What’s in a moment? A lot it turns out. Have you ever wondered what a moment of website downtime means for a business? It could mean hundreds of thousands of pounds in lost revenue, and worse, lost customers. But it's not just a problem for IT: marketers need to care about the potential price of things going wrong. We've launched a report investigating the true cost of downtime. “The Marketing Cost of Downtime” highlights the missing links in businesses today and provides educational and practical insights on how to minimise the risk.

What consumers think of downtime

It’s easy to assume that enjoying an online browsing session or checking out at an ecommerce platform will be plain sailing. The report highlights a different story, one of a broken online journey that can be detrimental to a brand's reputation. We spoke to consumers across the country to find out about their online experiences, and the results should act as a warning. More than two thirds (68 per cent) of consumers feel their opinion of a brand would be negatively affected by website downtime, while 57 per cent felt they would avoid buying from a brand because of downtime.

In our view, up to 95 per cent of websites are not fit for purpose. That may sound ridiculous, but hosting only works well if it’s with a supplier that can back a solution technically as well as financially. This means 24/7 managed support. There has also been a breakdown in communication between IT and marketing teams. While marketers appear more conscious of brand reputation and customer experience than their IT counterparts, few understand the technology infrastructure underpinning their digital services and thus the true impact of web downtime. It’s about time this is rectified, and education will be a crucial means to achieve this. With customer experience rated as the primary way for organisations to differentiate themselves, marketers need to be aware of the impact that poor technology and hosting support has on sales and brand reputation.

Web hosting partnership in action

For our client, House of Hackney, safeguarding future growth was the key motivation to engage a hosting partner. Ecommerce Manager, Rachel Morris, said, "Unfortunately it’s often seen as a nerdy and dry subject (for brands), so it’s not always prioritised." We’re on a mission to change the way brands and marketers regard and apply website hosting. Education is key. There are deep intricacies of hosting, and each business requires a different solution. But businesses need to realise that through the right partnership and strategy they can head issues off at the pass. Ultimately this will help remove stress and pressure for the many marketers it directly affects. It's time for a marketing industry standard that protects businesses from the impact of downtime and keeps customers wanting more.

Download the report

If you want to know more simply submit a few details to discover the marketing cost of downtime, some examples of hosting best practice and what to look for in a partner to mitigate this happening in your brand.