How to save costs in cloud computing?
The growth of cloud computing has been nothing short of a fairy tale in recent years. The staggering growth can be seen across industries. The adoption of remote working in recent times has also bolstered the need for cloud computing even further.
However, if there is one major challenge associated with cloud computing that many businesses face even today, it has to be the burgeoning costs involved in cloud computing.
In this post, we will look at different ways to save costs in your cloud computing operations.
Table of Contents
- Types of pricing models
- Ways to reduce cloud computing costs
Types of pricing models
There are mainly two pricing models in cloud computing - static and dynamic. In static pricing, enterprises have to pay a static amount for the resources they consume. These are those resources in which one would not be able to exceed the usage. Also, there is a possibility of overpaying if you don't use all the resources.
Dynamic pricing, on the other hand, is a cost-effective model. It is similar to the pay-as-you-go model, where you have to pay for the resources that you consume. In a dynamic model, there is a possibility that the applications might be running idle when it is not in use. This, in turn, would spike the prices.
Ways to reduce cloud computing costs
Irrespective of the pricing model you choose, here are a few ways you can save costs in cloud computing.
1) Performance Analysis
The first thing you must do is analyze your present model. You can contact your service provider and request a report to understand the performance and utilization of their cloud services. You should also use your own tool to build a performance analysis report from an end-user perspective. Once you compare both reports and find the application usage, resources, and peaks, you will have a clear picture of the entire performance of the application. Based on the report, you can easily cut costs on various idle resources or even find seasonality to reduce or increase the resources accordingly.
2) Capacity Planning
Discuss with your IT team to understand the level of resources you actually need to handle unexpected traffic spikes and loads. Make sure that you don’t stack up on resources unnecessarily. More important, avoid overspending. The critical part of capacity planning is choosing the right resources for your workload.
The other way to avoid overspending is by choosing the auto-scaling option. This would ensure that you don't pay for unused resources. To the unversed, the autoscaling feature automatically monitors the demands and scales up/down the resources. It does this by prioritizing performance and availability.
Note: When setting up auto-scaling parameters, make sure to keep the cost in mind.
3) Reduce excess storage
In the IT industry, storage can be a key contributor to your high cloud bills. There is a culture in IT wherein users push data with duplications. This ends up creating a lot of data redundancies, which, in turn, shoots up your storage costs. To overcome this, make some simple adjustments in your data copying methods. Start by practicing versioning of data. Ensure that your employees are ‘re-educated’ on the same. Most cloud providers offer pricing plans(for storage) based on cost per gigabyte. Choose the right plan as per your exact data storage needs.
4) Store cache strategically
Few cloud providers offer memory-based caching services. A classic example would be ElastiCache of AWS. Utilize them as they can offer great benefits. Caching helps in frequently navigating accessed or important data in memory closer to the computer instance instead of retrieving it from a storage instance. This will increase the performance of certain applications and reduce the expenses on cloud storage. This is great, especially when performance-sensitive workloads are being run in a remote location or if efficient replication is required to increase the resilience of an application.
5) Run workload on cheaper computing location
Try moving the workload to different geographical locations where the demands are lesser, and the prices are lower. This would decrease your cloud bills considerably. Make sure the common storage service can cater to all locations. You can notice only a small latency between the service areas. Some restrictions might be there based on the region you choose, such as security and regulatory compliance requirements. So do not choose the region without adequate research.
6) Review internal contracts
If you are taking most of your operations to the cloud, then you must be slowly moving away from all the on-premise hardware. As you gradually retire the hardware, make sure to retire the services and support contracts that come along with the hardware. This will save you some money in the long run.
7) Restrict cloud access
The cloud is well known for its central appeal and its self-service nature. Businesses usually allow all stakeholders and individuals to access their cloud to deploy, monitor, troubleshoot, or provision workloads. This ‘open-source’ nature can be helpful and convenient, but it can often lead to unwanted mishaps like performance hits. This, in turn, can lead to unplanned, unexpected, and unnecessary costs. To reduce these costs and avoid such performance hits, it is important that you have an experienced cloud architect or engineer at your place. Also, restrict cloud services to those individuals who understand cloud management and are skilled in building a cloud infrastructure that offers phenomenal performance at minimal costs.
Cost saving is always crucial in a cloud ecosystem. It ensures that you reap all the benefits of cloud computing and, at the same time, utilize all the resources effectively. It also minimizes wastage and reduces unwanted spending on your cloud services. Follow the steps highlighted in this post to effectively reduce your cloud spending in a short span.