Do you want to skip the read and get right to my pick in this Cloudways vs Kinsta comparison? The better web hosting provider for most people is Kinsta.
Cloud hosting has gained quite a following over the past several years, mostly due to the fact that it is seen as more stable and more reliable alternative to traditional data centre-driven hosting services. Indeed, many traditional hosting providers have actually branched out in recent years to meet the needs of a steadily growing population of site owners who would rather put their sites on a cloud-centric host.
For this review, we are pitting Cloudways vs Kinsta, two cloud hosting platforms which have gained a following over the past several years. Here, we will see how these two players fare in terms of features and functionality, reliability, and cost-efficiency.
Pros and Cons of Cloudways vs Kinsta:
If you want to get to know each of our contenders Cloudways vs Kinsta up close, please read:
Here's a brief background on our contenders Cloudways vs Kinsta.
Established in Barcelona, Spain in 2011 and presently based on the island of Malta, Cloudways was created as an ecommerce-specific hosting service, particularly for those who were just starting up, digital agencies that wanted to segue to an online portfolio with the capacity to handle client transactions, and web developers.
Its current focus is on cloud hosting, modifying the standard managed hosting set up to make it easier for users to log into, navigate, and manage sans the usual learning curve. It numbers solutions for WordPress sites as well as managed cloud hosting among its standard services.
Kinsta is something of a Johnny-come-lately to the hosting game, being less than a decade old. Founded in 2013, it touts itself on its LinkedIn page as a “premium WordPress hosting service” and is supported by Google Cloud.
We also found it to be one of the most nitpicky hosting services: the system is constantly checking your site for issues – on an average of every two minutes, as a matter of fact – and has its own auto-scaling mechanism to help your site stay reliable and load fast despite heavy online traffic.
Ease of Use:
Cloudways is easy enough to set up: its interface allows you to build and deploy your site in minutes, and one-click installation of third-party applications is already built into the system. The fact that many site management processes are pre-automated by default (yes, that includes site backup and migration), then running a site is as easy as pie.
Signup is quite easy. Likewise, getting into the system is a breeze. While Kinsta works well with WordPress, it actually has its own WordPress-ready management platform, so I daresay jumping from your hosting platform to your building platform and vice versa isn’t necessary. What we do find worrisome (though not by much) is that Kinsta doesn’t really play well with other platforms.
Winner – DRAW! Both Cloudways vs Kinsta are easy to use, even if Kinsta is more WordPress-friendly.
What features can you expect from Cloudways vs Kinsta?
Which between Cloudways vs Kinsta offer cheaper domain registration?
It's a letdown. You’re going to need a third-party provider for a domain name because Cloudways doesn’t offer its own domain name registry. In fact, we’d go so far as to say that Bluehost helps if you need a domain name for a WordPress site and GoDaddy works well for those who are into ecommerce.
Unfortunately, the same thing can be said about Kinsta. It doesn’t have its own domain registry and you will have to get one or sign up for one at a third-party site like Name.com or Google Domains.
What about an email service – who's better, Kinsta vs Cloudways?
While Cloudways has an email add-on called Rackspace, it is an optional service you add to your subscription for an additional cost. We find this confounding as more traditional hosting services already include email services and/or hosting in their standard hosting plans.
Again, the lack of email services is something you can expect from this cloud hosting provider. You will need to look up a third-party service to create email addresses for your site.
For databases, which between Kinsta vs Cloudways has a better offering?
Cloudways uses Thunderstack, a built-in SQL management system that has its own tool kit, enabling users to work from remote connections. Thunderstack is also quite fast and its core functions can be augmented with several easy to use plugins. Unfortunately, getting the Thunderstack system will cost you extra. Depending on your subscription, it will set you back by $10 to $36.51 monthly.
Kinsta offers automatic database optimisation across all hosting plans.
Cloudways’ was one of the first platforms to offer WordPress-specific cloud hosting. That said, it boasts of hosting over 600,000 WordPress sites, along with management applications or enhancements for individual site owners, ecommerce entrepreneurs, and agencies.
Cloudways’ dedicated content delivery network (CDN) also improves the loading time of WordPress sites regardless of their owners’ physical location anywhere in the world. A cache plugin called Breeze is another reason for this, as this solution was specifically developed to optimise the functionality of WordPress sites.
What sets Kinsta apart from other hosting platforms is that it allows for multiple WordPress installations per account, of course dependent on one’s hosting plan – ranging from one for the Starter plan to 150 for premium enterprise-grade plans.
Likewise, Kinsta also offers optional downloads of support app Nginx as well as Redis, an open-source in-memory data structure store that can be used as a database, cache, or even a message broker.
