We’ve all been there: a website crashing when you want to buy a ticket for the concert of your favourite band. Frustration, when you can’t pay for a plane ticket during a special offer, because a server is not responding. Losing our time when apps aren’t working due to high demand has a negative impact on customer experience. From a business perspective, is there an effective way to make a website or an application easily scalable in a cost-effective way? There is. And it’s called serverless computing.
What is serverless computing?
Serverless computing is an execution approach of cloud computing. Contrary to its’ name, it actually uses servers, but you, as a client, can forget about them. How is that possible? In this approach, the whole infrastructure exists, but it’s not owned and not managed by a business owner.
With serverless computing applications are developed faster, which translates to a reduced time-to-market. But this is not the only advantage. There are more:
- Scaling flexibility – an application scales automatically according to the needs. If you own an online store which experiences higher traffic during sales or before Christmas, there’s no need to worry about the performance of your store. Thanks to serverless computing, it will scale when triggered by bigger volume of users.
- Cost efficiency – in serverless computing you pay for what you use. If the traffic is low through the year and increases only in high season, you will pay only for what you (or in this case your clients) use. Micro-billing allows charging for performed activities only. You don’t have to pay for the whole infrastructure every month only to make sure it will be able to provide service when demand increases. There are no hardware or maintenance costs. Moreover, since billing system is clear, you are able to predict the exact cost per client acquisition.
- Productivity – server management and capacity planning are not on your side anymore. You can focus on your business instead of the infrastructure.
- ‘Greener’ computing – according to Forbes and McKinsey and Company, typical servers in business and enterprise data centers deliver between five and 15 percent of their maximum computing output on average over the course of the year. With Serverless you are using those resources only when you need them and you are more friendly to our planet.
How can you use serverless computing?
We have already covered an example of an online store. But there are more examples where you can benefit from serverless computing. Online registration systems face similar issues as online shops – servers often go down when demand increases rapidly.
Companies can benefit also from using serverless computing internally. The serverless approach allows us to easily automate processes. This automation can be used for example during employee induction, where every month certain tasks have to be repeated – setting up accounts, files migration, software subscriptions, sending meeting invitations and more. An app will launch when needed, perform requested activities and you will be charged only for the time when it was in use, not for the whole month. And you can calculate exact cost for each of that actions.
And what is more important your solution will adjust to actual traffic. For most of the time, it can be not active at all. It will be almost costless for you. Then in that big day like football final or pop-star concert, your solution will be ready. It will scale up and handle this huge traffic without any issues.
If you’d like to discover how serverless computing can be implemented in your company, don’t hesitate to contact us.