What Exactly is a Content Delivery Network or CDN?
CDN is short for Content Delivery Network which is a network of edge servers that deliver cached static content from websites to users based on the geographic location of the user. CDN’s, are not a web hosting substitute. It is an additional network of servers for certain static file types only.
Normally, when someone visits your website, they are directed to your hosting provider’s server. Your server is located in 1 location. For example, JA Publications is hosted in Salt Lake City, Utah. If you’re not using a CDN, all of your website’s users are hitting this one server. If you have a site that gets lots of traffic, this can overload your server and cause the site to perform slowly and even crash the server.
User’s proximity to your web server has an impact on page load time. By deploying your content across multiple geographically dispersed servers, you can make your pages load faster from the user’s perspective. This is when a CDN comes in handy. In simpler words, the closer the CDN server is to where your user is, the faster the user gets the content. A good CDN, will have edge servers located all over the world and close to populated areas.
Content Delivery Networks (CDN) Help Speed Up Your Site
Content Delivery Networks & SEO
Page speed is a ranking factor by most search engines. If your site is performing poorly, this usually hurts your ranking meaning that if two sites are tied for first place, the faster site wins. When you’re setting up a CDN, make sure you use a properly configured robots.txt in your pull zone to avoid duplicate content penalties. Also, specifying the origin IP address is not a bad idea either along with using SSL. I recommend MaxCDN. They have great customer support and very fast edge servers. How to setup the actual zone or CDN for SEO is beyond the scope of this post.
How Content Delivery Networks Help Your SEO was last modified: October 1st, 2018 by Jeff George
In my years in this industry I have seen time and time again the mantra “Let’s copy the competition! They are number one, so they must be doing something right. Right?”
The process usually begins with the following: “I noticed our competitor X is number one on Google. Competitor Y is number 1 for a hundred different keywords. We should copy everything they do down to the minute detail! Let’s get going!”
While in some business disciplines that is a semi-ok idea, in SEO copying your competitors utilizing this reasoning is a waste of time.
You visit a website and your browser starts requesting all the files that constitute the website. So your browser asks the server, “Can I have image_011.jpeg?” and the web server says, “Yeah, here you go and take this thing with you and bring it back when you come back next time so I know it’s you.” Your browser says “okaythx” and then returns a nanosecond later: “Hello – can I have image_001a.jpg? And, I have this thing you gave me last time.” And then the server says, “Oh it’s you again. I remember you.”
At this point you’ve probably figured out that the mentioned “thing” is the cookie. This post is far from a complete description and it doesn’t go into why a server may want to recognize a client browser but that’s stuff you can easily look up elsewhere and I said we were going to keep this short.
What’s the Difference Between First Party & Third Party Cookies?
The thing to understand is that there is no intrinsic difference between a first-party cookie and a third-party cookie. There’s only cookies. The distinction exists only at run-time, within the context of a particular visit. Your browser maintains a collection of cookies. Your browser receives a request from a website’s server to store a cookie, and depending on your browser settings, it adds the file to a cookie collection stored on your device’s storage disk. There isn’t a separate collection of first-party cookies and a separate collection of third-party cookies. There’s just one collection of cookies.
If a cookie is associated with a file requested from the same domain as the page you are viewing, it’s a first-party cookie. A cookie associated with a file requested from a different domain than the site you’re on, is a third-party cookie. That’s it.
Notice that the same cookie can be a first-party cookie one minute and a third-party cookie the next. For instance, when you visit twitter.com your browser sets several cookies associated with the *.twitter.com domain name. In the context of your stay on Twitter these are first-party cookies. If you then visit huffingtonpost.com, Huffington Post requests files from the twitter.com domain and those requests include the same *.twitter.com cookies, they are now third-party cookies.
There is no such thing as a completely secure WordPress website. Your website will get hacked eventually if you don’t put site security at the top of your priority list. It’s not a matter of if, but when. And if you make money with a WordPress site, you’d be silly to not take site security seriously. Keep in mind, that humans are rarely trying manually to break into your site. Instead, scripts are written to scan for vulnerable websites and when they find one, then try to break in. So, a malicious hacker can setup a computer or multiple computers to stay on 24 hours a day and just scan and hack into many sites without touching the keyboard most of the time. It’s important to understand that if you’re website is on the first page of search engines, you’re even more open to attacks.
As you may know, WordPress is an open-source content management system software developed by Automattic, Inc. as opposed to closed-source software like Apple’s iOS. This means that the actual source code or the nuts and bolts of how it works is publicly available and accessible to developers. This is one of the aspects about WordPress that makes it so great. With open-source software, developers can collaborate and build just about any type of software solution to be integrated into WordPress. But, that same source code is also available to the types that are looking to break into and hack and exploit your site as well and this is why you should be concerned with site security. If your business runs on WordPress or any other open-source content management system, you need to secure it properly and continuously. You’ve been formerly warned and if you’re smart, you’ll take security very seriously.
You can be the biggest WordPress security expert in the world, it won’t matter one bit if your hosting company gets compromised. Hosting your own websites? Good luck with the Heartbleed bug, that affected the whole Internet for 3 years before someone even realized it’s existence.
