There are many young would-be internet marketers out there who start bad by making a big judgmental mistake about their online business in quest for saving money. They decide to go for a free web hosting service instead of buying a domain and web hosting.
The free web hosting providers are good enough for things like small personal blogs or for sharing things like pictures of family pets but these are not recommended for business at all due to a lot many reasons.
- Forced Advertisements - Free hosting is not actually free. It actually has a cost attached to it which you pay in the form of forced advertisements plastered to your website pages. And this looks really clumsy, unprofessional and cheap. But it doesn’t stop here. If fact you might be forced to display advertisements of your own competitors because you have absolutely no control over what advertisements get displayed on your website.
- Limited Space and Bandwidth - The space and bandwidth offered by free hosting is strictly limited. Your website gets suspended without any notice if your space of bandwidth usage exceeds the measly limits. This means that when your website is suspended your business and online presence is practically shut down. You can not add any more content. Either you have to delete some content or you need to upgrade to a paid web hosting plan.
- No Domain Name - With free hosting, you do not get any domain name of your own. Internet users have come to expect the real business to have website names like www.mybusinessname.com and any business without its own domain name is considered to be not reliable. When your website does not have its own domain name, you also can not get domain names of your business domain which makes your business all the more questionable and unprofessional.
- No Ownership - When you are running the free site, the content is not in your ownership. Its ownership is with the free web hosting service provider and he or she can delete any of the content at will with or without any reason. There are many horror stories of websites getting shut because of perceived inappropriate content or spamming.
- Limited Support - With free hosting, you get very limited support. You can not call anyone for help if your website is deleted or there is something wrong with your website.
- Lack of Features – It is generally not possible to have many advanced features like optin email lists, shopping carts and ssl certificates etc. As an example, if you are having a free blog on wordpress.com you can not avail the option of excellent plugins which extend the functionality of your website in so many ways.
- Big Risk - And the biggest risk with free hosting is that it may not be free for ever. The free web hosting provider may one day decide to do away with the free packages and your site may get deleted without any notice.
It does not make much sense to opt for free web hosting when domain names and web hosting has become so inexpensive. With options like WordPress and cheap web hosting, it is absolutely recommended that your purchase your own domain name and opt for paid web hosting. It is so cheap that you can afford paid hosting at the price of one pizza a month.