Top 15+ AWS Cost Optimization Tools in 2024

With cloud spending making up a large and growing share of engineering budgets, cloud cost optimization is crucial to ensure cloud expenditures align with business objectives and budgets. Effective AWS cost optimization involves understanding billing and account structures, monitoring and visualizing real-time usage and costs, and making good decisions about resource allocation.

Everyone wants to save money in the cloud, and many tools are being marketed to help you do just that. Yet, it can be challenging to decide on the best solution. The right platform can help you cut through complexity and help you get more out of your cloud resources. On the other hand, selecting the wrong platform might lead to unpleasant billing surprises and missed savings.

That’s why we wrote this complete guide to AWS cost optimization tools — find out key areas of cost reduction, the best tools broken down by category, and strategies for reducing your AWS spending.

What is AWS Cost Optimization?

AWS cost optimization is the process of reducing your Amazon Web Services (AWS) expenses without sacrificing the performance and capacity requirements of your applications. It involves strategies such as selecting the right pricing model (such as On-Demand pricing versus Savings Plans), scaling resources to match demand, and utilizing tools and services designed to monitor, manage and reduce costs.

By optimizing AWS costs, businesses can ensure they are only paying for the resources they need, maximizing their return on AWS investments.

Best Practices for Reducing AWS Costs

Here are the key areas where almost any organization can reduce their AWS cloud costs.

#1: Cloud Management: Cost Allocation, Visibility & Reporting

Optimizing cloud costs often starts with addressing the key issue of limited visibility into expenses. Without clear insights, it’s hard to identify what and how much to cut. Key challenges typically include:

  • The AWS bill is confusing, and it’s difficult to attribute shared costs
  • It’s difficult to forecast spending and stay within the budget
  • More visibility is needed to investigate unexpected charges or spikes in usage

The goal is to fully allocate, monitor, analyze and report cloud costs so that you fully understand how resources are being used and by whom. Key terms include:

  • Cost allocation: the process of identifying and assigning the costs of shared cloud resources and services to different projects, applications, users or teams within an organization. 
  • Tags: simple metadata attached to resources in order to make them easily identifiable. If your AWS account has hundreds or thousands of resources, tags help you to categorize, filter and organize depending on different criteria such as project, environment or purpose. 

Showbacks/Chargebacks: a type of cost allocation in which the costs of cloud services and resources are reported/billed to the business units or teams that use them.

#2: Commitment Management: Reserved Instances & Savings Plans

In exchange for a commitment to spend a certain amount, AWS will offer a substantial discount on compute resources (up to 72-75% depending on various factors such as the length and flexibility of the commitment). However, it’s not always easy to determine the right type or amount of commitment to make to save the most. If you under-commit, you miss out on discounts. But if you over-commit, you’re paying for resources you don’t need.

Forecasting costs and planning commitments is an art. There are many possible choices and combinations — for example, there might be over 200,000 pricing options for one particular type of compute in a single region. And as business needs determine cloud usage, it’s necessary to continually rebalance and re-optimize. Determining the right commitments to make requires often analyzing the past 30-45 days of historical data, which takes time.

For a comprehensive explanation and analysis of Savings Plans and Reserved Instances, how they are applied across your organization, and when to use them, you can check out The Ultimate Guide to AWS Commitments.

#3: AWS Spot Instance Optimization and Automation

AWS Spot Instances are spare AWS (On-Demand) capacity that users can purchase at a heavy discount. However, it’s important to note that AWS gives you a discount on the instance, but not a guarantee that you’ll be able to use it to the end of your compute need. The instance can be taken away at any time with a 2-minute warning, potentially disrupting critical workloads.

In addition, the Spot market is highly volatile. It is complex to manage fluctuating pricing, the types of instances available on the market, and the most cost-effective decision to make at any time, in view of existing commitments across your organization.

Luckily, tools can reduce much of the complexity involved in using Spot. By leveraging Machine Learning to analyze the market, your usage, and other dynamic factors, they can put you on the most reliable and cost-effective Spot options automatically.

#4: Cost Optimization Automation: Right Sizing & Scheduling

As your usage patterns evolve, you’ll find that some applications no longer need as many resources available to them as they once did. It’s essential to continually right size these applications so that you’re not overpaying for oversized or unnecessary instances. By analyzing historical usage and performance, you can identify and eliminate cloud waste and unnecessary spending.

Because continual right sizing is necessary to optimize costs, automation tools are key. Some features to look for include:

Right sizing recommendations for EC2 and Auto Scaling Groups

Scheduling capabilities to pause resources that are idle or not actively needed at certain times

Storage optimization & migration tools that can help you save time through automation

Top 15 AWS Cost Optimization Tools

Now that we’ve discussed the key principles of AWS cost management, let’s dive into the list of best tools to choose from.

