Maximizing Your Azure Cost Savings: Strategies, Tools, and License Benefits

3 minute read

Are you looking for ways to optimize your Azure costs and manage your cloud spending more effectively? Azure offers a range of tools and strategies to help you save money and stay on top of your costs. In this article, I will explore some of the key ways to optimize your Azure costs and provide an overview of the Azure cost management tools available to you.

Mature Azure cost management

One of the first steps to optimizing your Azure costs is to have a mature Azure cost strategy in place. This involves using Azure tools to monitor costs, architecting for cost, and setting up budgets to keep costs under control. By using best practices like using dev/test subscriptions, stopping services in non-production environments, and combining resources like app service plans, you can save money and optimize your Azure costs.

Insight into spend

To effectively manage your Azure costs, you need to have insight into your cloud spending. The cost management + billing feature in the Azure Portal allows you to monitor your cloud spending, while Azure Advisor provides cost optimization recommendations to reduce your overall Azure spend. You can also use Azure Policies and Azure Tagging to manage your cloud resources and enforce policies to stay within your budget.

License benefits

One of the most effective ways to save money on Azure is to take advantage of the license benefits available to you. Azure offers four main types of license benefits: Azure Hybrid Benefit, Reserved Instances, Azure Dev/Test pricing, and Azure Saving Plans.

Azure Hybrid Benefit

If you have existing licenses for Windows Server or SQL Server, you can use Azure Hybrid Benefit to save on Azure costs. By applying your existing licenses to Azure, you can get up to 80% savings on Azure Virtual Machines, and up to 55% savings on Azure SQL Database.

Reserved Instances

Azure Reserved Instances allow you to reserve virtual machines or SQL databases for a one-year or three-year term, which can provide you with significant savings on your Azure costs. By committing to a reservation, you can save up to 72% on your Azure costs compared to pay-as-you-go prices.

Azure Dev/Test pricing

Azure Dev/Test pricing provides discounted rates on non-production workloads, making it an ideal option for testing and development environments. You can save up to 55% on virtual machines and up to 80% on SQL databases compared to pay-as-you-go prices.

Azure Saving Plans

Azure Saving Plans for compute is a flexible pricing model that provides savings up to 65% off pay-as-you-go pricing when you commit to spend a fixed hourly amount on compute services for one or three years. This can help you save money on resource costs and optimize your Azure costs.

Hidden Azure costs

There are many hidden Azure costs that you need to be mindful of, including underutilized VM scale sets, unattached disks, standard load balancers without a backend pool, orphaned public IPs, and underutilized Azure SQL databases or storage accounts without retention policies in place. By staying on top of these hidden costs, you can save money and optimize your Azure costs.

Azure Serverless Computing

Serverless computing services like Azure Functions and CosmosDB’s serverless variant can also help you save money on resource costs. By using serverless computing, you can scale your applications automatically based on demand and pay only for the resources you use.


By following these tips and strategies, you can effectively manage and optimize your Azure costs, saving you money in the long run. From using Azure Dev/Test pricing to taking advantage of Azure Hybrid Benefits, Azure offers a range of tools and strategies to help you save money and optimize your cloud spending. With a mature Azure cost management strategy in place and the right tools at your disposal, you can stay on top of your Azure costs andensure that you are using your resources efficiently. By keeping an eye on hidden Azure costs and utilizing serverless computing, you can further optimize your Azure costs and save money.

It’s important to regularly review your Azure costs and adjust your strategy as needed. By doing so, you can ensure that you are getting the most value from your cloud investment and keeping your costs under control.

I hope that this article has provided you with some useful tips and insights on how to optimize your Azure costs. With the right approach and tools, you can effectively manage your cloud spending and achieve cost savings that can benefit your organization in the long run.

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