Flywheel Alternative: The Benefits of Choosing Kinsta

If you’re looking for a Flywheel alternative for WordPress hosting, Kinsta has you covered. Powered by the Google Cloud Platform, our unique, powerful solution for managed WordPress hosting is optimized for speed and performance. It’s unlike anything else you’ll find.

Introduction

Flywheel was acquired by WP Engine in June 2019. Every day, we encounter Flywheel clients who are looking for an alternative managed hosting solution that provides better performance with higher quality support.

Kinsta is an expert in managed WP hosting for 10+ years and is well-known for top website performance, world-class support, and the powerful MyKinsta dashboard that makes website management a breeze. More than 120,000+ clients all across the world, including some of the biggest companies in the world, rely on Kinsta.

I switched to Kinsta from Flywheel and have never looked back. When they say boost your website speed, they aren’t lying. I gained a noticeable difference on the front-end and back-end from Flywheel, plus they have some amazing dev tools. It’s a pleasure working with Kinsta! I am a customer for life.

How Kinsta Compares to Flywheel in a Nutshell

Kinsta’s infrastructure is fully containerized and powered exclusively by the Google Cloud Platform on Google’s Premium Tier network, enabling us to provide you with a large selection of the fastest data servers, incredible performance, server-level caching, dedicated resources, and enhanced security. Gone are the days of worrying about sharing resources with other sites, including your own! 

All sites on Kinsta are protected by our enterprise-level premium Cloudflare integration, free for all customers. It includes a secure firewall, HTTP/3 support, DDoS protection, free CDN, and other benefits. You also experience transparent resource consumption, costs, and pricing. 

We are also proud to be the highest-rated managed WordPress host on G2, the world’s leading software review and comparison site.

Feature Comparison Overview

At this point, we want to take a moment to look at some of the biggest differences between Kinsta and Flywheel:

KinstaFlywheel
Plan Tiers21 (not including custom)4 (not including custom)
Premium 24×7 SupportAll plansAll plans
Free Cloudflare IntegrationX
Container Technology100% resource isolationNot specified
Core InfrastructureSame across all plans (GCP)Same across all plans (GCP)
NetworkGCP Premium Tier NetworkNot specified
Global Data Centers37 locations5 locations
CDN PoPs34 (All regions)Not specified
Built-in Edge Caching260+ data centersNot specified
Free Expert MigrationsAll plansAll plans
PricingPlans start at $35/monthPlans start at $15/month
Free DDoS ProtectionX
PHP VersionsPHP 8.0, 8.1, 8.2, 8.3PHP 7.4, 8.1
Free Cloudflare FirewallX
Free SSL CertificatesFree SSL (wildcard domains supported)Free SSL (wildcard domains not supported)
Free APM ToolKinsta APMX
Early Hints Web StandardNot specified
Multisite SupportPro plans and higher ($70/month)Freelance plan and higher ($96/month)
IP GeolocationX
Reverse Proxy SupportX
Performance Analytics$25/month add-on
Redis Add-onX
New Relic (license required)X
Multilingual DashboardEnglish, Spanish, German, Dutch, Portuguese, Italian, French, Swedish, Danish, JapanX

Enjoy a 20% Faster Website Simply by Moving From Flywheel to Kinsta

We measured 3,200+ migrations over the course of a three-month span. On average, client sites experienced 20% faster load times just by moving to Kinsta.

How is this possible? Our customers enjoy:

  • The latest generation of virtual machines from Google’s Compute Engine general-purpose machine family C3D VMs and The fastest Compute-Optimized C2 VMs, available across all plans in supported regions.
  • A stack that’s been fine-tuned for WordPress over the past 10+ years
  • Google’s Premium Tier Network to deliver website data faster
  • Free CDN powered by Cloudflare’s global network of 260+ locations
  • Built-in Edge Caching that cuts the time needed to serve cached WordPress HTML by an average of more than 50%!
  • Early Hints feature, a modern web standard that can help immediately improve how quickly your pages load by providing additional information on what resources to preload, resulting in faster page rendering speed.

Migrate from Flywheel to Kinsta hassle free with our free expert migration service. With our 30-day money-back guarantee, you can test out the service and improved speeds completely risk-free. You only lose if you don’t give it a try!

