Your website is hosted by a host server somewhere in the world, probably in your country or near it. What if some Australian guy visits your website which is hosted in Canada? Yes as they geographical distance increases, web page loading time increases too. This was the main reason of CDN creation.
What is CDN? Why Should I Use It?
CDN or Content Delivery Network, consists of several data centers located all around the world. They are connected to each other and when you use a CDN, it clones your website content on all its nodes (data centers). Now every visitor delivers your content from the nearest data center to his/her location. This resolves the problem of physical distance between server and visitor.
Some CDNs have smaller territory, for example they just have servers in one country. Before starting to use a CDN, make sure it covers and serves the geographical areas you want.
Fast access to your website makes both visitors and Google love your website and it affects your website SEO.
Also it’s very useful when your website has considerable number of visitors; it removes the load from your host server and distribute it among CDN servers.
Another important advantage of CDNs is their safety; most of them have plans for protecting against DDoS attacks and you can use SSL. They hide your original IP and makes your host server anonymous. Even if your major audiences are in your country, security is a valid reason for using CDN.
CDNs usually use high speed DNS servers which reduce the time for site looking up. For example, CloudFlare, one of the major CDNs in the world, hosts more then one third of world domain names and has considerable fast response.
One of the most important privileges of one host server is its “up time”. No one likes to try to visit a website and find it down. Some CDNs have an option for keeping website up even when the original server is down. So the probability your visitors find your website down, considerably reduces.
Benefits of CDN:
- Clone your website on different servers all around the world. Now every visitor serves from the nearest server
- Reduce the load on your host server
- Protect against DDoS attacks. Also SSL is available
- Hide your server IP
- Use fast DNS servers
- Keep website alive even when the original server is down (increases up-time)
How to Use CDN
Choose a CDN and they all have tutorials and documentation. Just pay enough attention to the settings; some options like cache, may lead to a confusion about their behavior.