One thing that we often have to tell our clients or prospective clients is that their site/page is heavy and slow. And, even worse, the content they spent a lot of their time and money on improving is the issue. A Content Delivery Network (CDN) can come in handy in this situation in order to fix this.
If you’re regularly creating high-quality content, you should certainly reevaluate how you handle your digital assets and invest in a CDN.
In this article, we’ll be uncovering what to seek in an SEO CDN, the costs of CDN and common implementation pitfalls to avoid. But before we kick off, let’s familiarise ourselves with what a CDN is.
What is a Content Delivery Network (CDN)?
Every one of us, whether we realise it or not, interacts with CDNs on a regular basis. Whether we’re reading articles on news outlets, ordering products online, watching Youtube, or scrolling through our Twitter timeline, CDNs are everywhere.
In definition, a CDN is a geographically spread network of proxy servers and data centres.
No matter the sort of material you consume, a CDN is likely involved. CDNs are behind (almost) every text, every picture pixel, and every video frame that is delivered to your mobile and PC browser.
You must first be aware of the problem that CDNs are meant to address. That’s how you’ll be able to understand why they’re so popular. The irritating lag between when you ask a website to load and when its content actually comes onscreen is referred to as latency. The purpose of an SEO CDN is to virtually reduce that distance in order to increase the speed and efficiency of site rendering.
How can a CDN benefit your company?
The effectiveness of any website may be determined by how graphics and video are incorporated (or not) into its ecosystem. It also applies to:
- Shot and styled photos
- Stock photography
- Graphic designs
- Product and eCommerce photo libraries
- Audio files
In essence, CDNs operate as a multiple-path traffic crossroads where many servers and Internet service providers may interact and share access to the website traffic arriving from various sources.
They don’t wait for each asset to load on separate pages or render as a hard-coded element. Instead, they pass traffic and assets back and forth as the assets are called up by page loads. Instead of depending on one server for all content service delivery, this occurs globally at several places. In order to reduce load time and effectively shorten the path to delivery, these hosts keep cached content ready to show when called.
How SEO CDNs help organisations achieve SEO objectives
With increased investments in content marketing, CDNs have established themselves as industry standards when it comes to technical SEO. That’s especially true when it comes to SEO for businesses.
Speed is a crucial element in enhancing website rankings as well as the general page and user experience, as any SEO expert worth their salt will attest.
The importance of page experience to Google is not surprising in the least. It has taken the corporation a lot of work to create incentives for effective online rendering that disrupts users as little as possible.
In the past few years, almost all (at least those that were publicly publicised) Google algorithm updates have included components to enhance page experience, page speed, and content delivery.
A user is more likely to give up and move on the longer information takes to process and load. A lead or money is lost for each and every rage-quit on a website that wouldn’t load. Speed is also closely related to the highly anticipated Core Web Vitals release.
By balancing the delivery of data, a CDN can significantly improve the overall security of your website. This aids in defending your business against denial-of-service (DDoS) cyberattacks, in which the sinister objective is to increase traffic in an effort to overwhelm and crash a server.
What to seek in an SEO CDN solution
The CDN’s speed in comparison to your origin is arguably the most crucial factor. Also, guarantee it delivers both small and large files and payloads effectively.
Ideally, you’ll get the chance to demo potential SEO CDN solutions. You should check and explore the following core metrics:
- High-Performance Hour. You should make sure to pressure test the CDN reaction when it counts the most if your website suffers from significant traffic fluctuations based on the days of the week or hours of the day
- Availability of less sought-after assets. Since CDNs are shared environments, you should be aware of whether less frequently used content is being supplied from the edge (the many CDN servers) rather than the origin server
- Throughput. For assets of any size, this should never be lower than the origin
- Connect time. Particularly good network connectivity, minimal latency, and no packet loss are what you need in this situation
- DNS response time for the last-mile and the end-user. You don’t want to test internally only to find out after implementation that a complicated DNS configuration is causing excessive wait times for end-users
For a CDN provider, you want to make sure that they have a wide, broad network. Furthermore, you want to be certain that the servers’ location satisfies the requirements of your audience. That applies both now and in case you expand into other markets.
Make sure your chosen CDN has a sufficient number of servers in South America or Africa, for example, if you wish to increase content delivery there. Your alternatives will be more limited as a result than if you were to focus on North America or Europe. That’s because those locations have extensive server networks.
How much does it cost to use an SEO CDN?
There is a lot of pricing variation with CDN, as there is with any marketing options.
The cost of the solution increases with the number of content load requests. For really small websites, CDNs may not be necessary. That’s because it is simpler and less expensive to manually optimise each picture or item.
Manual optimisation and curation, on the other hand, are ineffective ways to manage and provide content across web properties for medium to enterprise-level sites because of content production and sprawl.
Although it could cost more money upfront than doing it on your own, the task not only gets accomplished but also doesn’t cost you leads and sales because of a terrible user experience and a bad server response time.
Medium-sized firms should typically budget £150 or more each month. Large to enterprise-level solutions, on the other hand, nearly always require a tailored estimate.
Aside from the unclear pricing, those plans have the benefit of:
- frequently including proven security features
- improved analytics and user data, up-time assurances
- increased delivery/cache options to guarantee a great user experience regardless of the size of the site
Due to the mentioned server network difficulties, you can also discover that CDN prices fluctuate based on where you are.
Identify common problems with SEO CDN implementation
Using a CDN has a few small limitations, primarily has to do with setting it up properly. All of these issues have very straightforward solutions. That said, if you’re about to undergo a content migration to a CDN, it’s worthwhile going in prepared.
- Budget required for using a CDN: It adds to the already existing hosting and website fee
- Network providers might disallow CDN: The CDN may be blocked by a select (very few, but still important!) network providers
- May require a developer for integration: Many websites incorporate CDNs well, but if you’ve gone bespoke, it may be difficult to get everything set up and may require the assistance of a specialist developer
- Tracing problems: An end-user can receive the incorrect IP address if your CDN uses a third-party geo-mapping database. Check this at setup and at least once a year to make sure the CDN isn’t sending requests down an awkward, long path.
To sum up, businesses that are using a CDN to host and share content may see higher search engine results, a more secure website, and an overall better user experience.
Let us take care of technical stuff
SEO, CDN, and other technical parts of marketing can be too much for business owners looking simply to drive more traffic and get more sales. Well, that’s why our agency exists; to take care of the heavy lifting while you focus on your products and services. Book a discovery call with us today to see what it’s all about!