Best website monitoring services
In 2018, the web is a crazy place. Even pages that look the same are updated constantly – so if you want to make sure you stay on top of all the changes made to your website, you’re going to need to use one of the best website monitoring services.
Luckily, these services are useful to a wide variety of businesses, politicians and even ordinary people trying to find the best deal on those Supreme shoes. They can be used to keep an eye on your competitors, so that you can make sure you’re offering competitive pricing all the time, and if you’re a politician, you can catch your political rivals when they change their platform. You can even use some website monitoring services to make sure your site experiences minimal downtime.
There are dozens of uses for these services. But, no matter what you’re looking for, we have you covered – we’ve created a list of the five best website monitoring services you can find. So, read on to find the one that best suits your needs.
- Also take a look at the best web hosting services of 2018
Website monitoring for the modern age
One of our pet peeves when browsing for meta web services is that a lot of them look like they were designed 10 years ago. What we love about Wachete is that it is able to pack in all the functionality from its competition and implement it in a 2018-friendly package.
What really sets Wachete apart is that in addition to daily or weekly email reports, it also offers mobile apps and browser extensions so that you can keep an eye on this information in a dynamic way while on the go. While this is definitely useful for professionals who can’t afford to be tied to a desk all day, it’s especially important for consumers who just want to buy a concert ticket before they sell out.
A tool specifically for monitoring website health
One of the most important things to keep an eye on when you’re a web admin is the actual status of your website. If your website goes down, you’re not earning income – it’s that simple. Luckily, you don’t have to hire somebody to sit at a computer refreshing your page over and over again to make sure there’s no downtime. You can pay Webmon to do it instead.
Now, unlike a lot of other services, Webmon won’t alert you when there’s a change in the actual content of your page, but it will send you metrics measuring your site's performance and status. And, as a bonus, it will run checks every 30 seconds, so you can rest easy knowing that if your website runs into any issues, you’ll be notified immediately, so that you can fix them as soon as possible.
The only negative thing we have to say about this service is that there isn’t a free option, but since this is such a specialized tool, it probably doesn’t matter that much.
A fully-featured web monitoring service
If you run a retail business, or if you’re a consumer looking to, well, support a retail business, it may be useful to check out Changetower. Now, while the free version will only check websites once every 12 hours – which isn’t very useful in the fast-paced world we’re living in – once you start paying even $9 (£6.70) a month you’ll be able to keep up-to-date with any changes that your target website makes.
This is particularly useful to retail businesses, as it allows them to monitor competitors and adjust pricing on-the-fly in order to stay competitive. Plus, Changetower will supply detailed reports that show, in detail, any changes that were made. And, if you don’t need every change documented in your email, you can set custom alert criteria, so that you can make sure that all the information that makes its way to you (and your IT team) is relevant.
Web admins will also find Changetower useful, as it will monitor any HTML code or images on the site, and notify you if anything breaks. It will also notify you if your page goes down.
Powerful monitoring for the advanced user
Sometimes you just need raw power to get the job done – sometimes you need Distill.io. Distill is one of the most flexible website monitoring services available right now because it allows users to do anything they need to do – even run monitors locally.
Now, while the functionality that Distill offers isn’t dramatically different from the competition, the difference that it does offer is pretty major. By allowing any user to employ a browser extension to monitor websites for free, without placing any kind of limit on it, this may just be the most affordable and sensible way to monitor websites. In fact, if we were going to recommend a service to a consumer who just wants to watch a few retail websites – we’d recommend Distill.
However, because Distill hands the tools off to the (free) user, it requires them to be able to run it on their own, and if you’re not tech-savvy, we’d recommend going elsewhere. It can get complicated, and can potentially take up a lot of resources if you’re tracking multiple websites.
Content monitoring for politicians and more
In 2018, the political landscape is a little bit crazy, and a ton of information is flying around at all times. Luckily, one of the best website monitoring services is targeted directly at politicians. And it’s actually pretty useful to anyone running a campaign – it allows the user to crawl for any information relevant to their campaign(s).
Versionista will then produce a color-coded report showing any changes made to, say, a political rival’s website – highlighting anything that has been deleted, and anything added.
However, the Achilles heel of this software is its pricing. Now, we understand that since this is aimed at political campaigns, the firm can charge a bit more than the competition – but a starting price of $99 (£74) a month is a bit steep for smaller campaigns. Especially when the same functionality can be had from some of the other products on this list. But, if you can afford it, specialized tools are generally the best way to go.