Kinsta vs FlyWheel

Let’s take a look at some of the major differences between Kinsta and Flywheel:

  • Kinsta is a leading managed WordPress hosting provider that offers all-in-one solutions for managing your website and supports 37 data centers across Google’s global network. Flywheel only supports 5 hosting locations (with no locations in Asia).
  • Kinsta uses C3D and C2 VMs (GCP’s fastest servers) for all plans in supported locations. In our tests, we found that C2 VMs are up to 200% faster than GCP’s lower-tier machines, while C3D machines reduced response times by a further 20% to 50%. Flywheel also uses GCP, but they don’t provide any specific information about their infrastructure.
  • Transparent resources and pricing. Kinsta lets you know exactly what resources your sites have available. Flywheel has both a total visit and bandwidth limit in place across all of its plans, making it harder to estimate your monthly cost.
  • Containerized Solution. Kinsta offers a unique infrastructure that containerizes site resources so they don’t have to share. This increases and levels your performance on a per-site basis. No more worrying about sites you don’t manage potentially stealing your resources. It also helps minimize your time spent troubleshooting performance issues as you no longer have to account for potential resource stealing.
  • Because of Kinsta’s unique containerized hosting, you can also host multiple sites on multiple data centers, all within the same plan! No more having to pay for multiple servers just to host sites in different locations. Help your clients get an instant performance boost by simply hosting their site on a server that’s more appropriately located for their customer base.
  • Kinsta performs weekly automatic MySQL optimization on all of your sites to optimize database performance. Flywheel doesn’t offer automatic database optimizations.
  • Kinsta’s Agency Partner program makes it easy to manage hundreds of client sites and provides a cost-effective solution at the same time, and you can even host your agency site on Kinsta for free when you enroll in the program. Flywheel also has an agency program, but they don’t let you host your agency site for free on their lower tier.
  • Kinsta plans include everything you need to maximize site performance and security, including premium DNS, uptime monitoring, and firewalls. Flywheel’s agency plans come with basic firewall protection but lack advanced DDoS detection and mitigation capabilities.
  • All Kinsta plans include free access to our custom application performance monitoring tool (Kinsta APM) for debugging WordPress performance issues. For customers who prefer New Relic, we support that as well, but you must have your own license. Flywheel does not have a built-in free APM tool, and they don’t support third-party tools like New Relic either.
  • Kinsta offers free migrations from Flywheel handled by an expert engineer. You can rest assured that your site will be migrated safely, securely, and following best practices. 
  • Kinsta offers you the ability to have each one of your sites hosted in a different data center. On Flywheel, you must choose one hosting location for all of your sites.
  • Kinsta lets you run a different version of PHP (we support PHP 8.0, 8.1, 8.2, 8.3) for each live and staging environment. Switching between PHP versions takes just a few clicks in the MyKinsta dashboard. Flywheel does not provide a PHP version switcher in the dashboard, and they don’t support PHP 8.2 as of June 2023.
  • Our custom MyKinsta dashboard includes a variety of useful site management tools that are not available on Flywheel, such as database search and replace, APM tool, free IP Geolocation manager, PHP restart, and more.
  • Kinsta provides access to wp-config.php and other critical files. Flywheel locks down your wp-config.php file and doesn’t allow you to make changes.
  • Sites on Kinsta are equipped with a self-healing PHP feature. We monitor all sites on our infrastructure 480 times per day and offer an uptime guarantee.
  • Kinsta offers six types of backups: free automatic/daily, optional hourly, manual, system-generated, downloadable, and external backups sent automatically to your Amazon S3 or Google Cloud Storage. We also store two weeks of backups at all times, with the possibility to increase data retention. Flywheel offers nightly backups but doesn’t offer external backup support.
  • Kinsta CDN takes advantage of our Cloudflare integration and its worldwide network that spans almost 200 cities in more than 100 countries. We don’t need to know where you are to know there is a Cloudflare server near you. That means lightning-fast server requests to your website. It’s available at no extra cost on any Kinsta plan.
  • Kinsta has a unique system that caches pages at the server level. Our built-in Edge Caching cuts the time needed to serve cached WordPress HTML by an average of more than 50%!
  • Kinsta provides the ability to add reverse proxy support on all plans. Flywheel does not support reverse proxy configurations on their plans.
  • For developers and agencies, Kinsta offers a powerful local development tool called DevKinsta. With DevKinsta, you can clone and develop your projects locally and push updates to Kinsta when ready.
  • Kinsta is well-known for its world-class support, composed of WordPress experts and Linux engineers, available 24/7 for all our customers via live chat, with an average response time of under 2 minutes. We offer multilingual support across all of our plans, and our engineers are experienced and capable of solving any hosting issue on your WP site. While Flywheel also offers 24/7/365 support, they don’t have multilingual support.
  • Kinsta offers a 100% Malware Security Pledge.
  • Kinsta is SOC2 compliant, which provides independent proof that we have established security procedures and adhered to those procedures over time. Flywheel is also SOC2 compliant. See Kinsta’s Trust Report for additional information.

