Boost performance of Websites using Cloudflare - Tips to implement it








Are you trying to improve the performance of Websites using Cloudflare?

This guide is for you.


Cloudflare protects against threats such as SQL injection and identity theft. Cloudflare also improves site performance and speeds up loading times by using their multiple data centers that are located around the world. 

Performance and web security are the basic and foremost concerns that every website owner. Cloudflare is an answer to all those concerns.

Here at Ibmi Media, as part of our Server Management Services, we regularly help our Customers to perform Cloudflare related queries.

In this context, we shall loon into methods to improve the performance of Websites using Cloudflare.


More about Cloudflare and how it relates to Website security

With Cloudflare, if we are subject to DDoS attacks, we will be able to access at least some portions. Hence, we will not experience a total denial of service.

A free system, Cloudflare acts as a proxy between visitors and the server.

When a website becomes a part of the Cloudflare community, they help in automatically optimizing the delivery of the web pages so that the page load time increase and give the best performance.

Once Cloudflare identifies an attack, it blocks the attack for both the particular website and the entire community. It will then present a list of attacks from which we have been protected.

Cloudflare protects a website from cross-site scripting, SQL injection, comment spam, excessive bot crawling, email harvesters, and so on.


How to enhance the performance of Websites using Cloudflare ?

With Cloudflare, we can build a reputation for every visitor online by gathering the threat data that is available.

In addition, we can customize the security settings for the site.

Then CloudFlare's network stops the threats before can reach us. 

Thus we can save bandwidth and resources.

We can also add an IP address or IP ranges or entire countries to the Trust and Block list.


Key Features of Cloudflare:

1. Web application firewall (WAF): Without using any hardware, one can stop real-time attacks like SQL injection, cross-site scripting, and comment spam.

2. One-click SSL: We can add SSL with a single click without any change in the existing configuration.

3. Site Performance Improvement: Improves the page load speed.

4. Bot and Threat Protection and Spam Comments Protection: Leverages data from third-party resources to reduce the number of spam comments.

5. Offline Browsing Mode: In the event that our server is unavailable, visitors will be able to access the site since CloudFlare serves the visitor a page from its cache.

6. Lower CPU Usage: As fewer requests hit our server, this lowers the overall CPU usage of your account.

7. New Site Stats: Gives an insight into search engine crawlers and threats.


How to use Cloudflare for Websites ?

We require only a simple change in the domain's DNS settings to set Cloudflare for Websites. We don't need to install any hardware or software or change any of the site's existing code.

1. Initially, sign up for Cloudflare.

To do so follow, https://www.cloudflare.com/index.html.

2. Once done, we can select a plan from the list of plans according to your requirement.

3. Then enter the domain, and, then follow further steps, set DNS Records, "click next" and we are done.

4. If for some reason we want to deactivate the CloudFlare service, we just have to click the deactivate button.


[Need help with improving Website performance? We can help you. ]



Conclusion

This article covers how to improve the performance of Websites using Cloudflare. Website speed has a huge impact on user experience, SEO, and conversion rates. Improving website performance is essential for drawing traffic to a website and keeping site visitors engaged. 

Along with the caching and CDN, Cloudflare helps protect your site against brute-force attacks and threats against your website.

Cloudflare has the advantage of serving million of websites and so can identify malicious bots and users more easily than any operating system firewall.


CDNs boost the speed of websites by caching content in multiple locations around the world. CDN caching servers are typically located closer to end users than the host, or origin server. Requests for content go to a CDN server instead of all the way to the hosting server, which may be thousands of miles and across multiple autonomous networks from the user. Using a CDN can result in a massive decrease in page load times.


How to get started on optimizing website performance with Cloudfare CDN (content delivery network)?

1. Optimize images

Images comprise a large percentage of Internet traffic, and they often take the longest to load on a website since image files tend to be larger in size than HTML and CSS files. Luckily, image load time can be reduced via image optimization. Optimizing images typically involves reducing the resolution, compressing the files, and reducing their dimensions, and many image optimizers and image compressors are available for free online.

2. Minify CSS and JavaScript files

Minifying code means removing anything that a computer doesn't need in order to understand and carry out the code, including code comments, whitespace, and unnecessary semicolons. This makes CSS and JavaScript files slightly smaller so that they load faster in the browser and take up less bandwidth.

3. Reduce the number of HTTP requests if possible

Most webpages will require browsers to make multiple HTTP requests for various assets on the page, including images, scripts, and CSS files. In fact many webpages will require dozens of these requests. Each request results in a round trip to and from the server hosting the resource, which can add to the overall load time for a webpage. 

4. Use browser HTTP caching

The browser cache is a temporary storage location where browsers save copies of static files so that they can load recently visited webpages much more quickly, instead of needing to request the same content over and over. Developers can instruct browsers to cache elements of a webpage that will not change often. Instructions for browser caching go in the headers of HTTP responses from the hosting server.

5. Minimize the inclusion of external scripts

Any scripted webpage elements that are loaded from somewhere else, such as external commenting systems, CTA buttons, or lead-generation popups, need to be loaded each time a page loads.

6. Don't use redirects, if possible

A redirect is when visitors to one webpage get forwarded to a different page instead. Redirects add a few fractions of a second, or sometimes even whole seconds, to page load time


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