Why is a modern CDN key for an eCommerce?

Content distribution networks play a key role on the Internet as we know it. If not for them, many companies would not have the possibility to serve their content and offer their services in a fast and efficient way. And in any case, the few that could do so would have to assume very high costs in IT infrastructure. CDNs democratize the efficient distribution of content. However, it is important to distinguish between a classic CDN and a modern CDNSince they are still dedicated to the same purpose, there are great differences with respect to the service they offer.

A key concept in understanding the difference between first and second generation CDNs is the access. In many respects the old networks function as a black and blind box, which collects what we want to serve and distributes it based on its own criteria through its points of presence. It hardly offers us control over fundamental aspects, visibility is very limited and, if we need to make changes, these can take hours.

CDN 2.0 and eCommerce 2.0

The evolution of Internet shopping trends in the last decade has had the smartphone as the undisputed protagonist. The user experience has changed enormously, and yet the conversion rate is still higher on computers than on smartphones.

According to SaleCycle, Although 63% of visits to online retailers came from mobile devices, purchases from these devices accounted for 53%. From here we extract two very important data: that more than half of sales are made from mobile devices, and that even so the conversion rate on PC is higher. Why?

There is no single answer to this question, as the data varies depending on the sector. However, there is something that we must take into account, and that is that all websites are displayed properly in PC format, but the same does not always happen in mobile, and in this not only the design of the site counts, but also how the content is served.

A modern CDN gives us complete control over how content is served depending on the device on which it will be displayed. And the same happens with connection speed: we cannot serve the same content to a PC connected to the Internet through a high-speed fiber optic connection, as to a smartphone that is using a 4G connection. There is only one common aspect in both cases: the user does not want to wait. But Nor will your expectations be satisfied if the quality of what you get is not adequate.

Fastly CDN eCommerce

This is where a modern CDN like Fastly makes a difference. with respect to a first generation network, and it does so due to several factors:

  • Control: real-time visibility and control over the performance of our eCommerce offers first-hand information on the suitability of our service for various types of platforms.
  • Adaptability: Only if our CDN is able to parameterize each connection based on multiple factors (speed, device, screen resolution, aspect ratio, etc.), will it be able to optimize the content to be served.
  • Edge computing: POPs (Points Of Presence) bring not only the data, but also the processing capacity to the user, in addition to adapting them to the local context if necessary. In this way, the distance that the data must travel is substantially reduced and it is downloaded to the datacenter, two improvements that translate into a much faster response to the customer.
  • Optimization: Edge computing and adaptability already translate into optimization, but to this we can add the improvements that we can apply ourselves, either thanks to the control offered by the API, or to tools such as the Fastly image optimizer.

A modern CDN is a key element for access to our eCommerce to occur in the best conditions possible, and for the data to be adapted to the context. ECommerce is not the future but it is the present, but it is a highly competitive present, and in which we must be able to adapt and offer the best possible service.

If you want to know more about what Fastly can do for you and your online platform, we recommend Fastly’s ebook on eCommerce solutions.

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