5 Best CDN Providers to Speed Up Your Website (In-Depth Comparison)

Slow web pages can kill your business.

It’s true. Just a 2-second delay in page load time can increase bounce rates by up to 103%.

And, according to the latest data from Google, 54% of mobile users are bouncing if a page takes more than a couple of seconds to load.

Ready to improve your website speed and page load times?

While there are different ways to improve your website speed and page loading times, using a CDN (Content Delivery Network) is one of the best and easiest ways to boost overall speed and performance.

In this article, we’ll compare the best CDN providers to speed up your website so you can choose the best CDN for you.

What Is a CDN (Content Delivery Network)?

content delivery network

A CDN is a geographically distributed group of servers that store content like HTML pages, javascript files, CSS files, images, and videos.

CDNs cache the content from your website on multiple servers in different locations. Then, the CDN delivers content to your site visitors through the server that is closest to them, bouncing to the next closest server if the closest server is down.

Why You Need One of the Best CDN Providers to Speed Up Your Website

Typically, when a user comes to your WordPress blog, they’re redirected to your web host’s server, which is located at a central location.

This means that every user on your website is accessing a single server to view your website. So, if you have lots of traffic, you might overload your server, leading to slow load times or even a server crash!

When you use a CDN, your static content—images, CSS files, javascript files, Flash, etc.— is cached and stored on all of these servers spread around these different locations.

Now when a user visits your site, the CDN redirects them to the closest server to their location.

Having a CDN makes a huge difference for your website’s performance and also improves user experience. Here are a few of the advantages of using a CDN:

Speed: CDN users report increased site speeds once they begin using a CDN provider.

Crash Resistance: If you have high traffic, a CDN is a must. A CDN lets you distribute the load across servers instead of having 100% of traffic going to a single server.

Improved User Experience: A faster site leads to improved user experience. If a page takes more than a couple of seconds to load, your visitors are going to leave. With a CDN provider in place, CDN users have seen decreased bounce rates and increased pageviews.

Improvement in SEO: Google loves faster sites and ranks them higher in search engine results.

A CDN is not a website hosting service. You will still need a hosting service to build your website.

The Best CDN Providers to Speed Up Your Site

Let’s take a look at some of the best CDN providers to speed up your website and how they compare to one another.

1.MaxCDN / StackPath

maxcdn stackpath

MaxCDN (now StackPath) is the best WordPress CDN in the market. You can control your CDN with a beginner-friendly control panel and their servers use super fast SSD drives. StackPath also has a large network of servers spread across many countries around the globe.

It’s easy to get started with StackPath. It works well with popular WordPress caching plugins like W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache.

StackPath lets you purge your cache, view reports, setup locations, and more. You can also add SSL certificates or use a shared SSL certificate to make sure that your cached content is served through a secure site.

Using load balancing and blocking features, StackPath’s CDN also protects your website from DDoS attacks. Plus, all plans include a firewall that reduces server load even further.

StackPath comes with a developer-friendly set of tools and APIs, allowing developers to integrate their apps or websites into the StackPath API and take advantage of its powerful interface.

Network Size/Distribution

  • 45 locations
    • North America
    • South America
    • Europe
    • Australia & New Zealand
    • Asia-Pacific

Analytics & Reporting

  • Analytics are reported in 5-minute intervals (typically up to date within 10 minutes)
  • Detailed data points about content delivery and traffic, with advanced reporting capabilities and analytics
  • Reporting timeframes: last hour, last 24 hours, last 7 days, last 30 days, last 90 days, and custom period
  • Graphs and statistics available:
    • Bandwidth: the amount of bandwidth used from delivering CDN assets (Edge Bandwidth), bandwidth from performing origin pulls (Bandwidth to Origin)
    • Requests: number of individual HTTP requests handled by the CDN (Edge Requests), number of requests sent to the origin for assets not in the cache (Requests to Origin)
    • Delivery by Data Center: bubble map of which StackPath data centers delivered your content and how much they respectively delivered
    • Cache Hit Ratio: graph of the proportion of your traffic that required accessing your origin, both transfer and requests; gives a high-level understanding of how efficiently you are utilizing the CDN’s cache

Pricing

$10/month

Get started with MaxCDN/StackPath today!

2. Sucuri

sucuri

You probably already know Sucuri as a popular website security company, but did you know that Sucuri also offers a powerful WordPress firewall and CDN that protects your website against DDoS attacks, malware, and other security threats?

Sucuri’s website application firewall scans all user requests to your site before they can reach your hosting server. Then, if anything gets past the firewall, Sucuri’s widely-respected security features will take care of it.

You can use Sucuri with all of the CDNs on this list. Combining Sucuri with a CDN like MaxCDN would reduce server load since Sucuri’s firewall blocks bad requests before they can request cached content from MaxCDN.

