Kinsta has been in business for 10+ years and is known for top website performance, world-class support, and the powerful MyKinsta dashboard that makes website management a breeze. More than 26,300+ clients all across the world, including some of the biggest companies in the world, rely on Kinsta’s hosting services.
We know that everyday WordPress and website users are looking for an alternative hosting solution to Pantheon that combines better infrastructure and performance, along with faster and better support. Kinsta provides all these and much more!
Pantheon doesn’t specialize only in WordPress. Although it offers WordPress hosting, its plans are almost entirely geared toward enterprise-level clients and sites powered by Drupal. Despite the high price point, its hosting plans also don’t come with as many user-friendly tools, features, and support as Kinsta provides.
How Kinsta Compares to Pantheon 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.
While Pantheon also uses Google Cloud Platform, they don’t make top-tier products like C2 compute-optimized virtual machines and Premium Tier network available for all plans. You get access to C2 machines only if you have Premium or Dedicated custom plans.
We are also proud to be the highest-rated managed WordPress host on G2, the world’s leading software review and comparison site:
At this point, we want to take a moment to look at some of the biggest differences between Kinsta and Pantheon:
|Pricing||Plans start at $35/month||Plans start at $60/month (with prepayment), $29/month for Pantheon Preferred members|
|Money-Back Guarantee||30 days on all plans||X|
|Plan Tiers||21 (not including custom)||6|
|Premium 24×7 Support||All plans||Varies by plan|
|Free Cloudflare Integration||✓||X|
|Built-in Edge Caching||260+||Not specified|
|Core Infrastructure||Same across all plans (GCP)||Same across all plans|
|Uptime Monitoring||All plans||Performance and Elite plans|
|Global Data Centers||35 locations||4 regions|
|Free Expert Migrations||All plans||Paid service|
|Free DDoS Protection||✓||X|
|PHP Versions||PHP 8.0, 8.1, 8.2||PHP 5.6, 7.x, 8.x|
|Uptime Monitoring||All plans||X|
|Resource Limits||Only limited by PHP workers||Varies by plan|
|Free APM Tool||Kinsta APM||Not specified|
|Early Hints Modern Web Standard||✓||Not specified|
|Multisite Support||Pro plans and higher||Elite plans only|
|IP Geolocation||✓||Not specified|
|Reverse Proxy Support||✓||Varies by plan|
|Redis Add-on||✓||Performance and Elite plans|
|Multilingual Dashboard||English, Spanish, German, Dutch, Portuguese, Italian, French, Swedish, Danish, Japan||Not specified|
Pantheon’s features and tools can be difficult to configure and use unless you’re a developer.
If you want the same performance and scalability you would get from a cloud hosting provider but with a better user experience, fewer technical requirements, and paid services, Kinsta is the obvious choice.
Enjoy a 20% Faster Website Simply by Moving From Pantheon 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 fastest Compute-Optimized C2 VMs and Google Cloud servers.
- 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%!
- Containerized sites, meaning no more shared hosting/resources at any plan level.
- 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 Pantheon 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 this a try!
Kinsta vs Pantheon
Let’s take a look at some of the major differences between Kinsta and Pantheon:
- Kinsta supports 35 data centers across Google’s global network.
- Kinsta is a specialized managed WordPress hosting provider that provides feature-rich, affordable plans. We offer plans for websites of all sizes and scales. Pantheon is a WebOps platform that focuses on enterprise and agency solutions, making it overwhelming and expensive for the average WordPress user.
- The Kinsta stack is WordPress-optimized, which makes creating and managing your site simple and straightforward. Pantheon’s infrastructure is not strictly for WordPress sites, so the platform is not as user-friendly or intuitive.
- Kinsta uses C2 compute-optimized 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.
- All sites on Kinsta are protected by a Cloudflare integration, which includes a secure firewall, free SSL certificates, free DDoS protection, HTTP/3, and more.
- Transparent resources and pricing. Kinsta lets you know exactly what resources your sites have available. The Basic Pantheon plan is advertised as $29/month, but that’s only if you are a Pantheon Preferred member, which is the partnership program for agencies. The actual list price for the Basic plan is $60/month, which comes with very few features. For performance-enhancing options, you’ll need to upgrade to one of the four Performance plans, which have a starting monthly price of $160.
- 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 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 will be a Cloudflare server near you. That means lightning-fast server requests to your website. And it’s available at no extra cost in any Kinsta plan.
- 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. Pantheon uses a tiered system where the support features and response times vary depending on the level of your plan.
- Kinsta performs weekly automatic MySQL optimization on all your sites to optimize database performance. We didn’t find any evidence that Pantheon provides the same service so far.
- All Kinsta plans include free access to our custom application performance monitoring tool (Kinsta APM) for debugging WordPress performance issues. Pantheon does not have a built-in free APM tool.
- Kinsta offers free migrations from Pantheon handled by an expert engineer. You can rest assured that your site will be migrated safely, securely, and following best practices. Pantheon handles migrations with a DIY plugin, which means you have to do the migrations on your own, so you won’t receive a white-glove migration experience specifically tailored to your site.
