Did you just create your first site at Kinsta, and you’re ready to make it live? Great! Follow the go-live checklist below to get your website up and going fast. If you run into any problems or have questions, our Support team is available 24/7, and we’re happy to help.
Note: If you’re looking for information on migrating a site yourself before taking it live on Kinsta, we have several resources to help guide you:
- Migrate with SFTP and MySQL
- Migrate with Duplicator
- Migrate with Migrate Guru
- Migrate WordPress.com to WordPress.org
- Powerful WordPress Migration Plugins
1. Test Your Site
When you add a site at Kinsta, a temporary URL is automatically created for you. You can use this to test your site. (sitename.kinsta.cloud). You can see it in MyKinsta on the Domains tab of your site.
There are some plugins that are incompatible or banned at Kinsta. If you come across this, see our help article that guides you through this.
Here’s a handy checklist before moving forward:
- Have a valid WordPress install
- Theme looks good
- Plugins work as needed
- Content is in place
Previewing Your Site With Your Live Domain
If you want to test your site using the live domain (e.g., http://example.com/) before pointing it to Kinsta, check out our detailed article on how to Preview Your Site Before Updating DNS.
If your site is currently using SSL (HTTPS), it’s important to note that it won’t be possible to preview the site over HTTPS using the live domain unless you install a Custom SSL certificate on the Kinsta site.
The second option is to run a search and replace to update the URLs in the database to use http:// so that the site loads over http:// instead of https://. Once you’ve pointed your domain to Kinsta and an SSL certificate has been generated for the site, you’ll need to run a second search and replace to switch the domains back to https://.
2. Add Your Domain to Kinsta
After you’ve confirmed your site is all good, it’s time to go live with your custom domain. You have two options to achieve this: keep your existing DNS provider and add a DNS record, or use Kinsta’s premium DNS service powered by Amazon Route53. Both options support our free Cloudflare integration, including HTTP/3 support, an enterprise-level firewall, free DDoS protection, and more.
Check out our guides on how to configure your custom domain on Kinsta:
- How To Add a Non-Cloudflare Domain to a Site on Kinsta
- How To Add a Cloudflare Domain to a Site on Kinsta
3. Set up HTTPS
Once your domain is pointed to your site at Kinsta, it’ll automatically be protected by a free Cloudflare SSL with support for wildcard domains. For customers who prefer to use a custom SSL certificate, we support those as well. For more information on adding a custom SSL, check out our guide on how to install an SSL certificate.
If you want to redirect all HTTP traffic to HTTPS (we recommend this), we have a handy Force HTTPS tool in MyKinsta for that.
4. Install the Kinsta MU Plugin
Our Kinsta MU plugin is automatically installed on new WordPress installations created here at Kinsta. If you migrated your site yourself, you’ll need to download and install the Kinsta MU plugin manually. This includes our full page caching and other functionality, such as integration with Kinsta CDN.
5. Enable the Kinsta CDN
Next, it’s time to further turbocharge your website by using Kinsta’s built-in CDN. A CDN typically offloads 70% of bandwidth requests from your web server and can reduce load times by up to 50%! Turning it on is done with a flip of a switch.
Check out how to enable the Kinsta CDN on your site.
If you choose not to use our CDN, we still recommend you set one up. Cloudflare is another great choice. Check out our tutorial on how to install Cloudflare on your site.
6. Add Redirects
If you had redirects (301, 302) set up with your old hosting provider, you’ll want to add those in MyKinsta. Using WordPress plugins to implement redirects can sometimes cause performance issues. Adding redirects in MyKinsta means the rules are implemented at the server level, which is a much more optimal way. For multi-regional sites, our redirects tool supports IP geolocation-based rules as well.
7. Run a Speed Test
Once your site is live on Kinsta, you may want to run a speed test to measure your site’s performance. Speed test results can vary depending on how you run them, so you’ll want to make sure you are using the correct testing method.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind when running a speed test.
- The speed test location is very important. We recommend testing your site from a location that is close to your origin server and one that is far away from your origin server. Stick with these two locations for the duration of the speed test, and do not jump around to other locations.
- Always run the speed test multiple times to ensure requests to your site are hitting our page cache and your CDN cache. To verify the cache status, you can use the speed test tool to check a request’s response headers. If you see
x-Kinsta-cache: HITand a similar
HITheader for your CDN, the test is valid.
To learn more about the speed testing process, check out our guide on how to properly run a speed test on your site.