Compared to other public cloud providers, Amazon Web Services (AWS) provides businesses with some of the best-managed services and cloud resources available. However, depending on factors such as your storage usage, computing power, and traffic volume, AWS’s pricing model can quickly become pretty expensive.
The good news is that AWS cost management tools can provide several cost-saving benefits, such as improving cost visibility, tracking and alerting you to anomalies, and simplified cloud financial reporting—all designed to help companies reduce their cloud spend while at the same time optimizing performance.
If you want to extract the most value from your AWS budget and investment, consider how cloud cost management and optimization tools can help. Third-party cloud cost management tools, including the five highlighted below, can deliver more features and better benefits than the native reporting, visualization, and automation tools available through your public cloud provider.
The benefits of AWS cost management tools
AWS cost management solutions enable organizations to better monitor and manage their cloud costs and build more cost-effective cloud infrastructures. Here are some of the top benefits of AWS cost management tools and how they can help you achieve greater cost savings on your cloud spend.
Before working to reduce your cloud bill, you need to understand exactly what your cloud providers are billing you. AWS cost management tools can provide greater visibility into your actual cloud usage, costs, historical spending, and other metrics. These tools also make it easy to measure and generate custom reports that break down your AWS spend across regions, cost categories, applications, and more.
Monitoring and alerts
AWS cost management tools allow for real-time monitoring and notifications, making it easy to continuously track how much you are spending on AWS resources.
When considering AWS cost management tools and their benefits and features outlined above, it all comes down to selecting the best cloud platform for your business needs.
Check out our cost optimization tool comparison matrix to see how ProsperOps compares.
The AWS resources you use, such as EC2 instances and EBS volumes, and how you use them (i.e., storage, computing power, data transfer), will significantly impact your total cloud spend. So, it’s important to continually review your cloud environment to understand what resources you need compared to what you have in place.
AWS cost management tools help companies identify idle and underutilized resources that can be optimized to reduce cloud costs and improve efficiency.
It’s important to only provision the resources you need right now then review and right-size your resources regularly. Remember, in the cloud, purchasing extra capacity and expanding is seamless. Cloud providers offer auto-scaling and load balancers to make your infrastructure reliable, cost-effective, and dynamic.
Manage Savings Plans and Reserved Instances
As noted earlier, we encourage you to get familiar with AWS’s pricing models, so you understand how your cloud costs are calculated. You should also familiarize yourself with the discounts offered by your public cloud provider.
Two powerful discount vehicles offered by AWS, Savings Plans (SPs) and Reserved Instances (RIs), can be leveraged to reduce your cloud costs. RIs, for example, reduce the price you would pay compared to on-demand instances.
AWS Reserved Instances is a pricing model that allows organizations to save money by purchasing on-demand instances in advance.
Similarly, AWS Savings Plans can be used to reduce the price you pay for compute resources compared to paying for on-demand instances. The discounts you receive by using Savings Plans and Reserved Instances are provided in exchange for committing to use AWS compute resources for a one- or three-year term.
Some AWS cost management tools offer basic visibility into Savings Plans and Reserved Instances, tracking utilization and coverage. Others, like ProsperOps, use machine learning to build and manage a cost-effective portfolio of RIs and Savings Plans.
6 AWS cost management tools
Depending on your priorities (cost visibility, monitoring and alerts, resource optimization, reporting) there are quite a few different SaaS solutions that can support your AWS cost optimization efforts.
Here are five tools you can use to reduce the cost of your AWS services, along with their key features and primary use cases:
ProsperOps simplifies AWS cost management by automating cloud rate optimization (i.e., managing and optimizing how you pay for cloud services). Organizations that use ProsperOps can maximize their AWS cost savings without any ongoing effort.
With ProsperOps, companies can autonomously build, manage, and optimize a portfolio of Savings Plans and RIs designed for optimum cloud cost efficiency. These commitments are continually adjusted every hour to align with your usage needs so that you only pay for the resources you need.
ProsperOps is designed to seamlessly support your entire AWS compute estate, covering all EC2 instance types with a discount commitment, including GovCloud and instances running Windows workloads.
By automatically responding to engineering changes in real time, ProsperOps can maximize commitment coverage and minimize waste. Best of all, as a fully autonomous platform, ProsperOps gives time back to team members by eliminating the need for them to manage discount instruments manually.
- Hands-free cloud rate and cost optimization
- Cloud cost reporting for finance and accounting teams
- Autonomous commitment management and load balancing
- Real-time cost and savings visibility
- Intelligent Showback to accurately allocate costs and savings
CloudCheckr provides visibility into your AWS cloud spend, helping to identify opportunities for optimization. With CloudCheckr, organizations can manage a single or multi-cloud infrastructure, uncover spending trends, and access personalized cost-saving recommendations.
Along with cloud visibility and cost-saving recommendations, CloudCheckr provides tools to help you mitigate cloud infrastructure risk. The platform includes tools that support automated remediation, maintaining compliance, and staying audit-ready across 35+ standards.
