If you want to learn how to monitor your WordPress uptime, downtime, and performance, you are in the right place. This article has been updated in 2021 and will cover the most important aspect of uptime, downtime, and performance monitoring for WordPress.
You are also going to discover the best free uptime monitoring plugin for WordPress (aka WP Umbrella) and learn how to use it.
So if you are looking to mitigate the damage and loss caused by downtimes, you are in the right place. Let’s get started!
Uptime monitoring checks that your website stays permanently online and available. It provides an overview and history of the availability of your website and domain.
Uptime monitoring tools almost always include an alert system so you can instantly know whenever your website goes down.
Uptime monitoring services often include the possibility to monitor website performance, mainly loading time, from all over the world.
Uptime monitoring is easy to understand. To check uptime, Monitoring services use external servers from all over the world to send requests to your site.
This request gets back with many information:
We use this information to provide you with uptime and performance charts.
It is exactly the same. Monitoring plugins provide you with data from a self-hosted server. This means that you will be alerted even if your WordPress goes down.
Downtime hurts the professional image of your brand or blog and can ruin any web-related investments.
Here are some terrific figures and facts about the negative impact of downtimes:
“If a site takes so long to load that we can’t even fetch it, then that will affect your rankings because your site is timing out”Matt Cutts, former SEO guru working for Google
If your Website uptime is under 99,99% you should definitely look at my step-by-step for WordPress Hosting.
WordPress is an amazing CMS, but you might be surprised about how often downtimes happen. Indeed, WordPress websites can go down for so many reasons.
Cheap web hosting services often suffer an average downtime of up to 30% caused by traffic spikes or data center problems.
Because servers are shared with many other websites, they are more likely to crash or being very slow. Yet, if the connection between the server and the DNS is too long, your WordPress Website can crash.
If you can afford it, you should always choose a fully Managed WordPress Hosting.
It can also crash because you, or someone who has access to your admin dashboard, broke a line of code.
Error can happen every time you try to edit a theme, a PHP function, or a plugin. A bad piece of code can take down an entire website. If you want to know more about it, you can read my guide about WordPress HTTP errors.
This is why it’s important to select a web host with a staging space and reactive support if you want to troubleshoot downtime quickly or prevent it to happen.
Keep in mind that just because a plugin is in the WordPress directory doesn’t mean it’s safe.
Attacks from hackers can also cause severe downtimes to your website. There are so many kinds of hacker attacks but the easiest is called a DDoS attack.
DDoS attacks overwhelms your serveur with traffic spikes generated by bots. A good web hoster should protect your website from DDoS attacks.
One of the best plugin for uptime monitoring is WP Umbrella.
This plugin allows you to:
And guess what’s best, this plugin is free.
WP Umbrella allows you to set up monitors from all over the world.
The monitor will check your WordPress website every 1-10 minutes and send you an email notification if downtime happens.
It also provides you with performance information such as TTFB, DNS loading time, TCP, TLS, and server ping.
To download the plugin you can go there or find it in the WordPress Plugin Directory. Enter WP Umbrella and Look for the umbrella 🙂
You can register directly in the plugin WordPress or use the web application. Once installed and activated, the plugin is available in “Settings”.
Enter your email, password and accept the terms of service to connect the API to your Website.
The monitor is in place and you will be alerted if something wrong happens: availability, bad performance, critical PHP errors, etc. Easy-peasy.
Step 3: Go to settings
By default, the plugin monitors the homepage from Belgium. To select another region go on Monitors > View details > Settings and select the region of your choice.
Step 4: make sure your email adresse is correct so you get notified
Last but not least, click on Notification and check that the email address is correct to receive email alerts if downtimes happen.
Jetpack improves the functionality and management of your WordPress Website. The main features of Jetpack are:
Jetpack has +5millions of active installations and is the most popular security plugin for WordPress.
You have to pay to get the most part of the features available on Jetpack: backup, scan, anti-spam, search, video hosting, SEO features, and analytics integration.
Uptime Robot is a free tool used to monitor websites. It monitors websites every 5 minutes and alerts you through various channels if your sites are down.
UptimeRobot also provides you with SSL certificate monitoring and Cron job monitoring.
To access response times and monitor performance you need to pay.
ManageWP helps you to manage several WordPress Websites from a single dashboard. The plugin is free, but you have to pay to include the uptime monitoring add-on. Here are the free features of ManageWP:
Note that you have to pay for the premium business plugin in order to receive alerts through email or SMS.
Pingdom is probably the most advanced monitoring solution available on the market. It’s also the most expensive (13$/months by website). It offers a free trial version for 14 days.
This monitoring service provides synthetic monitoring and real user monitoring. You can thus simulate and understand visitor interaction with your website. The features of Pingdom are:
Pingdom doesn’t have a WordPress integration.
StatusCake is external uptime & performance monitoring application. It offers the classic features of this kind of service:
StatusCake doesn’t have a WordPress integration.