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The Cloud Cost Optimization Guide: 10 Steps to Saving Money on Your Cloud Resources

cloud cost optimization

The Cloud Cost Optimization Guide: 10 Steps to Saving Money on Your Cloud Resources

The cloud has now become a popular option for businesses at every level. But as the demand for cloud services has grown, so have prices. As a result, firms must look for ways to optimize costs. 

At every business level, there are several hurdles in managing cloud spending. Firms that optimize their cloud services get the most cloud for their money. It ensures steady, affordable cloud operations.

According to studies, cost reduction and control are the main issues with using the cloud. Thus, this is another primary reason for firms to get cloud cost optimized.

The cloud cost optimization guide will show you ten vital steps to help you save money on the cloud. With these steps, you can be sure you are getting the most out of your cloud and optimizing your costs for savings. Read on!

Understanding Cloud Cost Optimization

As businesses move to the cloud, they must be mindful of costs. Cloud cost optimization reduces your cloud spending while improving the quality of your services. 

Cost optimization may also extend to productivity and capacity. But it is often related to cloud spending. The fact remains that many firms’ cloud spaces are not well set up, resulting in extra cloud spending. 

But these costs may lessen with the right cloud cost optimizer and cost optimization methods. There are several ways to optimize cloud costs. But the best approach will vary depending on your specific needs.

10 Steps to Saving Money on Your Cloud Resources

1. Know your Need

You must first determine your needs before selecting a cloud solution. For example, you must choose whether to host on your servers or rent space from a different supplier. You must also decide how much capacity you need and how often.

For example, some tools are now included in cloud service providers, like AWS cost management. So by fishing out unused resources, you can reduce the cost of the cloud. 

A manager must be more careful to unplug the storage from terminated instances. So when setting up a temporary server for a project, admins must remember to take it down once the work is over. 

These actions lead to inflated google cloud costs that bill for resources no longer used. Unused resources may get noticed and removed using a cloud cost optimizer to cut costs.

2. Invest in Cloud Optimizing Tools

Firms may track their cloud usage and identify often-used services using a cost optimizer. So a cloud cost optimizer enables you to pay only for the things that count. Also, it allows the firm to commit to a set amount of cloud expenses over time.

Also, you can get real-time information on your cloud usage from a cloud optimizer. As a result, it decreases the cost of your data center and lets you perform a few repairs.

This goes beyond cost management. Your cloud system is more visible to you with cloud cost control tools. As a result, you can grow and design your services with confidence.

You’ll be able to obtain cloud services at a discount. Thus, it is crucial to reduce the cost of using the cloud.

3. Right Size

Right-sizing is the most cost-effective way to match instance types and sizes to needs. It also involves finding ways to reduce or scale back and not affect the capacity or other conditions.

Right-sizing aids in lowering cloud costs and optimizing cloud use. Also, this enables the best performance from available resources. Right-sizing must become an active process since your resource demands are always changing. 

4. Restrict Your Cloud Spaces

Most firms often give every user access to the cloud to deploy, audit, and debug workloads. Open access may be practical but result in unwanted, wasteful expenses. Users might even forget to close instances after spinning them up.

To avoid this extra cost, firms must only allow people with expertise in the cloud environment to access the cloud. 

5. Use Reserved Instances

Reserved Instances offer a major discount and can help save costs on your cloud resources.

Reserved Instances (RIs) are a cloud cost optimization technique that can save you up to 75% on your AWS bill. RIs allow you to use a certain amount of cloud resources over a period in exchange for a lower hourly price. 

RIs are available for some AWS services, including EC2, RDS, and Redshift. They are best used when you have a predictable workload that will run longer. 

RIs are also an excellent way to lower your cloud bill without making any changes to your infrastructure. You can get them as either a one-time upfront.

6. Use Auto Scaling

Auto Scaling can help you optimize your use of cloud resources. It automates scaling your cloud capacity up or down based on demand.

Enterprises can avoid paying for idle cloud capacity by autoscaling. Native services with autoscaling characteristics are available from cloud providers. These services can help optimize cost and performance. At the same time, it can track and adjust the system scale to meet demands.

