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Web Hosting: Free vs. Paid Service

free or paid web hosting

In order to get a website on the internet, most of us go through a web hosting provider. These companies allow you store data on their servers, publish your pages and make them accessible on the World Wide Web. Those new to web hosting typically have two choices: free or paid service. Let’s examine both to help determine which one is right for you.

With most free web hosting plans, you are able to upload content such as text files and images on the space provided at no cost. This type of service is ideal for someone new to hosting as it allows you to become familiar with a server. With a paid host, you are of course required to pay for allotted space on their server. These fees vary from monthly to quarterly or annual schedules, and from company to company. The good thing is that paid web hosting is very affordable with some plans starting under $4.95 per month. This type of plan is more suitable for professionals looking to run an online business. A paid web hosting service provides you with bandwidth, storage and features that typically are not included in a free plan.

The reason free web hosting providers are limited in features is due to the lack of revenue. They rely on other companies to provide income in the way of banner advertisements promoting the products and services of their clients. A paid host however, makes steady revenue from their loyal base of clients. This makes a major difference as free providers also lack reliable customer support as well.

The majority of advantage of free web hosting is obliviously the price, or lack thereof. This makes a perfect solution for personal users looking to create a fun and friendly site, as well as a few small businesses just starting out on the web. Another advantage as that many free hosting companies provide you with easy to use tools to quickly upload your content on their server, something that is very attractive to newbies.

There are also a number of drawbacks when it comes to using a free web hosting service. For starters, you are usually forced to display advertising windows and banners on your site. This can be very distracting and place a blemish on your credibility, as visitors may be turned off. Another problem with free hosting relates to your domain. In most cases it begins with the name of the web hosting company followed by the name of your website, reading something like this: Some view this as very unprofessional and may negatively judge your site. Besides that, this URL is far more difficult to remember.

With a paid web hosting service, you decide what, if any ads and banners are placed on your site. You can choose to charge a fee or post banners free as part of an affiliating marketing system. You also get a unique domain name that does not tie you to a specific web host. This name can typically be transferred to another provider as well. Most of these services have large capacities that enable you to store huge amounts of data and conduct a number of activities such as uploading content and streaming multimedia files. You are also provided with several features to enhance functionality and presence including built-in professionally designed templates, sophisticated content management systems and blogging software.

So what’s the best solution for you? Well that all depends on what you plan to do with your website. If it does not require too much space and can succeed with limited features, a free plan may be a good option. However, if you’re looking to make a mark in e-commerce and require shopping carts and additional software, a paid web hosting provider is certainly the way to go.

Paid hosting doesn’t have to expensive. BlueHost and IX Web Hosting are two companies that offer affordable service packed with great features!

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Need quality paid web hosting with inexpensive? Try BlueHost ($6.95) or IX Web Hosting ($4.95)

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21st June 2008
Posted by Web Hosting Consultant in Best Web Hosting Tips

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