Ever wanted to start a website with Kinsta? Now is your chance. Kinsta is a renowned Managed Hosting solution, much like WPEngine, and just like it, Kinsta provides an excellent, easy to use website builder. Both the Kinsta dashboard and the Kinsta Website Builder are user-focused for your smoothest experience. Today, we will present a complete, step-by-step guide on how to start a website with Kinsta and help you generate passive income in an easy and affordable way.
Are you looking to:
- Build a website with the Kinsta Website Builder
- Create your own blog using Kinsta
- Open an online shop with Kinsta
- Promote your business online with Kinsta
- Start promoting your products and services online with Kinsta
Then this is the article for you.
This post will help you:
- Create a professional WordPress website with an easy to use visual content editor;
- Choose the right theme for your business;
- Choose your domain name and add it to Kinsta
- Find the right add-ons for your Kinsta website
- Learn how to manage your new Kinsta website
- Publish your first Kinsta website
- Improve your SEO and generate traffic
- Start Making Money from your new website
- Answer the most common questions on how to start a website with Kinsta
Why build a website with the Kinsta Website Builder
Unlike other Wordpress hosting solutions, Kinsta offers a managed hosting service preferred by thousands of professionals. This article will show you why Kinsta is so popular, and most importantly, how you can start a website with Kinsta in no time.
Kinsta Website Builder uses the WordPress visual content editor, making it perfect for beginner users as well as experienced ones. Kinsta supports all types of WordPress websites, including blogs and eCommerce sites, and it allows you to migrate your existing WordPress website on Kinsta in a quick and easy way. On top of that, Kinsta comes with a ton of cool features like:
- The all-in-one Kinsta management platform;
- State-of-the-art technology for better performance and speed;
- A purpose-built site management platform;
- A cool search-and-replace tool;
- Fast migration solutions;
- Cloud-based managed WordPress hosting;
- Cloud-based technologies like Google Cloud and New Relic for increased security
- Extensive knowledge base, and 24/7 live and one-on-one customer support.
See Kinsta COMPLETE FEATURE list AND PLANS
Kinsta is simply one of the best WordPress Managed Hosting solutions and website builders available today. They provide step-by-step guides for their new users, as well as visual aids. Moreover, the Kinsta Website Builder uses the WordPress Visual Composer for quick and simple customization and maintenance.
So are you ready to start a website with Kinsta and join a community of professionals?
You’re only a few steps away.
How to start a website with Kinsta in 8 quick steps
There are two ways of getting started with Kinsta – choosing a plan and start a website with Kinsta directly, or try the free demo. This is Kinsta’s way of offering the best of both worlds. Since they don’t come with a free trial, they give their users the option of the demo, as well as a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Can I start a website with Kinsta Free Demo?
The short answer is no. The free demo only gives users an overview of the Kinsta management platform. It allows you to create a test account and a test website, different environments, and just play around.
With this option, Kinsta doesn’t need confirmation so you will be immediately redirected to the Kinsta management platform. From here, follow the steps and create your new Kinsta website. But make sure you select Install WordPress, so Kinsta does the installation for you and you don’t start with an empty environment.
Once your site is set up, you will see it in the Sites list along with a few Demo sites that serve as examples. From here, you can continue exploring the Kinsta dashboard, however, since this is just a demo, there are quite a few limitations to what you can do. For example, actually accessing your WordPress admin is not available with the demo. So, to start a website with Kinsta, you will have to select a plan.
1. Select a plan for your Kinsta Website
Don’t worry. Selecting a plan is safe since all Kinsta’s plans come with a money-back guarantee. Therefore, if you find that Kinsta is not for you, you can get a refund within 30 days. Also, Kinsta comes with an entire list of plans, as well as a Custom plan option, fitting your every need.
Now it’s time to think about what is your goal, and what expectations you have from your future website. For example:
- Do you want a simple promotional website?
- Do you want to sell goods or services online?
- Do you want to start a blog?
If you are only looking for a simple promotional website, then the basic plan for $30/month might be the right starting point for you. And if you are thinking of adding eCommerce later on, you can always upgrade your plan.
