· 12 min read

9 Common Website Crash Reasons You Must Know

A website crash is a frustrating experience and may occur for various reasons; however, they are not uncommon, and if you know what's causing the problem, you can fix it.

By knowing the website crash reasons, you can learn how to fix them. In case you are wondering what caused your website to crash and how to overcome them, we explained these in detail in this blog post.

Let's look at 9 common website crash reasons and how you can track and solve them.

What is a Website Crash?

a picture of a laptop screen showing 404 error

Simply put, a website crash occurs when your website stops working correctly and prevents users from accessing it.

Once you receive errors from your website and see that it stopped loading any data and the users cannot access it online, that's when you know that your website crashed.

For a website to function without errors, the browser must be able to process all the data the server sends.

In this case, if one of the resources fails to load due to a technical glitch or server error, the browser will stop further processing.

And this is how a "website crash" happens!

The web browser automatically stops all activity on a website when it cannot load the resources it needs to function and stays that way until the error is fixed.

9 Reasons Why Your Website May Crash

You may have heard the famous quote, "a problem well defined is half solved," which is why you should find out what causes your website crashes.

Knowing common website crash reasons is half the battle.

With that in mind, we'll dive right into our list.

1- Code Errors

a picture that a computer screen shows codes and the word "error" in the middle

Code error happens when your website is poorly coded and contains many bugs that eventually cause it to crash.

If this is the case for your website to crash, try to locate the root cause and find out what triggered the code to break.

One small coding mistake can cause your website to crash, affecting your traffic and performance.

Please ensure everyone with access to your site's code knows what they're doing.

Additionally, you may also experience a crash if you use poor server copies of your website, so choose your service wisely.

2- Plugin Errors

laptop displaying a WordPress dashboard with a plugin

There are numerous WordPress e-commerce plugins to get your website up and running in full functionality.

Using plugins for your website can ensure greater security, improve productivity, and have a better browsing experience.

However, some plugins you use might conflict, causing the website to crash or stop working.

Some plugins work well until they are abandoned by their creators, which makes them buggy and outdated.

In particular, installing and activating plugins online can cause a website crash in WordPress.

There is also a possibility that you could install a WordPress update that is incompatible with your plugin, causing your website to crash.

3- Traffic Surges

a picture of a red chart showing the website traffic surge and website crash

High traffic volumes are significant, but you must also consider your website's capacity to handle them.

When too many people try to visit your website simultaneously, that's another reason why your website crashes.

You probably remember when Ellen Degeneres took that famous Oscar selfie and shared it on Twitter.

That tweet got so many times retweeted that it crashed Twitter! 📉

In the same way, as Twitter experienced a traffic surge, your website could also experience downtime.

That is why you must check your hosting plan and space when planning a promotional marketing campaign or launching a new product.

To guarantee 99% uptime, you should also use reliable hosting services that offer state-of-the-art servers.

4- Domain Problems

a picture of a frustrated man looking at a laptop screen and searching for the domain errors and website crash reasons

No matter how closely you monitor your domain activity, you can still encounter technical difficulties resulting in domain/hosting servers malfunctioning.

There could be several factors behind the domain glitch, but the key is to choose a good hosting or domain provider that is reliable.

Moreover, forgetting to renew your domain can cause your website to crash.

Keep in mind that domain registration is a different service from web hosting.

And regardless of whether your hosting plan is intact, domains can still expire and cause your site to go down.

5- DNS Errors

DNS stands for Domain Name System, and this error mainly occurs because you cannot connect to an IP address indicates a website crash.

Web browsers use IP addresses to find a website, and DNS converts your domain name into an IP address, which means if anything goes wrong during this process, your website can't be accessed.

The most common problems associated with DNS errors are the incorrect configuration of DNS records, high TTL values, DDOS attacks, high DNS latency, and network failures.

We suggest having a DNS expert on hand to resolve such issues as soon as possible and have your website up and running.

6- Cyber Attacks

a man who is coding is reflected on the computer screen

Websites that are not encrypted or secured are usually targeted by malicious attacks from hackers, causing them to crash.

DDoS and bots are common tactics used by cybercriminals to attack websites that affect website performance and, in the worst case, can even make your site crash. 👨🏻‍💻

Using a reliable web hosting service that offers secure servers can prevent this problem by preventing your website from getting infected in the first place.

Additionally, WordPress websites are prone to spam comments that can crash websites and even email accounts. Thus, turn it off if you don't need the commenting feature.

Keep your software and plugins updated, and remember to back up your stable installations in case you need to revert to a previous working version.

