Making the Case for Multi-CDN Delivery
September 29, 2016

Pete Mastin

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Audiences have always dropped off when content delivery is slow. Studies of e-commerce and video have proven that the longer it takes for the screen to completely render, the more people close the browser and move on to another enterprise.

We don't need to restate the obvious. Information from Google, Amazon, Yahoo! and Mozilla prove over and over that Internet users stick with high performance sites and abandon slow sites.

DevOps needs to find ways to provide even more reliable, faster, application delivery. One massive innovation is the content delivery network (CDN). These services store the more static assets in high-performance data centers that are strategically located to get assets to the end client as speedily as possible.

These days, any service serious about delivering high quality to large audiences must either utilize a CDN service or implement its own solution. Here's why a multi-CDN strategy makes sense.

The Content Delivery Network: Nobody's Perfect

Nobody is perfect, and no one is perfect for everyone. CDNs strive for perfect uptime, but they can't accomplish it.

In addition, different geographic regions are better served by one CDN or another. As audience expectations increase and as services achieve a global reach, relying on one CDN creates weaknesses.

Distribute Responsibility

A multi-CDN configuration can help maximize content delivery or application performance even in the face of surging traffic – deploying assets on several CDNs at one time. This promotes the best possible performance, helps ensure 100 percent uptime, reduces costs, and leverages regionally dominant CDNs.

With a variety of options, the multiple CDNs need to be managed in a way that creates the best value from them. Different approaches to managing traffic among multiple CDNs exist, among them is: failover, round-robin, geographic and performance-based.

Scalability: Be Ready When Demand Spikes

A single CDN approach has its limits. Whether you deliver a premiere gaming experience, maintain a high-traffic ecommerce platform, or stream over-the-top (OTT) video, one CDN means accepting outages and performance limitations. Moving to a multi-CDN approach will create the foundation needed to provide a better experience for users.

By adopting a multi-CDN approach, businesses are better positioned to negotiate CDN rates. CDN providers, like all companies, want to maximize their value by resisting price reductions. It makes sense to use multiple CDNs. With multiple, high-performing CDNs available, content providers can deliver a premier user experience more cost-effectively.

Simply put, multiple CDNs perform better than a single CDN. This strategy improves performance, reduces costs and promotes ease of management.

Pete Mastin is a Product Evangelist at Cedexis.

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