Website performance is a primary factor that can significantly influence the page UX, UI, Conversions, bounce rate, and SEO ranking. Different factors can affect your website performance, but predominantly, it’s a lack of quality web hosting service.
One solution to this problem is using a content delivery network (CDN). They have the power to deliver static content to users faster. A CDN is efficiently used to increase the page loading speed and user engagement all at once.
So, Is your website moving fast enough for users?
Speed is necessary to keep a user who visits your website for the first time.
In this article, we’ll outline the basics of CDN and how it can boost your website performance.
Table of Contents
What is a Content Delivery Network?
A content delivery network is primarily a network of distributed servers across the globe that store your website’s cache and act as a central system between your server and user. One of the most common reasons for slow loading time is the distance between your hosting server and the actual user. The long distance can take a substantial amount of time to transmit data from one location to another, resulting in latency. Therefore, a CDN is used to minimize the loading time.
How do CDNs work?
CDNs work on distributed servers across the globe, these servers are also called edge servers, and the location where they are present is called points of presence (PoPs). You can store your website worldwide instead of in a single place. Simply put, a PoP is a data center with two essential tasks.
First, it carries a copy of your website and stores all the cached files in caching servers. Second, it communicates with users based on their location. So, when you visit a website from Dubai, a CDN will direct you to a data center in UAE instead of data traveling all the way to Newyork and back. Lesser the route, the faster the loading. This way, users get their content quicker.
How Do CDNs Boost Website Performance?
First, let’s understand where you don’t need to invest in a CDN. If you’re a startup and don’t really have a lot of traffic, a CDN is absolutely no use. Also, if you have traffic coming from a specific geographical location alone, CDN won’t do any good. However, a CDN can make your website perform better and ensures a better user experience if you have a global audience. Here’s how:
Faster Loading Times
A CDN can help your website load quicker and won’t crash easily. And here’s why faster websites matter to you: You are looking at a better conversion and retention rate with a website with outstanding performance.
Because of faster loading times, a CDN can also improve your search engine rankings, which is a great bonus.
Google better ranks those websites that load quickly and are easy to crawl. The more often google crawls your website, the more quickly it recognizes the changes and updates related to your content. The content that is indexed faster is more openly available to users. This quick search indexing can help get your website into more search results.
Reliability or uptime is a critical factor of a website. Imagine you made a lot of effort to get a visitor to your site; after this, your website doesn’t open. It will be disappointing to you and your visitor, right?
In times when a user doesn’t wait to wait a few seconds, you can be assured that a crashed website is something they will not return to.
When you use a CDN, it creates copies of your website across the globe. So if one server fails, it doesn’t affect your website uptime. Other servers will take over the job of sending content to the user. In addition, Google also stops recommending websites that often crash.
Reduce Bandwidth Cost
One of the best features of CDN is that it releases files from your original web server. This is extremely useful when you don’t want to overload your web host server. It can also reduce bandwidth costs by removing the need to pay for high-cost web hosting plans.
A global CDN means you will have a single platform that will work across different countries and regions for a fair price, which is excellent if you are on a low budget. This is a good and affordable way to improve website performance worldwide with one hosting platform.
CDN protects your website by acting as a high-security fence to block spammers, scrapers, false bots, and distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks where malicious actors try to flood a server or network with traffic to overwhelm it. Most CDNs offer security measures like DDoS mitigation, the ability to block content at the edge, and other enhanced security features.
CDN and Ecommerce
E-commerce businesses can benefit most from a CDN; How?
Because most e-commerce companies have lots of images and videos to display their best products to customers, they have lots of content to be delivered. They can also lose their business from slow loading pages, so implementing a CDN is a necessary fit for them.
An eCommerce platform Big Cartel allows artists, musicians, and independent business owners to create their own unique online store. They have used a CDN to make sure they can deliver more than one million websites around the world on behalf of their customers.
They switched from Amazon to Fastly in 2015. As an API-first, cloud platform designed for programmability, the team gave more functionality and control to Big Cartel than they have in Amazon.
CDN and Gaming
Gaming platforms have heavy graphics, images, and videos to manage. They need to deliver content faster to the gamers or risk games snagging up in the middle of a deciding moment.
SIMMER.io is a community website that allows game developers to share Unity WebGL games. Their egress cost boils over whenever a game goes viral, hindering growth. Because of Bandwidth Alliance, SIMMER.io copied their data from Amazon to Backblaze and reduced egress to $0. They can now grow their site without increasing egress costs over time or usage spikes when games go viral.
In addition to the types of companies listed above, streaming media, financial institutions, mobile apps, media properties, and government entities can also benefit from a CDN.
Until recently, CDNs were not offered by every hosting company. However, that is changing rapidly. Now, most web hosting companies offer pre-integrated CDN with their hosting packages, including the most basic web hosting plans.
So, if you’re running a website with a global audience and you’re looking to increase the overall performance of your website, a CDN is necessary. The fact that more than 50 percent of today’s websites use CDN is proof of that fact.
Enjoy fast websites, ensure higher uptime and deliver a great user experience with Content Delivery Networks!