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Are you on the verge of launching your first WordPress site? Is the lack of a proper web hosting service stopping you from making that move? Or, do you already have a site that fares pretty well? And, you are looking to upgrade your web hosting features and get access to more resources?
Well, if that is the case, then this review will be of great use to you. In this review we are going to closely look at one of the best web hosting service providers in the market, Kinsta.
Kinsta is definitely a game changer with its superior hosting, speed, and security features. Go through this review and see if this is the killer web hosting service you need to sign up with in order to make your business a success.
Kinsta offers premium managed WordPress hosting services based on Google’s Cloud Platform. This offers them an edge over other services when it comes to speed and storage. They have brilliant features included within their plans. Kinsta customers can use their daily backup feature to never lose data again. They can also make good use of their website staging and cloning feature to try out new updates and tools remotely before going live.
Mark Gavalda is a well known WordPress developer who decided to launch Kinsta on December 1st, 2013. His dream was to provide a premium WordPress hosting experience that can be accessed by anyone. To that end, Kinsta runs on the latest technology allowing their customers to experience seamless managed WordPress hosting services. Their customer support team is great at both listenting to the problems and providing instant solutions.
Kinsta is a name to reckon with in the web hosting sector. As one of the leaders in managed WordPress hosting services, Kinsta is responsible for powering multiple websites all over the globe, in over 128 countries. They have a formidable team of around 50 tech experts and visionaries who constantly keep pushing new frontiers to be able to bring the latest and most useful technologies to their customers. Kinsta assures nothing but the latest and best when it comes to managed WordPress hosting.
Kinsta pioneers in the usage of LXD managed hosts and orchestrated LXC software containers for each site that they host. They have effectively managed to put every WordPress site in their own container. Each of these emulate a self sustained environment where there are all the software resources required to run a WordPress site. For example, each container has all the necessary protocols such as Linux, NGINX caching, PHP, and MySQL. Each website enjoys completely private resources that do not need to be shared with other customers or even with your own sites.
All Kinsta plans are accompanied by the following resources. Take a look:
- Customers get Free Kinsta CDN
- Free Let’s Encrypt SSL
- Free Staging Environments
- Automatic Backups are conducted daily. Customers can also create manual backup points according to their needs.
- Full page caching that allows content to be delivered in lightning fast speed to visitors of the site.
- Full page caching is paired with the in-house Kinsta MU plugin that allows greater control over the caching process.
- Latest programming languages such as PHP 7.2, 7.3, and 7.4
- If a customer’s WordPress site has been hacked, Kinsta will fix it free of cost and with topmost priority.
- Great server-level rules in place along with optimizations for WordPress e-commerce plugins such as WooCommerce and Easy Digital Download, so that visitors to the site can have a seamless checkout experience.
- Data driven, custom designed dashboard to constantly improve your website.
- Easy data analysis and succinct performance insights thanks to regular MyKinsta analytics report.
- You are free to add any number of users on your team. They will have access to your sites, once you add them as developers or administrators. This is possible due to Kinsta’s multi-user access with detailed permissions.
- Proper access to SSH, Git, as well as WP-CLI.
- All plans include one or more than one premium website migrations for free. These are undertaken by the excellent and competent support staff. The number of migrations without charge obviously depends on the kind of plan you decide to choose.
Now that we have a basic layout in front of us, let us delve deeper into the pros and cons of Kinsta. This will give you a comparative idea about what to choose and why.
Kinsta had taken the call to move to Google’s Cloud Platform before any other managed WordPress hosting service even considered it. What seemed like a pretty risky move back then, is currently being lauded for its foresight. Kinsta had complete faith in Google’s innovative steps, they were even intrigued by efforts such as the “live migration of virtual machines”. Now that everyone is shifting their services to the GCP, Kinsta enjoys a good head start, meaning that they know the infrastructure better than most. They are adamant about sticking with GCP only because they want to provide the best support to their customers rather than dividing attention and possibly providing average support.
Kinsta makes use of virtual machines placed in one of the GCP’s many data centers. This effectively means that your website will be hosted on the same platform that Google uses. Each of the Virtual Machines are equivalent to 96 CPUs. They have access to humongous quantities of space and resources. Scaling your website is easy with Kinsta because resources are allocated and used on the basis of requirements. This kind of division makes sure that your website’s performance and speed remains unaffected.
Due to the nature of GCP’s reach, visitors of your site, irrespective of where they live, will never see a delay in accessing your website and its contents. This is possible only because Kinsta chooses to use GCP’s premium tier, as opposed to the standard tier.
