41% of small business owners expect the bulk of their sales to come from the web during the holiday season. According to a recent survey by Manta.com, that marks a 10% increase over 2011 and reflects the continued growth in popularity of ecommerce amongst consumers.
With more and more shoppers going online, that means small businesses have to make sure their sites are safe and secure and that they’re able to handle the potential spike in traffic—especially during the holidays.
How can you make sure your small business website is safe and raring to go? The folks at CloudFlare, a San Francisco-based web performance and security company, reached out to me to share the following three tips:
1. Protect Yourself Against Cyber Attacks
Cybercrime continues to be an issue for websites both small and large, with distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks prevalent as the most common threats against small businesses online. Don’t let an unprotected attack shut down your site and cost you customers. Investigate ways to safeguard your business.
2. Ensure Every Page Loads As Fast As Possible
If your site is sluggish and can’t keep up with demand, customers won’t wait around. Small businesses must ensure their sites can handle the highest traffic peaks 24/7 to avoid transaction issues and unhappy customers, which can result in a loss of revenue.
3. Select Passwords That Are Strong And Unqiue
Passwords should be unique and vary from site to site. Hackers exploit the fact that users don’t use different passwords for different sites. Strong passwords have upper and lowercase letters, numbers and punctuation marks and don’t use common names or dictionary words.
Making Your Small Business Website Faster and Safer
If you have a small business website, it’s something you rely on to help attract new customers, drive sales, and generate awareness about your products. As you think about your online presence, look for opportunities to incorporate the tips above. When you do, you’ll increase the chances that your site will be up and running 24/7 and that your shoppers will have a responsive, safe, and secure experience—just in time for the holidays.
How do you get your website ready for the holiday rush?
Share your tips below.
By: Shawn Graham
[Image: Flickr user Kevin Dooley]