15 Best Free Website Uptime Monitoring Services (Our 2018 Picks)

15 Best Free Website Uptime Monitoring Services (Our 2018 Picks)

We’ve all been there — eagerly looking forward to getting a meal or a drink at a favorite establishment, only to arrive and learn your spot is closed that day. More often than not, you probably just forgot to check the restaurant’s hours — but what if the business just randomly closed right before your big feast?

Website visitors experience the same frustrations and aggravations when a website is down or unavailable. As a site owner, you may not always know when (or why) your online presence crashes. Instead of manually checking your site around the clock, uptime monitoring tools will keep a steady eye on your website and let you know if something doesn’t seem right. In this article, we’re diving into all your monitoring options, from services included with your hosting plan to third-party programs that can offer more in-depth information.

How to Monitor Website Uptime and Why It Matters

Broadly speaking, website monitoring involves testing and verifying that visitors can interact with a site as expected. Uptime, or availability, is typically the prominent characteristic to track, but comprehensive services can also track user interactions, server or network performance, DNS records, code revisions, and other functionalities.

If a monitoring service detects an error or failure, it will typically send alerts by email, text, chat, or social media. These notifications often include diagnostic information that enables administrators to correct the issue faster. Historical data is compiled into various reports and graphs, and the information gathered can help you assess your site’s performance or even hold your hosting provider accountable if it falls short of its uptime guarantee or service level agreement.

When it comes to downtime, every second counts — particularly for eCommerce stores and other online businesses. Unplanned outages cost Fortune 1,000 companies between $1.25 billion and $2.5 billion each year. Beyond lost sales, less exposure, and terrible first impressions, downtime can harm your brand’s reputation and leave customers unsatisfied.

Internal website monitoring, like the services you most commonly see with hosting providers, entails tracking important metrics that give an overall picture of your server health and performance: memory usage, disk space, CPU load, and response times. External monitoring, however, checks on performance issues across the entire internet backbone and, often, all the way to end users of your site.

Read on for the best monitoring options available; tools included with hosting plans can be difficult to find but can offer great savings and usability. Third-party services, however, often provide deeper insights in exchange for a fee.

Best Web Hosting With Free Uptime Monitoring

In addition to wildly appealing prices, Hostwinds packs a ton of impressive features into all levels of its plans. With a guaranteed uptime rate of 99.999% — meaning less than 6 minutes of downtime per year — the company’s clients hardly need to monitor uptime, but Hostwinds provides a highly customizable monitoring tool to shared, business, and reseller customers.

In addition to alerting site owners when an issue has been detected, the Hostwinds Advanced Website Monitoring service will automatically create a support ticket on your behalf. Customers can monitor their site’s availability, email performance, DNS settings, and custom scripts and ports, all with the ability to tailor alert settings and message content.

1.
Hostwinds.com

Hostwinds review

Monthly Starting Price $3.74

  • 400% faster speeds via SSDs
  • Litespeed web server performance
  • FREE dedicated IP address
  • 99.999% uptime guarantee
  • Datacenters in Dallas and Seattle
  • Get started on Hostwinds now.

BEST OVERALL
RATING

4.8
★★★★★

Hostwinds: Our Expert's Review

Setup time: 5 minutes
Laura Bernheim (HostingAdvice.com): Promising enterprise-grade hosting solutions for prices that appeal to small and medium businesses, Hostwinds delivers the full range of operating systems and server configurations to help customers build and grow an online presence. With hosting plans... Go to full review »
Money Back Guarantee Disk Space Domain Name Best Overall Hosting Plans
60 days Unlimited SSD $14.84 www.hostwinds.com

Best “Shared” Hosting With Free Uptime Monitoring

With so many customers and websites sharing a single physical server, uptime monitoring is pretty uncommon at the shared hosting level. More commonly, hosting providers enable site owners to track their resource usage to monitor how their web presence fits within the individual plan’s restrictions. Although control panels like cPanel don’t directly monitor uptime, the data you can uncover will paint a picture of your environment’s overall health.

A select few hosts, however, extend monitoring service to cover the availability of shared hosting. Hostwinds gives users full control to a wide range of checks, ranging from HTTP and HTTPs to pings, DNS, and a custom TCP port, as well as the ability to send notification alerts if something goes wrong. Check out more information about the super-charged shared hosting you can find at Hostwinds below:

2.
Hostwinds.com

Hostwinds review

Monthly Starting Price $3.74

  • Shared hosting plans offer the ultimate affordability
  • Upgraded business plans give users more control and room to grow
  • Softaculous auto-installation scripts
  • Unlimited bandwidth and subdomains
  • FREE website transfers
  • Get started on Hostwinds now.

