6 great CDN services to speed up your site (free and premium providers!)

by Kelvin

Looking for the best CDN service to speed up your site? Or are you just looking for an easy way to speed up your site?

As much as people tried, we still couldn't break the laws of physics.

  

No matter how fast the internet is, the distance between your site visitors and your site's server still affects the loading times on your site. If your server is in Los Angeles, your site loads faster for someone from San Francisco than someone from Hanoi (Believe me, I know!)

A CDN network, short for Content Delivery NetworkTo resolve the issue, save your site content to multiple servers around the world. Rather than having to go to your server every time, visitors can download your site files from the closest CDN site.

This is ideal for speeding up load times on your site worldwide and reducing server load at startup!

However, to get started, you need to find the CDN provider that fits your needs and budget.

For this, I want to help you in this post!

After a brief introduction to some key CDN terms, I present six fantastic free and premium CDN solutions. Whatever your budget, you'll find a tool on this list!

Let's eliminate the important terminology of CDN

Hey, I know you will probably only make it to the top CDN list. But before I do, I think it's important to define some key concepts so you don't get confused when you start looking for CDN providers.

I want it to be as short and beginner-friendly as possible.

First there Assistance Points (PoP) or perimeter server (They actually mean different things, but the difference is not important to most users)

These two terms refer to the number of locations that a CDN has worldwide. For example, if a CDN has locations in San Francisco, London, and Singapore, that is the case. 3 Assistance Points (or 3 Omkretsserver), Unlike Edge Servers, it has its own original serverThis is the main server where your site is hosted (i.e. your web host).

In general, a larger number of support points is better as this indicates better coverage worldwide.

After a certain point, however, your average site has lower returns. For example, you are unlikely to have many visitors from Korea, so it is really important if your CDN only has one place in Japan instead of Japan Y South Korea? For most sites, this is not the case: Japan is already pretty close to Korea, so these additional factions in a second don't matter.

Then you got it Pressure vs. pull Zones This is getting quite technical, so I won't fully explain it. Basically though, it's about how you can transfer your site's files to CDN servers. For most casual webmasters, a Remove CDN This is the best option since CDN can automatically "drag" your files to your servers instead of having to "push" your files to CDN manually.

Finally there is reverse ProxyA reverse proxy acts as a mediator between your visitors' web browsers and your site's server. Basically, it directs traffic for you that can provide services and security benefits (Find out more here) Some of the CDN services I want to cover also work as a Reverse Proxy Server, which means they automatically implement the cached version of your site without any additional effort on your part.

With this important knowledge, let's get out of the way and delve into the best CDN providers, starting with one of the most popular options…

1, Stack path: a large full CDN (formerly MaxCDN)

MaxCDN has been a popular CDN service for years, especially among WordPress users. Stackpath in 2016 acquired MaxCDN and packed MaxCDN services Stacking path Fire. Now the two are one and the same.

Like Cloudflare, Stackpath offers security and CDN services. However, Stackpath gives you a more a la carte approach where you can choose specific services or use a complete "delivery package" with CDN, a firewall, managed DNS and more.

I want to specifically talk about the CDN service. I only know that these other services are available when you want them.

Stackpath is currently offering 45 points of presence on every habitable continent except AfricaYou can see the full map below:

Pop stacking path

Because stackpath one Remove CDNIt is very easy to configure. Just enter your site URL and Stackpath will make sure to extract all your assets on its servers.

Then you can distribute assets from Stackpath Edge servers.

Unlike Cloudflare, you will do not You must change your name server to use Stackpath CDN (although Stackpath offers managed DNS if you want)

Stackpath pros

Disadvantages of a single path

price: Stackpath CDN plans start at $ 10 a month for 1TB Bandwidth. Pay later 0 $ 04 / GB for additional bandwidth.

2, Cloudflare: free and packed with security features

Torch of Heaven

Cloudflare is undoubtedly one of the largest CDN providers. You dominate 10 million Websites and have a large global network (by far the largest on this list).

Cloudflare currently has 154 data centers on every continent where humans live (Sorry Antarctica!) You can see the full map below:

The cloud burst

First Flame of heavenAll you have to do is change your site's name servers to point to Cloudflare. Cloudflare will automatically cache your content and serve it from its huge global network.

Cloudflare is also a reverse proxy (Look, I told you that this term is important!) This means that not only can you intelligently deliver content through your CDN, but it also offers a number of security benefits.

With Cloudflare, for example, you can create special rules to protect important areas of your site, like This WordPress dashboard. You can also implement greater security throughout the site. This is useful if you have a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack on your site.

Another great benefit of Cloudflare is that it is free for most sites. While Cloudflare paid for plans with advanced features (like a web app firewall and custom page rules), most users fully agree with the free plans.

Finally, if you haven't already Use HTTPS on your siteCloudflare offers a free shared SSL certificate that allows you to move your site to HTTPS (Even if possible, you still need to install an SSL certificate through your host. know why)

Cloudflare benefits

  • The free plan works for most users.
  • Easy to set up – all you have to do is point your name servers at Cloudflare and you're done.
  • It has a large global network of 154 locations. 6 different continents
  • In addition to its CDN services, it offers many security benefits.
  • It gives you a lot of flexibility with the rules of your page.

