How to Achieve High Website Availability

For many site managers, a website’s availability is crucial to your online presence. Whether you’re running an e-commerce store, a blog, or a corporate website, keeping it accessible to users around the clock is essential for success.

You might have heard the term High Availability before (or HA); this is the holy grail for websites. It refers to your website’s ability to remain operational and accessible even when faced with disruptions or failures. Achieving high availability means your website is up and running 24/7, 365 days a year, with minimal downtime. For businesses and organizations that depend on their online presence, high availability is not just an aspiration—it’s a necessity.

Types of Threats to Website Availability

When thinking about website availability, there are different types of issues that can occur that threaten the status of your site.

Internal Problems:

Internal problems come from within your website’s infrastructure. This can include hardware failures, such as server crashes and storage device malfunctions, or software bugs that cause things to behave unpredictably. Internal problems are anything which lies within your site’s control – and therefore regular software maintenance and updates are crucial for mitigating this threat.

External Problems

External problems originate from dependencies on third parties or external services beyond your control. Examples include:

  • API Issues: Third-party APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) are vital for many websites. Any problems with these APIs can affect your site’s functionality and performance.
  • Cloud Service Outages: While generally reliable, these services can experience outages that impact your website’s availability. Monitoring and redundancy strategies are key to mitigating this risk.
  • Third-Party Element Problems: Third-party plugins can enhance your website’s capabilities, such as marketing analytics, eCommerce tools and social media plugins. However, they can also face a range that disrupts your site’s operation. Third parties can also load additional third parties that can impact your site’s performance!

Third parties, by definition, are much less straightforward to control. It is therefore key to make sure that your monitoring suite takes account of any external dependencies that can impact your site.  

Malicious Actors

Malicious actors represent a significant threat to your website’s availability. These threats come from individuals or entities seeking to disrupt or exploit your services. Compromised Third Parties can leave your website vulnerable to attacks or data breaches.

Monitoring with RapidSpike

RapidSpike is a comprehensive monitoring tool that can help you safeguard your website against these threats. Here’s how RapidSpike’s features can bolster your website’s availability:

1. Page Load Monitors

Measure Page Load Times: RapidSpike tracks how long it takes for your web pages to load fully, pinpointing performance bottlenecks and timeouts.

Monitor Third-Party Dependencies: Keep a watchful eye on all third-party elements loading on your web pages. RapidSpike detects and alerts you to any page load issues.

Website Availability - Slowest Third Parties

Specify critical page elements to monitor with ‘tracked elements’, such as images, scripts, or interactive elements, to ensure a smooth user experience.

RapidSpike’s Third Party Explorer also allows you to view an overview of the Third Parties being loaded on your site and their impact on page load.

Website availability - Third party explorer

2. Detecting Compromised Third Parties

Receive alerts for elements on your page, including if the file size exceeds an expected limit. This can help you keep an eye on what is loading on your page. 

3. Uptime and Server Monitoring

The Uptime Monitoring service by RapidSpike checks your website’s availability around the clock and alerts you immediately if downtime occurs. You can also see a root-cause analysis of any issues. You can also monitor uptime for servers.

4. Sitemap Monitors

RapidSpike’s sitemap monitors allow you to check the status code of every page on your website. A high-level view of your website’s availability can stop any important pages from failing unnoticed.

Website availability is not negotiable in today’s online world. To achieve high availability, you must understand and mitigate internal, external, and malicious threats. RapidSpike equips you with advanced monitoring tools to ensure uninterrupted access to your website, enhance its performance, and protect it against potential vulnerabilities. With RapidSpike, you can confidently maintain your online presence, ensuring your users enjoy a reliable experience.