Firms pay extra for cloud services without a cloud cost optimization strategy, up to 70%. Think about cost optimization when setting the autoscaling options. For instance, limit workloads of lesser value that don’t need major scaling. Set autoscaling parameters to apply the fewest resources needed to meet demand.

7. Use Spot Instances

Spot Instances allow you to bid on unused EC2 capacity and offer major savings. You will receive the instance if your bid exceeds the current Spot Price. 

Spot Instances are a great way to save on costs, as they can be cheaper than On-Demand instances. But Spot Instances can get interrupted anytime if the Spot Price exceeds your bid price. 

For this reason, Spot Instances are best suited for systems tolerant of interruptions. They include batch processing, big data, and transcoding.

8. Create a Policy Framework

Based on the firm’s needs, there are diverse ways to build such a framework. So it is advisable to list the needs and match the costs to those demands.

With the cloud, managers and their teams can interact, create, and put new ideas into practice. But it also adds new costs and needs a new analysis of how to stay ahead of its unique features.

Cloud policy framework aids in managing those concerns. It expands upon the ideas we set as the foundation of our trusted cloud. This involves openness in our business practices.

9. Estimate Subscriptions With Business Needs

Firms usually overspend on subscriptions and storage. As a result, they hold onto surplus capacity they don’t need. But these huge subscriptions and cloud storage can get predicted based on the firm’s demands. 

As such, they will only pay for the subscription and storage they need. By doing so, they reduce costs and save money.

10. Set Budget

When your firm adopts cloud-based budgeting, there are instant savings tied with it. But it involves outsourcing other tasks that are optional to the firm’s functioning. 

A fixed, recurring amount allocated to operate cloud-based budgeting frees up more resources for use in other areas. This can help with efforts in expansion or different strategies to increase value.

Everyone must know their aims and budgets for a cloud cost optimization plan. So staff and executives should all actively take part in the budget-making process.

Bottom Line

The cloud has become a staple in today’s world. It is scalable and flexible. But the cloud can still be expensive, even with all these benefits. This is especially true if you’re not optimizing cost.

Cloud cost optimization is the duty of the entire business. It is not a one-time task but a continuous process. Thus, creating awareness for everyone using your firm’s cloud-based resources is crucial to make the most use of them.

With the above information, we hope you find it easy to stop your cloud expenses from spiraling.



How Blockchain Can Fight Counterfeiting and Fraud

A recent report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and the European Union’s Intellectual Property Office shows that imported counterfeit goods raked in $509 billion in 2016 — nearly 3.3% of all global imports for that year. To fight back against the rising tide of knockoffs threatening their brands, companies are turning to blockchain technology to create more transparent supply chains.

Blockchain is a distributed, decentralized ledger technology controlled by smart contracts and regulated by a consensus protocol. The ledger automatically records every transaction, and every record it creates is unalterable. Depending on exactly how one uses the ledger, it can be classified as permissioned, public, or fit for purpose.

Within a brand’s supply chain, a blockchain ledger can manage a variety of activity from automating contract compliance between entities via smart contracts to tracking products from manufacturing to distribution. The ledger eliminates supply chain ambiguities and creates transparency that ensures companies and customers get the quality for which they pay.

Blockchain’s Value in Existing Supply Chains

The value of modernizing supply chains with blockchain isn’t just theory. Major brands have already begun partnering with tech firms and other entities in response to rising demands for improved brand protection. LVMH (Louis Vuitton SE), for instance, working closely with Microsoft and ConsenSys, has created Aura Ledger to provide proof of authenticity of luxury items and trace their origins from raw materials to point of sale and beyond to the used-goods markets.

Throughout the retail industry, companies like eBay are starting to offer product authentication as a value-added service. Currently, the company authenticates only handbags due to rising concerns from customers about their authenticity. However, eBay plans to expand authentication to additional luxury items that might be subject to counterfeit.

In agriculture, the blockchain-based Grain Discovery streamlines transactions between farmers and buyers, making it easier for them to form new partnerships. In the pharmaceutical industry, distributors have formed the MediLedger consortium to track the provenance of pharmaceuticals and stem the counterfeit drug market worth more than $75 billion annually.

