InternetSupervision Articles - #1

The Inside Track on Website Monitoring

You just received a 404 error on your website!

No, actually you didn't, but how would you know that your site was unavailable to website visitors if you were not watching it 24 hours a day, every day of the year? You wouldn't! That is why many companies outsource the monitoring of websites to independent third parties. If you are concerned about the availability of your website, follow along with the Inside Track on Website Monitoring.

Web site monitoring is an essential component of you Web success. If Web users can not access your site, then what chance do you have of converting that visitor into a buyer? None! Absolutely none!

Monitoring the performance of your website not only gives you an edge over the competition (as most website owners don't monitor their website) it also give you peace of mind that your web host is fulfilling its duties of serving your website around the clock every day of the year.

Site monitoring software works in one of two ways.

Lower-end site monitoring services use a program to only ping your web server not your website. Essentially, these type of website monitoring software only send a low-level message or data packet to see if it can access the server, not the actual website or its internal functions. The obvious problem with this approach is that it is limited in scope - in short, all it looks for is the ability to establish one connection with the server. For most website owners this is not enough - especially those that are hosted on a shared server.

Higher-end Internet site monitoring services work in the following way: a software program is created which crawls a website in order to determine that the site is available. While it also look for network connectivity of the server to see if it is operating, the advantage of this approach to website monitoring is that website managers/webmaster can rest assured that not only the server is up and running, but that the functions of their website are up and running as well.

Web site monitoring tools that you can run on your desktop are an example of a lower-end site monitoring service. Features of a website monitoring service that provide higher-end website monitoring services are those that monitor not just the connection with a server but the integrity of the HTML, the FTP access, the SMTP (outgoing email server) as well as POP3.

Just a side note, site traffic monitoring is not website monitoring. Monitoring website traffic means seeing how many people have visited your website, and has nothing to do with website traffic monitoring software which is concerned with the Internet availability and performance of your website.