#1: nOps


nOps is an ML-powered AWS cost optimization platform that helps AWS users reduce their costs by up to 50% on autopilot.

With nOps, users can benefit in two key ways. First, you pay less for what you use without the financial risk. nOps charges based on a fraction of your savings, so you only pay if you save.

Second, nOps offers a suite of solutions tailored to engineers’ preferred tools and services — making it easy to take action on cloud cost optimization so you can focus on building and innovating.

nOps processes over 1.5 billion dollars in cloud spend and was recently named #1 in G2’s cloud cost management category. Here are some of its cost-saving offerings:

  • Compute Copilot: automatically selects the optimal compute resource at the most cost-effective price in real time for you — also makes it easy to save with Spot discounts
  • Business Contexts: understand 100% of your AWS bill with cost allocation, chargebacks, showbacks, tagging
  • ShareSave: risk-free automatic life-cycle management of your EC2/RDS/EKS commitments
  • nOps Essentials: right sizing recommendations with one-click apply, resource scheduling, optimization of storage via Git and Terraform integrations

You can book a demo to find out how nOps can help you start saving today.

AWS Native Tools

Amazon Web Services offers many free tools to help with your AWS cloud cost optimization. Here are some of the most important:

#2: AWS Cost Explorer

AWS Cost Explorer

AWS Cost Explorer enables you to view and analyze your costs and usage.

You can view data for up to the last 13 months, forecast how much you’re likely to spend for the next 12 months, and get recommendations for what Reserved Instances to purchase.

Cost Explorer can also be used to identify areas that need further inquiry and see trends that you can use to understand your costs.

#3: AWS Trusted Advisor

AWS Trusted Advisor

AWS Trusted Advisor helps you optimize costs, increase performance, improve security and resilience, and operate at scale in the cloud.

Trusted Advisor continuously evaluates your AWS environment using best practice checks across the categories of cost optimization, performance, resilience, security, operational excellence, and service limits, and recommends actions to remediate any deviations from best practices.

#4: AWS Budgets

AWS Budgets

With AWS Budgets, you can set custom budgets that trigger alerts when cost or usage exceed (or are forecasted to exceed) a budgeted amount. Budgets can be set based on tags and accounts as well as resource types. Major use cases include:

  • Monitoring cost and usage — set your preferred budget period to daily, monthly, quarterly, or annually, and create specific budget limits.
  • Creating scheduled reports — Stay informed on how actual or forecasted costs and usage progress toward your budget threshold.
  • Responding to thresholds — Set up custom actions to run automatically or through an approval process when a budget target is exceeded.

#5: Amazon CloudWatch

Amazon CloudWatch

Amazon CloudWatch is an AWS-native monitoring and observability service. It can be used to collect and track metrics, monitor log files, set alarms, and automatically react to changes in AWS resources.

Some of its most common uses include monitoring application performance, performing root cause analysis, optimizing resources, and testing website impacts.

#6: AWS Instance Scheduler

AWS Instance Scheduler

The AWS Instance Selector automates the starting and stopping of EC2 instances and RDS instances. You can stop resources that are not in use and start them back up as soon as you need them. This AWS tool functions by using resource tags and AWS Lambda to automatically stop and start instances, and it can be deployed across multiple AWS Regions based on a schedule you define.

When compared to a setup where you leave all your compute instances continuously running at full utilization (even when those resources aren’t being used), this solution can lead to significant cost savings.

AWS Cost Management Tools & Optimization Tools

Let’s talk about some general-purpose tools for managing and optimizing your AWS usage and costs.

#7: Cloudability


Apptio Cloudability is a cloud financial management platform that improves visibility and governance across cloud environments. It provides budgeting, forecasting, and rightsizing features as part of its financial management solution.

One major advantage of the tools is its FinOps focus, helping to accurately track and forecast cloud costs and correlate cloud spending to business value.

#8: Densify


Densify is used to automatically optimize your cloud resources and automatically configure your cloud instances. It uses Machine Learning to perform deep analysis of workload characteristics and cloud provider capabilities, to continuously match cloud applications and AWS services to the right cloud infrastructure.

And the platform is flexible — it runs on multiple cloud services and is suitable for multicloud and hybrid cloud architectures.

#9: CloudHealth


VMWare Tanzu CloudHealth enables users to manage their cloud costs, usage, performance and security through a single interface.

Some of CloudHealth’s advantages include its comprehensive set tools to manage, analyze, and optimize cloud infrastructure and spending, as well as its multicloud capabilities.

#10: Flexera


Flexera’s mission is to improve visibility, allocation and efficiency of cloud spend at scale. It provides actionable recommendations, budget controls, and cost policies to help your organization avoid surprises and reduce unnecessary cloud spend.

One of Flexera’s selling points is the set of automation tools it provides to act on recommendations, making your cloud optimization and governance more scalable and efficient.