But if your goal is to build or migrate and existing online shop from the very start, you will probably want a larger package. However, while Kinsta doesn’t recommend the base plan for eCommerce, for example, this module is still supported. So whichever plan you chose, there is no wrong option. you can always change your mind later on. And if you are unsure about what you should do, the Kinsta support team is always there for you.
2. Create a WordPress website with Kinsta
Once you created your account and selected your plan, you will gain access to the full Kinsta management platform. From the dashboard, go to Sites, and click on Add Site. And the first step is to click on the drop-down menu and choose a location for your hosting servers. It is recommended to choose a location closer to you at first because chances are your most traffic will come from your local area.
The next step is to fill in the name of your site. You can always change this later on, so you shouldn’t worry too much about it. Finally, if you have your own domain, you can add that here. If you don’t, just skip this step for now and proceed by clicking on Add. Your new website will be created in a few seconds.
Once the website is ready, you can see it in the Sites list, with a mention that the website is Live. This means that your website is available to everyone, including the browser crawlers. However, you will want to change this setting and create a Staging environment for your site. This way, your site is private until it’s been built and tested. Users won’t be able to stumble upon an unfinished website, and crawlers won’t be able to index it before you had a chance to perfect your SEO.
3. Create a Staging environment for you Kinsta Website
Like many other WordPress Managed Hosting solutions, Kinsta also supports two different environments – Staging and Production. When you first create your new WordPress website, the site goes into the Production environment. This means that everyone can see it. However, when you’re building a website, you want to first test it and then “release it into the wild”. Hence, you will want your site in the Staging environment.
So, create a Staging environment for your Kinsta website by going into Sites from the left-hand menu, then click on your site’s name. This will open the site’s details, where you will also see a Change environment button. Press the button, and select Staging from the drop-down menu. Since this is a new site on Kinsta, you do not have a Staging environment for it, but Kinsta will automatically create a new one for you and move your new site there. You are ready to start editing your site.
4. Build your site with Kinsta Website Builder
To start building your site, go to Sites on the left-hand menu, click on your site to prompt the site’s details, then click on Domains. As you still don’t have a domain, Kinsta generates one for you. This domain can be changed later on, so for now, our focus is on creating the site.
You will see two options next to your temporary domain – Open URL and Open WordPress admin. The first option redirects you to your current website and gives you the “user perspective”. Basically see what your users will see once the site is live. For now, click on Open WordPress Admin, and let’s start setting up your website.
4.1. Choose a theme for your site
The way you build your user interface is done in three steps – pick the theme with the layout that matches your brand, pick a color scheme that represents you, and finally, pick a font family that speaks your voice. Each and every one of these details works with the rest and creates that spot-on experience for your users. Achieve that sweet spot, and your users will want to come back.
Whenever you install WordPress be it through Kinsta or any other managed hosting solution, you will have a blank site, with a pre-selected theme. However, you will want a theme that represents you, your brand, and your business. So go into your WordPress Admin Dashboard, and from the menu on the left-hand side, select themes. You will see here all of the themes installed in your WordPress site.
The WordPress Visual Composer comes with a bunch of beautiful, responsive, and professional themes. So from the list, simply pick the one that matches your vision, and press Activate. This will automatically replace your current theme with the new one.
4.2. Customize your WordPress theme
Of course, you want a bit more of a personal touch to your theme, meaning you’d want to add your own color scheme and fonts. But also, you’d want to add a favicon and so on. Let’s start by changing your color scheme. Go to your WordPress Admin Dashboard, and click on Appearance, then Customize.
This will redirect you to the visual Customization Menu, where you can see your customization options on the left and your page. So for example, if you want to customize your header, you need to go into Header and from there set the style you want, width, and colors. When you’re happy with your setup, press Publish so your changes are applied to your site.
The same goes for the rest of the theme elements you want to change. Simply play around and make the theme your own. And if you think a change doesn’t suit you, don’t worry, you can always revert to a previous WordPress version and undo the change.
