My website is down – what do I do?
Step One – Check connection.
Let’s start at the very basic level of your own system – “Have you tried turning it off and on again?”. Your problem may stem from the fact that your computer (and network) don’t have access to the internet and there is an issue with your Internet Service Provider (ISP). Try accessing other sites on WWW – if they work, you can rule out your ISP as the problem.
Step Two – Look for an error message
Usually, when a site fails to load problem, your web browser will display an error code from the website server you are trying to access. Even though this code may not make sense to you, it will vital in further diagnosis of your website problem.
The most comment error codes are:
- Error 403 – The request for access to your website server is forbidden for some reason. The server understood the request but will not comply with it due to client-related issues.
- Error 404 – Your internet browser was able to communicate with the server but couldn’t find what was requested.
- Error 503 – The website server is temporarily unable to handle the request. This may be due to the server being overloaded or being down for maintenance.
Be sure to write down or screenshot any error code you see in your browser and move onto the next step.
Step Three – Contact your server provider
If you manage your own website server, you need contact your server provider’s support department with the error code that you have recorded from the step above.
Most support departments have a contact phone number or you will be able to log into their help system using the login information (username/password) given to you at the time you signed up for their service.
Using a support ticket system can take a few hours, however with the error code on hand, a solution will be quickly identified.
Step Four – Contact your website developer
If everything is handled by the developer of your site including your website server, it’s time to give them a call with the error code that you have. Developers will have the tools on hand to reverse engineer the problem and determine its source before implementing a solution to get your site back online.