Cloudflare Cons

  • Point simply failed. Because you point your name servers to Cloudflare, your site won't be available if Cloudflare ever has trouble.
  • Incorrect configuration of Cloudflare's security rules can interfere with legitimate users (Sunday Sometimes I have to do a CAPTCHA to see the Cloudflare sites just because I live in Vietnam) The solution is to lower your security level, but some occasional users may lose it.
  • While the basic installation process is simple, you may need to go a bit further to optimize it for WordPress. However, the WordPress Cloudflare plugin can help.

price: The free plan should be sufficient for most users. Paid plans start at $ 20 per month.

3, Sucuri: solid security plus surprisingly good CDN

has happened

Most people think about it Happened as a security service, not as a CDN. And for good reason, Sucuri does an excellent job on web security and will certainly help. Secure your site.

In addition to all the security features, Sucuri also offers a CDN for all plans. Your Edge Server network is not as large as the other CDN providers on this list, but it does offer Edge Servers in key areas. You can see the full map below:

Pop happened

Since most of the traffic on your site is likely to come from people close to those areas, the small number of rankings is not important to most sites.

You also have access to many other additional features outside of CDN functionality. For example, you also get a web application firewall. And if something happens, you can get the popular Sucuri detection and malware removal service.

You can even have Sucuri automatically backup your site (for an additional fee)

So if you want a CDN service that can further Sucuri is a good option to ensure with greater security and support.

Sucuri benefits

Disadvantages of Sucuri

price: Sucuri plans start at $ 199.99 a year, but you need your $ 299.99 a year to fully support SSL / https.

4, KeyCDN – Affordable and easy to use

keycdn

Unlike most of the other services on this list KeyCDN It is just a CDN. It focuses on that and does it quite well.

It's especially popular with WordPress sites, in part because KeyCDN is so active in the WordPress community with plugins CDN Enabler and The cache control unit.

However, anyone can use KeyCDN and the installation process is quite simple.

It also has a strong global presence with 34 points of presence it spread throughout the world, including all habitable continents. They are also in the process of adding new locations in Israel, Korea, Indonesia, and other areas. You can see the full map below (Blue shows active servers, while gray shows scheduled locations):

keycdn pop

With KeyCDN you can use both pull Y Pressure Zones (Most webmasters should also choose here pull) And just like with Stackpath, setting up a pull zone is pretty easy – just enter the site URL.

Finally, KeyCDN has some security features, like SSL support and DDoS protection.

KeyCDN does not offer a free plan, but you can start with one Free 30-day trial, The price is also paid in full when you travel, which means you are never bound by a monthly plan.

KeyCDN benefits

  • Affordable pay-as-you-go pricing, so you only pay for what you spend.
  • Good server performance on all habitable continents.
  • Easy to use for non-technical users with a lot of documentation.
  • Many functions for technical users. who want her, including header checks and custom rules.
  • Active in the WordPress community.

KeyCDN Cons

  • There is no free plan.
  • There are no detailed security features like firewalls and bot filters (This is only a scam if you naturally appreciate these features)

price: KeyCDN starts at 0 $ 04 per GB for the first 10 TB for Europe and North America (other regions cost a little more). Unit prices fall with increasing traffic.

5, Encapsulates: many similarities with Cloudflare

encapsulated

Incapsula It works a lot like Cloudflare. In other words, it acts as a reverse proxy and offers security and CDN features.

Incapsula is currently offering 44 points of presence on every habitable continent:

Pop hairstyle

With Stackpath and KeyCDN you can manage your own name servers, but like Cloudflare it will direct you to Incapsula to set them up.

The encapsulation then automatically directs traffic for you.

Incapsula not only uses Incapsula's global CDN network, but also offers a web application firewall and bot detection as well as load balancing.

Incapsula makes it difficult to find, but like Cloudflare, it offers a free plan. This free plan includes CDN functionality and cure protection.

Incapsula benefits

  • You have a free plan.
  • Points of presence on every habitable planet.
  • It also offers DDoS protection and bot in the free plan.
  • Paid plans offer advanced security features like: B. a web application firewall.

Disadvantages of the capsule

  • Like Cloudflare, Incapsula has a single point of failure. Because you are pointing your name servers towards Incapsula, your site will not be available if Incapsula has ever had problems.
  • There is no SSL in the free plan like the one you get with Cloudflare.

price: Free basic plan. Paid plans start at $ 59 per month.

6, Jetpack Image CDN: much more limited, but simple and free

jetpack

Jetpack Image CDN (formerly called Jetpack Photon) is the most limited option on this list, as it only works as a CDN for your WordPress site images, while all other CDN services can work with any type of static file.

With that said Images are about half the file size of an average site, making them one of the most valuable assets served through a CDN.

Jetpack Image CDN is also free and helps to address this limitation. And as its name implies, it is part of popular WordPress Jetpack plugin.

To enable it, simply check a box, making it easy to use CDN. After selecting this field, images from your site will be displayed through WordPress.com servers.

