Five Criteria For Choosing A Suitable CDN Network
Providing attractive online experiences quickly and reliably is a complex and central challenge. Regardless of whether it is about videos, music, software, or games. The economic success of every web offer depends crucially on the positive consumer experience.
Above all, poor performance annoys visitors and potential customers. You cancel streaming or online purchases: According to the Limelight Network State of Video Streaming from 2019, almost every second user leaves a website with a loading time of more than five seconds. Around 43 percent of the respondents even completely turned away from the provider and went to the competition.
Businesses have many opportunities to improve the online user experience. Above all, this includes a content delivery network ( CDN ) provided by a partner. But when it comes to displaying content, not all providers deliver the same performance and service quality. These factors depend on different aspects – such as cache capacity, latency, throughput, availability, and range.
The selection depends on key criteria such as the use of private connections: many providers rely too heavily on the best efforts of the public Internet for online streaming services or use too many to transfer data packets to the last mile provider Intermediate stations (hops). A private backbone with a global reach is more flexible and reliable than the public Internet and therefore preferable. It has high-performance points of presence (PoPs) in populous centers around the world and is based on peering agreements with all major Internet service providers.
Security is just as important. Given the increasing Internet risks, online providers need cloud services for a multi-layer defense against cyber attacks. On the one hand, you have to be able to rely on the fact that distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks that affect availability are quickly identified and averted. On the other hand, it is important to distinguish and filter out authorized access to offers from unauthorized ones. A strong network wards off dangers without generating new latencies and thus impairing the performance of the web applications and the provision of the content. An integrated web application firewall (WAF) or capacities for bot management also protect against hacking attacks.
1. Increase Performance Holistically
Many companies assess the performance of a website primarily based on the loading speed. But this is only a factor, albeit a very important one. However, other key figures also influence the function and thus the evaluation by the customer. In the case of videos, the repeated caching in particular causes frustration. The user is also annoyed by the waiting time until more information is displayed or new items are added to the shopping cart. For example, throughput is important when downloading a new product. Good network providers, therefore, optimize several performance parameters to provide content in the best possible way and regardless of where they are or the device used.
2. Perform Content Audits
Most websites consist of a mix of static and dynamic content as well as small and large objects, such as videos. An audit can provide information about possible bottlenecks. When auditing a mobile website, for example, it turns out that it updates numerous dynamic thumbnails with every query. This results in a back and forth between the website and Origin. The system is overloaded and the delivery is delayed. However, the switch to on-demand video files often suggested here by CDN operators is not a suitable solution.
3. Intelligent Buffering And Retrieval
Many providers save frequently requested content on different network edges to be able to provide it faster. But even less frequently requested items can be called up quickly if required. Anything that cannot be found in the cache must be queried from the storage hierarchy or Origin Storage. A good network, therefore, uses intelligent caching software and hierarchical caching techniques and reduces the necessary access to the origin.
4. Optimize Origin Storage
The structure of Origin storage is often neglected. This has a direct impact on the workflow. Poorly integrated storage can make managing large libraries difficult. The inefficient selection of storage locations and slow transmission on the one hand delays the provision of the content. On the other hand, accessing the origins increases access costs. Under certain circumstances, these can even exceed the storage costs.
With an Origin Storage designed for serving inquiries, the offers can be better managed. Storage automation and intelligent services contribute to this. In this way, companies can better control their videos, games, or music and determine where and how they are fed in, stored, replicated, and delivered. For a faster query, we recommend solutions that enable automatic multi-regional replication of the files: A film or a game is automatically provided from the fastest available storage location.
5. Private Instead Of Public
Most CDN network providers still rely on public Internet connections. However, the associated, mostly unpredictable bottlenecks, reduced performance, latencies, and packet losses can affect the deployment. Interim storage at the network edges only helps in part. And what was not kept in stock poses a risk to availability. Companies should, therefore, choose networks with a private, quality-of-service-capable (QoS) backbone. This is the only way to ensure the secure, high-performance transfer of all content in the event of a cache miss.
In general, a CDN provider is not just a service provider that provides capacity, but a solution partner and consultant. You should, therefore, check whether he has the appropriate skills. So you can ask the provider questions in advance – about his experience and proven integration competence, about the successful improvement of the user experience, or the rationalization of processes. The available service naturally plays a special role. It must be clarified in advance how the CDN partner can help in an emergency. The minimum is always available telephone support. Because only fast help avoids high costs in the event of downtime.
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