CHEAP
RATING

4.8
★★★★★

Hostwinds: Our Expert's Review

Setup time: 5 minutes
Laura Bernheim (HostingAdvice.com): A recurring theme in the Hostwinds product lineup, the company offers multiple configurations to ensure every customer's needs are perfectly met. The standard shared hosting services compete with the likes of InMotion Hosting, SiteGround, and A2 Hosting.... Go to full review »
Money Back Guarantee Disk Space Domain Name Cheap Hosting Plans
60 days Unlimited SSD $14.84 www.hostwinds.com/shared

See other shared hosting options »

Best “Cloud” Hosting With Free Uptime Monitoring

With redundancy and stability at the core of cloud hosting networks, downtime should theoretically be among the least of your concerns. However, you’ll still want to track business-critical uptime rates. Budget-friendly 1&1 IONOS offers monitoring services built into its cloud management panel. Data is more concentrated around server load, usage, and response times, but the information should still suffice in letting you know how healthy your hosting environment is.

Media Temple, however, is a premium service with excellent managed support perfect for businesses that need high-powered infrastructure and plenty of help maintaining the technical side of things. The company’s CloudTech customers can activate a monitoring panel that allows them to monitor the response time, activity, and resource utilization of up to five domains.

3.
1and1.com

1&1 review

Monthly Starting Price $5.00

  • An easy-to-use and affordable, yet powerful and flexible, cloud solution
  • Unlimited traffic, with SAN storage for security and SSDs for amazing speed
  • Independently configure CPU, RAM, and disk, and alter at any time
  • Prepared templates for popular CMSs and web apps with easy installations
  • Billing by the minute, no minimum contract term, and 24/7 support
  • Get started on 1&1 now.

CLOUD
RATING

4.9
★★★★★

1&1: Our Expert's Review

Setup time: 6 minutes
Alexandra Leslie (HostingAdvice.com): For an all-star player in the flexibility game, look no further than the cloud, where many find an excellent alternative to VPS options. Javier debriefed us on 1&1's newest hosting solution: the dynamic 1&1 Cloud Server, which was built to serve as a... Go to full review »
Money Back Guarantee Disk Space Domain Name Cloud Hosting Plans
30 days 20 GB SSD Minimum FREE (1 year) www.1and1.com/cloud-server

4.
MediaTemple.net

Media Temple review

Monthly Starting Price $45.83

  • 99.999% uptime, so your site is almost NEVER DOWN
  • Plesk or cPanel control panels pre-installed
  • Options to pick your choice of operating system
  • Includes up to 64GB of RAM and 8TB of bandwidth
  • YUM or APT package management available
  • Get started on MediaTemple now.

CLOUD
RATING

4.6
★★★★★

Media Temple: Our Expert's Review

Setup time: 4 minutes
Ryan Frankel (HostingAdvice.com): For premium hosting solutions, look no further than MediaTemple — and their cloud-based services are no different. They offer premier options for managed or self-managed VPS hosting, including a 99.999% uptime guarantee and pre-installed software…Go to full review »
Money Back Guarantee Disk Space Domain Name Cloud Hosting Plans
30 days 30 GB - 600 GB SSD New or Transfer www.mediatemple/cloud

See other cloud hosting options »

Best “Reseller” Hosting With Free Uptime Monitoring

Perfect for designers and agencies, reseller hosting plans enable entrepreneurs and freelancers to act as their clients’ hosting provider. The hosts listed below enable you to monitor more than just your own uptime, but that of all the websites you oversee. You can collect the data to measure your own performance and effectiveness as a host and share the reports with customers to demonstrate the value you bring to their online presence.

While Hostwinds concentrates on server performance and availability, GoDaddy offers multiple types of monitoring services. As the world’s leading domain registrar, GoDaddy enables you to track changes made to the registration settings of particular domains. You can be notified by email when anything changes, meaning you can act quickly to acquire a domain as soon as it becomes available.

For GoDaddy Pro customers overseeing multiple websites for clients, the Uptime Monitor tool is an easily configurable option included within the dashboard. The service checks your sites every minute and will alert you via email, text, or Slack when a site goes down and comes back online.

5.
Hostwinds.com

Hostwinds review

Monthly Starting Price $3.74

  • Shared hosting plans offer the ultimate affordability
  • Upgraded business plans give users more control and room to grow
  • Softaculous auto-installation scripts
  • Unlimited bandwidth and subdomains
  • FREE website transfers
  • Get started on Hostwinds now.

