Are you concerned about the security of your website?
I hope your answer is yes as the online presence is more fragile than many people might think.
Websites struggle with malicious attacks, unethical competitive tactics, and sudden loss of traffic on a daily basis. These threats are many and varied.
Having a solid monitoring routine in place can give you peace of mind and make your marketing strategy better informed and more predictable.
There are five monitoring routines to set up here:
1. Get notified when your site is unavailable
Any site, large or small, will eventually become unavailable and there is no getting around it. Even Google and Twitter break sometimes!
What matters is how quickly a brand is there to fix issues and update their customers.
This is why it is so important to monitor your website and be notified immediately when it is unavailable.
Pingdom is one of the best platforms for monitoring uptime. The great thing about the solution is that there is an option to monitor your site from different parts of the world so that you know if your servers are inaccessible from overseas, even if they appear to be working on your side.
Pingdom comes with statistics that show your availability statistics over time. If your website is frequently down, you should speak to your hosting provider or switch to a new one.
There are many more performance monitoring tools that you can use to verify that you have a larger website. It’s also a good idea to set up cross-device tracking using Google to monitor that your website is performing well on different devices.
2. Get notified when your site is hacked
Often times, websites are hacked by the cyber criminals who create them vicious Software installed on your website visitors’ devices without their knowledge. This software aims to gain access to personal information or to damage the devices, usually for financial reasons.
Malware damages your brand’s reputation, ruins your website’s organic visibility and consequently affects your bottom line.
Malicious attacks are very common. I deal with half a hundred different websites every month, and I haven’t seen any that haven’t been hit by a malware attack. In fact, 5.6 billion malware attacks were carried out in 2020.
This corresponds to the global overall state of digital security. Aura says someone becomes a victim of identity theft or fraud every 10 seconds. That number just seems surreal. If you don’t protect your website and its users, you will face a major privacy-related reputational crisis that we have seen hundreds of.
The Google Search Console is one of the fastest – and free! – Ways to be notified when your website has been hacked.
There are also several security scanners that can be used to find and remove malware in case your website has been hacked.
3. Monitor your links
Links are paramount to online visibility. Losing a high authority link often results in a loss of traffic and, over time, an organic loss of position. If you don’t monitor your backlinks it might be next to impossible to identify a problem.
This is why monitoring your backlinks is so important to a safer and more predictable marketing strategy. This is often a way to revive a lost link (e.g., if it’s gone due to a bug or a redesign).
Linkchecker.pro is a great tool that monitors your backlinks and notifies you when something is wrong. The tool not only notifies you of missing backlinks, but also informs you whether the link has been changed to nofollow or whether the link page has been canonicalized to another URL. In some cases, while there is nothing to fix, all of these records will help you identify a possible reason for lower rankings.
4. Monitor your bot traffic
Malicious bot traffic can pose a serious threat to your website’s wellbeing. A sudden surge in bot traffic can be a sign of a DDoS attack.
Bot traffic can slow down your website and indicate content scraping and data theft. ZDNet reports that malicious bot traffic is increasing as more companies move their operations and marketing online.
If you want to check if your website has been affected by bot traffic, Finteza is the best place to start.
With Finteza, you can identify click fraud sessions, detect a bot traffic attack, and determine the sources and targets of those attacks.
5. Monitor your brand name
Monitoring your brand names is number 5 on this list, but not because that’s the least important. In fact, I think this is the most important point here as an effective brand name monitoring routine will help with all of the above. Your active users and customers will be notified immediately when:
- Your website is not available
- Your page looks hacked
- Something is wrong with your website
- Your pages are unusually slow, etc.
In addition, brand monitoring can help you fix the problems before they arise and manage an impending reputation crisis by:
- Recognize the first frustrated customers in good time
- Respond quickly to every customer
- Move public conversations offline to prevent them from going viral
My favorite social media monitoring tool has long been Agorapulse as it is the most action-oriented. Forever social media mention it gathers you can:
- Compose and post a reply right away
- Label and star to record and make it easy to find later (this comes in handy if you reuse positive mentions on social media as testimonials).
- Assign other team members to be assigned to each mention and edit it on behalf of your brand
- Remove or archive mentions that do not require any action (or attention).
I find Agorapulse’s social inbox to be the only way to keep things productive and organized.
There are many benefits to digital marketing, including the ability to expand your customer base beyond your local community and even go global. But there are also challenges associated with it.
One of the biggest challenges facing digital brands is exposing themselves to multiple online risks, including security breaches, reputational crises, and sudden loss of rankings (and traffic).
Hopefully the above tools will make your digital marketing a lot safer and more predictable. Good luck!