During the last two weeks, I have been busy trying to find the best CDN service provider I can use for this site.
I am happy to say that I am finally able to choose one that I like the best.
In this article I will also tell you about the other CDN service providers that can stand toe to toe with my choice.
But first let’s have a quick look at what a CDN is and how it helps your website.
What exactly is a CDN?
CDN is a short term for Content Delivery Network, what it basically does is allow you to host your static images, CSS and JS files in several servers around the world.
Now, when a visitor visits your website it will serve those static images, CSS and JS files from the server which is closest to them thus making your website load faster.
The main benefits of CDN are:
- Faster loading for visitor.
- Removes a good amount of burden from your host.
- Built in redundancy in case one of the servers fail the traffic will be automatically re-routed to the closest server.
Also do not be afraid as most of them are really easy to setup.
Now let’s go to the list of the best CDN service providers in 2018.
MaxCDN is a highly regarded CDN service provider founded in 2009. They have been acquired by StackPath awhile back which then integrated a lot of security features to MaxCDN.
MaxCDN is known for their absolute speed. This is because they are only using SSDs in their servers.
They have data centers all over the world including North America, South America, Europe, Middle East and Asia Pacific.
Another best thing about MaxCDN is if you have a WordPress website, it can easily be integrated in popular performance plugins like W3 Total Cache, Autoptimize and WP Super Cache.
Pricing Starts: $9/Month.
CloudFlare has 152 data centers spread out across the globe. This means they only need fewer hops and has lower latency thus resulting to incredible load speed.
A recent sentiment survey also favors CloudFlare CDN by 6% more than it’s competitors.
One more thing that you should know about CDN service providers is that some of them charge by bandwidth used. If you exceeded the specified limit then you would be charge based on the additional bandwidth you used.
This is not the case in CloudFlare, they charge a flat rate for their services so you should not need to worry about a bill shock if a bandwidth spike ever happens on your site.
The best thing about CloudFlare, which I think is the real reason why they are being favored right now, is that they offer a Free plan. If you are on a tight budget then this is the best fit for you.
CloudFlare can also be integrated easily in a WordPress website using W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache.
Pricing Starts: Free
In my opinion, KeyCDN has the most user friendly website and highly intuitive user dashboard.
All of their guides are very accessible and very easy to follow.
They are also highly recommended right now because of their pricing. If you compare it side by side with the other platforms they will come out as the cheapest.
They currently have 33 data center across the world including Americas, Europe, Asia, Oceania and Africa.
And since they are in a pay-as-you-go payment system, I am happy that they allow disabling the automated charges to your card.
If you have a WordPress website, KeyCDN can be easily integrated with popular caching plugins like W3 Total Cache, Autoptimize and WP Super Cache.
Pricing Starts: $0.04/GB
CDN77 has 32 strategic data centers spread across North America, Europe, South America and Asia.
One of the first things that you will see in their homepage is a gauge showing their daily traffic peaks. Currently their network capacity can handle up to 7Tbps.
The other thing that caught my eye is their very well presented pricing plans.
CDN77 offer both pay-as-you-go and monthly plan. If you are a starter website and just consumes up to 5TB bandwidth they would offer you a pay-as-you-go plan.
However if you need 5TB and up you can choose whether to go pay-as-you-go or monthly plan.
The one thing that makes CDN77 stand out from the rest in this list is that they offer a 50GB of storage for free. Their competitors either charge extra or doesn’t support this at all.
Pricing Starts: $0.049/GB
The free website scanner in Sucuri has served me well in the past. It is a great pleasure for me to know that they now have a CDN service as well.
The Sucuri CDN service is not entirely an independent service. Basically it is a free feature if you subscribe to their Website Application Firewall service also known as WAF.
Sucuri has data centers around the world including North America, Australia, Japan, Singapore, Germany, United Kingdom and South America.
If you think about it, Sucuri is the closest competitor of CloudFlare since they are both experts in security. The only catch is that CloudFlare is mainly focus in preventing the attack.
As soon as the attack became successful, Sucuri is your best bet to clean the mess.
This is why I see a potential for Sucuri to stand toe-to-toe with CloudFlare in the future.
Pricing Starts: $9.99/Month
CloudFront is an AWS service which currently has 136 data center locations across the globe and they are planning to expand even more as we speak.
What makes CloudFront one of the best CDN service is the fact that it is a service of AWS. This means that it can be easily integrated with other services of AWS like AWS WAF or AWS Shield Advanced to take advantage of the security features those other services bring.
Similar to other services in AWS. CloudFront also runs through a pay-as-you-go payment system.
If you haven’t used AWS before and want to try out CloudFront then here is the good news.
CloudFront is part of AWS Free Usage Tier. So you can use it freely for 12 months however it has 50GB data transfer limit and 2,000,000 HTTP/HTTPS requests limit.
CloudFront can also be easily integrated to WordPress with popular performance WordPress plugins like W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache.
Pricing Starts: $0.085/GB
RackSpace is a household name when it comes to enterprise level managed cloud computing. It is no surprise that they have extended their reach to a CDN service as well.
I was contemplating whether to add RackSpace here on this list already or for a later article which focus on enterprise level CDN service providers.
The reason I consider RackSpace as purely enterprise level CDN service initially is because they are partner with Akamai.
Akamai is an industry leader when it comes to enterprise level CDN service which comes at a high cost.
But since they also offer a pay-as-you-go payment system and their prices is not far from the others in this list. I have decided to include them here already.
Because of the partnership with Akamai, RackSpace also now has access to 200 data centers around the globe making it the largest in this list.
RackSpace is also well known for great and very accommodating technical support team.
Pricing Starts: $0.0141/GB
All of the CDN service providers I mentioned above have remarkable performance. They just vary in pricing and the way they charge those prices.
If you are on a budget go ahead and try the Free version of CloudFlare.
Before I end this topic, I want to warn you about the pay-as-you-go mode of payment.
If you want to go and use this do not add too much balance on your account. You should also keep an eye on your credit card statements if you use your credit card.
I am warning you about this because of bandwidth spikes.
If ever an attack happens to your website, it would cause bandwidth spikes. Attacks can last for days and if this happens then you might be caught off guard by your huge bill.