CHEAP
RATING

4.8
★★★★★

Hostwinds: Our Expert's Review

Setup time: 5 minutes
Laura Bernheim (HostingAdvice.com): A recurring theme in the Hostwinds product lineup, the company offers multiple configurations to ensure every customer's needs are perfectly met. The standard shared hosting services compete with the likes of InMotion Hosting, SiteGround, and A2 Hosting.... Go to full review »
Money Back Guarantee Disk Space Domain Name Cheap Hosting Plans
60 days Unlimited SSD $14.84 www.hostwinds.com/shared

6.
GoDaddy.com

GoDaddy review

Monthly Starting Price $3.99

  • 1-click WordPress installs via cPanel or Plesk control panels
  • World's #1 Domain Name Registrar offers a FREE domain
  • Experience 24/7 expert support
  • Award-winning security monitoring
  • Screaming-fast page load speeds
  • Get started on GoDaddy now.

WORDPRESS
RATING

4.7
★★★★★

GoDaddy: Our Expert's Review

Setup time: 6 minutes
Ryan Frankel (HostingAdvice.com): Upon first getting started with GoDaddy, customers who sign up for an annual plan receive a free domain name and the power to control their hosting via cPanel or Plesk control panels. From either of these interfaces, you can quickly install and set up the... Go to full review »
Money Back Guarantee Disk Space Domain Name WordPress Hosting Plans
30 days 10 GB SSD - 50 GB SSD FREE (w/ annual plans) www.godaddy.com/wordpress

See other reseller hosting options »

Other Free (and Paid) Website Uptime Monitoring Services

Of course, you may be a little skeptical of hosting providers reporting on themselves. Whether your host lacks the needed monitoring tools or you want independent verification of your website’s availability, here are a handful of third-party services for you to consider. No matter your budget, technical expertise, or needed features, we’re confident these tools cover the full gamut of potential customers and website administrators.

7. Jetpack

Cost: Free (paid versions range from $3.50 to $29 per month)

Who best to trust with tracking your WordPress website’s uptime than the folks who built the platform itself? Brought to you by Automattic, Jetpack bundles a wide range of marketing, security, and performance services into a single plugin. In addition to secure user authentication and protection from brute-force attacks, Jetpack will alert WordPress users whenever their site goes down.

Screenshot of Jetpack

Get downtime alerts from Jetpack for free after enabling the feature in the WordPress plugin.

The plugin’s downtime monitoring service will check your website every five minutes, from various locations around the world. You can receive notification of your site’s downtime via email, text, or both; you’ll be told when it’s down, when it’s back online, and the total time it was unavailable. Because you need a site running WordPress to access and use Jetpack, we recommend doubling down on the content management system by pairing Jetpack with hosting from WordPress.com:

  • Jetpack SEO, spam protection, and social sharing tools included
  • Community, email, and live chat support
  • Access to tons of free and premium themes
  • FREE hosting; paid plans $4-$25 per month

8. Uptime Robot

Cost: Free (paid versions range from $5.50 to $746 per month)

A go-to resource trusted by more than 600,000 users, Uptime Robot serves the likes of Expedia, Fandango, and Staples. The service offers 50 monitors at intervals of every five minutes for free, but paying users can request up to 20,000 monitors and checks every 60 seconds, as well as SSL monitoring that detects errors and reminds admins of expiration dates.

Screenshot of Uptime Robot

Uptime Robot is a veteran free monitoring service that features a user-friendly dashboard and multiple integrations.

Starting in 2010 with a desire to create something free and useful for the online world, the developers launched Uptime Robot in 2010 and remain committed to keeping the core services free forever. The feature set is somewhat sparse, however, and monitoring operations are heavily concentrated in Dallas instead of including more locations.

9. Pingdom

Cost: $14.95 to $249 per month (or 14-day free trial)

A full-featured and immensely popular service to track website availability and performance, Pingdom appeals to savvy developers, agencies, businesses, and other web professionals. In fact, it’s the service we use to monitor HostingAdvice.com. Although Pingdom is known for robust uptime monitoring services and alerts, the platform also gives website owners deep insights into page speed, transactions performance, and user experience.

Screenshot of Pingdom

Companies like Amazon, Cloudflare, GitHub, MailChimp, and Slack all rely on Pingdom to track uptime and performance.

Pingdom watches your site from more than 70 locations around the world, although coverage is light in Asia and Australia. However, we really appreciate that the platform will run additional tests as part of a root cause analysis to establish what exactly went wrong in causing the outage.

10. Uptrends

Cost: $14.78 to $198.26 per month (or free 30-day trial)

A comprehensive monitoring service platform offering cloud-based network and performance monitoring, Uptrends got its start in 2007 as a free tool that has since morphed into a subscription-only service. Customers can add real user monitoring to their plan for an extra fee based on pageviews, enabling them to see load times by browser, operating system, location, and device.

