People are constantly looking for various information online. They compare and buy products and services online. Therefore, business websites play an important role in promoting a company. They help to build effectively against competitors, optimize internal processes, and find more customers. And the lack of a website for an organization has a negative impact on its image and profits.
And website administration is as time-consuming as checking emails or calling potential clients. Though website management can be entrusted to a qualified webmaster. And it’s a useful investment, which is much more rewarding than every businessman may think. And this is an almost vital thing to have nowadays when you want to sell something to a lot of customers, even locally.
How does an e-store work?
In short, an online store, or simply an e-store, is a website on which a catalog of products is published and customers have the ability to select and order them. The customer browses the product catalog and puts the goods he wants in the so-called virtual “basket”, just like in an ordinary supermarket. When all the goods are selected, the customer places the order, giving his contact information and delivery address. Next, the manager of the online store contacts the buyer to check the order and agree on payment, time and place of delivery.
The popularity of online stores is primarily due to the convenience of choosing goods, and also to the fact that prices in online stores are usually lower than in regular stores. From the customers’ point of view, it is very convenient. They don’t even have to get up to look through dozens and hundreds of products from the desired category and buy only what’s needed. Moreover, it can be done at any time and in any place. Because online stores never close and are not tied to a place.
Why is website monitoring essential for e-store?
“Online store monitoring,” despite the Internet searching results, is not only about price tracking and sales increasing by watching competitive e-stores. There’s another meaning that is vital for this type of website – literally monitoring website accessibility and stability from the inside. And businessmen need qualified professionals and specific tools for that, too.
To put it simply, website monitoring is a big part of the job of a technician in a company, or even a whole team of such specialists. The global goal of this work is to find out about any problems with the website in time and prevent them. And even the most basic malfunctions can cause big problems up to customer churn and serious financial losses. Some of the major troubles that are dangerous for an e-store are:
- Website is slow. According to Amazon, they lose 1% of sales for every 100 ms of delay. Clearly, smaller stores won’t lose as much, but still. Nobody likes to wait.
- Certain pages are inaccessible. It could be the product page, or it could be the cart or payment form. And companies do expensive research to improve the design and increase the conversion rate of the website pages. And these pages must be accessible to users at all costs.
- Whole website is inaccessible. Yes, that happens too. And it’s good if it’s completely down – the owner will quickly notice it. It’s worse if the site goes down from time to time and for some customers. This can go on for months, until customers start complaining, but it will be too late to stop them from never returning to an e-store.
The result of these, as well as many other problems, is always about the same: the online store loses customers. And none of the customers will tell an e-store owner about a problem. Most users will simply go to a competitor. And share negative experiences with friends who will never become your customer.
Tools for effective website monitoring
It does not matter whether you hired a professional webmaster or decided to do website monitoring on your own – you need the right and effective tools that give maximum information with minimum effort in the setup process. For example, one such tool is HostTracker, an online service that allows even a novice to perform professional website monitoring from all possible angles.
In addition to complete control over the state of the website, this platform allows you to simulate many of the user’s actions. Such tools allow you not only to check website availability and stability, but also the its access speed and web pages loading speed, as well as the integrity of the data placed on them.
Avoid overpaying for advertising with well-established website monitoring
With the current prices for advertising and large investments, every website owner always wants to be sure of its effectiveness. Therefore, when launching an advertising campaign such as Google Adwords, every online store owner wants to be sure that nothing will interfere with it and will not stop users from coming to their website.
And if for some reason the website becomes inaccessible, the Google Adwords system blocks all of the ads entirely. The reason for inaccessibility is not particularly important for this contextual advertising service – errors 403 (Access denied), 404 (Page not found), internal server errors, etc. And it is possible to restore the functionality only manually. And only after Google team approves your ads, which, in turn, takes a lot of time. But that’s not the worst of it.
But there are major cons in relying on this system. First, a large number of malfunctions of the site connected to Adwords go unnoticed by Google, and it links to unavailable websites in the ad units. Second, even a short-term failure can stop an advertising campaign for an extended period. Because the webmaster must localize problem in time first. And once webmaster fixed it, he will have to make a subscriptin restoration request and wait for it to be fulfilled.
But the HostTracker toolkit includes a service that automatically detects the status of a website. And if there are problems, it manually pauses the campaign through the Adwords API before Google does anything urgent. And once the website is back to normal, the service will resume the campaign as if nothing had happened.
This approach to monitoring the website and Google Adwords campaigns allows you to avoid serious financial losses, minimize the impact of failures and significantly reduce the workload of the technical team.
Be in touch with website stability and accessibility round-the-clock
To keep website stably available for users, it is necessary to respond promptly to all arising problems. It doesn’t matter whether the owner does it himself or the webmaster does it. Anyways, you need to always be aware of what’s going on with the website. To do this, all HostTracker website monitoring systems include instant notifications of emergencies and failures.
For this purpose, system divides all alerts into several categories, depending on their importance. If malfunction is brief or insignificant, system is not sending alerts. But in case of real problems, the website owner or webmaster on duty is promptly notified about them. Webmaster can get three types of alerts: about website problems, about its status, and about it up and running. In cases of problems and troubleshooting, it’s simple – you have to fix them. The second type of notification the webmaster receives when the check is unsuccessful, if it is a confirmed problem. And the third type of notifications notifies you when the website is back up and running. This is convenient for the owner if the webmaster has succeeded in fixing problems.