As an experienced Amazon seller, I‘m always exploring new tools and services that can help me better manage my FBA business and improve operations. One AWS offering that more sellers should be aware of is Amazon Lightsail. In this guide, I‘ll explain what Lightsail is, its benefits for ecommerce, and how online sellers can leverage it in 2023.
Amazon Lightsail is a virtual private server (VPS) service that provides an easy, low-cost way for small businesses and developers to launch websites and web-based applications on AWS. With Lightsail, you get everything needed to deploy projects in the cloud without having to configure servers and infrastructure yourself.
For online sellers, Lightsail can be used to host web stores, manage databases of product/order data, run analytics, and more – all for as little as $3.50/month. In this post, I‘ll share how Lightsail can benefit your ecommerce business and tips for getting started.
Why Amazon Sellers Should Consider Using Lightsail
The number of Amazon FBA sellers has grown exponentially over the past few years. There are now over 2 million sellers worldwide! As your business grows, leveraging solutions like Lightsail can provide important advantages:
Lightsail offers predictable, monthly pricing that beats alternatives. Plans start at just $3.50/month – extremely affordable for any seller. Rather than paying for expensive dedicated servers or colocation facilities, you can host sites and apps on AWS for less.
Nothing hurts sales more than your site going down. Lightsail provides excellent uptime and availability by leveraging AWS infrastructure across global data centers. For sellers, this means your customers can always access your store when needed.
You can scale Lightsail instances up or down based on your sales and traffic volumes. Lightsail also integrates seamlessly with other AWS services, so as your business grows you can leverage more capabilities.
Ease of Use
The simplified Lightsail interface makes launching projects fast and easy. For non-technical sellers, this allows you to get web stores up and running yourself without needing developers.
How Sellers Can Use Lightsail
As an ecommerce seller, there are a variety of ways Lightsail can help you:
Hosting Web Stores – Lightsail provides an affordable way to launch shopping sites on AWS rather than expensive dedicated hosting platforms. You can install ecommerce software like WooCommerce or Magento yourself on Lightsail.
Database Management – Lightsail integrates with RDS to provide managed databases like MySQL, PostgreSQL, and MongoDB to store and query product catalogs, orders, and other transactional data.
Business Analysis – Leverage CloudWatch, QuickSight, and other AWS analytics tools with Lightsail to gain insights from your sales and customer data.
Building Prototypes – Test new product ideas and store concepts using Lightsail‘s low monthly pricing before investing heavily in development.
Developer Environments – Lightsail provides a low-cost way for developers to build and launch sites for sellers rather than paying for EC2 instances and all associated services separately.
How To Get Started with Lightsail
Here is a quick step-by-step overview of how to launch your first Lightsail instance:
Signup for an AWS Account – If you don‘t already have one, signup for a free AWS account. This gives you access to Lightsail and all other AWS services.
Browse Lightsail Plans – In your AWS console, browse Lightsail plans. Consider compute needs, RAM, storage for your workloads. There are many combinations to choose from.
Pick an Instance Template – Select one of the 1-click template options like WordPress, LAMP stack, Nginx, etc. to speed up deployment.
Choose Your Location – Pick an AWS region/availability zone close to your customers for faster performance.
Give Your Instance a Name – Provide a name to easily identify your Lightsail resource.
Wait for Provisioning – It will take a few minutes for your VPS instance to be provisioned and ready to use.
Lightsail Instance Sizing for Ecommerce
When choosing your first Lightsail instance, here are some minimum recommendations for an ecommerce site:
- At least 2 GB of RAM
- 2 vCPUs/cores
- 80 GB of SSD storage
- 2 TB of data transfer
This would provide enough resources for a starter online store with room to grow. Expect costs around $20/month.
Integrating Lightsail with Other AWS Services
A benefit of Lightsail is that you can integrate your instances with other AWS products. As your business scales, key services for ecommerce include:
- Amazon RDS – For setting up managed databases like MySQL or PostgreSQL to store product catalogs and order data.
- Amazon ElastiCache – To cache frequent database queries and improve site performance.
- Amazon CloudFront – A content delivery network to cache and distribute your site globally.
- Amazon CloudWatch – For monitoring key ecommerce metrics like sales, traffic, orders.
The simplicity of Lightsail makes it easy to leverage these other capabilities.
Is Lightsail Right For Your Business?
For new and growing online sellers, Lightsail can provide an affordable and easy way to launch onto AWS rather than paying for dedicated hosting or servers. The ability to scale up instances and integrate other services also makes it great for businesses aiming for long term growth on Amazon.
However, Lightsail simplicity does mean less configuration options compared to EC2. So highly customized workloads may be better suited to EC2 or ECS. But for most simple storefront sites, Lightsail is a great option!
I hope this overview has helped explain how you as an Amazon seller can benefit from Amazon Lightsail. Let me know if you have any other questions!