10 Best CDN Providers of 2021

10 Best CDN Providers of 2021

Whether you run a simple blog website or a trendy online business, CDN (Content Delivery Network) can help you scale up the user experience. A good CDN can improve the site's performance as well as optimize its security

However, there are many CDNs that claim to be the best in business. Now, the question is – Which is the best CDN provider of 2021?  

We have tried out dozens of CDN providers with a goal to help you find the best with minimum effort. Here, we will acquaint you with the features of the ten best CDN providers of 2021. After reading this review, you will be able to figure out which one suits you the best. 

But before diving into the list, let’s learn the basics of CDN including introduction, benefits, and features. 

What are CDN Providers?

A Content Delivery Network, commonly known as CDN, is a group of servers distributed geographically that permits businesses to deliver content to users all over the world. These servers work together to offer internet content at a faster pace. 

A CDN promotes faster transfer of the assets that are needed for loading the internet content, such as javascript files, HTML pages, images, and video. The gist of CDN is to reduce the physical distance between the users and the servers and to ultimately improve the user experience.

Today, high-traffic websites like  Amazon, Facebook, and Netflix use CDN for faster transfer and a smooth user experience. In contrast, websites without CDN deliver the content from the origin servers for every user request. This can slow down the load times and cause the site to malfunction during high traffic spikes.

Thus, a CDN helps to distribute a load of traffic by serving the content from a server that is closer to the end-user.

In addition, CDN can deliver HD videos, audio streams, system updates, software downloads, and even financial records. That is why most businesses opt for CDN nowadays. 

Benefits of CDN

There are many benefits of using CDN. Some of them are:

Better Performance

The main benefit of using CDN is to improve the site's performance. As mentioned earlier, CDN serves the content to its end users from the server nearest to their physical location. 

Studies have shown that when a website takes seven seconds to load, it faces a 53% bounce rate in the visitor's number. The bounce rate rises with more time your site takes to load. Using CDN helps to solve this problem more efficiently.

Improved Security

For any business that has a website, CDN is one of the essential security measures. CDN providers devote their time and effort to preventing DDoS attacks, web exploitations, and other threats. 

Greater Availability 

Even a powerful server can get overwhelmed during excessive traffic. As a business house, it is essential to ensure the content is available even during high-stress situations. This is where CDN comes in to spread the traffic over a wider server network. Thus, rapid traffic spikes do not cause unexpected failures. 

User Insights

Surfing the web generates enormous amounts of user data. CDN providers offer insights into the users' browsing activity from around the world. Thus, businesses can modify their tools to provide a better user experience and increase conversions. 

Lowering Traffic Costs

CDN caches your content and optimizes it for better delivery to the end-users. When your files get smaller, they consume less bandwidth which means less bandwidth cost. Thus, if you have a plan based on the traffic, it will cost you less.

Features to Look for When Choosing CDN Providers

Look for these features when you choose a CDN provider:

Content Delivery Management

The CDN provider you choose should let you manage your active content effectively and purge old content. You should also be able to optimize the media for different content and files such as videos and images. 

Updated Security

Websites that deal with finances and original content are at the most vulnerable to risk and cyber threats. Thus, the CDN provider should have the latest security protocols. Most CDN providers have sufficient measures to deal with scammers, bots, and other persistent threats. 

It is also beneficial that your CDN provider supports Digital Rights Management (DRM) licensing using Microsoft PlayReady, Apple FairPlay, or other content protection systems. 

Broad Network

A CDN only makes sense if it has a large server network to supply content across a wider geographical location. So, make sure that the CDN provider you choose has a broad network. 

Reliable Support 

It is common to run across technical problems. It is best if the CDN provider has a knowledgeable support team to help you troubleshoot any technical issue such as connectivity error, availability, security, or other issues. 

Best CDN Providers To Speed Up Your Website

Here are the 10 best CDN providers of 2021:

1. Cloudflare

Cloudflare CND Provider

Cloudflare is a popular San Francisco-based content delivery network service that merges user-friendly ease of use with expert-level functionalities. It is super-easy to set up the service without any need for coding knowledge. All you need to do is update the DNS nameservers and the service starts automatically. 

Every day, 10,000 new users sign up for Cloudflare, and the number keeps on rising. The company covers over 180 points of presence to optimize the site speed based on the nearest geographical location. 

Its web filtering system can effectively block bots, increase security, limit content spam, and sort out DDoS attacks. Smart image optimization can reduce the image size by up to 35% without compromising the quality. Such a feature leads to better site loading speed. 

