How to Reduce Amazon S3 Costs

How to Reduce Amazon S3 Costs

Learn all the strategies to reduce Amazon S3 costs. This article is part of our AWS cost reduction series.

In this article, you will learn all the strategies to reduce Amazon S3 costs.

First, let's review the factors that affect Amazon S3 monthly costs. You will pay in terms of:

  • The size of data stored each month (GB).
  • The number of access operations completed (e.g. PUT, COPY, POST, LIST, GET, SELECT, or other request types).
  • Number of transitions between different classes.
  • Data retrieval size and amount of requests.
  • Data transfer fees (bandwidth out from Amazon S3)

One of the most important cost factors is the storage class. Make sure you understand the different classes available and their use cases. Let's quickly review them and compare them.

Amazon S3 offers 6 different storage classes:

  • S3 Standard
  • S3 Intelligent-Tiering
  • S3 Standard-IA
  • S3 One Zone-IA
  • S3 Glacier
  • S3 Glacier Deep Archive

Keep in mind that every S3 object can be assigned a specific storage class. Thus a bucket might have objects with different classes simultaneously.

Here is a table that summarizes the main cost parameters for each storage class (for N. Virginia region).

S3 Storage ClassStorage ($ / GB)GET ($ / 1000 requests)Lifecycle Transitions ($ per 1,000 requests)Data Retrieval ($ per 1,000 requests)Data Retrieval Price ($ per GB)Minimum Days

To make things simpler, this table doesn't reflect all the elements charged by AWS S3. For example, it doesn't consider PUT (or other) requests, non-bulk data retrievals, or data transfer costs. But it describes the cost divers that differ based on class types.

You will also notice that Storage Price / Gb increases from top to bottom of the table. But access cost increases at the same time. Therefore the right class to use depends on how frequently you access each S3 Object.

S3 Standard class is typically used for frequently accessed data. Although the cost per Gb is high, you don't pay for the number of requests. And therefore this storage class is best suited for objects read or written several times each month.

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