Do Cloudways vs Kinsta offer site staging?
Cloudways’ Staging Environment offers users a secure space in which to test out their sites before going live. Among its features are the ability to test how sites work on five different cloud providers, IP whitelisting, as well as SSL-enabled staging.
We should also point out that Cloudways gives users the ability to connect a test site to an already working site, in order to see whether or not links work or if running one will hamper the operations of the other. Another good thing about this is that you can use Cloudways’ built-in Push and Pull features to swap data between sites.
The thing about having multiple WordPress installations with a Kinsta account is that it enables users to create a staging platform that is completely separate from both the developmental or building platform and the live site itself. This helps you test out new releases of the WordPress platform, along with any plugins that you’re thinking of adding to your website.
Also, unlike other WordPress-centric hosting platform, Kinsta allows you to make your site live with one click directly from the staging phase. Plus, you have the advantage of being able to make changes even while the site is live, thus making the editing process more efficient while keeping the site up and operational.
Which between Cloudways vs Kinsta can help you create better websites?
Cloudways doesn’t have its own proprietary site building platform. However, users have the option to create a site on the platform using WordPress’ Elementor Page Builder. This linkage allows site creators to build from the ground up and put it online in next to no time.
What we particularly like about this aspect of Cloudways is the way you can choose the server on which to host your freshly-minted site and how you can scale it up (or down) depending on your purpose.
Here’s the thing that really sets Kinsta apart from the competition: DevKinsta. This is not a site builder per se, but more like a way to augment the capabilities of the standard WordPress builder for more advanced users like developers, web designers, and freelance web specialists.
Compatible with Mac, Windows, and Ubuntu, DevKinsta allows users to create and develop truly unique local sites with a tool suite that already includes Nginx and Maria DB among others, and supports PHP 7.x and 8.x.
DevKinsta also has its own SMTP server and email testing tool for developmental purposes.
eCommerce and SSL certificate:
Cloudways has ecommerce-ready hosting packages for sites made with shop-building platform Magento and those equipped with WordPress’ ecommerce plugin WooCommerce.
One of the key selling points of its ecommerce solutions is just how easy it is to use. Really: all a user needs to do is select a server, launch the store, and start selling almost immediately. Regardless of builder, those availing of this ecommerce-friendly package will have a roster of tools at their fingertips, including solutions for building an eye-catching storefront and backend management.
Incidentally, SSL certificates are already included across all of Cloudways’ hosting plans.
Even small businesses will find hosting their sites via Kinsta advantageous. The platform offers enterprise-grade architecture, allowing for constant availability, server-level caching, auto-scaling, as well as six types of backups.
Specifically calibrated for WordPress sites working with the WooCommerce plugin, Kinsta’s business solutions also offer Cloudflare integration along with its own developer suite.
All of Kinsta’s hosting plans already have an SSL certificate, bundled together with its own CDN. It also allows the use of imported SSL certificates and has Wildcard SSL support.
Security and Backups:
How do Kinsta vs Cloudways prevent malware and other forms of attacks?
Automated backups are done on a regular basis across all Cloudways hosting plans. You can also migrate from one hosting provider to your Cloudways account for free.
Along with standard SSL certificates, the hosting service protects user sites through dedicated firewalls, IP whitelisting, application isolation to prevent cross-contamination in the event a site on the same server is hit by an attack, and database security measures.
As stated earlier, Kinsta monitors hosted sites every two minutes for suspicious activities, making it one of the most secure hosting providers currently available. It also offers free and unlimited basic site migrations from different site hosts, and between one to five premium migrations depending on your hosting plan.
Site cloning is also available across all hosting plans as well as its own proprietary site monitoring tool. Backups are done on a daily basis and these are all automated.
Winner – Kinsta! This is a tough call because Cloudways is also jampacked with features. However, in this Cloudways vs Kinsta ‘Performance' matchup, we are impressed with Kinsta's enterprise-grade capabilities.
Who is the more reliable hosting provider, Cloudways vs Kinsta?
Where are Cloudways vs Kinsta servers located?
Cloudways operates more than 65 data centres worldwide with locations in North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia.
Note, however, that only its Frankfurt, London, UK, and Sydney locations host servers for all five of its affiliate IaaS services; other locations only host one or two at the most.
Kinsta is available in 19 locations across the globe, with six of its servers in North America, one in South America, five in Europe, six in Asia, and one in Australia.
How does Cloudways vs Kinsta speed compare?
In this regard, Kinsta has the upper hand. Cloudways-hosted websites load in less than two seconds while Kinsta sites can load in as fast as 0.631 seconds.