Network Size/Distribution

  • 12 locations
    • North America
    • South America
    • Europe
    • Australia & New Zealand
    • Asia-Pacific

Analytics & Reporting

  • Monitoring frequency is based on your plan
  • Monitoring reports can be emailed in text or PDF on a weekly or monthly basis
  • Statistics available in emailed reports:
    • Uptime: shows the percentage of time your site was up and accessible by site visitors
    • Malware Monitoring: number of malware warnings on site; these warnings occur when Sucuri blocks malware
    • Blacklist Monitoring: number of blacklist warnings on site; these warnings occur when your site appears on a blacklist
    • SSL Monitoring: number of SSL warnings on site; these warnings occur when your SSL changes
    • DNS Monitoring: number of DNS warnings on site; these warnings occur when your site’s IP address, nameservers, or MX records change

Pricing

Starts at $199.99/year for the Basic plan; $299.99/year for Pro; $499.99/year for Business; Enterprise is custom

Get started with Sucuri today!

3. Cloudflare

cloudflare cdn

Cloudflare is a well-known CDN for small websites, likely due to their free plan. It’s important to keep in mind, however, that their free plan has limited DDoS protection and doesn’t come with all the bells and whistles of their paid plans.

Even so, Cloudflare is a great CDN option. It’s easy to set up and has a large network of globally distributed servers. Cloudflare also has an easy-to-use control panel.

Network Size/Distribution

  • 165 locations
    • North America
    • South America
    • Europe
    • Africa
    • Australia & New Zealand
    • Asia-Pacific

Analytics & Reporting

  • Analytics dashboard includes reporting on web traffic, security threats, performance, and DNS queries by response code
  • Reporting timeframes vary depending on the parameter you’re looking into (i.e. – web traffic reporting can be done for the last 30 minutes, last 6 hours, last 24 hours, last week, and last month

Pricing

Cloudflare has a free plan; paid plans start at $20/month

Get started with Cloudflare today!

4. KeyCDN

keycdn

KeyCDN is another great CDN provider to speed up your website. They have a powerful system of servers across North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific regions.

It’s also easy to set up KeyCDN on many popular platforms, including WordPress. Plans include DDoS protection, free and custom SSL, HTTP/2 support, Restful API support, SSD servers, and a powerful control panel.

KeyCDN offers pay-as-you-go plans, letting you pay for what you use instead of locking you into a fixed monthly payment. While this could reduce pricing for some websites, unexpected growth in traffic may increase costs, making it difficult to budget.

Network Size/Distribution

  • 34 locations
    • North America
    • South America
    • Europe
    • South Africa
    • Australia & New Zealand
    • Asia-Pacific

Analytics & Reporting

  • Real-time statistics include traffic per second, requests per second, and cache hit ratio
  • CDN dashboard shows general analytics like CDN usage, HTTP status, cache status, file type, and file size
  • Data can be viewed by zone and time frame (last 24/48 hours, last 7/30 days, this month, last month, or a custom range)
  • Real-time logs give you detailed information on cache access (and can be further refined using filters in JSON format)

Pricing

Pricing is tiered by location and usage.

Get started with KeyCDN today!

5. Rackspace

rackspace cdn

Rackspace is well-known in cloud computing, hosting, and enterprise-level cloud solutions. And, they have a CDN solution built on top of powerful cloud infrastructure!

Setting up Rackspace is a bit more involved than the other CDN providers on our list. Plus, Rackspace offers a ton of other cloud solutions as well, which can make it hard for users to find what they need. But, it does work well with WordPress and can be easily used with popular WordPress plugins.

Rackspace doesn’t provide any DDoS mitigation at all, so you’ll need to use Sucuri or Cloudflare in addition to this CDN provider.

Network Size/Distribution

  • 200+
    • North America
    • South America
    • Europe
    • Australia & New Zealand
    • Asia-Pacific

Analytics & Reporting

Rackspace’s reporting options for its CDN are pretty limited.

Pricing

Pricing is tiered by location and bandwidth with requests to Edge billed separately based on location and usage.

Get started with Rackspace today!

What Is the Best CDN Provider for Killer Site Speed?

After comparing all of the top CDN providers to speed up your website, it’s clear that MaxCDN / StackPath is the winner. They have the most robust set of features, reasonable pricing, beginner-friendly setup, and a large network.

For the best speed and security, we recommend that you use StackPath and Sucuri together.

On a tight budget? Check out Cloudflare’s free CDN plan.

Now that you’re up to speed on the best CDN providers to speed up your website, why not give it a new look? To do it the easy way, check out our picks for the best drag and drop page builders for WordPress. Don’t use WordPress? Here’s a list of the best website builders for small business instead!

And, before you do ANYthing, click right here to get started with OptinMonster. But only if you want to grow your email list, boost your sales, and get more leads. 😉

Jacinda Santora
Jacinda Santora is a writer specializing in ecommerce and growth marketing. She prides herself on her ability to make complicated things easier. When she isn't writing you can find her daydreaming about campervans, drinking coffee, and listening to podcasts.

Add a Comment

We're glad you have chosen to leave a comment. Please keep in mind that all comments are moderated according to our privacy policy, and all links are nofollow. Do NOT use keywords in the name field. Let's have a personal and meaningful conversation.