What is CloudFlare and Why Should You Use It?
CloudFlare is a relatively new service that aims to revolutionize the way traffic and content is distributed from a particular website to its viewers. While many were sceptical at first about the benefits it purported to offer, CloudFlare now has a decent track record of living up to its claims. With a satisfied bloc of customers using the service and a growing base of CloudFlare users becoming apparent, many others have begun wondering whether or not the service is for them. We will review the main aspects of this service so that you can decide whether or not it will suit your needs.
The Premise of CloudFlare
The basic idea around CloudFlare is that it will optimize content for viewers while simultaneously securing your website from malicious attacks. All web traffic that comes into your site is first routed through CloudFlare’s secure network, which then optimizes the content for the user to ensure that it loads in the quickest way possible. In addition, bandwidth usage is minimized not only through optimized content delivery, but also by blocking malicious or wasteful web crawlers from pinging domains belonging to you. The overall claim is that websites that use CloudFlare experience far fewer attacks and spam while also experiencing an increase in page-loading times and performance.
Avoid Site Outages
We all know how terrible a site outage can be and how much it can potentially impact the perception visitors have of you, as well as lost revenues. Those using CloudFlare will not have to worry; when there is a site outage, they step in and continue delivering cached versions of the page to visitors so they do not actually have to deal with the outage. It is comparable to having two separate websites that operate via one domain. With CloudFlare, you will never have to worry about losing traffic and you can work on the underlying issue without feeling the added pressure of restoring access.
Optimized Content Delivery Network
CloudFlare has numerous data centres located all around the world – and can stream your website to visitors from any one of them. Depending on the location of the user, CloudFlare will optimize your pages and send them to the user from the closest data centre to the visitor. This action ensures that loading times are minimized, which will hopefully keep your visitors and customers happy. When you consider that CloudFlare also works to minimize loading times by efficiently organizing your pages, this added feature only makes the process that much faster.
If you’re worried about malicious hackers pinging domains in search of weaknesses, then CloudFlare has you covered. Their extensive database of information collected from visitors going to CloudFlare-hosted sites already has allowed them to profile behaviour and activities that could be considered insidious or harmful to your site. CloudFlare even allows you the ability to block specific IPs if you have had trouble with certain users on prior occasions. Most attacks can be successfully thwarted by CloudFlare’s intuitive system that stops hackers before they even reach your website, helping you breathe easier and worry less about security.