Kinsta Dominates Competition in 2018 Performance Benchmarks

Updated on March 05, 2018

Review Signal has released their annual 2018 WordPress hosting performance benchmarks and we’re ecstatic that for the fourth year in a row, Kinsta once again proved to be the best company across all tiers! And not just on one or two of our plans, but every plan, from Starter all the way up to Enterprise. 🤘

When it comes to managed WordPress hosting, one of our goals has always been to build an all-in-one solution for our clients which can help make site management easier. Things like customer support, reliability, and uptime are also very much a part of that.

But one of the most important factors to us is performance and ensuring that when you get that surge of traffic that your site stays online. If a host can’t scale, this can present all sorts of growing pains for your business. One of our recent clients, Gadget Flow, had to go through 5 different WordPress hosts before finally arriving here at Kinsta.

Evan Varsamis
After moving to Kinsta we saw at least 20% faster page load speeds, better caching, and 99.9% uptime. We consider Kinsta as part of our team, they are there when we need them and help us scale and succeed as a business.
Evan Varsamis
Founder & CEO

TLDR

For those of you short on time, here’s a quick summary:

  1. Kinsta is the fastest WordPress host on the market! We’ve proven this four years in a row.
  2. You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars. Kinsta is affordable for all kinds of businesses and cheaper than its competitors. We give you the best value, price, and performance.
  3. We have all the features you and your developers need. Why go with a slower or more expensive host?
  4. Mobile speed just became a ranking factor. Having a slow site in 2018 is going to seriously impact your bottom line.

Review Signal

For those of you who may not be familiar with Review Signal, it’s an independent web hosting review site run by Kevin Ohashi. Thanks to Kevin’s attention to detail and in-depth analysis, Review Signal has become one of the leading authorities when it comes to benchmarking WordPress hosting providers. In fact, this is their 4th consecutive year publishing these benchmarks. Make sure to check out their 20142015, and 2016 benchmark reports, all of which Kinsta was also top tier.

ReviewSignal

Note: The 2018 benchmarks were supposed to be in 2017, but were delayed until early 2018.

Yet another top tier performance from Kinsta. Perfect uptime and near perfect load tests. 🚀 It's starting to feel redundant writing that. -- Kevin Click to Tweet

We had the pleasure of doing an interview with Kevin Ohashi back in 2015, in which one of the questions we asked was, “Is there anything you find surprising about the hosting industry?”

How generally terrible it is. I started my business because after a decade in the web hosting industry, there still wasn’t an honest web hosting review site that I would be comfortable recommending to people. And after operating my site for 4 years now, it’s very easy to understand why.

I get web hosting companies emailing me regularly trying to bribe their way into being rated the best. The worst part is, most of them aren’t even hiding it. This behavior is business as usual to them. So the most surprising thing to me is how regularly I am disgusted by the behavior of a lot of the companies in the space. That isn’t to say there aren’t some awesome companies out there, but it seems like they are the minority. The worst part about that is that these scammy/disgusting tactics are seemingly very effective and the real good guys are fighting an even worse uphill battle because of it. — Kevin Ohashi

2018 WordPress Hosting Performance Benchmarks

Just like last year, the benchmark reports were split up into 6 different tiers based on price range and plans from different hosting providers. We saw some new names entering the hosting market, as well as old familiar faces. Kevin tested two distinct performance attributes: peak performance and consistency over the course of two months using the following 5 tools:

  • LoadStorm: Used to help simulate real user load.
  • LoadImpact: Used to test the static caching of the homepage with users.
  • Uptime + StatusCake: Two uptime monitoring services were used to measure consistency.
  • WebPageTest.org: Used to test overall speed from different locations (first view only).
  • WPPerformanceTester: Used to benchmark CPU, MySQL, and WP database performance.

The tests were run on an identical WordPress dummy site with the exact same plugins, unless one was needed for that particular provider’s caching mechanisms, etc. A new change that Kevin introduced this year was that SSL was required for testing on Enterprise tiers. SSL will be required for all plans next year.

