Cloud Cost Optimization: How to Lower Cloud Costs

There has been a huge shift into cloud computing as more businesses and organizations are switching to an online cloud environment for data storage and other tasks.  There are several benefits to cloud computing, including increased scalability, flexibility, and resource availability.  Cloud computing also offers secure data storage and prevents data loss due to issues with hardware devices like computers, external hard drives, and servers.

When using cloud resources, it is important to create a cloud environment that suits your specific needs while implementing the best practices for cloud efficiency.  If you do not have an efficient cloud environment, you could end up wasting resources and inflating your costs. 

At PSM, we help businesses and organizations set up and manage their cloud computing.  We are especially adept at managing cloud computing with Microsoft Azure as a Microsoft Solutions Partner.  In this guide, we discuss several effective strategies to help lower your cloud costs and the efficiency of your cloud computing.

What is Microsoft Azure?

Microsoft Azure is a cloud computing platform and set of services provided by Microsoft.  It offers a wide range of cloud services, including computing power, storage, networking, databases, analytics, artificial intelligence, machine learning, Internet of Things (IoT), and more.  Azure enables businesses to build, deploy, and manage applications and services through Microsoft’s global network of data centers.  It also offers robust security features, including identity management, encryption, threat detection, and compliance certifications to help protect data and applications in the cloud.

What is Cloud Efficiency?

Cloud efficiency is the use of cloud computing in a way that lowers the cost as much as possible while minimizing the waste of resources.  Maximizing cloud efficiency involves managing your cloud environment in a way that reduces costs, minimizing carbon emissions, and getting the most out of the energy used by the cloud.  Optimizing all three of these areas will improve the efficiency, sustainability, and affordability of your cloud computing.

Cloud cost optimization is important for businesses and organizations to save costs and minimize the impact on their bottom line.  The expenses of cloud computing can add up quickly, especially if your business has a high volume of data on the cloud or uses the cloud environment to manage important applications.

You can improve cloud efficiency by focusing on the following:

  • Cloud costs: You should track, measure, and optimize the costs of your cloud environment so you know exactly what you are paying for.
  • Carbon emissions: Cloud computing uses a lot of energy which increases carbon emissions. Businesses can help reduce their carbon footprint by finding more efficient ways to use cloud computing.
  • Application performance: If you are running applications on the cloud, it is important for them to run efficiently to improve customer satisfaction and avoid losses in revenue. Optimizing the cloud can help improve the performance of your applications while reducing costs.

Improving the efficiency of your cloud computing can make more room in your budget for additional features and allow you to invest in more innovative practices.  The following are effective strategies for cloud cost optimization:

Right Sizing

One of the most effective ways to control cloud costs is with right sizing. Right sizing is structuring your cloud environment to meet your objectives in the most efficient way possible.  This involves finding a balance between performance and spending.

Clean Up

When managing complex projects through cloud computing, a lot of resources are created to manage these projects that are then quickly forgotten about.  This can cause your cloud environment to become full of resources that you are still paying for, but not using.  Cleaning up your unused resources can free up space within your cloud environment and reduce your costs. 

You should implement a strategy in which you periodically evaluate your cloud environment to find unassigned or unused resources and determine if these resources should be incorporated back into your operations or wiped from the cloud.  Cleaning up your cloud regularly will save you the cost and the space taken up by unused resources.

Azure Reservations and Savings Plans

Microsoft Azure offers service plans with either a one- or three-year commitment that includes cost savings on cloud computing.  Taking advantage of the reservations and savings plans can significantly reduce your cloud computing costs, especially if your business is also focusing on right sizing and clean up.

Database and Application Tuning

It is common for businesses and organizations to migrate their applications to the cloud, but these applications need to access legacy databases to function.  In many situations, these large databases cannot be migrated to the cloud, so data handling patterns that allow applications within the cloud to access databases that are not on the cloud are used.  However, this process is slow, resource-intensive, and expensive.  You can help improve the performance of your applications and save money by downsizing your cloud infrastructure through effective optimization of your database.

You can also ensure better performance from your applications by using applications specifically designed for the cloud as opposed to applications that are migrated into the cloud.  Applications designed for the cloud can effectively utilize the flexibility and scaling of infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS) services which results in lower costs and higher performance.

Managed Azure Services from PSM

Cloud computing has many advantages compared to on-premises computing and storage including increased scalability, flexibility, availability of resources, and security.  However, inefficient management and use of the cloud environment can end up costing your business or organization money and slowing your operations.  Following the cloud cost optimization strategies discussed above will help ensure more efficient and cost-effective cloud computing.

At PSM, we offer a range of cloud computing services, including managed cloud services, cloud migration, and cloud consulting.  We are also a Microsoft Solutions Partner with a thorough understanding of the capabilities and best practices when it comes to cloud computing with Azure.  We can provide complete managed Azure services to help your business with Azure migration, data storage and backup, and security.

To learn more about how PSM can help make your cloud computing more efficient and cost-effective, give us a call at (312) 940-7830.

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About the Author

Picture of Cody Muller
Cody Muller

Cody Muller is a highly accomplished IT Project Manager specializing in Healthcare and Higher Education. With over seven years of experience, Cody has led projects with seamless wireless infrastructure deployment across 28 nationwide locations, serving over 50,000 onsite staff and students. His expertise includes developing sustainable IT processes for new college campuses and delivering strategic services to large healthcare organizations, ensuring exceptional end-user satisfaction.


(Managed Services, Cloud Services, Consulting, Cybersecurity, Talent)

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