Read on to see the details of each Kinsta feature and how they compare to Flywheel, making Kinsta a great Flywheel Alternative. Or try it out right now with our risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

Kinsta Is Built for Performance and Scalability

If you’re looking for a performance-oriented and scalable host, Kinsta’s got you covered. Our custom-built hosting platform is optimized to deliver incredible speed, performance, and scalability, whether you’re running a personal blog or an ecommerce store doing millions in revenue. 

At Kinsta, you can scale up and down between plans with just a few clicks and transparent resource consumption. Best of all, there is no downtime when switching plans, and your hosting bill is automatically prorated with a transparent and controlled cost!

With GCP’s Premium Tier network, we ensure that the traffic to and from our customers’ sites is routed around the world as quickly as possible. When it comes to page load times and site performance, every millisecond counts!

Kinsta has allowed us to offer a bulletproof service to our top tier clients and keep them happy. Especially those who have traffic spikes with sudden server demand.

High-performance virtual machines powered by the Google Cloud Platform form the foundation of our hosting infrastructure. Beyond that, our high-performance hosting stack consists of orchestrated LXC containerized software containers and LXD managed hosts and highly tuned configurations for Nginx, PHP, and MariaDB. Our unique containerized infrastructure allows sites hosted on Kinsta to automatically scale CPU and RAM usage in response to traffic surges.

As part of our Cloudflare integration, Edge Caching saves your Kinsta site/page cache to any of Cloudflare’s global network of 260+ data centers.

Edge Caching is included free with all Kinsta plans, doesn’t require a separate plugin, and cuts the time needed to serve cached WordPress HTML by an average of more than 50%!

Kinsta Is Safe and Secure

At Kinsta, we know that the security of your data is of the utmost importance, which is why we’re dedicated to providing the most secure hosting service by taking a variety of active and passive measures to safeguard your site.

All sites on Kinsta are protected by our free Cloudflare integration, which includes an enterprise-level firewall with a custom ruleset and DDoS protection. With our Cloudflare integration, you’ll get the benefits of enhanced security and performance without having to manage your own Cloudflare account.

Some of Kinsta’s key security measures include:

  • Monitoring sites every three minutes for uptime, 480 times a day.
  • Rigid software-based restrictions to stop malicious code from entering your website.
  • Real-time DDoS attack detection and mitigation.
  • Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) support and automatic bans for IPs that have more than six failed login attempts in a minute.
  • A dedicated Security Team to address malicious attackers, hacks, and exploits.
  • Free Cloudflare integration with a secure firewall and built-in DDoS protection.
  • Only support for encrypted SFTP and SSH connections (no FTP).
  • Completely isolated containers (LXC), using LXD to orchestrate them so there’s no chance of cross-infection from other clients.
  • Free Cloudflare SSL certificates with wildcard domain support.
  • 100% Malware Security Pledge if your site is infected with malware while hosted on Kinsta.
  • Automatic security checks for every plugin installed to discover vulnerabilities and/or security issues.

In the rare event that something were to happen to your site, our Malware Security Pledge means you will get hands-on assistance from our engineers free of charge. We’ll restore your site and make sure it’s free of backdoors that hackers can take advantage of.

Kinsta Is Developer-Friendly

We create a WordPress hosting solution tailored for developers without sacrificing ease of use. Everything from our custom dashboard to our products and tools is built to help improve your productivity. 