#11: Spot by NetApp

Spot by NetApp

Spot by NetApp (formerly known as is a CloudOps tool for reliably, securely, and efficiently deploying and operating cloud infrastructure and applications.

Spot by NetApp is able to automate workload management across various cloud providers by constantly analyzing cloud resource usage using machine learning algorithms. It helps users identify and leverage cost-saving opportunities for automatic cloud cost control and efficient scaling of workloads.

Commitment Management Tools

If you’re looking for a solution to help you optimize your commitments to increase savings and flexibility, a commitment management tool can help. Here are some of the best tools to help you manage your AWS Savings Plans and Reserved Instances.

#12: Zesty


Zesty helps you automate the efficient allocation of Reserved Instances (RI) and Savings Plans (SP). You can use it to automatically adjust commitments, so that your DevOps team doesn’t need to manually review and manage discount programs on an ongoing basis.

Zesty also helps you reduce the financial risk of purchasing one or three-year commitments with its buy-back guarantee for Standard RIs.

#13: ProsperOps


ProsperOps is an automated optimization service that manages purchase commitments on AWS and GCP. The service monitors usage of your resources and automatically adjusts discount instruments. 

For example, it manages AWS Reserved Instance and Savings Plan commitments on your behalf, analyzing your usage to purchase and sell commitments as needed to maximize savings outcomes while preserving sufficient flexibility.

Spot Tools

Spot Tools

If you’re looking to save on your AWS bill, Spot instances offer up to 90% discounts on EC2 instances — but the catch is that AWS might take the instance back at any time, potentially interrupting your workload.

Let’s talk about tools that can help you more easily navigate Spot instance selection, workload management, Spot terminations, and more.

#14: Xosphere


Xosphere is a Spot instance orchestration platform that automatically chooses the most optimal AWS Spot instances for your workloads. It integrates natively with Amazon Auto Scaling Groups and monitors the instances within each group.

When Spot instance capacity is available at a favorable price, Instance Orchestrator will replace expensive On-Demand instances with cheaper Spot instances. On the other hand, when Spot instance capacity is no longer available at a favorable price, it will switch back to On-Demand instances to ensure your application remains available.

Through automation, XOSphere’s platform helps you to take advantage of Spot pricing while reducing manual effort.

Kubernetes & Container Cost Tools

Kubernetes & Container Cost Tools

Many AWS customers are currently running their workloads on Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (Amazon EKS) for its extensive feature set, flexibility, scalability, and capacity for optimizing resource use. Here are the tools that can help you efficiently optimize and automate the scheduling and scaling of your Kubernetes workloads.

#15: Kubecost


Kubecost provides real-time cost monitoring and optimization for Kubernetes, offering insights into how resources are being utilized and where savings can be made. 

It integrates directly into your Kubernetes environment in AWS, GCP, Azure or on-prem. You can use it to deliver a detailed resource optimization report by namespace, deployment, or other common Kubernetes concepts, enabling teams to understand the financial impact of their Kubernetes workloads. 

Kubecost also offers features such as cost allocation, spend efficiency, and budget alerts that help organizations to implement cost reduction measures.

#16: is a cloud cost optimization platform that focuses on Kubernetes. It helps you manage and autoscale your clusters, visualize and monitor your Kubernetes costs in real time, as well as detect and remedy your Kubernetes vulnerabilities and configuration issues.

#17: PerfectScale


PerfectScale was built to help you right-size and scale your Kubernetes environment. The platform helps optimize system scalability, improve resilience, and reduce your cloud bill while preserving performance. PerfectScale analyzes your environment, usage and resource configurations to provide and automatically apply recommendations.

Directed towards DevOps, Platform Engineering, and SRE professionals, PerfectScale can help improve your stability, resilience, and cost-effectiveness for AWS EKS and other Kubernetes environments.

#18: Harness


Harness is a CI/CD platform that helps manage cloud costs. It focuses on enhancing cost transparency, optimization, and governance through features such as Continuous Integration, Continuous Delivery, Feature Flags, Cloud Cost Management, Service Reliability Management, Security Testing Orchestration, and Chaos Engineering.

In particular, Harness has strong support for Kubernetes deployments and Kubernetes cost management.

nOps: the All-In-One AWS Cost Optimization Solution

At nOps, our mission is to make it easy for engineers to cost-optimize, so that they can focus on building and innovating.

That’s why we put together a comprehensive suite of tools to cover all of your AWS cost optimization needs. And there’s no vendor lock-in — just plug nOps in to your preferred AWS-native service (EC2 ASG, EC2 for Batch, EKS with Karpenter or Cluster Autoscaler…) to start saving effortlessly.

nOps is entrusted with $1.5+ billion in cloud spend and was recently ranked #1 in G2’s cloud cost management category. Join our customers using nOps to cloud optimize with the latest automation by booking a demo today!