Cloudflare effortlessly supports HTTP/2, IPv6, and SPDY. Its clever page rule allows you to distribute traffic across various servers. Likewise, the REST API gives you full control of the service.

Pros: 

  • Intuitive UI and UX
  • Comprehensive security options
  • Smart routing
  • Bot management
  • Excellent uptime stats
  • Advanced developer tools
  • Highly customizable 
  • Prevention against DDoS attacks on all plans 

Cons: 

  • Limited security rules 
  • Limited analytics 
  • Slow speed in some regions, especially Europe and North America
  • Storage is not included  

Pricing: 

  • Free 
  • Pro: $20 per month 
  • Business: $200 per month 
  • Enterprise: Custom based

2. Fastly

Fastly CND Provider

Fastly offers the CDN features to level up the needs of bigger organizations such as Reddit and Spotify. The company justifies its name by delivering super-fast performance levels. As we write, Fastly proudly secures the eighth spot with 33.00 ms query speed.

The best feature of Fastly is its super-configurable settings. The company offers support for various types of video caching. It also offers multiple low-level controls for the users wanting to manipulate HTTP headers or customize the content's looks.

Fastly is a powerful enterprise-level CDN that gives its users the power, flexibility, and configurability to handle almost all situations. However, you need the basic know-how and experience to set the CDN. Beginners might find Fastly a bit confusing with all the options it offers. 

Pros: 

  • Fast performance 
  • Real-time logs
  • Instant purging 
  • Highly configurable 
  • Multiple powerful features 

Cons: 

  • Beginners may have difficulty setting it up 
  • Pricing is higher than most CDNs of the same caliber

Pricing: 

RegionFirst 10 TBNext 10 TB
Europe$0.12$0.08
North America$0.12$0.08
Asia$0.19$0.14
Australia & New Zealand$0.19$0.14
Brazil$0.28$0.24
India$0.28$0.24
South Africa$0.28$0.24
South America$0.19$0.14

3. KeyCDN

KeyCND CND Provider

KeyCDN is a fast, reliable, easy-to-use, and budget-friendly CDN. The company has 25+ strategically placed POP (Points of Presence) around the globe. With the lowest price of $0.04/GB, KeyCDN might be a good option for first-time users. 

Getting started with KeyCDN is easier than ever. All you need is your email address to sign up. Upon signing up, you instantly get 25GB without any payment details. Its user-friendly web dashboard lets you create your first zone with a minimum number of mouse clicks. The package includes guides to help you in case of any confusion while integrating the service with WordPress or other apps. 

If you have technical experience, you will appreciate the Origin Shield in KeyCDN. It lets you specify a particular server to be your updates' source rather than the origin. This feature reduces the server load, thus, increasing the performance. 

You can adjust the headers, strip cookies or cache, or even set up the custom robots.txt file. Once the service starts, you can set reporting tools to monitor the CDN's performance in real-time.

KeyCDN’s Block Referrer lets you blacklist the domains that are hotlinking the page content. Similarly, the Image Processing feature is useful in image optimization. 

Other advanced features of KeyCDN are free SSL, instant purging, HTTP/2 support, support for IPv6, two-factor authentication, and many more. 

Pros: 

  • Easy to set up and use
  • Affordable pay-as-you-go pricing
  • Log forwarding 
  • IPv6 support 
  • Free shared and custom SSL 
  • 30-day free trial on sign-up with 25GB maximum traffic

Cons: 

  • Small network 
  • Below average response time 
  • Performance is lower than some CDN providers on the list

Pricing: 

REGIONFIRST 10 TB
per month
NEXT 40 TB
per month
NEXT 50 TB
per month
OVER 100 TB
per month
North America$0.04/GB$0.03/GB$0.02/GB$0.01/GB
Europe
Africa
South America
$0.11/GB$0.08/GB$0.06/GB$0.04/GB
Asia
Oceania
$0.09/GB$0.06/GB$0.04/GB$0.02/GB

4. Akamai

Akamai CND Provider

Akamai is one of the oldest yet popular CDN providers on our list. The company offers a stand-out CDN service that performs at high speed. Akamai has been around for more than two decades and now has around 275,000 servers in 135+ countries. 

The CDN service leans towards advanced users. As a result, it could cause some trouble during the setup for newbies. That is where the company's 24/7 customer support can come to the rescue.