- Sites on Kinsta are equipped with a self-healing PHP feature. We monitor all sites on our infrastructure 720 times per day and offer an uptime guarantee. Pantheon’s 99.99% uptime guarantee doesn’t apply to the Basic hosting plan. It also only offers site monitoring for Elite plans.
- MyKinsta dashboard includes a variety of useful site management tools that are not available on Pantheon: database search and replace, free and built-in APM tool, free IP Geolocation manager, ionCube loader, PHP restart, and more are either not available or are only offered on its Performance and Elite plans.
- All Kinsta plans include a free CDN and premium DNS. Pantheon includes a global CDN, but most of the useful features are only available when you upgrade to the Advanced Global CDN, which you have to reach out to the support team to set up and configure.
- Kinsta offers out-of-the-box ecommerce-optimized caching. Our platform is optimized for WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads. Pantheon also offers WooCommerce hosting, but advanced server caching is only available with Performance plans.
- All Kinsta plans come with a one-click staging environment feature.
- Websites with reverse proxy setups are welcome.
- Websites hosted on Kinsta come with a 100% Malware Security Pledge.
- 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. Pantheon only offers manual, automatic, and on-demand backups.
- Kinsta has a 30-day money-back guarantee, while Pantheon doesn’t offer any type of refund. According to its Terms of Service, “no credits or refunds of any kind will be given.”
- Pantheon does not have an affiliate program. Kinsta has a very attractive affiliate program where you get a 10% monthly recurring commission on top of an initial payment.
- 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. WordPress multisite is also supported.
- Built-in Edge Caching that cuts the time needed to serve cached WordPress HTML by an average of more than 50%!
Try it out for yourself 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 e-commerce 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 is the best WordPress host I’ve had so far. They are quick to help, easy to deal with, and really know their stuff. Plus their servers are super fast!
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%!
Although Pantheon also leverages the GCP, its hosting platform is a lot more technical and can be confusing if you’re not an experienced developer. Despite significantly higher prices, many of the performance and scalability features included with all of our plans are only available on Pantheon’s Performance of Elite Pantheon plans. There are also a lot of hidden fees and charges.
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 two minutes for uptime, 720 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.
With Pantheon, you also have access to basic web-based firewalls and HTTPS through Let’s Encrypt. However, you don’t get most of the WordPress-specific security measures we offer. On the Basic plan, all you really receive are automatic security updates and patching.
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.
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 and 8.2.
- 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’ll have all the tools needed to manage your WordPress site, regardless of your technical knowledge.
We truly cannot say enough about the level of customer service that Kinsta provides – it’s always a great experience, with very personable and helpful support.
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.
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.
Let’s look at some of the features that make our MyKinsta dashboard so powerful:
- Toggle between different PHP versions. Kinsta supports PHP 8.0, 8.1 and 8.2.
- 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. Free automatic Cloudflare SSL certificates with wildcard domain support and the option to import your own.
- A toggle for enabling
- 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.
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.
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).
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’ll 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!
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
Pantheon plans do not come with a free APM tool, which makes it very difficult to quickly troubleshoot performance issues on your WordPress site. Pantheon’s “Performance” plans come with free access to New Relic APM, but their lower-tier plans do not.
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 e-commerce 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 e-commerce plugins rely heavily on CPU performance because they cannot be efficiently cached. This is where our C2 compute-optimized VMs really shine with their industry-leading CPU performance. At Kinsta, we make 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 <code>woocommerce_items_in_cart</code> or <code>edit_items_in_cart</code> are detected.
- Implementing specific rules to allow EDD and WooCommerce functionality during server-level page caching.
Pantheon offers WooCommerce hosting. However, this requires a Performance or Elite plan, which are both much more expensive than Kinsta plans (even with the same features included).
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 45,300+ community members using DevKinsta to develop locally and push updates directly to a staging environment on Kinsta!
Pantheon doesn’t have an integration with a local WordPress development tool, which means there is no way to clone and push WordPress sites for their customers.
If you’re a busy freelance or agency developer, DevKinsta’s advanced features and MyKinsta integration can be a huge time saver.
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.
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.
If you’re interested in moving your site to managed WordPress hosting, we offer unlimited free migrations from Pantheon! To top it off, unlike Pantheon, where free migrations are performed via a WordPress plugin, our migrations are performed by an expert migrations engineer. This is a paid service at Pantheon.
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.
Pantheon offers a free Global CDN via Fastly with all plans. However, to take advantage of features such as full-page caching, IP block listing, and reverse proxy support, you need to upgrade to the Advanced Global CDN. Not only does this involve more money, but you also need to have the Pantheon Professional Services team enable and configure it.
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.
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!
Best Affiliate Program in the Industry
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.
Pantheon does not currently offer an affiliate program. It only provides a Pantheon Partnership Program, which is geared toward agencies.
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 feature updates!
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 Pantheon. It’s time to move away from Pantheon and switch to our managed WordPress hosting platform.