The thought of free website building and hosting is tempting, isn’t it? After all, who wouldn’t want to get something for free, especially for those working within a tight budget? Well, just remember that you get what you pay for. So before you learn that the hard way, here are 10 reasons why free websites are a very bad idea.
There are very few things in this world that are truly free. A free website provider will find a way to make money off your site. They may charge you for additional services or place distracting, unattractive advertisements on your site. They can also sell your email address or other personal information.
To keep costs down, free website hosting is usually served from a shared environment, meaning hundreds of other websites could be using the same bandwidth and resources that yours uses. The result? Very slow load times. This is bad for SEO and creates a poor user experience.
Because of the shared environment of free hosting, you’ll likely have very limited storage and bandwidth available. Exceeding either quota may result in your site being shut down or paying additional fees.
Most free site providers require you to use their domain name as your website address. Will anyone take you seriously if your URL is mycompany.freewebsitehosting.com? And, that URL is only valid as long as you use their service. If you decide to build elsewhere, you won’t be able to redirect your users to the new site.
Free website builders often use proprietary software. So when you’ve outgrown their service and want to move on to something better, your content can’t be easily migrated. Paying someone to manually export your website content can be very expensive.
Free web services are notoriously vulnerable to hacking and malware, both of which will hurt your website’s reputation and SEO. And because these companies offer limited access to your files, you may find it difficult to recover if your website is victimized.
Unlike professional website design, free providers usually offer a limited selection of poorly-designed site templates. Do you want your business represented by a cheap-looking website?
Because of the costs involved, free website hosting will not provide you with regular backups of your site content. If something bad happens to your website, there will be no method for restoring your data.
Free website providers usually will not allow you to install analytics code to track your visitor data. Why? Because they typically run their own code to see how well your site is performing for them.
Most free website companies do not offer responsive templates that adjust to tablet and mobile screens. This will drive users away and negatively impact your SEO. With so many smartphones in use these days having a mobile-friendly site is crucial to the success of your business and could be the reason why a potential customer chooses your competitor instead.
Every business needs a website, but you should never start with a free one. They are unreliable, potentially unsafe, unnecessarily difficult, and severely limited. If you would like to discuss how our Website Design or Managed Website Hosting can help you succeed, please don’t hesitate to contact us.