As of this writing, CDNPerf ranks Akamai as the seventh fastest service in the business with a query speed of 30.00 ms. Akamai also enlists multiple features for security, better user experience, and performance. 

In fact, even the biggest names such as LinkedIn, Yahoo, Twitter, and SalesForce trust Akamai services. 

Pros: 

  • Enterprise-grade features 
  • Stellar reputation 
  • Dynamic site accelerator 
  • Amazing performance 

Cons: 

  • Not beginner-friendly 

Pricing: 

There is no concrete pricing plan on the Akamai website. You could contact customer support via email, phone, or live chat to inquire about the pricing that suits your needs. 

5. Imperva

Imperva CND Provider

If you run an enterprise-level website, Imperva should be your top priority. Imperva has 47 PoPs spread around the world to improve performance as well as security. Its enterprise-level WAF ensures safety against the latest threats and effective protection against Layer 3,4, and 7 DDoS attacks. 

With the global distribution, Imperva minimizes the bandwidth usage and improves the site load speed. It also packs various analytic and monitoring services to provide insights into the site's performance and security.

Imperva caches dynamic pages using machine learning to reduce bandwidth consumption. You can also write your custom delivery rules, such as redirecting bots to other pages or sites. Such features make your site secure as well as improves the performance of real visitors. Further, the automated compressions and file minification reduce page load speed. 

The CDN supports IPv4, IPv6, and HTTP/2 to speed up your website for those users using modern browsers.

Pros:

  • Robust security 
  • Better performance 
  • Enterprise-level features 
  • Edge programmability 
  • Advanced UI analytics 
  • API automation 
  • Support for HTTP/2, IPv6, and IPv4

Cons: 

  • Storage not included 
  • It is a bit advanced for beginners. 

Pricing: 

  • Free
  • Pro: $59 per month,
  • Business: $299 per month,
  • Enterprise: Custom based 

6. StackPath

StackPath CND Provider

StackPath is a user-friendly CDN provider with multiple advanced features in the box. The company has established 45 PoPs all over the world to focus on better performance and service delivery. 

With a straightforward and user-friendly console, it is easier to manage the settings in StackPath. In case of any query or difficulty, the company has set an efficient technical support team. You can reach out to them via phone or live chat. Such perks make StackPath a better choice for beginners.

StackPath also offers cutting-edge services such as DualCDN strategies and Edge SSL. You can choose between a shared SSL or your own SSL certificate. The anti-DDoS technology and Web Application Firewall offers better protection against DDoS attacks and other potential web-based crimes. 

You also get live log data that help you analyze the attacks. Based on that data, you can adjust your security policies. The company also offers instant purging for instant updates and removal of the page content.

Pros:

  • Great value for money
  • Powerful WAF (Web Application Firewall)
  • Free private SSL
  • Customizable edge delivery rules
  • User-friendly consoles
  • Efficient data storage policies 
  • Real-time analytics
  • Complete DDoS protection
  • 24/7 support 

Cons:

  • The performance tails off outside the US and UK
  • Few PoPs outside Europe and North/South America
  • Below-average performance according to CDNPerf
  • Minimal video support
  • No image optimization

Pricing: 

  • Simple Starter Plan: $10 per month (1TB traffic and unlimited requests) + additional $0.04 per GB + additional $10 for WAF, DNS
  • Edge Delivery Plan: $20 per month 1TB traffic, 2 million DNS requests, and WAF with 5 million requests)

7. Limelight 

Limelight CND Provider

Limelight is one of the fastest CDN providers on the market today. The company has 123 PoPs spread in six continents to reduce bandwidth consumption and improve performance. Limelight focuses on providing a better digital experience to your visitors. 

No matter if you deliver software files, games, or stream videos, the Limelight Orchestrate Platform meets all of your content delivery needs. No wonder it has high-profile clients such as DailyMotion, Napster, and Marvel. 

The package includes web acceleration, video management, origin storage, and cloud security to ensure high performance while delivering content. Furthermore, static content caching also improves the user experience. Its Last-Mile Acceleration boosts user/server connection. Likewise, HTTP video streaming reduces the load on the server.

Pros: 

  • Protection against DDoS attacks 
  • Fast content caching
  • Intelligent purging
  • Low learning curve
  • Optimized video streaming
  • Great reporting options
  • Local support

Cons: 

  • It lacks some basic functions
  • Quite costly for beginners
  • Not ideal with complex infrastructures
  • No uptime guarantee

Pricing: 

Prices are not disclosed.

