Amazon Lightsail is a powerful hosting solution for web applications and for websites. However, before you try it with your website, there are a few things you should consider.
Managed vs. Unmanaged
A simple shared web hosting solution is a managed hosting solution meaning someone else has taken the server configuration & maintenance tasks upon themselves and you won’t have to deal with it so we call it ‘a managed solution’.
A solution like Amazon Lightsail gives you control over the configuration & maintenance of the server itself so we call it ‘an unmanaged solution’.
If you understand linux administration, you will feel right at home with Amazon Lightsail and you can easily find online articles to get going with it.
However, if you never connected to a linux server via SSH, maybe just find a simpler managed shared web hosting solution. There are many good, reliable shared hosting providers out there and if you don’t have ‘special requirements’ for your website (which I will discuss in a minute) better start there.
So why use Amazon Lightsail anyway?
Let’s say you/your business have a WordPress website and you’re very busy with your marketing efforts. You should consider that the resources that are needed to successfully serve your website visitors change. You may dispatch a mail blast that will cause a temporary surge in website visitors, you may run ads. You work very hard to attract more visitors to your website and other marketing channels and hopefully, you do a good job and you reach your goals and traffic grows and grows. Soon enough you will have to face the fact, your shared hosting is no longer enough to deal with the amount of visitors your website is now attracting.
That’s when Amazon Lightsail starts to really shine.
You may choose to start from a very basic server configuration but you can change that instantly, create a stronger server, create a few servers with a load balancer to manage the traffic, separate the storage to Amazon S3, use CloudFront (Amazon’s CDN solution), put the website’s DB on a dedicated RDS solution and so much more.
You have all the infrastructure to serve a large and growing number of visitors, it is a very convincing solution.
So who should manage it all?
As I stated before, if you’re familiar with linux administration, Amazon Lightsail should be a walk in the park for you but for most people out there, I would recommend involving a specialist when it comes to Amazon Lightsail and not try managing a WordPress website there by yourself.