Thank you for your questions. Let me know if this helps:
WordPress-to-Cloud solution relies on Cloud Storage Engine (ClouSE) in order to offer remote cloud storage at performance and security of the local storage; that it in addition to the benefits of cloud storage.
You already know that cloud storage is ultra-scalable, amazingly durable, highly available, it also either acts as a CDN or easily integrated with CDN solutions - that is all at very affordable cost.
Many of users of our plugin go all the way to the cloud (setup # 1). Others use ClouSE in setup # 2 in order to store and serve files from the cloud storage (see above - cloud storage is just that attractive). When you have a lot of files using cloud storage is a often natural choice.
Also WP2Cloud is one of the very few solutions (and this is the feedback that we get from our customers) that is in active development, well supported and just works, once configured.
Agree, configuration is still somewhat not straight forward for less technical audience, as you've rightfully noticed. We are figuring out how streamline it further. That is why your feedback is well-taken, feel free to point out specific pain points to us and we promise to make it better.
That might create difficulty as you’ll need more control over your environment to use WP2Cloud. I’d say you basically have two easy options:
1) use a more advanced hosting plan (with root access, likely a VPS) and stay with your hoster
2) or move the website hosting to the cloud entirely.
Sometimes it might be worthwhile to have a discussion with the hoster whether they are open enabling ClouSE for you.
>first steps to get WP2Cloud running
On Amazon AWS or Google Cloud hosting, the easiest way to start would be to spin off your instance of the ready-to-run image that we prepared. This Virtual Machine image is just a file that contains the latest versions of LAMP stack + admin tools + WordPress + WP2Cloud components.
When you launch your own instance from this template, you’ll see the configuration UI form that will take all Cloud Storage configuration parameters, plumbs them to in order to configure instance (alternatively you can pass all config params as a metadata for the instance). After this step is complete, you can now customize this instance to your liking and build your own site. This image becomes your golden image - take a snapshot of it when you are done installing plugins. This image (and your passwords) is the only thing that you need to restore your side - as all the site data is in a cloud.
Depending on circumstances, some of WP2Cloud users needed additional help in migrating sites to the cloud. We oftentimes recommend to work with WordPress solution provides to assist in site migration. And we’ll happy to recommend the one we’ve worked with on several projects
Please keep us posted on your decision or if you have more questions.