4.3. Manage your sitemap
The next step in building your website is the sitemap, which is the website’s core structure. In other words, the pages you have, and your menu items. First, go to your WordPress Admin Dashboard, Appearances, and click on Menu. This will prompt the Menu settings where you will see all of your current menus.
Normally, on any website, there are two menus – the header or Primary menu and the Footer menu. From your Menu panel, you can edit either of these menus. You can add or remove items from the menus, create brand new menus, and replace the existing ones, and so on.
You can also make changes on your footers from the Customization menu presented in the Customize you Theme section. From the Admin Panel, go to appearances and customize, then click on each of the menus. You will see all items in each menu, and from there you can rename them, move their positions, etc.
4.4. Manage your WordPress widgets
Widgets are in other words sections on your pages. For example, a contact form, a calendar, or a simple Recent Posts section are called widgets. Some of these widgets come from WordPress and its themes, but many of them come from third-party services, also known as plugins.
Once you install a widget, you will have to add them to your sidebar or Customization menu first. So, go to your WordPress Admin Dashboard, click on Appearances, and then select Widgets. Now, choose the area where you want to add a widget, then select the widget you want to add from the list.
Since Kinsta is using the Visual Composer, to add a widget to your page, go to Edit in Live Preview, then Add Element and search for WordPress Widget. WordPress will automatically retrieve all of your available widgets you previously added. Then simply add the widget to your layout and there you go. You can move it around by dragging it into place or edit it further.
4.5. Edit a page with Visual composer
Adding or editing a page with Visual Composer is done in two ways – the traditional way, or the Visual Composer way. For the first option, go in your WordPress Admin Dashboard and click on Pages. This will open the list with all of your website’s pages. Click on the page you want to edit to open the page’s editing screen.
Initially, you will see the plain WordPress page editor. So click on the Backend Editor button to switch to Visual Composer editor view. Here you will be presented with different layouts you can choose from, and you can also save these settings as a template for future use. Consistency is important!
The other way is to go into the Visual Composer panel in your Admin Dashboard and from the welcome screen click on Create New Page. This will open up the Visual Composer Hub, which will take you through a series of steps helping build your first page.
4.6. Install plugins
WordPress is an open-source technology, with thousands and thousands of contributors. As a result, there are over 57.000 available plugins at your disposal. Some are free, some come with free trials, and some are only paid for. Regardless, whatever your needs, there is a plugin for you.
To install a plugin, go to your WordPress Admin Dashboard and click on Plugins. This will open your plugin lists with all of you installed plugins whether they are active or not.
Click on Add New, search for your desired Plugin, and then Install. This will add the plugin to your list but it will not activate it. To activate a plugin, search for it on your list and click Activate.
4.7. Add a blog post
By default, WordPress is a blogging tool, which means that comes with a pre-built blogging module. To add your blog to your sitemap, follow the steps described in 4.3. Manage your sitemap. Once your Blog is part of your menu, it’s time to start creating content.
Go to your Admin Dashboard and click on posts. This will open your Post list, with all of your published or drafted articles. To add a new post, click on Add New and start editing your post from the top, starting with a catchy title.
5. Add eCommerce to your Kinsta website
For WordPress, eCommerce is just another functionality, which comes from a plugin. And the most recommended eCommerce plugin for WordPress is WooCommerce. So, to add eCommerce to your Kinsta website, go into your WordPress Admin Dashboard, and click on Plugins then Add New.
Search for WooCommerce, and then install it into your WordPress library. WooCommerce will provide a setup wizard that will automatically set up your eCommerce module on your site. Therefore, activate the WooCommerce plugin and follow the setup steps to allow the setup wizard to do its magic.
Once the setup is done, you are ready to add products to your Kinsta website and start making money online from your new virtual store!
6. Add a domain to your Kinsta website
So far in your journey about how to start a website with Kinsta you’ve created a beautiful website. You have used the Kinsta Website Builder to add all of your desired plugins and set up your webshop. Now it’s time to give your site a unique domain.