See how Kinsta stacked up against the competition in each of the tiers below.

$25-50/Month Tier (Kinsta Earned Top Tier 🏆)

Since our managed hosting plans start out at $30/month we’ll only be diving into the last five tiers. The second tier is the $25-50/month tier in which you have a lot of companies competing (12 in total). This is definitely one of the most crowded tiers. Here’s a summary of how we stacked up against the competition:

Kinsta had almost no errors across the entire Load Storm test, which was scaled from 500 to 2000 users over 30 minutes with 10 minutes at the peak.

Load Storm tests

Load Storm tests

Kinsta performed flawlessly on the Load Impact tests. Our WordPress caching is rock solid! 💪

Load Impact tests

Load Impact tests

Kinsta also had 100% uptime through the entire testing period.

A few that struggled:

  • Dreamhost struggled on Load Storm tests.
  • Pressed.net had a lot of Load Storm errors and issues with uptime.
  • Siteground struggled with uptime (Note: they did issue statement saying that perhaps this shouldn’t have happened).

It’s almost boring writing about Kinsta. 100% uptime. 0 Load Impact errors. 3 Load Storm errors. Another Top Tier performance that I’ve come to expect. – Review Signal

$51-100/Month Tier (Kinsta Earned Top Tier 🏆)

The third tier is the $51-100/month tier in which 6 different hosts were compared, as opposed to 12 in the previous tier. Here’s a summary of how we stacked up against the competition:

The Load Storm test was scaled from 500 to 3,000 users over 30 minutes with 10 minutes at the peak. Kinsta only had 1 error. CloudWays, Pressable, Nestify, and Pantheon on all had errors.

Load Storm tests

Load Storm tests

Kinsta once again performed flawlessly on the Load Impact test.

Load Impact tests

Load Impact tests

Kinsta once again had 100% uptime through the entire testing period. We also had the fastest PHP bench and WP bench in this tier.

PHP bench and WP bench

PHP bench and WP bench

A few that struggled:

  • CloudWays struggled on both load tests.
  • Nestify had issues on Load Storm tests.

Kinsta had 1 error between both load tests and 100% uptime. Nearly made that perfect score. Another Top Tier performance. – Review Signal

$101-200/Month Tier (Kinsta Earned Top Tier 🏆)

The fourth tier is the $100-200/month tier in which 5 different hosts were compared. Here’s a summary of how we stacked up against the competition:

The Load Storm test was scaled from 500 to 4,000 users over 30 minutes with 10 minutes at the peak. And as you can see, Kinsta dominated this test with only 48 errors and the lowest peak response time. Note: Liquid Web did have SSL enabled which skewed their results slightly.

Load Storm tests

Load Storm tests

Kinsta once again performed flawlessly on the Load Impact test, as well as the lowest peak average load time.

Load Impact tests

Load Impact tests

Kinsta once again had 100% uptime through the entire testing period. We also had the fastest PHP bench scores.

PHP bench and WP bench

PHP bench and WP bench

A few that struggled:

  • Due to the fact that Liquid Web had SSL enabled it is hard to tell where they actually fell.
  • Nexcess and Nestify both struggled with load tests.

Yet another Top Tier performance from Kinsta. Perfect uptime and near perfect load tests. It’s starting to feel redundant writing that. – Review Signal

$201-500/Month Tier (Kinsta Earned Top Tier 🏆)

The fifth tier is the $201-500/month tier in which 5 different hosts were compared. Here’s a summary of how we stacked up against the competition:

It’s worth mentioning the pricing here. Kinsta is actually cheaper than all other competitors in this tier, with our Business 2 plan. Also, take note that Pantheon’s pricing is actually based on monthly pageviews, not unique visitors. This means you’ll find yourself needing to upgrade plans at Pantheon a lot sooner.