Screenshots showing developer friendly MyKinsta features

Some developer-friendly features and tools you’ll have access to as a Kinsta customer include:

  • SSH, Git, and WP-CLI access on all plans.
  • Custom setups like Bedrock and Trellis, as well as starter themes such as Sage.
  • One-click WordPress staging environments that allow you to easily push changes from staging to production as well as conveniently clone your site.
  • Run a different version of PHP for each live site and staging site, and switch between PHP engines takes just one click. We currently support 8.0, 8.1, 8.2 and 8.3.
  • Post and page revisions enabled by default. While we recommend limiting or disabling these, we believe this should be your choice.
  • Load your site over a reverse proxy.
  • Built-in free APM (Application Performance Monitoring) tool for troubleshooting WordPress performance issues.
  • DevKinsta, a free local development tool.
  • Restore backups to staging as well as production.

With Kinsta as your hosting provider, you have all the tools needed to manage your WordPress site, regardless of your technical knowledge.

I am pleasantly surprised at the ease and speed of setting up WordPress with Kinsta. I love the staging environment and the deployment to production!

Uncover Your WordPress Site’s Performance Bottlenecks.

Our experts will run a free performance audit of your website and share the results within 24 hours.

Agency Partner Program

Kinsta has an Agency Partner Program specifically designed for agencies looking for a powerful and secure hosting platform with minimal overhead. After joining our Agency Partner Program, your agency will be able to focus on developing client projects and expanding your business while we handle the hosting side of things.

We talk to new agency owners every day and know how frustrating it can be when you are overpaying for dedicated servers, while your sites are still sharing resources with each other. This leads to performance issues. We hear you and we have the solution!

Our container-based hosting stack is a game changer for your agency and for your clients. Each website gets dedicated resources and we deliver better performance and uptime in a cost-efficient way. No upsell, just upgrades: transparent plans for Your Growing Agency. 114,000+ WordPress sites already enjoy the Kinsta difference. Contact us and get your first month free today!

Our Agency Partner Program also comes with a number of perks:

  • Free hosting for your agency site on a Kinsta Pro plan (a $70/month value).
  • Unlimited free migrations for your client sites.
  • White-label our cache-clearing plugin with your agency’s logo and branding.
  • One month of free hosting, so you don’t have to worry about paying for two hosting plans while migrating your client sites to Kinsta.

As a member of our Agency Partner Program, all your client sites will receive the same level of support, features, and tooling offered on our normal plan tiers!

MyKinsta: A Custom-Built Dashboard for Powerful Site Management

At Kinsta, we believe in empowering our customers with powerful features to make WordPress site management a breeze. MyKinsta dashboard is built with usability in mind. 

With features like search and replace, force HTTPS, URL redirects with IP geolocation support, IP deny, Application Performance Monitoring, Edge Caching, Early Hints, Cron Jobs, PHP workers, and more, you have a wide array of powerful tools for managing your WordPress site. MyKinsta even includes a comprehensive analytics dashboard that provides insights into key site metrics.

The MyKinsta dashboard

Let’s take a look at some of the features that make our MyKinsta dashboard so powerful:

  • Toggle between different PHP versions. Unlike Flywheel, which only supports PHP 7.4 and 8.0, Kinsta supports PHP 8.0, 8.1, 8.2 and 8.3.
  • Application Performance Monitoring tool that gives you all the necessary PHP and MySQL data to debug WordPress performance issues. 
  • High-performance object caching with our Redis add-on.
  • Get detailed analytics on bandwidth and visitors, CDN usage, cache HIT & MISS rates, and more. 
  • Access to one-click staging environments and the option to restore backups to production or staging. 
  • Quick phpMyAdmin access.
  • Automatic MySQL database optimizations.
  • One-click ionCube enabler.
  • Free Kinsta DNS (powered by Amazon Route53) to manage your DNS records directly in the dashboard.
  • One-click CDN setup with Kinsta CDN.
  • Purge the site cache directly from the dashboard.
  • Redirect management with IP geolocation support.
  • IP Deny tool that lets you quickly block IP addresses before they reach your site. Flywheel’s IP deny method involves manually updating a GeoIP database and setting up rules with a WordPress plugin (iQ Block Country).
  • Free automatic Cloudflare SSL certificates with wildcard domain support and the option to import your own. 
  • A toggle for enabling WP_DEBUG mode.
  • Password protection for your environment and the ability to strengthen login security by adding your SSH keys to the dashboard.
  • The dashboard is available in 10 languages: English, Spanish, German, French, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Japanese, Swedish, Danish.

