how to conduct a trustworthy online check on the state of your website:
- Go to HideMy.name and select the "Free Trial" option.
- After providing a working email address, click Get code. This way, a free VPN access code will arrive in your mailbox (you will need it later).
- By selecting VPN for Windows, you can install the application.
You can also set up the software's Mac, Linux, or Android versions. Choose based on the operating system you use for your machine.
- Follow the installation procedure that will appear on the screen.
- Once the app is installed, Open HideMyName VPN on your computer after that and enter the code you were sent by email.
- To check the connection to your website, select a specific server. For instance, we can use this software to see if Hostinger is accessible in Tanglin, Singapore.
- Your website is down in that region if you cannot access it after changing the location of your server. Try checking from multiple servers to verify that your website is accessible from various places.
Keep in mind that your code is only suitable for 24 hours. After that, you must obtain a new code by creating a new email account or by purchasing one of the premium plans for $8 per month, $24 per six months, or $36 annually.
Checking for Unavailable Websites
If you want your website to have good metrics, you should continuously monitor its availability. Websites frequently discourage audiences from revisiting it, as the users would feel like their time is being wasted.
This could reduce your website’s metrics in the long run, leading to lower and lower numbers.
Therefore, you need to know immediately if your website is available or not – and you need to know if the issue is a universal one. Fortunately, doing so is easy, and we’ve provided multiple ways that you can do that check in this article.
Now, you can check your website’s availability using the multiple methods we’ve discussed.
Why is your website down?
There are multiple reasons why your website could be experiencing availability issues.
The most common one would be server overload when your host server can’t handle the traffic that your website is experiencing. This traffic could also be because of malicious attacks designed to bring your website down.
There are also server unavailability issues caused by power outages, hardware causes, and human error.
How do you look up if a website is down?
There are multiple ways that you can check to see whether your website is available or not. You can go to Website Down Checker, Host Tracker, and Site24x7. You can even use a VPN to see whether different international servers can access your website.
How do I fix a website that is down?
There are multiple troubleshooting fixes that you can conduct if your website is down.
If your website is down only on your PC, you might want to check permissions or access blocks – maybe a plugin or your ISP is preventing you from accessing the website.
However, if you’ve discovered that the website is down internationally, you can call your website host and have them look at the issue from the server side. They can then recommend you other steps to follow if they think that you can do something to resolve the issue.