The power of ecommerce provides a platform for your business to reach thousands of customers online. But have you thought about who (or what) is reaching back? Cybersecurity is a serious issue for ecommerce businesses online. As a business owner, you have a responsibility to your customers to keep their information safe first and foremost.
However, there are other cybersecurity threats that target your business more than your customers. One type of threat comes from bad bots, which are malware applications that execute a variety of automated tasks that can hurt your business website.
Bad bots can slow your website’s performance, scrape information, and attack your network. All of this can negatively affect your customers’ shopping experience and ultimately, your sales. Make sure you are taking the appropriate steps to guard against bad bots. Here are a few tips to get started?
Test & Improve Your Website Load Time
One element of your website that bad bots will affect is your page load time. Make sure you are testing your page load time on a frequent basis, and take complaints about slow speed seriously. It could be the symptom of a larger cybersecurity problem.
Load times are not only indicative of larger problems, they can also be the source of larger problems. Nearly half of web users expect a web page to load in two seconds or less, and they will abandon a website that doesn’t load in three seconds. Google’s Page Speed Tools are a good place to start to learn more about your website’s performance.
Build on a Solid Hosting Foundation
It matters what service provider you choose for your web hosting. While there are plenty of hosting providers to choose from, they are not all built equally. Your web hosting provider should be your partner in protecting your digital assets against attacks.
Trusted ecommerce platforms like Shopify offer built-in hosting with advanced security for small-to-mid-sized businesses, while its enterprise ecommerce solutions offer the same for larger businesses or inventories. Make sure you do your homework and choose a trustworthy provider that takes cybersecurity seriously.
Arm Your Website with Security Features
There are a lot of great applications that can help keep your website protected against bad bots. Some work better than others, so be sure to do your research. Also check with your own hosting or website platforms to see what they suggest.
For spammer bots, consider installing Akismet (if you’re using WordPress) or another security plugin. If you are concerned with duplicate content, check your content with Copyscape. If you think your pay-per-click campaigns are being attacked by click bots, which waste your ad budget with automated false clicks, consider a click fraud monitoring plugin.
Differentiate between Good Bots and Bad Bots
Not all bots are bad bots. Other bots, like Google Bots, actually help you. Google Bots crawl your website to index its pages for search engines. When your site is indexed, it’s easier for potential customers to find, which leads to more traffic and sales.
The best thing you can do is to stay informed and aware about the latest developments in cybersecurity for your business website. If you are working with a trusted hosting partner and taking steps to protect your website, you will greatly reduce your risk.