When a website becomes inaccessible or fails to perform the primary tasks for users, it is said to be down. This can affect your business and sales negatively.

Why isn’t my website loading?

If you can relate to this question, ‘Is my site down?, you have a big problem in hand that you need to take seriously. Website downtime is like a nightmare for business owners. It can be caused by different factors, which we will be discussing shortly in the post below. Knowing the root cause of the trouble helps you fix it quickly and prevent it from happening in the future.

What causes website downtime?

Several reasons cause a website to slow down. Some of the main reasons include:

Server overload

If you are hosting your website on a shared server, this kind of problem is common. Since the server is shared by more than one website, if one site goes down, it can affect all the others. For instance, if any other site on the server is getting heavy traffic, it can hurt your website as well. This could even crash your website.

Another reason could be that your server host is updating their system. For this, they are retired to take your site off for a short time.


Another big cause of website downtime could be a malicious cyber-attack or DDos. This is why you need to keep an eye on a sudden spike in traffic because it could be caused by a hacker or malware to cause a big outage.

DDoS or Distributed Denial of Service attack involves sending high volumes of fake traffic to your website. This is particularly done to take your website down. To prevent this from happening, you need to enhance the security protocols of your website so that it can protect against vulnerable attacks.

Software & hardware issues

Lack of hardware maintenance for a long period could lead to downtime. Even a power failure could cause major outages across the world. In 2010, Amazon had to face a major outage because of hardware failure.

On the software front, if you are using incompatible or older versions of WordPress themes and plugins, it could cause trouble for your website. To keep your site up and running, you need to maintain both your hardware and software from time to time.

Other Causes

Here are some more reasons that can lead to website downtime:

  • When you accidentally unplug a cord when working with a server
  • Improper code review
  • Rough and improper handling of servers

Before you try to fix your website, you should find the answer to the question ‘is it down for everyone.’ That’s how you will know if your website and server are the only ones facing such a problem.

Website downtime can hurt your business. This is why you have all the reasons to take it seriously. It is extremely important to maintain the hardware and software of your server.

Taylor Gilbert is the admin and freelance writer at How About Tech since 2020. He primarily writes Tech articles, How-to guides and Entertainment as well.