Cloudflare is a free and simple solution to improve blog performance, help fight spam, and protect your blog from attacks. Even newbie and not so perceptive midlife bloggers can set up and effectively use Cloudflare. Moreover, their customer service is outstanding. Observing my resolution to share reliable blogging information, this is my Cloudflare journey.


How I found Cloudflare

Ms Sharon Hurley Hall wrote an awesome CloudFlare review on Basic Blog Tips.  Oh my gosh this woman is a tremendously talented professional writer and blogger. Sharon gave an in depth and easy to understand overview of CloudFlare. She offered statistics to illustrate the benefits of using Cloudflare and tips for using the service. In addition, Sharon wrote a follow up article sharing more tips for using the service, which did prove helpful for my blog performance as well.

CloudFlare is actually a security tool, aimed at protecting your site from online threats such as spammers, bots, and exploit attackers. The page load speed boost is a welcome side effect, produced from the way CloudFlare works with your site. Sharon H Hurley

On top of being a free service to protect my blog from threats, CloudFlare appeared to be the solution to my continual frustration over slow loading pages. After reading the Basic Blog Tips review twice, I decided to try CloudFlare. Thanks Sharon.


Setting Up with CloudFlare

Signing up for an account was easy and straightforward. Exploring the overviews and illustrations provided by CloudFlare gave basic insight and information about web page delivery and domain DNS (domain name server) settings. Technical terms are explained in simple words that help you to understand the set up process. The explanations combined with systematic instructions for the majority of hosting companies made the set up process simple. A four-step process was provided for my hosting company. Following the instructions to the tee, the process took me about 15 minutes to set up.

I did have a problem the first time I tried to use Adobe Dreamweaver after setting up CloudFlare. I couldn’t log into my hosting account and I thought the problem was with them but, after investing, found it was CloudFlare. You see they protect these protocols by moving them and therefore my ftp address and password had to be changed. A quick search provided this answer and the problem was easily solved.

Cloudflare Illustration

 Overall Cloudflare Results

CloudFlare has been serving my pages for about two months now. Google Analytics shows improvements in bounce rates and page views as predicted. The blog loads much faster now too. Besides having to wait a few seconds to access my admin page on several occasions, the service has improved my blogs performance and solved my frustration issues.


 Customer Service that Rocks!

CloudFlare offers amazing customer service. Last week this blog encountered big problems. In the process of previewing a post, I received an error from Chrome something like “connection was reset” and a blank page. After three or four of these errors, I opened Fire Fox thinking the problem was with Chrome. Fire Fox and IE returned the same issue. My blog would not load.

“It has to be CloudFlare,” I thought. After scouring the help and faqs with no solution, I sent a help request. It was after midnight, time to let it go until morning. Nervous and upset I said to the hubby, “Gosh I hope this company helps me. It’s a free service and that worries me.” To my pleasure, I awoke to find CloudFlare had responded with specific information to check, several links to visit, and a promise to resolve the issue. Woo Hoo!

Following the directions from the CloudFlare team, I contacted my hosting provider. Having been hacked in the past, I knew the hosting company would never admit to it being their problem. I was right. After going back and for with the hosting company for most of the afternoon my site miraculously came back online.  Meanwhile the CloudFlare team continued corresponding to be certain my issues were resolved. I sent the information from the hosting company to them. When I didn’t understand the technical explanations from my hosting company, the CloudFlare tech explained them. At no time did they blame the hosting company. Not once did the tech support team make me feel inadequate. Additionally, the tech sent explicit instructions on what/how to gather the information needed to pin point the reset origin just in case the problem arose again.


 More Than Blog Acceleration and Protection

For the newbie and non-technical blog owner, excellent customer service may be the most important and comforting feature of any tool. How so? Well, I find that terms and processes one doesn’t understand can be the most frustrating and discouraging aspect of blogging, especially when funding to fix a problem is not an option. CloudFlare definitely resolved my page speed frustrations as proposed. What they may not know is their excellent customer service encourages bloggers like me to continuing with their blog adventure. Thank you CloudFlare!

Does customer service make a difference in respect to your blogging future? Have you ever stopped using a blog service/tool due to bad customer service?