- Resource monitoring and performance metrics
- Detailed cost and usage analytics
- Right-sizing and optimization recommendations
- Policy automation and governance
3. Apptio Cloudability
Apptio Cloudability allows companies to monitor and analyze their AWS usage, identify cost-saving opportunities, and act on recommendations to optimize their cloud spending. With Cloudability, companies can gain a deeper understanding of their AWS cloud costs, track their usage patterns, identify inefficiencies and areas where you may be overspending.
Cloudability provides recommendations for optimizing Reserved Instances, (right-sizing recommendations), and implementing other cost-saving measures. The platform also allows companies to set up automated budget management alerts to identify spending anomalies and help companies avoid any AWS billing surprises.
- Cost visibility and automated analysis
- Cloud cost reporting (e.g., Chargeback, Showback)
- Recommendations for RI management and right-sizing
- Budget anomaly tracking and spend alerts
Densify helps companies improve their AWS cost efficiency and cloud resource utilization. The platform analyzes historical data and usage patterns to identify opportunities for cost optimization and provide recommendations for right-sizing instances, containers and clusters, storage, and more.
Densify can also provide companies insights into workload placement, recommending the best instance types and regions for optimal performance and cost efficiency.
- Intelligent right-sizing recommendations
- Detailed dashboards for cost transparency and streamlined reporting
- Workload placement optimization recommendations
- Simulations to determine optimal configuration for Auto-Scaling groups
CloudZero provides real-time monitoring capabilities and custom alerts that allow companies to achieve insightful visibility into their cloud spend. With CloudZero, you’ll be able to analyze AWS cost trends, identify cost anomalies, and highlight areas of inefficient resource utilization.
CloudZero provides helpful data visualization tools and detailed reports that make it easy to generate insights for reducing cloud spend. If you would like to achieve better transparency into your company’s AWS resource usage, CloudZero is an excellent tool to use.
- Cost anomaly detection and customizable alerts
- Cost allocation tools for tracking how your AWS resources are allocated
- A discount optimization dashboard for managing AWS discounts
Xosphere is a platform that helps companies reliably leverage spot instances via a feature called “Instance Orchestrator.” By integrating with Amazon Auto Scaling Groups and monitoring the instances within each group, Xosphere automatically replaces on-demand instances with spot instances when they are available at a favorable price. This ensures optimum savings and uninterrupted performance.
- Automatic diversification of spot instances
- Works with existing Auto Scaling Group notification settings and lifecycle hooks
- Allows you to enable and configure settings with AWS tags
5 native AWS cost optimization tools to consider
AWS provides several native tools that can be used for cloud cost management. These tools can be a cost-effective solution for smaller businesses, but they tend to lack the features and capabilities needed by larger organizations with sophisticated FinOps teams
Here are five AWS native cost management tools that you should be aware of:
1. Billing and Cost Management Console
The AWS Billing and Cost Management Console is a centralized platform that provides an overview of AWS costs and usage. In it, you can get recommendations, view invoices, set up cost categories, configure cost allocation tags, and much more.
While the reports provided by the AWS Billing and Cost Management Console are lacking in detail compared to those you can get with third-party cost management tools, it offers an effective starting point for cost monitoring and budgeting.
2. AWS Cost Explorer
AWS Cost Explorer provides a helpful set of cost analysis and visualization tools. It offers spending reports, cost forecasts, and the ability to filter and analyze spending data. By allowing companies to analyze and visualize their spending data, AWS Cost Explorer provides insights into cost trends and usage patterns that can assist with budgeting and optimization efforts.
3. AWS Budgets
AWS Budgets enables companies to set custom spending thresholds and receive notifications when costs exceed these thresholds. This helps companies stay informed about their AWS spending and ensure there aren’t any instances of unexpected overspending. With AWS budgets, you can create spending thresholds for specific services, accounts, or usage dimensions.
4. AWS Trusted Advisor
AWS Trusted Advisor provides basic guidance on optimizing the costs, performance, and security of cloud infrastructure. For cost management, AWS Trusted Advisor offers automated checks and recommendations regarding idle resources, RI purchases, and other potential savings opportunities.
5. AWS Cost Anomaly Detection
AWS Cost Anomaly Detection is a machine learning-powered tool designed to analyze spending patterns and generate automated alerts for any unusual patterns or anomalies that it identifies. This tool allows companies to quickly identify unexpected cost changes and investigate their cause.
Automatically reduce AWS costs seamlessly with ProsperOps
Cost management tools that provide detailed reporting and cost-saving recommendations are a good starting point if you want to build and maintain a cost-efficient cloud infrastructure.
But, to achieve the best outcomes and ROI from your investment in AWS resources, you need a tool that goes beyond just reporting and recommendations.
With ProsperOps, companies running on AWS automatically optimize Savings Plans and RIs continuously and in real time—with no manual management required.
To see how ProsperOps makes reducing AWS costs easier than ever, sign up for a free ProsperOps demo!