Cloudflare is a CDN (Content Delivery Network) – a network of servers spread across the globe which offers various benefits to websites. It caches web content, thereby improving website speeds, minimizes the use of bandwidth, and reduces the load on the web server. Further, its failsafe mechanism ensures redundancy and also adds an extra layer of security to the website. In this article, we will talk about how Cloudflare makes a big difference in website speed.
How does Cloudflare work?
As soon as you activate Cloudflare, your traffic gets routed through Cloudflare’s content delivery network. It stores a copy of the static content of your website like images, CSS, etc. in order to optimize the delivery of the content. When a user visits your website, it selects the server closest to the visitor resulting in a reduced page load time. In case that server is busy, then the traffic is re-routed to the next server closest to the site visitor.
How does Cloudflare make a difference in website speed?
Primarily, the Cloudflare CDN performance can be broken down into three categories:
- Reducing the physical distance between the visitor and the data
- Helping in the improvement of the performance of the server-side infrastructure
- Reduce file sizes to help the content to load faster
Let’s look at a non-CDN scenario:
Imagine a user in New York wants to access a website which is hosted on a web server in Singapore – which is around 9500 miles apart. Without a CDN, the request from the user needs to travel all the way to Singapore via multiple connections, and the data needs to travel from Singapore to New York through numerous routers too. Each of these routers increases the latency resulting in a slower performing website. In this case, the webpage takes around 3000ms to load.
Let’s look at a CDN scenario:
Now, let’s assume that the web server in Singapore is using a Content Delivery Network having a server in Atlanta which has the cached version of the static content of the website. In this case, the webpage loads in merely 1100ms.
Therefore, you can see that since the distance between the user and the server is reduced, the load time improves by around 1900ms (or nearly 2 seconds)!
Cloudflare CDN uses Solid-State hard drives (SSDs), which are more resilient and reliable as compared to HDDs. Since SSDs are costly, many CDN providers still use Hard Disk Drives (HDDs) and compromise on the reliability and resilience of the network.
Hence, as you can see, Cloudflare makes a noticeable difference in the loading speed of your website. If you are starting a reseller web hosting business, then you might want to look for Hosting Reseller Plans which offer Cloudflare as a part of the package and use SSDs. We hope that this article helps you understand the way Cloudflare functions and how it helps reduce the page load speed of your website. Do share your views with us in the comments below.