The Google Cloud Platform is great to use because:
- You have access to the world’s largest network. Google also uses the trans-pacific cable which is 9000 km long and present under the sea.
- The data centers are extremely secure. It has Google’s seal of trust on it.
- It has extremely affordable pricing which is mixed with very minute increments. You do not have to pay for the services that you do not use.
- The live transfer of machines mentioned above, provides a seamless experience when there are repairs or software updates underway.
With GCP you do not need to worry about your website’s data and your website’s speed.
Studies have shown that a delay of even a second, while loading a mobile page, can heavily impact traffic conversion. If your website is slow, chances are slim that it will rise up in seach engine rankings at all. Kinsta makes it a point to ensure that the websites they host, never have to suffer because of speed.
Kinsta has 24 datacenters spread all across the world, in areas such as the USA, the Asia-Pacific region, the European continent, and South America. You get to choose a different one for each of your websites.
Along with this, they offer the Amazon Route 53 DNS to all their customers. This premium service ensures that latency is kept at a minimum. It also plays a major role in geolocation routing that in turn benefits online stability and speed of your website.
The fact that Kinsta uses PHP 7.4, NGINX, and Maria DB for its WordPress stack, greatly increases site loading speed for all customers.
Because Kinsta runs on the Google Cloud Platform, your website is also always on lock down. Google deals with their security concerns seriously. Do not expect anything less from Kinsta either. There are multiple tools and policies being deployed so that your data is protected at all costs. Take a look at a few of these measures –
- Your site is under live monitoring every minute of the day
- DDos attacks are fixed and their sources are detected
- Due to Google’s vast database, proactive measures are taken to prevent malicious codes from entering
- Your website is backed up daily
- Your website has access to built-in firewalls
- A two factor authentication is used to verify account access
- IP address is banned after 6 failed attempts
- If your website is hacked, then Kinsta will fix it for free
- Access to free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate which is easy to install
- Minor WordPress security patches are automatically installed and applied
In the event your website suffers from a mishap, you can easily restore it to an earlier version by using a backup. This can be done with much ease by accessing the restore option on the MyKinsta dashboard.
While you have the option of installing additional security measures on your website, there is little to aspire for considering the attention to detail provided by Kinsta. Their unique collaboration with the GCP allows you to rest easy, knowing that your website’s security is close to that of Google’s.
If you are one of those people who dislike web hosting providers moving away from the traditional cPanel when it comes to remote management, wait till you experience what Kinsta has to offer. The MyKinsta dashboard is bound to change your opinion, simply because of the ease of use.
The MyKinsta dashboard is intuitive and interactive. It has everything you require to manage your websites, including your accounting information and more. Take a look at a couple of features that MyKinsta dashboard has to offer.
- Has access to the support staff in English and Spanish. You can get through to them via the intercom feature. They are planning to get more languages into the mix.
- Use the MyKinsta dashboard to add new WordPress websites directly.
- Launch site migrations from the dashboard itself.
- Regularly check for plugin updates from the dashboard itself.
- Use the dashboard to create backups and clear cache memory.
- Easily navigate between staging environments and live sites to test run updates and tools.
- Complete Domain Name Services (DNS) management
- Enjoy remote services such as WordPress plugin monitoring and IP address denying. You can also check CDN data and user logs remotely.
- Access to tools like Kinsta cache plugin, New Relic monitoring, and PHP Engine switches.
- Access the MyKinsta dashboard from your mobile, without having to miss any action that might be happening on your website.
This proprietary dashboard is easy to use, neatly packs all important controls in one place, and also manages to look cool as well. It would be surprising if you still end up disliking this innovative tool that makes website management very easy.
The Kinsta customer support team is made up of individuals who are experts in the web hosting world.They advertise their support team as the best. With the Kinsta support team, you will never be in a scenario where questions have to be passed down from one member of the staff to the other. Each time you face a problem and you approach the support team, you will be greeted by an expert. The entire support team consists of skilled WordPress developers as well as Linux engineers. They know what to do and will solve your problem. Kinsta boasts of a response time that is below 5 minutes. They also make it a point to reach out to you the moment they find something is not right.
The MyKinsta dashboard allows you to get in touch with the support staff via the intercom feature. It is an advanced chat feature that does not have you tied down to any specific window. You can also submit a ticket to the support team and let them resolve your issue.
If you are wondering why Kinsta does not offer phone support, you should check this list of reasons out.
