The budding entrepreneurs are looking to save money and look forward to free web hosting. However, it might not be an ideal choice in the long run which is why it is essential that you understand the difference between free and paid web hosting before you take any decision.
1. You Will Soon Outgrow Your Free Web Hosting
One of the most important difference between free and paid web hosting is that at a certain point your blog or website will become limited as you would have used all the features open to use by providers of free web hosting.
And if you transfer to paid web hosting and have your own domain then you will be unable to upload the .htaccess file to redirect the customers and search engines to the new paid web hosting space. In order to make the search engines aware about your movement there are a set of instructions which need to be used in .htaccess file to 301 permanently redirect them to the new location.
The same is applicable when you delete a page in your website too and the redirection cannot happen.
All your efforts will be in vain and you would have to start all over again.
2. Professional Look of the Business
On using a free web hosting your website link or URL would look somewhat like this:
The URL above specifies the blogspot.com as the free hosting company. This type of URL doesn’t leave a good impact from the business point of view. There is no professionalism reflected and which is why it is best that you invest in a professional hosting or a domain name.
3. Do You Think it is Actually Free?
Why do you think the company is providing you free services? There are expenses incurred by every working company and they are going to cover the expenses anyhow. They are going to insert advertisements in your web page on which you are going to have no control. There could be inappropriate ads placed on your page which could annoy your website viewers. You would ultimately lose your good crowd.
4. Anything Which is Free Might Not Last Forever
There is no guarantee about how long the free web hosting services will continue to provide their services. History has seen huge providers shut down their services. 13 July, 2009 saw Yahoo closing down their 360 services. The paid hosting companies might not last as well but the advantage here is that since you have an account you will easily be able to download your entire site. Since you have a back-up you can upload your website data onto the new hosting company that you sign up with.
5. Your Template Stays With the Free Web Hosting
People are attracted to free web hosting as they offer many free templates and features. Although some paid ones provide free templates too but the thought of getting something free is definitely enticing. The problem with the templates, ecommerce software, graphics and other features which are offered by free web hosting companies is that those cannot be moved if in future you would want to move to paid hosting.
6. You Get Limited Features
Another important difference between free and paid web hosting is that you get a variety of features in a paid web hosting whereas the free service restricts your right to many useful and sometimes important features. Free hosting services are usually targeted by the spammers and although the search engines try to handle spammed pages individually but if the complete free hosting service is being controlled by the spammers the search engines deletes the website completely from their results.
7. Custom Error Pages
Everyone is aware of the function of the error pages; and free hosting services will not permit you to use this feature. A free web hosting page will simply show the company’s general error page without the visitor having any instructions on where to look for the page. A paid web hosting on the other hand will let you use the custom pages so your visitors get the actual notification and are not confused. Custom error pages are structured to match your website and have proper instructions for the visitor about why they are seeing an error.
8. ISP Web Hosting
Many internet service providers offer free hosting space for websites when you sign up for internet access with them. You will have a URL that will resemble the free web hosting accounts. Besides having the above mentioned problems the other problem which is important to note is that once you cancel your internet provider’s services your web hosting services will also be closed or cancelled. You will lose your email id and with it also hundreds of customers that you have made.
9. Free Web Hosting is a Misapprehension of Economizing
For those who think that free web hosting is aiding in your efforts to save money for your business then you are in a misconception. Everyone wishes to save in start-ups but paying for domain name and registration is definitely not where you wish to save.
- Professionally you are not building a good image with something free
- On expanding your business you will face many problems when it comes to features or expanding the business pages etc.
- You might lose links from the websites who have added your websites link into their sites.
- Re-designing from scratch is a bad idea.
The above difference between free and paid web hosting services clearly show that although free web hosting could be tempting and might initially provide you with some features which you would be delighted to use but they are not permanent in nature. Paid web hosting is safe and your business and data will never be lost. You can avail the best features according to your needs and also expand your customers; your website is going to stay as long as your business runs.