What is a CDN and how to use it on my WordPress website?


Using a CDN for your #WordPress website – what is a CDN? Do you need one?

Full Video Transcript

Hey y’all, welcome to another WordPress Wednesday. My name is Kori Ashton here at WebTegrity in San Antonio, Texas and it is that time again for another WordPress Wednesday. A time to nerd out on all things WordPress.

Today we’re looking at the topic, what the heck is a CDN? Do I need one? What does it do? I’ve heard of them maybe; but, I don’t understand exactly what it is that they do. So, I’m gonna walk through that with you today. If you have questions more about this be sure to put them in the thread below (the comment box below) over on YouTube. Give us a tweet out. Holler at me. I’ll try to answer your questions for you.

Alright, I have to give a shout out right away to WPBeginner dot com (wpbeginner.com) for this awesome infographic. If you’ve done any research on what is a CDN, especially in the WordPress world you’ve probably come across this article by them and I wanted to show it to you here because it’s pretty easy to understand if you take a look at this. CDN stands for Content Delivery Network. Basically, it’s a network of servers that would be all over the world that would, in a sense, duplicate your content around to these servers.

Here’s what I want you to wrap your brain around…You pay for hosting. (Where your website lives, right now) All the files that create your website live on a server somewhere. It’s called hosting. For this particular infographic they have it lit up here in yellow as the origin server. (The original server) So, let’s say that it’s WPEngine or GoDaddy or Host Gator. Whomever it is that you have hosting with. That’s who you’ve paid to put your website content on their server. What you want to do is apply a content delivery network (a CDN) to your website so that it can (in a sense) distribute the content all around the world, wherever these other servers are and any of your visitors that are trying to view your site based on their IP address, they’ll be able to see the closest server to them. So, is it real time? of course. They’re going to see your exact website; but, that’s what is so powerful about a CDN. It basically resources your static things like your images, your files, your Javascript, your cascading style sheets. All these things that don’t change that often. They leave them on the server so that it loads more quickly all around the world. It’s pretty darn cool. Gotta love technology.

Here’s why you do need one. First of all, it’s just gonna make your website load so much more quickly no matter who’s visiting it or from what side of the world. You can imagine if someone in Australia was trying to view our website here in San Antonio, Texas and our servers are here in Texas, it might just take a few extra seconds. A struggle for the individual and their load time. They get frustrated and they move away. The bounce rate would increase. So, if you have faster servers and my website was right here on a server in his or her country it might load more quickly. That’s the idea.

The other reason you need it is because, it could help balance out the weight of influx of traffic. So, let’s say that you have a big event happening of 3K…5K…50K visitors come hit your website at one time, again if your website sat on one server alone all that weight hits one server. If it’s dispersed out with a content delivery network it could easily balance out the weight and help your website to potentially not crash. That’s pretty cool.

Another reason why you want a CDN is because it simply (referencing back to the thing I said about the load speed) Google loves to see fast websites. So from a search engine optimization standard, when you’re talking about improving your organic placement, (your search engine optimization) you absolutely need to have a CDN in place. So, how do you get one? There are several out there; but, the first thing I want to say is, the best place to grab one up is actually with your hosting company. So, you can call them up and talk to them and ask them what they provide, how many servers they have, what it costs. We, of course, always brag about WPEngine. They’re who we host with. I’ll put the link for them in the description box below. They offer a CDN with their hosting services. So, you can easily apply that to your website and see that massive increase in load time. Just that speed. It really booms your website and speeds things up. Another one, of course, that’s very popular out there is MaxCDN. You can go take a look at that. Again, I’ll put the link to that in the box below. I’m not an affiliate with these guys and they do have their pricing listed on their website, so you can take a look and see what would be more beneficial for you. Another one that I heard great things about is CloudFlare, of course.Both of those are options for you to look at and see what’s best for you. Of course, if you’re over in the world of WordPress dot com (wordpress.com) this is not necessarily applicable to you. You might have to use Jetpack or something over there, to hopefully improve that; but, this is for those in the self-hosted version of WordPress.

Alright y’all, I hope you’re doing great. I hope you’re having a great week. Be sure to subscribe to our channel if you’re brand new to us; because, we put out a video like this every single Wednesday for something specifically to do with all things WordPress. If you’re interested in reaching out to us, you can find us over at WebTegrity dot com. (webtegrity.wpengine.com) I’ll put the link in the description box below and, of course, you can always tweet to us. I’ll see you next week on WordPress Wednesday. Bye, y’all.

WP Engine – http://shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=875645&u=960977&m=41388&urllink=&afftrack=

Infographic from WP Beginner http://cdn.wpbeginner.com/infographs/whatisacdn.jpg



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