There’s no need to simply take our word for it, though. Schedule a live demo today and explore the user-friendly interface and plethora of tools to see firsthand what makes MyKinsta different from the competition.

Kinsta API

Say goodbye to the limitations of the past and enjoy a revolutionary era where machines can seamlessly interact with our services. Kinsta API (Application Programming Interface) allows you to perform tasks on your Kinsta site without logging in to the MyKinsta dashboard.

Create a Kinsta API Key

What’s possible with Kinsta API?

  • Reporting: seamlessly integrate Kinsta Services into your internal tracking systems and retrieve Kinsta analytics data effortlessly.
  • Scheduled Tasks: create applications to schedule tasks, ensuring minimal disruption to your visitors. 
  • WordPress Site Creation: create a new WordPress site installation automatically and take control of your site’s functionality. You can also create WordPress Multisite installations.

Enjoy more automation than ever before on the Kinsta platform by taking advantage of Kinsta API.

Expert Support for WordPress

At Kinsta, we treat every customer as a mission-critical priority, whether you’re a solo entrepreneur, agency, or global enterprise. Our support team of WordPress experts is available 24 hours a day year-round, including holidays, weekends, and late nights (wherever you are).

Kinsta’s WordPress hosting support conversation ratings chart.
Kinsta’s WordPress hosting support conversation ratings chart.

We don’t rely on a tiered support system, which means we won’t waste your time with escalations and transfers. Whether you’re on our Starter or Enterprise 4 plan, you have access to the same team of WordPress experts.

In addition to multilingual support and resources available in over 10 languages, we’re also proud to maintain an initial ticket response time average of under two minutes!

I also can’t think of one support event that didn’t meet my expectations. Since I see all the support tickets, I’ve noticed they even try to help my staff in areas out of the Kinsta scope. They deal with dumb questions in a professional manner.

With the standard support, if something were to happen to your site, you would need to submit a ticket in order to receive help. There is no active monitoring like there is on Kinsta plans.

Free Performance Monitoring Tool

All Kinsta plans come with a free custom-built APM tool that can be easily accessed in the MyKinsta dashboard. Kinsta APM provides you with key WordPress performance insights and metrics without the need to pay for third-party subscriptions to other APM services.

With the information you get from Kinsta APM, you can debug and troubleshoot performance bottlenecks, These include:

  • Slow WordPress plugins and themes.
  • Long calls to external APIs and domains.
  • Unoptimized MySQL database queries.
  • PHP execution time

Flywheel plans do not come with a free custom-built APM tool. Instead, Flywheel has a $25/month “Performance Insights” add-on that provides performance metrics like load time, time to interactive, time to first byte, cache rate, and page size. The majority of these metrics can be found for free by using third-party tools like PageSpeed Insights.

Optimized for WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads

As a managed WordPress hosting company, we understand the importance of a platform capable of supporting high-traffic, resource-intensive ecommerce sites. We also recognize the unique and demanding challenges that come with powering online stores. This is why we optimized our platform for WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads.

WooCommerce and other WordPress ecommerce plugins rely heavily on CPU performance because they cannot be efficiently cached. This is where our C3D and C2 VMs really shine with their industry-leading CPU performance. At Kinsta, we make C3D and C2 VMs available on all plans from Starter to Enterprise 4 and beyond.

Our expert engineers are very familiar with WooCommerce and have developed a custom workflow that optimizes performance. Some of the ways we enhance the WordPress ecommerce experience include:

  • Excluding ‘My Account,’ checkout, cart, and other pages that shouldn’t be cached.
  • Ensuring a smooth checkout process by automatically bypassing the cache for users when woocommerce_items_in_cart or edit_items_in_cart are detected.
  • Implementing specific rules to allow EDD and WooCommerce functionality during server-level page caching.

While Flywheel has special caching rules for WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads, they do not offer C2 compute-optimized VMs to their customers. Instead, they rely on other Google Cloud Platform technologies to power their hosting platform.

