Availability for the Top 100K Websites Remains Promising in Q2 2017

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CloudEndure research into website downtime found that 43% of the top 100K sites achieved at least four-nines availability in Q2 2017, which is consistent with the promising statistics from Q1 2017.

Throughout Q2 2017, CloudEndure tracked the availability of the 100K most-visited websites in the U.S. in an effort to analyze the effectiveness of current business continuity and disaster recovery efforts across the industry.

The list of top 100K websites is derived from Quantcast’s audience measurement service, which examines sites such as Instagram, Quora, ESPN, The Verge, and more. The Quantcast insights are combined with our own tracking engine, which monitored the availability of each website 24/7 throughout Q2 2017.

Some of the key highlights from the Q2 2017 Downtime Report include:

  • The number of top websites to achieve zero downtime rose to 18%
  • 43% of the top 1,000 websites experienced zero downtime
  • 46% of the Fortune 1000 websites saw at least four-nines (99.99%) availability

This research focuses on the top 100K websites in Q2 2017. However, if you’re looking for a deeper understanding of industry standards for availability and disaster recovery, you can download the 2017 Disaster Recovery Survey Report for more information.

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Read on to find out how the top 100K websites maintained availability goals after promising Q1 2017 results.

Translating “Nines” Into Downtime Figures

The 2017 Disaster Recovery Survey Report found that 79% of enterprises strive for three-nines (99.9%) availability for their websites and production machines. But before digging into the effectiveness of business continuity and disaster recovery strategies, it’s important to understand the real-world implications of different “nines” of availability.

The following table offers a quick refresher to help you translate various “nines” of availability into actual downtime per quarter and per year.

Availability % Downtime per year Downtime per quarter
90% (“one nine”) 36.5 days 9 days
99% (“two nines”) 3.65 days 21.6 hours
99.9% (“three nines”) 8.76 hours 2.2 hours
99.99 (“four nines”) 52.56 minutes 13.4 minutes
99.999% (“five nines”) 5.26 minutes 1.3 minutes
99.9999% (“six nines”) 31.5 seconds 7.7 seconds

Despite lofty availability goals, widespread system downtime incidents continue to impact some of the biggest brands in the world. While enterprise-grade disaster recovery once seemed like an unnecessary luxury, the shift toward cloud-based DR is helping organizations take business continuity more seriously without breaking the bank.

Keeping these various “nines” of availability in mind, we can look at the results of the Q2 2017 downtime report and compare them to Q1 2017.

Related: 10 Essential Steps to Developing a Disaster Recovery Plan

Top 100K Websites Maintain the Success of Q1 2017

When we looked at the downtime tracking report from Q1 2017, the top 100K websites seemed to make noticeable strides toward greater availability. While it only takes one large-scale outage to derail availability goals, companies were able to remain consistent through Q2.

In Q2 2017, 36% of companies achieved three-nines availability, 25% achieved four-nines availability, and 18% had zero downtime, all of which align closely with last quarter’s results.

downtime report q2 2017 chart

When the field is narrowed from the top 100K sites to the top 1,000 websites, the growing focus on business continuity becomes clearer.

downtime report chart Q2 2017 by company type

In the Q1 2017 report, we found that 65% of the top 1,000 websites achieved four-nines availability or better. In Q2, this figure grew to 68%. However, the real difference is found in the percentage of websites that experienced zero downtime.

While 36% of the top 1,000 websites avoided system downtime in Q1 2017, 43% of these sites had zero downtime in Q2 2017. With so many companies questioning the ability to implement affordable, enterprise-grade disaster recovery and business continuity solutions, this is an important availability trend to monitor.

Are you keeping up with the business continuity goals of your industry peers?

The improvement for top 1,000 sites didn’t necessarily carry over into Fortune 1000 websites, though. In Q2 2017, 46% of Fortune 1000 websites achieved four-nines availability or greater, which was a slight decrease from Q1 (48%). The difference resulted in more sites seeing three-nines availability, which still meets business continuity goals in some cases, although let’s remember that this translates into over 8 hours of downtime per year.

Even though there are slight differences between the Q1 and Q2 2017 reports, it’s good to see that companies of all sizes are maintaining availability goals rather than fluctuating quarterly.

Whether the result of internal human errors or an external disasters, the top websites know that downtime is a fact of life. If the top 100K websites (or any company) fail to implement a disaster recovery and business continuity strategy, they risk seeing significant swings in availability on a quarterly basis. Just because you get through a quarter with zero downtime doesn’t mean you’ll never experience an incident.

That’s why enterprise-grade disaster recovery has to become more accessible to companies of all sizes. Business relies on guaranteed uptime and continuity even when external circumstances make it difficult.

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