Why Startups Are Choosing Amazon Web Services

By Flux7 Labs
August 29, 2014

In August 2013, Wired wrote a controversial article that focused on why some startups were getting away from the cloud and returning to on-prem solutions … all because of costs. The end of cloud-based startup infrastructure, however, wasn’t near. In fact, one of the challenges cited in the Wired article — costs — got easier to deal with this year with falling prices. Read our blog on what the AWS price cut means to you.

We continue to see a steady stream of startups moving to Amazon Web Services [AWS] from other providers. No doubt, AWS is difficult to beat for costs, stability, and its robust tool set.choosing__aws

Recently, one stealth startup was creating an app it hoped would become very popular and eventually have millions of users. It would have been cost prohibitive to setup a static environment during day one that would accommodate that many users. Company leaders knew they needed something that could scale.

After evaluating a few other cloud platforms, they decided AWS would be the best fit. However, they were still missing the cloud architecture knowledge they needed. We worked with them to ensure their setup was optimized and ready to be tested for success.

The co-founder of the stealth startup said: “Without Flux7’s help, we wouldn’t have been able to set up such a well-structured account, and we surely would have encountered issues upgrading in the future.”

Similarly, another startup, poised on the brink of a major marketing campaign, realized that before it pressed the launch button, it needed to have some solid infrastructure in place. And Heroku just wasn’t it. You can read about this startup’s challenges in detail here.


Two’s Company … Three’s a Trend?

Yet, another startup worked with us to move its infrastructure from another vendor to AWS. This time, it was to meet HIPAA compliance, a requirement that just could not be met with its previous cloud provider.

Like the startup featured in the Wired article, each of these startup’s fledgling infrastructure had only got them so far. They had made the decision to start their businesses with one cloud provider for reasons such as simplicity and initial costs. But, they rose to a phase of growth whereby web-scale production environments were needed.

Our blog, 6 Reasons Why Large Enterprises Should Move to Amazon Web Services, focuses on the needs of the enterprise. Yet, these same reasons also hold true for startups.

Among the top reasons startups should consider AWS are

1. A Treasure House of Services

With more than 35 major services and 927 sub-services and features, AWS offers a wide range of services for startups. AWS is considered a leader because it has matured during the years in its service offering and has a stronger ecosystem. While it offers traditional services, including compute, storage, networking, reliability and security, it makes for a good modern ecosystem by providing the following:

  • Dynamic Scaling, Storage and Memory

  • Push-Button Deployments of the Entire Infrastructure

  • Automated Infrastructure Management

2. Infrastructure Guardian

Not trying to scare you … but, startups that didn’t take the time to strategize their security and disaster recovery plans have encountered their doomsday. And that’s even if they have their infrastructure in the mighty AWS! Such wake up calls happen. It’s only wise to use them as lessons. The AWS ecosystem extends strong support to integrating third party tools for:

  • Error Detection

  • Health Checks

  • Self-Healing

  • Disaster Recovery

  • Auto-Scaling

With AWS, it’s possible to rent third-party tools on-demand. The mantra is here to rent, not buy. With less than a few clicks, it’s possible to monitor your entire infrastructure for security breaches, error handling and health-checks.

3. Innovation and Business Agility

Surprise yourself! A recent Harvard cloud survey indicated that lowering costs or increased innovation were not the top reasons for cloud usage. The top reason went to business agility. You, as a startup, can’t afford to be slow. You have strong competition. You look forward to implementing new ideas at low costs of failures. And, you need speed. Here’s how the cloud extends a helping hand:

  • Automate the process of replacing environments that fail using AWS CloudFormation templates

  • Avoid patching servers, and, instead, create deployment scripts and new instances

  • Fast server replacements

After a heady run of helping startups migrate to AWS under crunching deadlines, we’re confident in saying: “Don’t wait to find out your infrastructure won’t scale.”

Get set up properly on AWS now. That way your team can focus on marketing, development, and all the other challenges that go with modern business. You’ll be glad you did.

And, to get a head start on your current infrastructure in six key areas, click here now to find out about Assessment Packages priced to meet your business needs.