Approximately half of all Fortune 500 companies experience at least 1.6 hours of downtime each week1. This equates to about 80 hours of downtime per year.
Even one hour of downtime can have a significant impact on a business’ finances. According to Forrester Research, the hourly cost of downtime for a typical company can range from $10,000 to $1 million. And the impact to a business’ reputation can be equally as damaging.
So it’s critical you have the right measures in place to ensure your site is protected, and to keep your customers safe and satisfied.
With the stakes so high, Internet retailers need to adopt a 360-degree approach to security all year-round. Below are some tips on how to get started:
Prepare for the Worst, Plan for the Best
To ensure website availability and security, be prepared for the worst through escalation and incident response planning by outlining standard operating procedures for downtime, including establishing and training incident-response teams. Monitor your site diligently to determine service health and identify anomalies quickly and accurately, as well as provide failover to back-up IP addresses to ensure the site is always available.
Improve Your Infrastructure to Handle Upswings
Optimize the scalability and performance of your Internet infrastructure with demonstrated management of increased traffic loads during the holidays and other peak shopping times. Whether you manage your site internally or through a vendor, a track record of maintaining satisfactory service levels during “slower” months may not be a reliable indicator that service levels can be maintained during peak times. If scalability and performance of your infrastructure are not optimized, it could damage your sales revenue and reputation at the worst possible time.
‘Tis the Season!
Did you know that…
- Online retailers can make up to 40 percent of their annual revenue in November and December
- On average, holiday sales have increased 3.3% for the last 10 years.
- The National Retail Federation is projecting 2013 holiday sales to rise 3.9% to $602.1 billion.
Don’t Forget About DDoS
With the increase in size and complexity of distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, do consider leveraging upstream service providers to protect both Web servers and DNS. If either goes down, a company could be out of business. A cloud-based approach to both DNS management and DDoS protection provides a cost-effective alternative to maintaining uptime.
Implement Security Best Practices by Partnering with a Security Provider for Holistic Support
Not all ecommerce sites can develop an internal cyber intelligence capability. Security service providers can help to quickly identify and understand the various security incidents and their implications, determine effective mitigation and remediation tactics, and develop a clear plan to enhance security. Businesses should take advantage of holistic services like the Verisign® Uptime Bundle. Delivered via the cloud, such services combine fully reliable DNS resolution and DDoS attack protection to support critical Web-based systems and reduce the risk of downtime.
Don’t underestimate the consequences that downtime can cause your company – one technical snafu, one natural disaster or just one power outage can put you out of business. So don’t wait - now is the time to think about how you can mitigate the threat of a possible downtime. For more information about best practices to protect your website availability and security, read our whitepaper The Ups and Downs of Network Availability.
It’s more than just downtime!
Heard of the Three Second Rule? Nearly half of all Internet consumers expect a website to load in 2 seconds or less. And if a site doesn’t load within 3 seconds, about 40 percent will abandon it. Even worse, roughly 80 percent of Internet consumers won’t return to a site if they had a bad experience with that site’s performance.
1Alertra, September 2013