Content Delivery Network, abbreviated as CDN, as the name suggests helps create a network for delivering content. Content Delivery networks have gained tremendous popularity in the last 5 years owing to high availability, low response times & reduced cost for hosting. Technically, Content Delivery Network refers to a large system of servers that are distributed across the globe connected via the Internet. The cost of using such an efficient content delivery network is relatively cheap. Some of the cheap Content Delivery Network providers charge extremely small amounts, and for a small to medium website, this works out to $10 or lesser per month, however there are other more expensive providers as well, who also provide other advanced services.

To understand the operational perspective of CDN, let us consider an example. Imagine a website to be hosted, a few thousand miles from the end user’s location. So when the user visits the website, the data will have to go through multiple networks resulting in redundancy and reduced speed. Now consider the website’s content being cached at a server barely a few hundred miles from where the user is operating. This saves a significant portion of time as well as bandwidth, and the content is readily available.

Today, a significant portion of business worldwide is carried out on the internet. Even e-commerce is a decade year old trend that will never die out. Enterprises who expect thousands of hits on a daily basis, along with multiple business transactions, will obviously need Content Delivery Networks for their online business to ensure that their services are available across the globe rapidly and economically.

In fact, studies have shown that the website visitors get impatient very soon, and longer delays can result in fewer conversions and sales, which will be detrimental to any business. Case studies from Mozilla, Microsoft Bing, Google and even the recent Obama campaigns show that a faster website results in more customer loyalty and better click-through and conversion rates. The Obama campaigning camp almost improved their web-performance by 60% as compared to previous portal to ensure very low latency connections for their viewers, and Google and Microsoft mentioned that a latency of even 100-millisecond can reduce traffic by 1%, thus making performance and hence use of CDN very critical.

While advanced CDN services are provided by large players like Akamai & Level 3, here, the customer may have to bear significant contract costs and so these may not be cost-effective. For small to medium businesses, affordability is an issue as during initial phase, overall number of hits as well as revenue is limited. To cater to them, various cheap content delivery network offerings are available from multiple providers, and are used to deliver almost anything ranging from documents, downloads, images, graphics & web objects, social networking and live streaming media.

In general, these Cheap Content Delivery Networks provide services at lower costs not because they are slow, but because they may not have network coverage in all parts of the world, or because they want to expand their customer base. Some of the most popular Cheap Content Delivery Network solution-providers are MaxCDN (from NetDNA), Jet-Stream and Amazon S3 among others. Also, most of these Cheap CDN providers have a pay-as-you-go pricing model, which allows customers to only pay for the bandwidth and storage that they use without the hassles of long term contracts or hefty charges.

In case you are looking for a CDN provider, make sure you also look at the Cheap CDN options available, because not only are they cheaper, but in many cases, they may also be faster (in the region of your interest) and thus better suited to your website needs. The overall costs of using these cheap CDN services may range from $25-100 per year depending on CDN provider and your bandwidth/storage needs. The prices may go down further if there are ongoing promotions or if you make use of the available coupons around the web.

References:
What is Content Delivery Network (CDN) – http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/content-…
Overview of Content Delivery Network – http://www.cdnplanet.com/cdns/
The power of a CDN – http://www.websitebegin.com/power-of-cdn/
Obama Campaigning Platform – http://kylerush.net/blog/meet-the-obama-campaigns-250-…