If you have come this far, it is very likely that you have heard of CDNs for WordPress but above all you have heard about its ability to accelerate the speed of web pages as one of its various uses. It is not surprising, because it is precisely the browsing speed, one of the most relevant factors when considering the user experience on our site.

At present, it means death that a page takes more than 5 seconds to fully display on the screen, the user will have a tendency to get bored, lose patience and leave the page to quickly find what they are looking for.

These factors also affect the SEO of a website, and therefore, the relevance of a certain site on the Internet, because Google downplays or penalizes those who take too long to load. For these reasons, those interested in improving the performance of their website should optimize the images, install plugins to improve the cache, combine and minify CSS and Javascript files among other things.

Contrary to the cases of optimizations that are carried out on the resources or components previously installed on the server or in WordPress, a CDN takes advantage of external servers, which will interact with your hosting to serve resources more quickly, increasing speed download and therefore improve the user experience.

What is a CDN?

In short, a CDN is a set of servers distributed throughout the globe that are connected through the Internet. Its name is the result of the abbreviation for Content Delivery Network, it is a network of servers that are used to store static content, most of all, of your WordPress site, such as images, CSS, scripts, etc.

Its advantages have to do with the improvement of server availability, it also alleviates the traffic load and serves as a barrier against computer attacks, in addition to improving performance and load times.

How does a CDN work?

First of all, it should not be confused with a hoting for WordPress, they are two different things. A CDN is unable to replace your hosting provider, it is an alternative way to increase the speed of your site.

The work carried out by the hosting server is not focused on generating and delivering the HTML page to the browser that requests it, instead, what it does is dedicate process time to locating and delivering resource files to the browser.

Among the resources mentioned, images are found, generally very heavy that consume a large part of the bandwidth, which translates into slow processes, no matter how optimized it is.

Is a CDN appropriate?

With this technique, the hosting server can focus on what is important, which is to serve users, generate files and deliver them back. If we outline the information, we could say that the operation of a CDN consists of 3 points:

  • A network of servers: it has an extensive connection between servers around the world and through the Internet.
  • Local storage: makes a copy of all the files that belong to dispensable static resources and that are hosted on the server.
  • Interference and attention to requests: this is done when a browser requests information to generate and display the page to the user.

How to activate a CDN?

Many users may be reluctant to search the networks, however, in simple terms, with three steps you can get a CDN for WordPress:

  • Select a CDN provider and subscribe a service, which are generally billed monthly or in direct relation to data usage. Most providers will have a calculator to define costs.
  • Use a free plugin like CDN Enabler or Wp rocket to integrate. These plugins automatically link your assets to the CDN.
  • When people visit a website, content is loaded from different CDNs around the globe, meaning that visitors in Europe will see content uploaded from Europe.

Still, choosing an effective server placement strategy for your WordPress site to host is vital, because even though a CDN allows you to distribute your material and content, there is still a request that needs to be made for the service provider to of accommodations is loaded. In addition, it contains a series of benefits that do not go unnoticed among users:

Improve performance

This is the main reason why to opt for a CDN for WordPress, because every day it becomes undeniable that a fast loading of the site promotes a series of benefits related to excellent conversion rates, as well as decrease in bounce rates and increase in the average duration of each visitor.

Reduce el TTFB

It has been mentioned before that a CDN for WordPress helps to reduce latency, allowing to shorten the physical distance of the data that is needed to travel. Well it can also help to lower the time of the first byte or TTFB .

In other words, the TTFB is a measure of the time it takes the browser before it displays the first views of the page it tries to load from the server; The longer it takes to get this data, the longer it takes to load the page.

Faster delivery

As with caching using a WordPress host, CDNs make use of caching; it is a way to deliver files more quickly. Once the CDN has the copy of your media, it has to be requested a couple of times before it is actually cached within the CDN. It places an HTTP header on each request and renames it “X-Cache”.

Now that you know what a CDN is and how it works, I encourage you to comment if you have used one and what your experience has been.

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