What Are Application Load Balancers & Its Benefits

Application load balancers are the backbone of any IT team’s security infrastructure. These machines available as hardware or software ensure your application is well-equipped to handle client or incoming traffic. Application load balancers, in particular, offer scalability, performance, and availability intelligently. In addition, it ensures your servers don’t get exhausted and are ready to welcome spikes in traffic. So let’s discuss the application load balancer further.

What Is an Application Load Balancer?

application load balancer works on the 7th layer — application layer — in the OSI model. Made for cloud environments, application load balancers assess application content and routes it to applications in the AWS public cloud. First, it monitors application-level contents like HTTP, HTTPS, and packet details, instead of port and IP. Next, it splits the traffic to the target group with availability based on the incoming traffic in HTTP format. Akin to other load balancers, application load balancers ensure no one server gets overwhelmed by the traffic load. But, what’s unique about the application load balancer is its ability to conduct health checks on your servers. It helps to find out possible coding and HTTP errors. Plus, it safeguards your application from dangerous attacks like DDoS that can compromise your application. This mechanism helps you offer an outstanding client experience, fast load time despite high traffic, and notable performance.

How do application load balancers work?

The increased usage of internet consumption, especially after the pandemic, has encouraged businesses to deploy solutions to manage the consequent challenges. Load balancers help enterprises maintain the performance and availability of their applications and stay a step ahead of the competition. Application load balancers are especially helpful for sudden traffic spikes where application load balancers effectively split network load to the public cloud, boosting availability and scalability.

Furthermore, it’s conducive for mobile and web apps running in AWS EC2 instances or containers. application load balancer comprises rules and listeners. The listener takes or listens to the client’s request, and rules govern the routing of these requests. Here are 3 crucial components of the application load balancer:

  • Load balancer: as the name suggests, it helps split traffic to servers available, eventually making your applications available and avoiding downtime.
  • Listener: it listens to the incoming traffic by the client and decides to apply a rule and send it to the target group accordingly.
  • Target group: target group comprises several servers grouped logically called the registered targets. When the application load balancer receives a request, it sends it to one of the registered targets, like EC2 instances, based on the protocol and port number you configure.

Benefits of the Application Load Balancer

  • The application load balancer can detect if one of the servers isn’t performing and automatically switches to another server, ensuring no downtime.
  • Application load balancer conducts health checks and shares granular reports containing metrics like HTTPS codes, latencies, and more.
  • One of the most significant advantages of the application load balancer is its ability to address sudden spikes, eliminating the risk of DDoS and other threats.
  • Taking advantage of containerization, most users are packaging their microservices into containers and hosting them on EC2 instances. This way, one instance can host multiple containers enabling multiple ports to listen to network traffic under the same target group.


Load balancing is crucial if you want to provide reliable service with performance that scales well as the business grows. They monitor traffic and route it to the best server for your application. Its ability to scale, provide security, and conduct health checks makes it an ideal choice for enterprises.

If you’re interested in learning more about how to get started with an app load balancing solution that will benefit your business, reach out to our sales team today!

Learn more about what load balancers are, along with their type and benefits, here.