Instagram proved that many people care about visual content. Lots of them can spend a few hours taking and editing pictures. If you’re a website visitor, you don’t think about how media content can slow down a website, you just consume the content and enjoy sharing it with others. But those who run a website definitely spend some time thinking of how to speed up a website without compromising the quality of visual content.
Well, they say ‘demand creates its own supply’. So, if you face difficulties with content delivery management, an image CDN may help to solve them. There’s a useful CDN image resource that helps to understand the process in practice for newcomers and simplifies it all for experienced developers.
In this article, we will study the benefits of having an image CDN, show how it differs from the regular image optimization tools, and outline six cases when you should consider setting up an image CDN to solve technical issues.
Better Page Loading Speed with Image CDN
Image CDN has all of the advantages of a regular CDN. It offers faster content delivery, but with an additional emphasis on visual content that includes device detection and image optimization. Let’s take a look at an example. In case you have already checked your webpage’s URL on Page speed Insight and noticed that it takes more than 3 seconds to load, that’s exactly the kind of a problem that an image CDN is designed to solve. The system is able to reduce image file size by up to 80%. This makes a website lightweight, and thus, much faster.
Let’s study the main advantages of an image CDN by figuring out three basic elements of the process:
A CDN determines the type of device that your site’s clientele utilizes. It identifies the OS version, screen resolution, screen pixel density, etc. Since all this information is gathered, the tool is able to adapt the content to each type of device more efficiently and send targeted advertisements in the right formats. Eventually, it simplifies the process by automating it, so there’s no further need for your teammates to manage everything manually.
Image CDN is responsible for resizing, converting, and compressing large-sized pictures in order to increase the page speed. Needless to say that it takes significantly longer for a mobile device to load a large picture in comparison to a computer. That’s one of the reasons why image CDNs are now part of each website’s tech stack. Using the information gathered, the system instantly optimizes every picture in accordance with any device’s request.
Content Delivery Network
It’s no secret that there’s a correlation between a website’s speed and the distance to the nearest server’s location. For instance, if the majority of your audience live in Colorado, it definitely helps to have servers somewhere close to that area. So, the closer a user is to a server, the faster the website’s loading speed would be.
The main feature of any CDN is better management of content delivery, so its edge servers are located, well, everywhere. The servers identify cache-optimized images and devices. So, when they recognize an analog request, they instantly respond with the already cached picture. This significantly speeds up the entire process.
Image Optimization vs. Image CDN
If you’re wondering why utilize an image CDN since it’s possible to optimize images without it, the answer is simple. Image optimization allows you to speed up the loading time exclusively for local audiences. While numerous dispersed image CDN servers allow you to manage the requests of users worldwide much faster.
How Image CDN affects SEO
You may have heard that CDNs hurt your SEO. But you should know that it’s possible only in case there’s a mistake in a setup. For instance, you need to enable a custom Zone URL. Otherwise, there’s a big chance that CDN providers will refer to a default Zone URL. As soon as you configure a custom Zone Alias, it will solve this issue from the get-go and Google will be able to recognize the pictures on your website properly.
All you have to do is add rel=”canonical” to the HTTP header in order for a crawler to be able to identify your pictures as copies, not duplicates.
Needless to say that Google pays a lot of attention to the website’s speed. Having a CDN is a huge step towards high search ranking positions.
6 Cases When Image CDN Is Crucial
- If you intend to speed up a website. It’s already been mentioned that on average a user waits only 3 seconds for a page to load. Obviously, the faster it loads, the better your website’s performance is. To know how long it takes in your specific case, use Google Speed Test.
- If you noticed that your payload is full up with images. Usually, pictures fill up 50% of a site and they are bigger than they should be, primarily for mobile devices. It is possible to optimize every picture manually, but it will take too much unnecessary time and effort to adapt them to each device.
- If you run a popular website with numerous images. When you have a few pictures to optimize, it won’t take long. However, with a huge amount of image files, the workload will significantly increase. Image CDN will manage the issues much faster and without an additional headache for you or your team.
- If your clients are dispersed across different locations. CDNs edge servers are located all over the world, which simplifies and speeds up the content delivery process. That’s why no matter where your visitors come from, CDN covers the delivery issues overall.
- If your site is dynamic. For instance, you may run an online shop or a website where users post a lot of media content. That’s one more case when Image CDN services become useful.
- If the majority of your clients use mobile devices. A lot of devices are still incompatible with 4G or 5G networks. That’s why the process of loading might be even slower. But an image CDN can speed it up by tailoring the files.
To sum it up, CDNs cover the whole range of issues related to page loading. Having this tool at your disposal, you significantly simplify the content delivery process. Any technical issues may be avoided since a CDN has you covered. Configuring the tool for your website will assist you in faster content delivery, image optimization, and, as a result, improve UX for your visitors overall.