Screenshot of Uptrends

Uptrends checks customers’ sites every minute and double checks any potential outages before sending alerts.

We especially appreciate the company’s global network of checkpoint servers; more than 185 machines are spread around the world to identify downtime and latency. Uptrends has servers on every continent but Antartica, most notably 30 servers in Asia, four in Africa, and 130-plus in Europe and North America.

11. StatusCake

Cost: Free (paid versions range from $24.49 to $79.99 per month)

Although the 15-minute interval for testing is longer than other free monitoring services, we appreciate the affordability and usability of StatusCake. The London-based company operates more than 200 monitoring servers located in 43 countries in six continents, offering check rates of 30 seconds or less.

Screenshot of Status Cake

In addition to email, text, and Twitter alerts, StatusCake integrates with many third-party applications.

Premium plans are lean and affordable, yet still test uptime and page speed, and monitor SSL certificates, servers, and domains. You can also use StatusCake for virus scanning, and the company’s iOS and Android apps enable you to monitor your website from anywhere.

12. Uptimia

Cost: $10 to $185 per month (or free 30-day trial)

Enabling businesses to monitor their site’s availability every 30 seconds, Uptimia also caters to small businesses and individual website owners by including services for monitoring website speed and transactions. The company launched a revamped Version 4 in May 2018, ensuring customers can take advantage of modern, updated features such as a redesigned dashboard, more convenient logs, and enhanced responsiveness.

Screenshot of Uptimia

Uptimia unleashed several updates in 2018, making the service an appealing option for those looking for modern features.

Uptimia checks customers’ sites from more than 171 datacenters around the world, and additional updates over the summer introduced root cause analysis, deeper insights into individual polling logs, and increased sharing and collaboration tools. If you’re not sure of footing the bill quite yet, Uptimia offers free tests for website speed and availability.

13. Host Tracker

Cost: $14 to $99 per month (or free 30-day trial)

Although Host Tracker is among the more expensive uptime monitoring services on our list, it’s perhaps the quickest with which to get started. Simply enter your email address and URL, and the company starts monitoring your site for free for 30 days. Host Tracker currently tracks more than 320,000 websites and sends nearly 16,000 alerts each day.

Screenshot of Host Tracker

Host Tracker monitors customers’ sites from 142 locations and compiles data into helpful reports and charts.

Notifications are free and unlimited to all customers, and Host Tracker will check your site at least every five minutes, depending on which plan you select. Domain and SSL certificate expiration, as well as DNS blacklisting, is also tracked in all accounts, with upgraded accounts also receiving information about server load, transactions, Google Ads, and error snapshots.

14. Site24x7

Cost: $9 to $225 per month (or free 30-day trial)

A comprehensive service perfect for growing businesses and picky developer teams, Site24x7 offers the full range of monitoring services for websites, servers, applications, networks, and real users. The company’s 90 worldwide locations are fewer than those of some other competitors, and customers choose to test their site from only eight datacenters.

Screenshot of Site24x7

Site24x7 leverages tech-forward tools to enable IT and DevOps teams to take a comprehensive look at their environments.

Created by Zoho, a Software-as-a-Service organization specializing in business and productivity programs, Site24x7 hit the market in 2006 and continues to add new features. With the backing of a large parent company, users can typically find more support, third-party integrations, and add-on tools.

15. Montastic

Cost: Free (paid versions range from $5 to $29 per month)

Don’t let the overly simple website fool you — Montastic is a stellar option for small business owners, bloggers, and personal websites. Made by Metadot in Austin, Texas, Montastic allows users to monitor up to three websites every 30 minutes for free. Paid accounts simply cover more URLs and shrink the interval to every five minutes. Pricing is simple, with plans offered on a month-to-month basis without any upsells, add-ons, or hidden costs.

Screenshot of Montastic

Rounding out our list is Montastic, the ultimate in affordable and simple website uptime monitoring.

Montastic isn’t as powerful as some of the other tools on this list, but it delivers quality work at prices friendly to those who don’t need all the bells and whistles. Alerts and error reports are sent via email, and the company will also check if certain text is or is not present.

Monitor Your Server Status and Downtime to Keep Your Site Online

If your current host doesn’t appear on this list, don’t worry. You can often find internal monitoring statistics within your cPanel or account management dashboard that will give you a sense of how your service is performing. Many of our favorite hosts, including Bluehost, InMotion Hosting, and Site Ground, offer transparent, public-facing tools where site owners can view the status of the company’s overall network and services — some even enable you to check your website specifically. When it comes to website monitoring, remember that all information is helpful!

Laura Bernheim

Questions or Comments? Ask Laura!

Ask a question and Laura will respond to you. We strive to provide the best advice on the net and we are here to help you in any way we can.