what is a cdn?

What Are Content Delivery Networks (CDN)?

Have you been noticing the term “content delivery networks” or “CDN” hanging out around a few of your favorite sites? Have you heard that it is really quite useful to use content delivery networks (CDN), but still aren’t sure what this means? This blog is perfect for you! We are going to explore just what CDNs are, how to use them, and why you should be using them for your blog.

What Is A CDN?

Simply put, a CDN is a collection of several servers that work together to get end-users’ information quickly. The information is stored on one server, but is accessed by multiple ones throughout the globe, giving quicker access. This is a common technology used by online streaming services such as Netflix or Hulu. Did you ever wonder how you were able to download and stream that episode of House M.D. so quickly and why it is so easy to continue streaming episodes until you’ve watched 8 hours worth of TV? Now you know! You can blame the CDNs for your Netflix binges.

While this is common for streaming services, it is also becoming increasingly common for webpages that don’t require videos to stream. This helps to get a webpage to load quickly, on any device, anywhere in the world. For example, if you are looking at Filofax UK to find the best planner or inserts for your planner and you’re in the States, you’ll notice how quickly it loads. This is because of a CDN. There is a cache of information from the Filofax website in a server that is much closer to you than one in London. It is helpful and makes it much easier to get what you desire. Doesn’t this sound like something you want for your site? It should! Now let’s take a look at how you can use it and some more reasons as to why you should.

How Do I Use It?

You will need to choose an adequate CDN service to use this for your site. One of the key elements in using and choosing a CDN service is that you research everything before choosing one. A few good things to know are the types of services you will need such as streaming, progressive downloads, on-demand, live, or combinations of these. Contact several different providers and ask them your questions. Don’t decide immediately on which provider to go with; take some time and compare notes from the different providers. This will help you weigh the options, as well as reflect over each conversation.

You should definitely trust your gut when it comes time to choose. If you felt weird about a certain provider, even if they offered some excellent benefits, you should move them lower down the list. This could be because the offers sounded too good to be true or just that you weren’t keen on how the customer service representative handled your questions. Whatever the reason, trust your gut.

Why Should I Be Using It?

Seeing that you’d need to choose a provider might have made you raise an eyebrow and think, “Well, maybe I don’t need this!” However, nothing could be further from the truth. Let’s take a look at a few simple reasons why you should be using a CDN.

1. Better User Experience. One of the biggest perks of using a CDN is that user experience will be significantly better. A CDN helps to make the website load quicker and be available in more areas around the globe, which is important when it comes to the world now. If you have poor user experience, you will lose ranks and visitors quickly. Aim to make the experience on your site better with optimal flow and by switching to a CDN.

2. Perfect For Mobile Users. CDNs help tremendously when it comes to having a website that is mobile friendly. A CDN is perfect for mobile users because many aren’t near your area or server, so if there is a server that has your information stored already, it will make it available to mobile users no matter where they are. Remember, making your website available for mobile users is crucial to a successful website.

3. Pre-cache Is A Big Help. What does pre-cache mean? Well, if someone accesses the CDN your information is on, even for a different website, he or she will already have the network downloaded when that person goes to your website. This will keep the user from having to download the network again and give him or her almost immediate access to your website. Nifty, isn’t it?

In Closing

Start looking into investing in a content delivery network soon to start seeing excellent results on your website. You’ll be pleased with the success of your site when it comes to user experience, which can rank you higher on Google. However, you won’t be the only one who is pleased; your users will be just as pleased if not more so because they are able to access your website quickly. Speed is everything when it comes to the Internet!

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