$201-500/Month Tier pricing

$201-500/Month Tier pricing

The Load Storm test was scaled from 500 to 5,000 users over 30 minutes with 10 minutes at the peak. Kinsta again dominated this test with 0 errors.

Load Storm tests

Load Storm tests

Kinsta once again performed flawlessly on the Load Impact test.

Load Impact test

Load Impact test

Kinsta once again had 100% uptime through the entire testing period. We also had the fastest PHP bench scores.

PHP bench and WP bench

PHP bench and WP bench

A few that struggled:

  • Pantheon struggled on Load Storm tests.
  • Nestify as lower scores due to a bottleneck of 100 Mbps connection.

Kinsta managed a perfect run. Zero errors on both load tests and 100% uptime. Congrats on earning yet another Top Tier award. – Review Signal

$500+/Month Tier (Kinsta Earned Top Tier 🏆)

The sixth tier is the $500+/month tier in which 8 different hosts were compared. This is the enterprise tier and every host customized their setup specifically for the tests. SSL was also enabled across all setups. Here’s a summary of how we stacked up against the competition:

If we look at the pricing in this tier, we can see that Kinsta is significantly cheaper than all other hosts. Our Enterprise 1 plan is $600/month and our Enterprise 2 plan is $900/month. Also, if you need additional storage or visitors our sales team can always put together a custom quote for you. But no matter what your needs are, we’ll beat the competition when it comes to pricing at this level!

WordPress hosting prices

$500+/Month Tier pricing

The Load Storm test was scaled from 500 to 10,000 users over 30 minutes with 10 minutes at the peak. Again Kinsta again dominated this test with 0 errors and we also had the lowest peak response time.

Load Storm tests

Load Storm tests

Kinsta once again performed flawlessly on the Load Impact test.

Load Impact test

Load Impact test

And while all hosts showed great uptime, Kinsta was one of only three that that had 100%.

Uptime enterprise WordPress hosts

Uptime enterprise WordPress hosts

Presslabs had the fastest PHP bench and Kinsta had the fastest WP bench.

PHP bench and WP bench

PHP bench and WP bench

Kinsta has also seen the greatest change as far as improvements in WP Bench scores, with an increase of 376%.

WP Bench historical performance

WP Bench historical performance

Once you get to this level of WordPress hosting we can see that many do in fact perform incredibly well. So we can’t really say that any struggled. This then brings us back to the price of which Kinsta can’t be beaten.

Kinsta had a perfect run at the Enterprise tier. This is why people shell out top dollar for Enterprise level hosting. Kinsta had perfect 100% uptime on both monitors. They also had 0 errors on both load tests and the lowest peak response time on the Load Storm test. A Top Tier Performance was rightly earned. – Review Signal

Summary

Kinsta is proud once again to be one of the only companies that consistently achieved “top-tier” status across all tests along with 100% uptime. We’re confident in the decisions we’ve made regarding our infrastructure over the past couple years and are excited to see the results pay off! We’re committed to providing you with the best possible environment to grow your business and stay ahead of your competition. Check out our Why Us page to see exactly how we’re different from other hosts.

If you have any questions regarding our service or platform, contact our sales team which would be more than happy to assist you. Or if you’re ready to dive right in and let us show you the Kinsta difference, migrate your site today.

This article was written by Brian Jackson
Brian is the Chief Marketing Officer at Kinsta. He focuses on everything from developing new online growth strategies, content creation, technical SEO, and outreach within the community. He has a huge passion for WordPress, has been using it for 8+ years, and even develops a couple premium plugins. Brian enjoys blogging, movies, and hiking. Connect with Brian on Twitter.

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  1. Gravatar for this comment's author
    jordan February 2, 2018 at 11:37 am

    Congrats, Kinsta! Not only fast, reliable hosting but the BEST customer support I have ever experienced! Keep it up:)

    1. Gravatar for this comment's author
      Brian Jackson February 2, 2018 at 11:52 am

      Thanks Jordan! We appreciate the kind words.

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