There is a lot of buzz about the benefits of microservices architecture (MSA) out there: it enhances the agility of CI/CD, increases resiliency, makes testing and developing easier, and allows for easy scalability. The advantages are clear, but converting to MSA can be costly and time-consuming, so how do you know when it’s the right move for your business?
The philosophy behind microservice architecture is for each service to be highly specialized and completely autonomous, making it independently deployable and easy to replace. If one service fails it can be isolated and repaired without taking down the entire system. This also makes testing a breeze, as you can pull one service at a time to be tested without disrupting the functionality of your larger product.
Your product is highly dynamic
Customers expect the products that they interact with to be ever-evolving: constantly keeping up with trends in innovation to enhance the user experience. If you are in a dynamic industry or have a highly dynamic product, microservices architecture gives your team the freedom to constantly evolve and launch new releases without disrupting service. This ability to provide continuous delivery and deployment allows you to wow customers with your agility, while keeping product development costs low.
Scalability is a priority
Microservices is a particularly attractive architecture if you need to enable support for a range of platforms and devices. Each independent service can be easily scaled to respond to increases in demand or usage. For example, an e-commerce business might consider migrating to microservices architecture in order to meet demand and mitigate costs during the holidays. If the shopping cart is an independent service, it can be scaled up to accommodate the extra traffic and prevent service disruptions for customers. This also has the added benefit of enabling “pay as you go” server usage, which leads to huge cost savings.
You want the freedom of Cloud-based services
The benefits of migrating to the cloud are well known, and chief among them is cost efficiency. In a microservice environment, any number of independent services can be outsourced to the cloud or 3rd party platforms. Moving services to the cloud saves you from investing in on-site servers, software and staff, and with most cloud companies offering a subscription-based service, you pay only for the data you use.
You have an established product
It’s important to realize that microservices architecture is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Making the transition requires a substantial investment of time and money, and it is best suited to companies with an established, proven product. Building an MSA system can lengthen product to market time, making it a risky choice for start-ups or new, untested products. Although there is compelling argument to build your product using microservices from the ground up, it’s important to ask yourself: do you want a product that can scale but doesn’t work, or a product that works but can’t scale?
If one or more of these reasons apply to your business goals, you may want to consider making the switch to microservice architecture. While the time and financial commitment can be great, the finished product will result in lowered costs, a more resilient product, and the flexibility to grow and scale your business with ease.