Another way to avoid this is to scan your website for viruses and malware that can damage your performance.

We suggest running a Malware/Virus check on your website domains every day to monitor for any problems.

7- Blacklisted By Google

a man checking Google using a MacBook Pro

Another reason why your website crashes might be related to Google policy.

Google isolates and adds to its blacklist thousands of suspicious websites regularly, resulting in website crashes and outages.

Google may blacklist your website if it suspects it is being used to spread malware.

But how?

The pages on your site which have been hacked can download malware automatically, signaling to Google that your website might be the target of a widespread malware campaign.

As a result, Google and other search engines, as well as antivirus companies, will flag such websites as unsafe, discouraging individuals from visiting them.

In this case, the best solution is to consult the developer and your IT department about what needs to be adjusted.

8- Cloud Provider Downtime

a man looking at laptop screen and watching the website crash stats and data

It is also possible that your website crashed because your cloud provider was down.

As frustrating as this error may be, there is nothing you can do about it.

It could be several things, such as maintenance or changes in how you provide your services, to cause this issue.

It is generally a good idea to contact your web hosting provider, regardless of the issue you are experiencing, just to be sure the error is coming from them.

It should be possible for them to assist you with any issue, mainly if it's a hosting issue.

9- Human Error

a man working with a laptop in an office

It is said that " to err is human," so maybe next time you experience downtime on your website, you should look for internal errors as well.

Generally speaking, human beings are great but are not immune from making mistakes.

Human errors on the server, whether caused by negligence, ignorance, inexperience, or simply accidental mistakes, directly impact your website's performance.

Therefore, we recommend taking a thorough approach to your policy!

It is best to make maintenance and requirements as systematic as possible by documenting all procedures.

In other words, the fewer people involved, the fewer errors.

Consequently, you can also take advantage of software integrations and automation and invest in machine learning and augmented reality.

How to Reduce Website Crashes?

a man working with two MacBooks and writing codes

Yes, your website may crash, and it's not the end of the world, but rooting out the cause can help you resolve the issue more quickly and minimize the damage.

There is no way to guarantee that a website will never crash, but you can reduce the chances of it happening if you take some precautions.

Here are some steps you can take to minimize website crashes:

  • Review regularly whether all software and applications are up-to-date.
  • Keep the plugins up to date, but don't overload the websites.
  • Activate auto-renewal to prevent domain/hosting expiration.
  • Pick the right CDN plan for your needs by choosing a CDN plan.
  • Make yourself a favor and always have backups of your site's files.
  • Store your backups in different locations in the web server.

Indeed, it is a solid recovery plan, like having backups that allow a website to be restored in minutes or hours instead of days or weeks.

Additionally, ensure that you and your website team have easy and direct access to your website's FTP/SFTP.

If you have a control panel, ensure your web team can access that too.

As a Final Note

You can avoid website crashes by taking the steps mentioned earlier, like choosing a reliable hosting service and protecting your site against different attacks.

Knowing website crash reasons can benefit you enormously since it can help you deal with possible crashes.

However, what can help you the most is having an automated tool to check the performance of servers regularly and maintain a good user experience for users.

In short, choose a good uptime monitoring tool to help you check your website performance regularly and get instant notifications about your up and downtimes.

a screenshot of the landing page of Websiteuptime.io, which is a website monitoring tool that can help you check the performance of your website

With a reliable website monitoring solution like Websiteuptime, you can set up alerts and use cron jobs tracking features to make your website more responsive and user-friendly.

Using a website monitoring tool increases your site's performance and allows your team to be more productive and efficient.

Frequently Asked Questions

a gif of Lisa Simpson from The Simpsons asking "any questions?" to her friends

What is the Best Tool For Monitoring Website Crashes?

Here are the top 5 website monitoring tools you can use to keep an eye on your website performance:

  • Websiteuptime
  • Better Uptime
  • Datadog
  • Freshping
  • Hyperping

How Long Does It Take to Fix a Crashed Website?

Fixing a crashed website mainly depends on the origination of the cause. Sometimes a minor issue causes your website to crash that, with a backup, can be restored within hours if not minutes, and sometimes the error is more critical and needs more time, like days or weeks.

What Can I Do to Fix a Website Crash?

The first step to fixing a crashed website is to root the error that caused the website to go down in the first place.

Then, you can check the error logs on your hosting, and once you know what caused your website to crash, you can control the damage and fix the problem.

How to Know If Your Website Has Crashed?

Using uptime monitoring tools is the best way to be informed when your website crashes. For example, you can set up alerts and let the app notify you when and how long your website has been unresponsive.

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