8. Amazon CloudFront

Amazon CloudFront CND Provider

Amazon CloudFront is a powerful option for tech-savvy users wanting a decent CDN for their businesses. It integrates with Amazon web services and gives users an easy way to distribute the content with low latency and high speeds. 

CloudFront offers a wholesome package of advanced features that lets you customize everything and automate GZip compressions. All the features account for better speed. Another strength of CloudFront is its in-depth analytics that is only a tap away. It displays all the details about your visitors' activities, including their device type, the OS they use, and more. 

You can set up alerts for data transfer limits. This way, you can make adjustments according to your needs.

The company has 180 PoPs across 30 countries. You can even connect with other Amazon services such as Amazon S3, Amazon EC2, Elastic Load Balancing, and others.

CloudFront is one of few CDN providers that is certified with ISO 9001 and 27001, PCI-DSS, SOC(1,2 and 3), and HIPAA. So, if your site deals with sensitive data, CloudFront could be your best bet.

The ‘keep-alive connections' and ‘request collapsing' are additional features that promote faster data transmission.

Pros: 

  • Advanced features 
  • Great performance and high data transfers 
  • Highly configurable 
  • Protection against Layer 3 and 4 DDoS attacks
  • Certified security compliance
  • Efficient traffic routing 
  • Best for video streaming and other larger media files

Cons: 

  • It can be complicated for a beginner to configure the settings 
  • Complicate pricing structure 
  • The feature-packed user interface may be overwhelming 
  • Technical support costs extra 

Pricing: 

  • Free tier: 50GB of data transfer out for a year 
  • On-demand pricing:
  1. Regional Data Transfer Out to Internet (per GB)
Per MonthUnited States, Mexico, & CanadaEurope & IsraelSouth Africa, Kenya, & Middle EastSouth AmericaJapanAustralia & New ZealandHong Kong, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, & ThailandIndia
First 10TB$0.085$0.085$0.110$0.110$0.114$0.114$0.140$0.170
Next 40TB$0.080$0.080$0.105$0.105$0.089$0.098$0.135$0.130
Next 100TB$0.060$0.060$0.090$0.090$0.086$0.094$0.120$0.110
Next 350TB$0.040$0.040$0.080$0.080$0.084$0.092$0.100$0.100
Next 524TB$0.030$0.030$0.060$0.060$0.080$0.090$0.080$0.100
Next 4PB$0.025$0.025$0.050$0.050$0.070$0.085$0.070$0.100
Over 5PB$0.020$0.020$0.040$0.040$0.060$0.080$0.060$0.100

2. Regional Data Transfer Out to Origin (per GB)

Per MonthUnited States, Mexico, & CanadaEurope & IsraelSouth Africa, Kenya, & Middle EastSouth AmericaJapanAustralia & New ZealandHong Kong, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, & ThailandIndia
All Data Transfer$0.020$0.020$0.060$0.125$0.060$0.080$0.060$0.160

3. Request Pricing for All HTTP Methods (per 10,000)

Per MonthUnited States, Mexico, & CanadaEurope & IsraelSouth Africa, Kenya, & Middle EastSouth AmericaJapanAustralia & New ZealandHong Kong, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, & ThailandIndia
HTTP requests$0.0075$0.0090$0.0090$0.0160$0.0090$0.0090$0.0090$0.0090
HTTPS requests$0.0100$0.0120$0.0120$0.0220$0.0120$0.0125$0.0120$0.0120

4. Origin Shield Request Pricing for All HTTP Methods (per 10,000)

Per MonthUnited States, Mexico, & CanadaEurope & IsraelSouth Africa, Kenya, & Middle EastSouth AmericaJapanAustralia & New ZealandHong Kong, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, & ThailandIndia
Origin Shield Requests$0.0075$0.0090$0.0160$0.0090$0.0090$0.0090$0.0090-
  • Discounted Pricing: Custom based price

9. CDN77

CDN77 CDN Provider

CDN77 is a big player when it comes to the content delivery game. It has an expansive network with more than 35 data centers around the world. Many of these PoPs are in the US and Europe. With the 50+ TBps network, CDN77 can handle high-volume traffic even with unexpected peaks.  

Its web console is straightforward and keeps unnecessary jargon at bay. Such an easy-to-use console with ample customizability makes this CDN provider a subtle choice for beginners of the CDN world.

The performance is not the best as compared to other CDNs on the list. CDNperf marks its query 36.00 ms. However, it is enough to get most of the job done.

