Is Kinsta a reliable source of speed information?

WordPress Mobile Speed

Updated: November 2019


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“If you do decide to go for cheap WordPress hosting, you should expect your site to go down from time to time (since at $10 per month, you’re most likely sharing a server with hundreds of other users). Also, expect that most issues won’t be resolved all that quickly. It’s just how the numbers work out.” – Kinsta

This quote is from an article written by Tom Zsomborgi. Tom is the Chief Financial Officer at Kinsta, a WordPress hosting platform.

We agree with Kinsta mostly. Their article about cheap hosting exaggerates some things. Like on BlueHost supposedly PagePipe’s store is the only domain on the server. They didn’t promise us that. Does that give us phenomenal speed – no. The TTFB is 1.7 seconds sometimes. That means PagePipe loads pages in under 300 milliseconds. And those are Easy Digital Downloads store pages. Every page reloads with an Ajax request! Boo.

And cheap hosts go down rarely. What do you expect for so little money? Most brag up times of 99 percent. And it’s often true. Some of our GoDaddy issues are resolved amazingly fast. And we mean hard technical problems. But we have a low expectation. We also think GoDaddy is a smuck for charging for SSL and privacy. Robbers. But we don’t buy that stuff from them.

We tested a client’s site on BlueHost with the same conditions as our store. He gets 500-millisecond load times – with a TTFB of 100 milliseconds. His SSL loads in 100 milliseconds. How? He has no clue. And neither do we. An Act of God. He pays the same as us. Go figure.

We walk the talk to show others how cheap-by-choice works. Severe self-imposed limitations.

We’re not an advocate of cheap hosting. Whenever we can, we get clients on the most expensive host they can afford. It makes our life so much easier for obtaining speed. But not everyone can do expensive. And high price doesn’t translate into good always. We help resourceful site owners, too.

It’s weird how good hosts and bad hosts are all bad and good at some time or another for speed. There is little consistency (repeatability) in performance between domains on the same hosting – pricey or cheap.

Now we have to consider this “cheap-hosting” article was published by Kinsta. Oh, they’re a host! They sell competing services. Would there be any bias against cheap hosts (since they’re not cheap)?

Naturally.

Have we ever put clients on Kinsta to solve speed problems? Yes. Do they always solve speed problems? Nope. Sometimes they make them worse. Go figure. We’ve found this to be true for every host. Variances. Fluctuations. Unpredictability. Voodoo. But we’re not paying for repeatability. We’re not relying on them to do a good job. We expect them to do a lousy job. We build accordingly with origin optimization. No tight tolerances.

The article’s testimonial is by Joe Hanley. He now hosts his site (https://www.audiblegenius.com/) on Acquia Hosting – not Kinsta. The Acquia homepage opens in 8.83 seconds in our timed browser. Lots of clutter on screen. Wow! Can’t wait to sign up with them. Built for Drupal? What?!

We bet Joe moves his site a few more times. Four times just isn’t enough.

Doesn’t Kinsta specialize in WordPress – not Drupal? Odd testimonial choice. Oh, Joe’s a software developer. No wonder.

So yes, if you’re a novice web virgin, you’ll lose a lot of money on cheap hosting trying to make things better. All a waste.

Conclusion: All hosting sucks – at sometime, in some way.

Godspeed-

Steve Teare
performance engineer

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