- The ticket system instantly informs the support staff about your problem, account details, and the level of problem you are facing
- The messaging system facilitates taking screenshots. It also allows you to send links, attach videos, as well as pointing out code snippets to resolve the issue faster
- You can access automatic links to the Knowledge Base while chatting with the customer support
- Detailed record of tickets and chats are saved for future purposes. This helps them quickly resolve similar problems in the future.
Kinsta is hell bent on focusing all of their efforts towards the online support, and honestly it is to their credit. They do a good job of getting in touch with you instantly, thus strengthening their claim for having no live phone support.
Kinsta is a great platform for those who are starting out with website hosting as well as those who know their way around web development. Apart from being a great user friendly web host, it also allows enough space for WordPress developers to experiment on. The fact that most Kinsta customers are WordPress developers, feeds into them offering advanced features within their hosting plans.
Take a look at what Kinsta has to offer if you are a WordPress developer-
- There is more room for flexibility while installing WordPress configurations
- There is SSH access and GIT access available of plans higher than Business 1
- There is pre-installed WP-CLI which is a command line interface
- There is he ability to run multiple PHP versions while switching between sites and even within staging environment
- There are provisions for automatic backups and restores even when you are working in a staging environment
- There is complete support to guide you through complex proxy configurations
- You also have access to add-ons like Elasticsearch, Railgun, and Cloudflare
Kinsta wishes to optimize WordPress sites and provide unparalleled service. Their goal is to get your website loading quickly, rendered properly, and provide a seamless experience to your users.
See the kind of provisions they have in place to make this a reality:
- New Relic Monitoring – All sites hosted on Kinsta have to go through 288 uptime checks in a day. This is possible due to the New Relic performance monitoring tool. It manages to give a detailed analysis of your website’s performance and quickly alerts the support staff the moment things go south. This results in effective and quick problem resolution.
- Server-level Caching – You can now expect pages to be cached at the server-level, so that there is no lag in delivering data to your users. You can combine this feature with the Kinsta caching solution to handle your cache as you wish.
- e-Commerce Functionality – Kinsta constantly strives to reach an optimum balance between performance and functionality. This is done to ensure that your customers and you get the kind of differential experience that everyone needs. eCommerce sites are a good example in this regard. They require a lot of resources and use a lot of data. Kinsta works hard to provide a useful environment to them.
You can expect your WordPress website to be optimized for maximum output and great performance if and when you choose Kinsta as your hosting service.
Kinsta offers unlimited website migration for free to their new customers. This service is available for all those who want to make a shift to Kinsta, especially the ones at CloudWays, Flywheel, WP Engine, and Dreamhost.
The number of WordPress sites you run is absolutely of no importance to this process. Irrespective of the number, Kinsta’s migration team will help you shift your websites over to this wonderful platform. To take advantage of this offer, simply follow the steps –
- Choose Kinsta as your web hosting service provider. Kinsta offers this service to everyone irrespective of the plan they choose.
- After you are done signing up, simply contact the support team via your MyKinsta dashboard, and they will begin the process of transfer.
If you are interested in checking out Kinsta controls free of cost, this is a great opportunity for you. With the MyKinsta demo, you can get an idea about the mechanics of this web hosting service. All you have to do is register yourself at kinsta.com/mykinsta and create a free demo account.
With this demo account, you can –
- Try your hand at creating a WordPress site
- Learn more about SSL management
- See how performance monitoring is conducted
- Experiment on the one-click staging area
- Understand the basics of search and replace
- Practice website backup
And with this, we finally move towards the cons.
Considering that the list for Kinsa pros is pretty long, some of you might think that this is a service without any drawbacks at all. Well, that is never the case. If there were to be such a service, competitors would not exist at all. Take a look.
Kinsta, as of right now, does not offer domain name registration services at all. This means that you will have to look for a third-party company to register your domain name with. There are other services available in the market that provide free domain name registrations for new customers. This can be a major drawback considering that registering for a domain name separately is not easy, and pointing the domain name to Kinsta is another level of difficulty all together.
Most web hosting providers are responsible for hosting your email accounts as well. This process allows you to create email accounts through your domains, It is extremely professional and works great when it comes to branding practices. The effect is visible the moment you send or receive emails via your hosting accounts.
Kinsta does not offer email hosting at all. There are people who believe that hosting your email account on the same platforms as your website is problematic, considering that during server crashes you lose access to both your site and email accounts. There is also a group who enjoy the accessibility of hosting websites and email accounts from the same place.
