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Fourth scenario: Full Zoning & Paid Tier (Pro plan)

If you do pay for Cloudflare and use their services, including paid ones like Argo, the load time in Australia of our test website was: 5.641s

This is much better than partial zoning, but only on par when Cloudflare was not in use.

 

The issue with Cloudflare in Australia

Australia is in a particularly undesirable situation with Cloudflare. Their closest server is based in Singapore and is the reason for these deplorable statistics. Singapore is geographically very far away from Australia.

 

Fifth scenario: Singaporean loading time, Partial Zoning & Free Tier

The load time in Singapore for the website using fremium from Cloudflare is not spectacular regardless of using Cloudflare's Singaporean server, the load time is now: 6.792s

This  is still slower than our website's Australian traffic without Cloudflare and only half a second faster than when we look at  Australian traffic for partial zoning & free tier.

The free plugin and free services from Cloudlfare given to you by your web host is not that great after all.

 

Sixth scenario: Singaporean loading time, Full Zoning & Paid Tier

The load time for the above scenario is: 3.782s

So Cloudflare does improve your speed internationally, with the caveat being the location. What we can take from this, is that for Cloudflare to work best, you need:

  • Full Zoning. Cloudflare must manage your DNS
  • Paid Tier & paid services must be used to see a benefit

But let's not stop here. There's a few more layers to this...

 

Seventh scenario: Singaporean loading time, Full Zoning & Free Tier

The performance for this is not too bad, better than Australian load time without Cloudlfare, but markedly worse than when you had paid services: 5.004s

 

Further testing: Does Content Management System Matter?

We will now do a quick test with a Joomla website. All the above stats are based on a WordPress website. This Joomla website is using Full Zoning & Paid Tier. The Australian load time is: 5.003s

This is the Singaporean load time: 3.942s

 

Is Railgun any good?

This test involves the partially zoned, free tier website. Recall that the Australian load time is: 7.215s

With Railgun, the loading time is: 6.614s

This is slower than a setup without Cloudflare and not enough improvement

 

Conclusion

If you are in Australia and do not have much international visitors, do not use Cloudflare. If you are outside Australia, results may differ. For example with Singapore, website load times perform extremely well.

If you are in Australia but have international visitors, using Cloudflare is good, but only if you are in the paid tiers.

 

 

 

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About the Author

Clarence Ling

Clarence Ling is the founder and business owner of CLASS Digital Marketing. He is a self trained Joomla Front End Web Designer and a Digital Marketer, constantly procuring the latest martech (marketing tech) and incorporating current developments in marketing. Based in Perth, Western Australia, he is also a real estate agent in Malaysia, selling Australian property overseas, attached to the largest and best East Malaysian real estate agency, Kozin Real Estate Sdn Bhd. Clarence regularly commutes between Australia, Malaysia and sometimes other parts of Asia in his line of work. 

Phone (Australia): +61 413 665 375 
Phone (Malaysia): +60 12 818 1160 
Email: clarence@clarenceling.com

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