What is a Content Delivery Network and why Do I Need One?
Without a CDN you rely on 1 server (origin server) and location to do all the work. A Content Delivery Network (CDN) is a secondary, world wide array of servers in addition to your origin server that already have your site preloaded and ready for full site delivery.
Normally, an origin server has to call in every aspect of your web site one by one. From images, videos, and even 3rd party code functions like jQuery, every line of code is delivered 1 by 1. With a CDN, it’s all cached (preloaded) therefore eliminating the 1 by 1 delivery which allows the user to experience your site much quicker. In fact, it can get up to 75% faster load times! This is especially crucial on mobile.
Another way CDN’s improve web site performance is by using proximity as a factor. Instead of one server serving the world, you get a world full of servers that will serve the world; makes more sense, doesn’t it? The closer the server the faster the delivery. The below illustration is a great visual that should hammer down your new understanding of what a CDN is.
More About CDN’s
The Web Site Security Factor
Performance is only 1 half of the equation. CDN’s also offer incredible web site security. This is done by placing a network firewall between the end user and your origin server, and in this keeps all of your site’s assets, code, and passwords unreachable by hackers. Now it is possible that a very experienced advanced and serious hacker can still break in, but even in this case CDN companies like our partner Cloudflare will guarantee the fix. That’s right they will clean it all up for you and get your brand’s site back up and running in no time.
Why You Need A CDN
The Web Site Quality Factor
Finally we get to the why of it all. Think about this. What is Google’s, or any other search engine’s job? The answer is to serve up only the highest quality brands that also perfectly answer the user’s search query. That’s it. This is where we get into SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and the fact that Google looks at over 250 different quality factors in order to judge whose brand they will show and at what spot. Obviously everyone wants the #1 spot. Well getting a CDN deployed on your site is going to knock out quite a few of the 250 factors, and therefore help you to reach that goal. In essence you want a CDN because it will increase your brands keyword ranks, because it raises your brand’s quality level and therefore authority score. High authority sites always have a CDN in place. So if you want to be like the big brands you must do as the big brands do. Right? Next let’s look at all of the SEO factors a CDN handles.
SEO Factors That CDN’s Improve
The Result of Having a CDN In Place
There are many ways in which a CDN improves SEO. Some are direct, and others indirect. Let us explain …
A direct factor example would be the speed at which the site now loads because of the CDN. That alone helps. It’s why Google has Page Speed Incites. They look directly at all the performance metrics.
What about a related indirect factor? The indirect factor here is that because of the enhanced speed you will see less bounces (when a person clicks on your site but doesn’t wait for it to load because it’s too slow). This then leads to more visits, time on site, and user engagement; all of which matter in the SEO world.
Here’s a list of first the direct factors, then the indirect factors that will see improvement.
Direct SEO Factors Improved
• Web Site Speed
• Web Site Over All Performance
• Web Site Security
• Web Site Up Time (with so many servers, you never go down)
• Key Word Ranks
• Position of Said Keywords Climb
• A CDN Alone Is A SEO Factor
Indirect SEO Factors Improved
• Decreased Bounce Rates
• Increased Visits and Traffic
• Increased User Engagement or Web Site Actions
• Increased User Time on Site
• Increased Pages Viewed per User
• This Leads to More Conversions
• Which Leads to More Reviews
• Which Leads to More Referrals
Now, put it all together and it becomes an upward spiral of success. This is a given only if all other SEO is on point. Keep in mind that just having a CDN is a bonus, but it’s about all the improvements and then the results of those improvements that really does the trick.
Please see our Birdie Digital Marketing Agency Partners article for more on Cloudflare CDN.