If you are a website or ecommerce owner, designer or developer, you need to know what a CDN is and what it does. First of all, a CDN is an abbreviation for Content Delivery Network. Some refer to it as a content distribution network. In short, a CDN helps the content of a website or application load faster in areas where the server of the website is not located. It also provides many other benefits including security and faster loading overall.
How a CDN helps your server
Websites made using open-sourced platforms such as Magento or WordPress, require a host/server in order to store all data. The host/server is much like a CPU or computer for layman terms but built to host websites. The power, speed, and configurations of the server affect the performance of the website.
Let’s say that you purchased a purchased a hosting service from a company like GoDaddy or PixelComb Hosting and you are in California. These hosting companies will likely provide you with a server that is in your location or close to your location.
People who are closer to where your server is located will experience a bit faster performance from your website, while people who are further away will experience lower performance. This especially applies to people in other countries.
The reason for the difference is due to data in your server having to travel long distances to reach the user, and consequently your website will load and function slower. Not to mention if your website has applications that allow the user to engage or perform actions.
A CDN would connect through your domain name, and essentially mirror your website’s information using many servers throughout the world. Hence the phrase “content delivery network” Much of this is achieved through a cache system.
There are numerous companies that offer CDN services such as CloudFlare, MaxCDN and Amazon CloudFront. Some hosting companies like PixelComb Hosting also offer CDN services with their security services.
Security benefits from a CDN
What else does a CDN do? It adds an amazing amount of safety. Hackers who try to hack your website or server would find it much more difficult to attack. Not to mention many CDN services also come with a firewall.
Settings in a CDN can be changed by a professional so that you can prevent users in countries you don’t need or are a risk, from interacting with your website. You can also set limits in interactions that target bots that try to spam websites.
So now you know what a CDN is. I guess the big question now is… Do you need it? For the most part, we always recommend it for websites that will be marketed and advertised. Ecommerce websites would benefit tremendously with a CDN service.
If you would like to learn more and would like our professionals to apply a CDN as part of your Cyber Security system, contact us.