As you probably already know, CloudFlare is an excellent way to keep your site fast and while it has served me, it has its issues of course, too. There’s another solution which I think is just a whole lot better, and that’s known as MaxCDN. I want to talk to you a bit about why I think it’s better, and why, if you’re using CloudFlare, I recommend that you switch over to MaxCDN as soon as you possible.
Why Use a Content Delivery Network At All?
So, before I get into the nitty-gritty of why I think MaxCDN is a better Content Delivery Network than CloudFlare, let me just take a brief moment to go over what a CDN is, and why, if you’re not using a CDN at the moment, you should be. So, what are the main advantages of a CDN? Well, there are two, for the most part. The first is that it greatly speeds up your site’s load time, and it also enhances your site’s security. We’ll be focusing primarily on the speed upgrade for now, and while both of these can optimize your website speed, I’ve found that MaxCDN can REALLY supercharge your website… because it takes website optimization to a whole new level. In my opinion it is the best Cloudflare alternative.
How does it work? Well, I could write an entire post just on this, but to give you a brief summary, it essentially “caches” static pages on your website, and puts them on servers all over the world, so that when someone is loading a blog post you wrote in Moscow, for example, and you’re in Australia, rather than having to load the data from Australia to Moscow, it simply lets them load the data from the server which is closest to them (which would likely be right in their home city). So, case in point: using a CDN will make your website load faster, every single time.
MaxCDN vs. CloudFlare
One major issue I’ve had with CloudFlare, is that it doesn’t work so well with WordPress, particularly the WordPress W3 Total Cache plugin, and MaxCDN, I’ve found, works flawlessly with this. This is great for WordPress users, because W3 Total Cache is such an important plugin, and veritably mandatory for increasing your site’s speed. The main reason I like MaxCDN however, is that it’s simply a lot faster than CloudFlare, which, wasn’t originally even designed to increase site speed… MaxCDN on the other hand, was, and so the difference there is very noticeable. Moreover, they offer real 24/7 support.
Another great advantage of MaxCDN, is it’s easy to figure out packages and pricing structure. With MaxCDN, you simply need to figure out roughly how much data you’re going to need, and then buy your package(s) accordingly. They start at as little as $9/month for smaller website, all the way up to 10+ terabytes of data on the high-end, and you can add data 10 terabyte per month chunks, in order to cache as much data as you could possibly need. This is why heavy-hitters like StumbleUpon and Garmin are using MaxCDN. Aside from that, it also has a lot of great security features, and features which CloudFlare simply doesn’t have.
So if you really want to optimize your website speed, MaxCDN is the way to go.