Average Uptime, Bandwidth, and Webspace Limits/Storage:
What about average uptime and bandwidth allocation – which between Kinsta vs Cloudways is better?
Cloudways sites are compliant with the standard: 99.96% is the hosting service’s current score when it comes to uptime.
Bandwidth and storage are dependent on each user’s hosting plan. Moreover, the minimum allowance is usually 1TB of bandwidth and 25GB of storage. At the other end of the spectrum, users can get 5TB of bandwidth along with 160GB of storage.
Kinsta’s average uptime is at 100% and its bandwidth allowance enables user sites to handle between 20,000 to 400,000 million visitors at any given time.
Likewise, its webspace storage limits range between 10 and 50GB.
Winner – Kinsta! Both Kinsta vs Cloudways have impressive speed and uptime, but in this ‘Performance' round, Kinsta has the edge.
Support and Resources:
Even if you're a seasoned website owner, you're bound to hit snags. So which between Kinsta vs Cloudways offers a better level and quality of support?
Cloudways offers 24/7 multiple channel tech support across all subscription plans and this is bolstered quite well with a regularly updated and maintained knowledge base. The service’s blog is also a great source of information and those looking for a third-party provider for specific functions will find it an excellent resource as it regularly features top ten lists for applications and plugins.
In this Kinsta vs Cloudways comparison, I have to say that Kinsta’s support system is a bit of a challenge to deal with at first. You need to email them to get a call from customer service if you haven’t signed up for a hosting plan just yet.
However, once you’ve registered for an account, live chat support is available 24/7.
Winner – Cloudways! We are calling this Kinsta vs Cloudways ‘Support and Resources' showdown in favour of Cloudways.
What about pricing levels and options for Kinsta vs Cloudways?
Here are Kinsta vs Cloudways plans that could be the right fit for your website's needs.
Cloud hosting prices per plan are all dependent on which cloud service you want to use. Here are the current ranges being offered:
- Digital Ocean: $10 to $80 monthly
- Linode: $12 to $90 monthly
- Vultr: $11 to $84 monthly
- Amazon Web Services: $36.51 to $274.33 monthly
- Google Cloud: $33.18 to $225.93
Also depending on the IaaS of your choice, managed WordPress or WooCommerce hosting will set you back between $10 and $742 monthly.
In this Kinsta vs Cloudways comparison, Kinsta actually has some of the most expensive monthly rates of any cloud hosting service. Prices range from $30 for the Starter Plan and $900 for Enterprise.
Free trial, refund policy, and money-back guarantee:
Cloudways has the shortest free trial period of any hosting provider we’ve encountered: just three days, then you have to either terminate your contract or opt for a monthly plan.
Interestingly, Cloudways prides itself on its pay as you go billing wherein users only pay for the services they actually use.
Users may, thus, request for a refund if this is presented within three months of adding funds. However, you may not receive the full amount as payment will be deducted for any services used.
Kinsta doesn’t offer a free trial, but it does have a money-back guarantee should you be unsatisfied with their service.
Winner – Kinsta! In terms of value for money, we’re giving this Kinsta vs Cloudways ‘Pricing' round to Kinsta despite being the more expensive service.
Comparison Winner: Kinsta vs Cloudways?
All things considered, we’re naming Kinsta the Comparison Winner in this Kinsta vs Cloudways showdown. It may be pricier, but it certainly does deliver when it comes for value for money.
Conclusion and Recommendations:
To wrap up this Cloudways vs Kinsta comparison;
What is Cloudways best for?
Ecommerce users, particularly those familiar with WordPress and WooCommerce.
What is Kinsta best for?
Kinsta works best for ecommerce users who are keen on scaling up their operations over time.
Kinsta may have taken the win in our Cloudways vs Kinsta review, but we recommend that you shop around for a viable hosting service that is in sync with your specific needs.
Are domain names included in a Kinsta hosting plan?
Unfortunately no, you will need to get one from a third-party registry.
I have a small online business; how much do I need to pay to start hosting my site with Kinsta?
At its most basic, Kinsta hosting will set you back by $30 per month.
That’s all for now:
If you've read our Cloudways vs Kinsta comparison review up to here, we are grateful. Remember always to keep abreast of the latest developments on website builders, eCommerce, and other articles, such as the ones below;
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Not only the best tea/coffee maker on the team Sophie keeps the many marketing projects flowing ensuring completion on time. Skilled across multiple marketing skill areas Sophie is our all rounder and a great asset to the team. Sophie is a website building trainer and tech writer who takes pride in helping small businesses and startups build their websites and launch their eCommerce platforms. Sophie is also the practical joker of the team and always wears a smile on her face. In her spare time she likes to spend her time with family. She loves going on holidays and spending time with friends.