You also get a free Let's Encrypt SSL certificate that proves its good value for money. Origin shields, multi-layered intelligent caching systems, DDoS protection, Latency-based routing, and a client-centered approach are a few other reasons to use CDN77. The company serves websites such as Udemy, ESET, Hubble Space Telescope, and more.

Pros: 

  • Easy-to-use console
  • Beginner-friendly
  • Free Let's Encrypt SSL
  • 50GB free CDN storage
  • 14-day risk-free trial without any payment details
  • Straightforward pricing 

Cons: 

  • $199 minimum monthly credit
  • Limited advanced settings and customizability options
  • Below-average performance

Pricing: 

  • Preset Monthly Plans
Monthly TrafficPriceOverages
6 TB$199$0.045 per GB
25 TB$385$0.039 per GB
50 TB$580$0.029 per GB
100 TB$990$0.019 per GB
150 TB$1,390$0.016 per GB
  • Custom Monthly Plan: Based on traffic volume per month and user needs

10. Google Cloud CDN

Google Cloud CND

Google Cloud CDN is a performance-centered service that promotes reliable web content delivery on a global scale. It has over 90 PoPs around the world. You can get the best speed no matter where you are located. 

However, the company is only compliant with sites hosted in Google Compute Engine or Google Cloud storage. If you use another web host, you can go with other CDNs on our list. 

There are major perks of using Google Cloud CDN, such as a pay-as-you-use pricing model and easy integration with Google cloud products like Cloud Logging and Cloud Monitoring

The anycast architecture gives a single global IP address to your site, thus delivering consistent performance throughout the world. Cloud CDN also supports QUIC and HTTP/2 to provide a better user experience to mobile users.

Google Cloud CDN lets your cache up to 5 TB of files, which makes it the best option for video streaming. Its Stackdriver Logging feature gives real-time insights for tracking and diagnosing errors that are preventing normal page load. 

Likewise, its free SSL ensures better data protection at no extra fees.

Pros: 

  • Global reach using the anycast IP
  • Supports QUIC and HTTP/2
  • Easy integration with Google Cloud 
  • Cache files up to 5TB
  • Real-time insights to track errors 
  • Free SSL protection
  • Low cost

Cons: 

  • The service is only available in sites hosted in either Google Compute Engine or Google Cloud storage

Pricing: 

The pricing is based on: 

  • Cache egress
DestinationFirst 10 TBNext 140 TBNext 850 TB>1000 TB
Asia $0.09$0.06$0.05$0.04
China$0.20$0.17$0.16$0.145
Europe$0.08$0.055$0.03$0.02
North America$0.08$0.055$0.03$0.02
Oceania$0.11$0.09$0.08$0.065
South America$0.09$0.06$0.05$0.04
All other destinations$0.09$0.06$0.05$0.04

Note: The prices above are the price per GB for monthly usage.

  • Cache fill
Cache fillPrice per GB
Within Europe and North America$0.01
Within South America, Oceania, Africa, Middle East, Asia Pacific$0.02
Inter-region cache fill$0.04

Which is the Best CDN Provider of 2021?

Answering this question depends on your technical knowledge, your site's scale, and your budget. 

So, if you are looking for a free option with basic features, go with the Amazon CloudFront. You can find a lot of options in this CDN. 

For a simpler choice, you can choose StackPath. If you are looking for an advanced CDN for your enterprise-level site, we recommend Imperva or Fastly. Finally, for a CDN to stream videos or larger files, go with Google Cloud or Amazon CloudFront.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is a CDN website?

It is a website that uses a CDN service to deliver its content to the end-users. Instead of relying on a single server, a CDN website uses a network of machines closest to the visitor's location. Such a pathway reduces bandwidth consumption and load time.

Which is the fastest CDN?

Speed is crucial if you want your website's success. Each second of delay results in considerable traffic bounce, thus resulting in less conversion. With a faster CDN, you can get assured that your site delivers the content at an optimum speed without compromising security. Some of the fastest CDN on our list are Fastly and Akamai.

Is Amazon Web Services (AWS) a CDN?

AWS offers a CDN service known as Amazon CloudFront. CloudFront is one of the AWS packages and comes in a package of other services. You can also pair CloudFront with Amazon S3, AWS Shield, and Elastic Load Balancing to put together a powerful hosting platform.

Final Words

So, these are the ten best CDN providers of 2021. Each of these CDN providers is effective in improving performance and increasing security. You can choose depending on your site's scale, budget, and preference. 

So, which one are you going to choose? Let us know in the comment section.

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