The world is moving faster than ever before, which means your website needs to keep up. No matter where you are, your users are likely to be scattered across the globe. Therefore, you need to make sure your site is up and running quickly, regardless of geographic location.
One way to keep site speed and performance consistent is to use a content delivery network (CDN), which is a network of remote servers distributed around the world, each containing a copy of the site that visitors can access. Not only will this make your site faster, but it will also help protect it and reduce your bandwidth usage.
While the two may look similar, it is important to realize that a CDN is not the same as a web host. Your host is the server where your site “resides”, sometimes referred to as the “source server”, and the CDN server simply copies static files from your source server to deliver them to your visitors faster.
Benefits of Using a CDN
Normally, when users visit your site, they connect directly to the source server through their browser and download all necessary files from there. However, for users who are far from the source server, this can cause problems. This distance can lead to significantly longer loading times.
The speed of your website can negatively affect its bounce rate, which in turn can have a disastrous effect on your conversions. Therefore, this is not a minor issue. You may even experience more downtime because all visitors are requesting the same files from one server.
This is where CDNs come in handy. When you use a CDN, visitors will instead connect to your site through the server closest to them. This way, your pages will load faster and will put less strain on the source server.
Make your site less prone to network failures
If a CDN server goes down, the site will simply load from another server. This allows you to handle more traffic.
Improves the user experience
The fact that your site is effectively spread across the globe creates a more consistent experience for all visitors.
Improve your SEO rankings
The speed of your website affects its search engine ranking, so speeding it up makes it more likely to appear higher in search results.
Reduce bandwidth usage
Since your source server doesn’t need to send as much data as possible to each visitor, you can minimize the amount of bandwidth required.
Help defend against basic attacks
CDNs are designed to handle large volumes of traffic, which helps defend against the most common types of malicious activity, such as distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks.
As you can see, using a CDN can help improve not only the speed and reliability of your site, but a lot more. The only question left is how to get started. Now let’s take a look at some of the best CDN solutions you can implement on your WordPress site.
CDN Solutions for WordPress Websites
Once you have decided to implement a CDN, you just need to find the solution that best suits your needs. Here are some of the leading CDN solutions that you can use with your WordPress site.
Cloudflare is a very popular CDN solution for WordPress websites. Not only does it have over 120 data centers, but it is also one of the few CDN providers that offer free plans. This makes it a smart choice for website owners who want a reliable and easy-to-implement solution.
Installing the Cloudflare plugin on your WordPress site is as easy as installing the plugin and creating a free account. You can then activate the default settings and everything goes smoothly.
- Easy to use with WordPress sites with minimal configuration.
- Automatically flushes the cache when updating the site.
- Web Application Firewall (WAF) is included in all premium plans.
Pricing: Cloudflare is free to use, but a variety of paid plans are available, starting at $20/month. These include additional site services such as image optimization, enhanced security, and priority support.
Image CDN by Jetpack
Jetpack is one of the most comprehensive and popular WordPress plugins. However, you may not know that it also includes a neat little CDN solution called Image CDN (formerly known as Photon). This is an image-only CDN that serves all your images from the cloud network to optimize the speed of your site.
- No configuration required.
- Automatically applies to all images on pages and posts.
- Improved performance, especially on sites with many images.
Pricing: Since Jetpack includes the Image CDN, you only need to install the plugin for free and activate it on your site.
MetaCDN is tailored for websites with video and live streaming capabilities. With more than 120 servers, it delivers fast speeds and consistent performance. Some advanced plans also use a multi-CDN architecture, combining multiple CDN networks into one for better performance. To integrate MetaCDN into WordPress, you must use the W3 Total Cache plugin.
- Ideal for websites that include video and live streaming.
- Provides higher performance through multi-CDN structure.
- Rollover of unused credits to the next month.
Pricing: MetaCDN offers a 7-day free trial, which includes all its features. You can then continue with its three pro plans, with plans that can be paid monthly or annually.
Google Cloud CDN
Google Cloud CDN is a custom solution for sites hosted on Google Cloud. cloud CDN is seamlessly integrated into all sites hosted on the platform, so minimal configuration is required. The solution provides stable and reliable performance, as well as integrated security measures.
To use Google Cloud CDN, you must install WordPress on Google Cloud Platform. you can then enable the CDN functionality using the Cloud Platform’s interface.
- Automatic integration into Google Cloud Platform.
- Provides SSL authentication at no additional cost.
- Ensures that your site maintains the same IP address without the need for zone DNS.
Pricing: Google offers a free trial version that requires a credit card, but will not automatically charge you when the trial period exceeds one year.
Keeping your website fast and secure is of the utmost importance. You need to ensure that your users can access your site quickly, no matter where they are. Using a content delivery network (CDN) is an easy and affordable way to achieve this, while also helping to ensure that your site is secure.