What is an uptime guarantee?
While domestic Internet providers usually work with best efforts policies, which do not guarantee any particular level of service in terms of access to the Internet, business suppliers have to do better. Businesses and similar organizations require hosting as well as access to others' Internet pages. Because customer access to websites is important for trade, these sites must be accessible at all times. This means that providers need to be able to guarantee that hosting will be live for an acceptable amount of time or pay reparations for lost business to their clients.
What is a 99.9% uptime guarantee?
Many providers boast of having 99.9% uptime guarantees, but it is important to remember that even this could mean as many as nine hours a year when services might not be accessible, more than a full working day. Unless the guarantee also comes with a limit on the number of consecutive hours services can be out before compensation is paid, this could be risky for business-critical sites.
Some services claim 100% uptime, but this is unlikely to be true in practice. Even switching to a pre-prepared server in the event of a hardware malfunction could take a few moments, ruining any chance of 100% service. Grand claims like this should be inspected carefully for hidden terms and conditions, as they are likely to be less transparent or fair than services that recognize the possibility of issues arising.
What happens if the site goes down?
Finding a supplier that manages the risks of downtime rather than pretending it will not happen or trying to gloss over it with percentages is probably the best bet. As well as looking at the numbers, it's worth checking out what a business says about its procedures in the case of equipment or software failure. Good providers have contingency plans in place to minimize downtime and keep services running smoothly. If a business's plans are well thought through and robust, it is likely to be keen to mention them in its marketing material to reassure customers.
Uptime guarantees are, therefore, not necessarily the best way to judge service levels before committing to a provider. They need to be considered in terms of the overall offer and, ideally, compared to existing customers' actual experiences.
When it comes down to it, most sites go down at some point. The true test of a good hosting service is their quick response time and efficiency in getting the network back up and running in no time. Check out the top-rated hosting services, offering reliable, top-notch websites service solutions.
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