However, Kinsta doesn’t provide an option for buying domain though them. This means that you have to find a domain provider of your own. Luckily, there are plenty of such providers out there from which you can buy both new and expired domains.
6.1. Add the domain to the Kinsta management platform
Once you have your domain, go to your Kinsta Management Platform and click on Domains. Click on Add Domain and simply write your domain name there. If you have a root domain, it is recommended you add is without the www. and check the “Add domain(s) with or without www”.
Next, you will have to appoint a domain as your primary domain, which is the one your users will see. For example, if you have www.example.com and example.com, pick the second as your primary domain. Here you will also have an option called Run Search and Replace, which will automatically search your WordPress website and replace your primary wherever it’s needed. Make sure you check this box before confirming your change.
6.2. How to set up your DNS
There are two ways of pointing your domain to Kinsta. First is through an A Record, and the second is pointing your domains with Nameservers. While the first version is easier, including only a two-steps process, there are some drawbacks. Specifically, you won’t be able to control all of your DNS records through Kinsta and you won’t be able to take advantage of Kinsta’s premium DNS services.
However, the second option, which is a bit techier, requires a lot more steps and a lot more information. But, this second option is highly recommended as you will take full advantage of Kinsta’s partnership with Amazon Route 53. This includes DNS failover protection, latency, and geolocation services, and more.
Nevertheless, whichever option you go for, Kinsta provides a full, step-by-step guide, with print screens and related links. And if you need more help, the Kinsta Support team is there for you.
7. Add an SSL certificate to your Kinsta Website
When your domain is successfully pointed to Kinsta, you want to add an SSL to it and make your website secure for you and your users. With every plan, Kinsta comes with a free SSL from Let’sEncrypt, that you can set up via its built-in solution. But, be advised that with the free SSL, come some limitations as well:
- The certificates will not work for domains with special characters;
- The amount of covered subdomains is limited at 100;
- The certificates are domain validated only;
- All domains and subdomains need to be manually added.
Nevertheless, installing your free SSL on Kinsta is easy and is the best option for beginner websites. First, go into your Kinsta Dashboard in the Kinsta Management Platform. From there, click on the site you want to add the SSL on. This will redirect you to your Site’s setting panel. From there you need to go to Tools, click on enable HTTPS at the bottom of the page, and select Generate Free SSL Certificate.
Make sure you select all the domains you pointed to Kinsta so you generate the certificate for all of them. Once you selected them, confirm your action by clicking on Generate Certificate and give it a little time for the SSL to be set up.
The final step, redirect all of your HTTP sites to HTTPS which is also called Force HTTPS. So, from the same Tool panel, enable Force HTTPS then choose “Use requested domain” and click Force HTTPS. This will turn all of your – now secure – domains from http://example.com into https://example.com.
8. Push your Kinsta website live
The last step when you start a website with Kinsta or any other website builder is pushing it to production. For Kinsta, this is as simple as clicking a button, quite literally. To move your site from Staging into Production, all you have to do is go into your Kinsta management platform and click on Sites.
The list of Sites shows you every site, and what environments are available for each. For example, the site you just build in the Kinsta Website Builder will show both the Live and a Staging environment.
Click on Change Environment and select Production, then Push Staging to Live. Your entire website, including databases, UI, functionality, and so on will now copy from Staging to Production. Congratulations, your site is now live.
9. Manage your website with Kinsta
Now that your site is up and running, remember you need to keep a constant eye on it. Luckily, Kinsta’s managing platform offers you all the tools you need. On the Kinsta Dashboard, you get an overview of each of your sites and their performance.
You also get access to the resource center from here, which we recommend using as much as possible. This will keep you up to date with Kinsta’s news, good practices, guides, and so on. This includes system status updates as well as WordPress tutorials that will help better optimize your sites and boost your performance.
For a more in-depth view of your performance, go to Analytics, where you first see a full report on your resource usage, device dispersion, performance, and so on. Take your time and study this data. The better you understand these reports, the better you will know where and what to improve.
That said, this concludes our guide on how to start a website with Kinsta, we hope it helps you get your first website up and running. Enjoy, and good luck!