Develop Locally With DevKinsta

With DevKinsta, you can launch WordPress sites with a full hosting stack and SSL support on your local computer (macOS, Windows, and Ubuntu) with just a few clicks.

DevKinsta is fully integrated with MyKinsta and Kinsta’s hosting platform, so you can join the 60,000+ community members using DevKinsta to develop locally and push updates directly to a staging environment on Kinsta!

Screenshot of the DevKinsta interface

If you’re a busy freelance or agency developer, DevKinsta’s advanced features (including multisite support) and MyKinsta integration can be a huge time saver.

I tried the Kinsta dev tool. First reaction: In comparison with Local by Flywheel it’s so much easier to install and 100% faster…

Static Sites for Free

Are you an agency creating static WordPress sites for your clients? Or do you create landing pages for high-traffic campaigns? We got you covered!

Static site hosting is 100% free at Kinsta. You can create a static or Jamstack site or use a static site generator. We can run the build process for you and deploy your site directly to the edge.

Get static site hosting for free

Benefits of hosting Static sites with Kinsta include:

  • Your site is directly pushed to our edge network with 260+ locations globally, powered by the security and speed of Cloudflare
  • Use a static site generator, and we handle the build process, which is also included free of charge
  • Add custom domains, and we deliver the security (SSL certificates automatically issued and updated)

Sign up, connect your git account, and start deploying your static site from your repo.

Free Migrations From Real People

Whether you want to move one site or 100, Kinsta provides hassle-free migrations that are handled by our skilled WordPress experts. You won’t have to deal with complex technology or risk losing critical data.

If I’m talking with another developer and they want recommendations on WordPress hosting, Kinsta hands down. It’ll save you headaches and all sorts of issues and your clients will be super happy so it’s a no brainer.

If you’re looking for a Flywheel Alternative and you’re interested in moving your site to managed WordPress hosting, we offer unlimited free migrations from Flywheel! Our migrations are performed by an expert migrations engineer.

To get started, simply complete our site migration request form, and our experts will reach out to schedule a time. Then you can track the migration’s status directly from your MyKinsta dashboard.

Turbocharging Your Content Delivery With Kinsta CDN

In addition to free bandwidth, all Kinsta plans include a free Content Delivery Network (CDN). This is a premium HTTP/3-enabled CDN to deliver your content lightning-fast across the globe.

As part of our Cloudflare integration, our built-in Edge Caching saves your Kinsta site/page cache to any of Cloudflare’s global network of 260+ data centers.

When site visitors load your website in their browser, cached responses will be delivered from the location closest to them. Edge Caching is free with all Kinsta plans and doesn’t require a separate plugin.

Our content delivery architecture was tailor-made for high throughput and low latency. You can enable the CDN directly from your MyKinsta dashboard.

Affiliate Program With Recurring Commissions

Kinsta is constantly exceeding our client’s expectations. Our satisfied customers are eager to spread the word about our products and services, which has helped us become one of the fastest-growing hosts in the industry. 

For every referral of Managed WordPress Hosting, you earn both:

  • An initial one-time bonus, between $50 and $500, is calculated based on the plan of the customer.
  • A 10% monthly recurring commission is paid every month for the lifetime of the customer. The 10% is calculated out of the plan’s monthly fee (discounts applied). Add-ons are not included.

For every referral of Application Hosting and/or Database Hosting, you earn a 5% recurring commission every month for the lifetime of the customer. The 5% is calculated out of the customer’s monthly invoice (discounts applied).


This is a powerful opportunity to earn a passive income! 

To make the Kinsta affiliate experience even more enjoyable, we custom-built our own easy-to-use affiliate dashboard. Therefore, you won’t have to deal with complicated or confusing third-party platforms.

Flywheel offers up to $500 per new customer, but they don’t pay recurring commissions for the lifetime of a referred customer. This means Flywheel’s affiliate program doesn’t allow you to build a passive income stream.

Join Others Making the Switch to Kinsta

At Kinsta, we offer the fastest, latest technology possible. We’re constantly evolving and adapting to leverage the most innovative solutions available. You can see for yourself simply by checking out our Changelog!

We are confident in our solutions and want you to be 100% satisfied with your hosting, which is why we offer a 30-day money-back guarantee and free migrations from Flywheel. It’s time to move away from Flywheel and switch to our managed WordPress hosting platform.