I can't find any information about WordPress.com Points of Presence. However, given the popularity of WordPress.com, it is true that there are Edge Servers in the most popular areas.

Advantages of Jetpack Image CDN

  • 100% free
  • The number of images that can be delivered through Jetpack Image CDN is unlimited.
  • The easiest installation process. Just press a button in the WordPress Jetpack plugin.

Disadvantages of Jetpack Image CDN

  • It is much more limited than other CDNs. It only works with images and you have almost no control.
  • You cannot clear the cache. This means that once the image is cached, it is "forever". To update an image, rename the file.
  • You will need the Jetpack plugin that some people don't want.

price: 100% free

What is the best CDN provider for your specific needs?

Now to the million dollar question: Which of these CDN providers do you really need for your site?

As you would probably expect from the fact that I shared six different CDN services, this is not the right answer for every site.

Instead, let's look at some scenarios that might apply to you …

Only when you are looking exclusively for a free CDNso Flame of heaven Is your best option. You have the best free plan for any CDN you can find, and it's flexible enough to get started. Please note that it may take a little effort to optimize it for WordPress.

Incapsula It's another solid free option. However, Cloudfare's free plan is a bit more generous, so for most webmasters I see no reason to choose Incapsula over Cloudflare.

When you're ready to pay:

  • Sucuri is an excellent choice if you want to download a large amount of maintenance from the website Y Speed ​​it up with a CDN. In addition to the global CDN, security features and automatic backups make it a great all-in-one solution. (Note: additional backup costs $ 5 Pr. Location).

  • KeyCDN It is an excellent opportunity for its flexibility and pay-as-you-go prices. It practically focuses on being a CDN, and it gives you a lot of control and doesn't lock you into regular monthly plans.
  • Stackpath is great if you want to access more security and monitoring features. It pays "almost" while on the go (albeit at least $ 10 a month) and is very flexible and easy to use.

Jetpack Image CDN It is a viable option if you just want something super simple. but, In my opinionit is too limited and would be better with a real CDN. However, it is better than nothing. So if you are intimidated by the other settings, they are worth activating.

Frequently asked questions and tips to help you get started with your CDN

Ready to start? Here are some tips to help you make the most of your chosen CDN provider …

How to make your WordPress site deliver content from your CDN

On some CDNs, like Cloudflare, Sucuri, and Incapsula, your site automatically provides the CDN content, as these services can direct traffic on your own (So you need to change your name servers)

However, this is the case with other CDNs where their name servers are not changed, eg. Eg KeyCDN or Stackpath It is not the caseThese CDNs are "extracting" your files on their servers, but your WordPress site continues to deliver files directly from their original server, which means you don't really benefit from a CDN.

To fix this you can use a free plugin like CDN EnablerEssentially, you can use this plugin to rewrite the specific asset URLs to use the CDN URL (images, CSS files, etc.). All you have to do is enter the CDN URL and choose which files to exclude:

CDN Enabler

While CDN Enabler is developed by KeyCDN, you can use it with any CDN (including Stackpath).

Use "cdn.yoursite.com" instead of "lorem-156.cdnprovider.com"

If you use a CDN, such as Stackpath or KeyCDN, this service will provide you with a CDN URL, such as "panda-234.keycdn.com" or "sloth-2234.stackpath.com".

This means that each file provided by your CDN has a URL like "panda-234.keycdn.com/wp-content/uploads/10/22/cool-image.png".

If you prefer to use your own domain name, you can use a list of zones through the CNAME record in your DNS records. Ok, that's a lot of jargon. Basically this means that files from "cdn.yoursite.com" can be provided instead of "panda-234.keycdn.com".

Here's how to configure it:

Can Cloudflare be combined with other CDNs to obtain the security benefits?

Yes, this is getting a little more advanced, but Cloudflare actually gives you good control over what features it uses.

There are some levels …

You can first only Use Cloudflare for your DNS (no CDN or security features). Even without security, there is still Some benefits because Cloudflare's DNS is probably faster than your host's DNS. All you have to do is stop your website on the site study CloudFlare tab:

CloudFlare demo 1

If you want to use both DNS Y You can also create security features Side ruler To exclude your entire site from the cache:

CloudFlare 2 demonstration

Basically you need Follow this tutorial, but create the rule for you full website Use the wild card star.

With this implementation, Cloudflare continues to filter all incoming traffic and routes it to your site, but the cache version doesn't work.

Use an object storage service and mount files with a CDN

This is an even more advanced tactic. But if you have a lot of static files like images, you can take advantage of a third party object storage service like Amazon S3 or DigitalOcean Spaces instead of storing all these files on your own web server.

WordPress plugins like WP Offload Media or Media Library Folder Pro S3 + Spaces Easily download media files from your WordPress site to the object store. Then you can connect the selected CDN service to both Amazon S3 Y DigitalOcean Spaces.

Get out now and speed up loading times on your web pages with a CDN!

divulgation: This post contains affiliate links. This means that we can make a small commission when making a purchase.

6 great CDN services to speed up your site (free and premium providers!) 1