In virtually every industry, suppliers and distributors are turning to blockchain technology to lower their risk of fraud. A decentralized, immutable record of every product’s journey can help verify authenticity — or lack thereof.

Blockchain as a Force Against Fraud

Companies that worry about counterfeit versions of their products have options to address the issue. When implemented together, the following steps can help mitigate risk and inspire confidence among companies and consumers alike:

Establish a secure supply chain network.

For blockchain to successfully transform a company’s supply chain, every business entity along the chain must agree to participate. That makes establishing a network of trusted partners the most important step toward securing products.

For example, the jewelry consortium TrustChain, which operates on IBM’s blockchain platform, only works because the group includes the mines that produce jewels, manufacturers that refine them, and retailers that sell them.

Given the rise of counterfeit purchases, most companies with strong brands are looking to work with their suppliers to prevent fraud. The momentum of such efforts increases when every stakeholder in the supply chain sees the value and signs up to actively participate in the efforts.

Choose the tags most suited for the brand and product.

Only with the right tagging technology can blockchain technology track every product along its journey. Through various IoT devices, tags can detect diversions, liquid leaks, vibrations, package openings, tilt, excessive force, and more.

Companies have several options, such as smart tags and high-resolution signatures that digitally relate products to the blockchain. Purpose-fit tags that have been developed to track shipments at the container, pallet, and package levels further help. Companies can also employ decentralized identifiers (DIDs) that are universally resolvable and globally visible to stakeholders throughout the supply chain.

This topic holds great interest across many industries. The RFID Lab at Auburn University recently announced the Chain Integration Project (or CHIP) launch, a project focused on finding ways for retail and apparel companies to communicate with their suppliers about tracking product inventory at the item level using radio frequency identification tags and blockchain. The project has attracted global companies across many industries due to the applicability across supply chains outside of retail and apparel.

Some products don’t need to be tracked with such intricate detail, while others should be tagged to track every moment of their journeys. Determine what tagging technology makes the most sense, adds business value, and is easiest to manage along the entire supply chain.

Encourage customers to be part of the solution.

When customers clearly and directly benefit from a company’s use of a blockchain-enabled supply chain, getting more partners to join the consortium becomes easier. However, brands can’t expect all end users to automatically jump on board.

When eBay released its authentication program for handbags, it did so in response to a need its customers had expressed. To entice sellers to participate, it offers several incentives if they sign up to authenticate their products.

Before long, the streamlined processes and unprecedented transparency that blockchain provides will be more than enough to encourage participation. Until then, make it more attractive through bonuses and other rewards in order to incentivize users and increase customer stickiness.

Unleash IoT, AI, and ML to actively fight fraud.

Protecting against counterfeiting and fraud isn’t always a passive exercise. With blockchain, companies can unleash the potential of IoT, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to actively prevent fraudulent transactions.

For instance, customers can scan product tags to verify their authenticity or compare images of the product against its stored signatures. Proof of purchase and other transaction details can be cryptographically linked to the buyer and product and then subsequently uploaded to the blockchain.

Any product that bears a brand’s name but can’t be tracked to its manufacturer would be considered counterfeit. A company can ensure, in real time, that it receives compensation for every product sold with its name on it.

The reported value of fraudulent goods that hit the global market is expected to continue rising, but companies are no longer helpless in the face of counterfeiters. As more industries and their supply chains embrace blockchain technology, counterfeit goods will no longer have a place in any market.


Mohan Venkataraman is the chief technology officer of Chainyard, a blockchain consulting company focused on delivering production solutions that address supply chain, financial services, transportation, government, and manufacturer pain points. With more than 20 years of proven experience, Mohan has extensive skills in software engineering, governance best practices, and industry models. With exposure to more than 70 clients, he has a clear focus on understanding client needs and aligning technology and business priorities to deliver value. His current interests include blockchain, cloud solutions, big data, service-oriented architecture, governance and integration competency center establishment, and enterprise architecture, with a focus in telecom media, technology, insurance, retail, healthcare, and life sciences industries.