Kinsta vs WPEngine : Who is faster?

In this post, we compare two WordPress hosting platforms : Kinsta and WPEngine. We also migrate a real website from WPEngine to Kinsta and compare how the site performs on both.

kinsta versus WPengine

The WordPress WebOps Platforms

In an earlier post, we had covered the importance of effective DevOps for managing enterprise websites.  There are several good WebOps platforms that specialize in WordPress such as:

  • Pantheon
  • WPEngine
  • Kinsta
  • Siteground
  • Bluehost etc

In earlier posts, we also compared Siteground vs. WPEngine and also Acquia Cloud with WPEngine. Both Kinsta and WPEngine are at the premium end of the spectrum, with hosting packages that start at $30-$35/month. Kinsta’ managed WordPress hosting is powered by Google Cloud. They have a strong emphasis on fast load times, providing 24/7 expert support, and being scalable for mission-critical sites. WP Engine provides managed WordPress hosting for mission critical sites around the world. They too have amazing support, are enterprise class and optimized for WordPress.

Kinsta vs. WPEngine : Comparing Features

WPEngine and Kinsta are quite similar in their core feature set. In this section, we focus on some of the differences between them.

exemplifi dashboard on kinsta
kinsta overview

Multiple Environments

WPEngine launches instantaneously with Dev-Stage-Prod environments while Kinsta provides only stage and production environments. It doesn’t offer a dev environment.

exemplifi details on kinsta
sites showcased on kinsta dashboard

Backup and Restore

Both products offer the ability to backup and restore versions of the site on a daily basis. Kinsta also offers an hourly backup option (that is a paid feature).

exemplifi backup schedule on kinsta
website backup timings on kinsta

Analytics

Robust site analytics is typically done in Google Analytics. Some plugins such as MonsterInsights let you get a more simplified view right in your WordPress dashboard. It is uncommon to see analytics on your WebOps platform, but both Kinsta and WPEngine offer some basic site analytics information. Kinsta is a bit more robust in this regard.

kinsta analytics dashboard
kinsta analytics country wise
wpengine analytics dashboard

Plugin Updates

exemplifi plugins on kinsta

A few other DevOps features

Kinsta offers a direct PHP restart option that WPEngine doesn’t.

exemplifi live environment demo on kinsta

Kinsta lets you export redirects while you have to raise a support ticket in WPEngine.

exemplifi redirects demo on kinsta

Migrating from WPEngine to Kinsta

Moving the site from WPEngine to Kinsta is unfortunately a manual process. You have to reach out to the Kinsta team and provide them with the WPEngine credentials. They have two migration packages : Basic (slower) and Premium (faster)

exemplifi wpengine to kinsta migration

Performance Comparison

After migrating the site from WPEngine to Kinsta, we ensured a 100% parity between the two sites. The tech stack was exactly the same : WP Version, Plugins, Versions, Page builder and Theme. We then compared the site performance over several days using Google’s Pagespeed Insights. If you’d like to learn more about this process, you can read our post on how to use the Google Toolset for site performance analysis.

The results are shown below :

kinsta versus wpengine performance statistics

Bottomline : We didn’t observe much of a difference between the two platforms.

If you are curious about how to improve your site speed, you can read our 10 tips to improve your site performance or get some practical guidelines for optimizing images for your website.

Summary

In this post, we compared two WordPress hosting platforms : Kinsta and WPEngine. We also migrated a real website from WPEngine to Kinsta and compared how the site performs on both.

References

Related Insights

The Google toolset for site performance analysis

We review the tools provided by Google to assess your site performance.

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Practical guidelines to optimize images for site performance

Images comprise 70% of an average page size. Optimizing them for mobile, tablet and desktop can have a significant impact on site performance. We discuss ways to do this.

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10 ways to speed up your website

A slow site will make your SEO ratings go down, cause you to lose revenue and increase your bounce rates. We cover 10 ways to speed up your WordPress site.

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