What is an image CDN?

, image CDN

What is an image CDN?

In today's internet, website speed is key to increase traffic or to keep customers inside the website especially in e-commerce sites. And yet, image performance has taken it's place in this concept. In 2018, Google shared the following study results for mobile websites:

mobile-speed-benchmarks

Several optimizations can be applied to speed up the image storage-delivery process. However, without Content Delivery Network, the loading speed of images would be too slow. In this blog, we will explain what is image CDN, and how it is different from a general purpose CDN.

cdn-world-illustration

What is it?

Think of a CDN that dynamically processes the user data to determine the best version of the image. It finds the proper format for each and every user, it determines screen size and resolution. With this knowledge, image CDN can manipulate the image to produce the best version of the image for each individual visitor.

With image CDN, you do not have to store different versions of the image in the storage. You can store only the original image and then manipulate that image on-the-fly to the visitor. Of course, image processing features are required for manipulating the image. In this case, image CDN is as essential as the image processing features for image management solutions.

Why is it useful?

☻ It increases website speed. Since it is geographically closer to the visitor than the origin server, the connection can be established faster. Getting the first byte when server and client are located in the same city, takes approximately 10 milliseconds, when client and server are located at different continents, it can take up to 300 milliseconds.
☻ Easy-to-manage images. Format, size, quality, SEO naming and more features of an image such as applying effects on it can be managed by just changing dynamic URL.
☻ Fixes image optimization issues at the edge. It puts proper HTTP response headers for images like Cache-Control and Expires

image-optimization-graph

We can think of image CDN as a regular CDN which is specialized in image delivery. If you are using a CDN already, image CDN would enhance your website performance with multi-CDN structure. If you are not using a CDN, image CDN would be a boost for your website. All effort is to speed up your website.