So, if you can’t be 100% secure, what exactly can you do?
The fight is won or lost far away from witnesses—behind the lines, in the gym and out there on the road, long before I dance under those lights.
Be Responsible About WordPress Security
The Greatest told it like it is: You don’t start thinking about security when you’ve been hacked. By then it’s too late. You think about it before you start your website. You vet the plugin and theme authors. You keep an eye on your websites. If you’re out of your depth, you hire an expert. Being prepared makes all the difference in the world.
Don’t, for one second, start thinking that any WordPress security plugin and/or service will somehow make you magically prepared. We can help you take most of the load off your shoulders and provide the tools you need, but at the end of the day you, and only you, are responsible for the security of your WordPress website. And if your attitude is “meh, whatever, I don’t have time for this”, you’re setting yourself up for a fall. You can bet the guys trying to get into your site have time for it.
Always Have a Backup Ready
76% of WordPress users don’t use backups. This is the kind of insane shortsightedness you need to fight at every turn. You’ll never see an ice hockey goalie forget his helmet because there’s only a 2% chance of a ice cold, rock hard puck hitting him in the face off a slapshot and knocking his teeth out, right? 2% is enough of a reason to take precaution when the end result could be devastating to your online business.
Even the baddest asses like being alive
It’s also the reason why we backup our client’s sites more than once per day. Handling backups for 70+ websites is a pain, so we use a backup plugin that’s easily controlled from the WordPress dashboard. We recommend that our clients use a robust, incremental backup plugin for WordPress that uses very little web server resources, and stores it on a secure off-site location. We also recommend doing hourly backup cycles, so your website has a restore point every hour. This is also beneficial if your site was ever hacked. It enables you to identify the point of entry and patch the security vulnerability more quickly than if you had no backup or backups running just once per week.
Be Vigilant. Always.
Some attacks are easy to notice: your website goes down, or it’s defaced. The ones you don’t know about are much more dangerous: someone could inject malicious code into your website and abuse it for weeks, without you even noticing it. By that time your SEO score is crap, you’ve been blacklisted, and the damage has been done. That’s where we come in.
Uptime Monitors – are great for detecting when your website goes down or is defaced. You’ll immediately get an email and/or an SMS with more details, and you’ll be able to spring into action before anyone else notices.
Website Security Checks – inspects your website for known vulnerabilities, malware, checks the blacklist status, and a number of other things. In the near future we also plan to automate the checks, so you can let the system run daily checks and notify you if it notices something’s wrong.
Performance Checks – are perfect for the sneakiest of the sneakiest attacks. Sometimes the Security Checks will not detect the intrusion because it’s a new type of malware that’s not in the vulnerability database, or maybe it’s not malware at all. Your website server resources are still being misused, and it’s slowing your website down. Pingdom.com grades your website performance and stores the result. Each time you run a new check, you can compare it to the previous grade and notice when it drops. Now you know something’s wrong, and you’ll be able to fix it before there’s any permanent damage.
There’s no easy fix for WordPress security. You need to act responsibly
Check your website security regularly
Why it’s Important to Secure Your WordPress Site was last modified: October 14th, 2018 by Jeff George
If the Meta keyword tags were really important ingredients in your recipe for SEO success, Google, Yahoo, and Bing would be the first ones to let you know that you actually need them. They would try to convince you to include them inside your header and would highlight the main benefits associated with this practice. Nonetheless, in reality, Google and Yahoo have chosen to ignore Meta keyword tags. Reason: in the past 10 years, numerous webmasters have SPAMMED out and abused the meta keywords tag. What commonly happens is people with less than a thorough understanding of the way search algorithms work will put every variation of their business type in keyword form in the keywords meta tag.
Here’s an example of how webmasters spam the meta keywords tag:
<meta name="keywords" content="seo company,seo companies,seo agency,seo agencies, seo services, seo service, local seo service">
Phasing Out the Meta Keywords Tag
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see how spammy this Black Hat SEO technique is, and this is why major search engines like Google.com and Yahoo ignore the meta keywords tag. That still doesn’t detour webmasters and SEO amateurs from doing it though, and even today, many still are. JA Publications, Inc. does a lot of Google penalty removal services, so we see this in the course of our analysis more often than we should. Second to back link schemes, this is the most common penalizing SEO technique that we see. Keyword stuffing not only meta tags but page content and meta titles and descriptions is also common.
Since keyword Meta tags have been used in conjunction with shady website optimization tactics, most search engines have decided to ignore them and the meta keywords tag holds no SEO weight or power. Bing seems to be even more determined, and goes the extra mile to penalize website owners who count on this type of black hat SEO strategy. Bing interprets the Meta keywords tag like a spam signal. Websites that use the tag, but do not display the keywords included with it, in their page body copy, are penalized by Bing. We like that a lot! The less SPAM, the better as far as we’re concerned.
Here’s Matt Cutts, a software engineer at Google, Talking About the Meta Keywords Tag
Meta Keywords HTML Tag and SEO was last modified: September 9th, 2018 by Jeff George