If you are using Kinsta as your web hosting provider, you could use G Suite and Rackspace as alternatives of hosting your email accounts.
Considering the fact that Kinsta moves heaven and earth to provide you great hosting services, it should not come as a shock that they restrict a few plugins as well. Some of them are not allowed because they clash with the services that Kinsta provides, the others do not make the cut because they create technical problems on Kinsta’s web hosting platforms.
Some of the restricted WordPress plugins are-
- Login Wall
- WP Fastest Cache along with Cache Enabler. Although WP Rocket v 3.0 and higher is allowed.
- Backup plugins such as WP DB Backup, Backup Buddy, and Updraft
- EWWW Image Optimizer. The cloud version of this plug in is allowed
- Better WordPress Minify
- P3 Profiler
There are a few others that are not compatible as well. Although the absence of these plugins do not really hamper website experience, control over additions is still something that is desirable to a lot of people who work with websites.
Kinsta has great plans at amazing prices for WordPress hosting. To get an idea about the territory on which they function, let us take a look at three hosting plans that they have to offer.
- The Starter Plan – You can enjoy one WordPress installation on this plan. Website visits are capped at 25,000. You get 3 GB of Storage space, 50 GB of CDN, and daily backups. For $30 a month, you get all of this as well as free SSL certificates, a staging area, as well as a caching plugin.
- The Pro Plan – You are allowed to have two WordPress installations on this plan. For $60 a month, you are given 6 GB of SSD storage space and 100 GB of CDN. You get 1 free website migration, daily backups, and multisite support. This plan provides you with site cloning as well as a caching plugin.
- Business 1 Plan – You are given three WordPress installations. Your website visits are capped at 100,000 per month. For $100 a month, you get 200GB of CDN, multisite support, and regular backups on your website conducted daily. You are provided with a staging area to test out updates and tools. Free SSL certificates and premium SSH access are provided. You are also given a caching plugin as well as premium site cloning features.
- Business 2 Plan – You can enjoy 10 WordPress installations altogether with this plan. Website visits are capped at 250,000 per month. This plan offers 200 GB of SSD storage space, 300 GB of CDN, as well as 1 free website migration. At $200 per month, enjoy great multisite support and regular backups on your website. You have access to multisite support, round the clock customer support, and premium site cloning features. You also get free SSL certificates as well as an intuitive staging area.
Other plans that Kinsta has to offer are:
- The Business 3 plan at $300 per month
- The Business 4 plan at $400 per month
- The Enterprise 1 plan at $600 per month
- The Enterprise 2 plan at $900 per month
All Kinsta plans allow you to choose from one of the 24 data centers present on the Google Cloud Platform. You will receive support from WordPress experts, experience a highly secure network which is monitored daily. Security measures are top notch, lighting speed features are provided and services are designed to deliver premium website content.
If you do decide to pay the subscription fee earlier, you get to enjoy 2 months for free. All website hosting plans are accompanied with free white glove website migrations.
With their user friendly features, stellar customer support, and great uptime, Kinsta definitely is one of the best web hosting service providers in the market. With features such as double authentication, Geo IP blocking, and automatically banning repeat IP addresses, they promise an unparalleled level of safety. Their aim to provide an exciting space for web developers is also wonderful. The fact that they are proficient on the Google Cloud Platform, makes them stand apart from the crowd. This means that Kinsta users get to enjoy similar features that google uses for itself.
Having said that, Kinsta might be categorized as being slightly advanced for novice website owners to deal with. Their starting price of $30 per month to provide basic hosting facilities might be too steep for those who are just starting out and do not wish to burn a hole in their pocket. In that regard, Kinsta might not be the best horse to place bets on.
So, if you are looking for a managed WordPress hosting service on the internet, do yourself a favour and check Kinsta out. If you want to get a first hand experience of their services, try their demo mode free of cost. Who knows, you might like the feel of it. But, to be honest, there are very few services currently available, who can provide the kind of features, security, and speed to their customers. The Google Cloud Platform ensures that these things are present for everyone to enjoy.
At the end of the day, it is you who will have to decide who can be the perfect web hosting partner. You have to have a plan and a vision, without which none of your ideas can be properly executed.Without a plan or a vision, you do not know which direction your website is heading towards. This kind of decision making asks you to have estimates about resources, reach, and monetary gains in mind. Choose a service that makes achieving your vision easier. Maybe, partnering with Kinsta will help you just that.