If you want to own or build a fully functional website on the World Wide Web, you need a high-end web hosting service. Web hosting is a type of internet hosting service, and the companies that provide it are called web hosts.
In Layman’s terms, choosing web hosting is like renting out a space on the internet. You can refer to this space as yours as this is where internet users across the globe will access your website.
Hosting allows you to place your website & its related content on a server, basically a powerful computer capable of delivering your website content to numerous users(accessing it) simultaneously.
There are many web hosting providers globally that you can choose as per your requirements. You can either rent out the space or buy it permanently. However, some providers offer free hosting services with limited functionalities.
And this is the biggest dilemma every first-time site owners faces. Every person or business is always trying to minimize their cost but wants excellent quality. This mostly leads to no or wrong decisions.
But not anymore. Today, in this article, we will talk about Free Hosting vs Paid Hosting and explore various advantages & disadvantages each one holds.
So, let us get started.
Free Hosting vs Paid Hosting – Pros & Cons
Free Web Hosting
Under this hosting service, the web host provides you with web hosting for a limited number of web pages with limited resources for no cost.
It is not a hoax, as many leading web hosting companies like WordPress (one of the best CMS platforms to build a website)offer this service. But the only thing you need to know is that there is no such thing as completely free.
Hosting a website is an expensive affair. So the web hosts have harmless ways to make money from the customers with free web hosting plans.
Firstly, they use their company’s name in your URL. For example www.yourwebsitename.wordpress.com
Secondly, they will either limit your website traffic or display ads on your website and more. In the long run, it can harm your business and personal branding.
In a nutshell, free hosting is not an ideal choice for someone who wants to make money online through his website. With this, you have no control over your website, you get no customer support, and they can shut down your website without informing you.
But if you are a newbie who wants to learn the working of websites & web hosting and want to polish your skills, free hosting is for you.
- Free of charge
- Best way to learn about the working of websites & web hosting
- You can use your website to place various forms of advertising media
- Security is not guaranteed
- Your website will always have the name of the web host in its URL
- You have no control over what types of ads might be displayed on your website
- Limited Resources
- No customer support
Paid Web Hosting
In paid web hosting, you either rent out the space on the server or buy it permanently. Compared to free hosting, paid hosting comes with a lot of perks.
You get your personalized domain name, creating your unique identity over the internet. You have complete control over your website and can handle it as you like. (Also, you can get your custom domain name from these best domain name providers.)
Not only this, you have unlimited bandwidth, no restriction on traffic, and can display ads of your choice if you want.
Different web hosts provide various types of paid hosting, namely,
- Shared hosting
- Managed WordPress hosting
- Dedicated server hosting
- Virtual private server (VPS) hosting
- Cloud hosting
- Enterprise hosting
For each type, you will come across a different price range & different features. You can choose whichever suits you the best. You don’t necessarily have to spend money like water to get a good hosting service.
- Highly secure
- You have full access to your website
- Unique domain name
- Unlimited server resources
- Excellent performance
- CDN (Content delivery network) Integration
- Control over the display of ads (the host can not display them without your permission)
- The purchase comes with a money-back guarantee with most of the web hosts
- Can be a little Expensive
- It can be tricky to understand & handle
Free Hosting vs Paid Hosting – Comparison
Free web hosting forces you to use the name of your web host in your domain address. However, with paid one, there is no such thing. You can have a personalized domain name for your branding.
The server resources with free web hosting are limited. You only get a specific number of web pages, bandwidth, & disk space. However, with paid hosting, all these resources are unlimited.
When it comes to reliability, the free hosting websites are dull. They have more downtime than uptime. In other words, they are not reliable.
On the other hand, Paid web hosting provides more than 95% uptime, which is necessary for business growth.
Search Engine Ranking
By choosing free web hosting, you give the right to the web host to display ads on your website. This becomes a headache as sometimes irrelevant & unprofessional links appear on your website.
Websites with such factors are looked down on by search engines. So, no matter how good your work is, you will get lower rankings only.
But if you have a paid hosting service, you are already professional in the eyes of your web host & he can not display anything on your website without your consent.
Thus, no irrelevant data on your website means better online visibility & better search engine rankings.
The website performance on free hosting is poor as numerous websites are using a single resource. This is why such websites face more downtime.
With paid web hosting, you will face no issue. Although it is not entirely immune to downtime, it will not affect you gravely as it occurs during nighttime and that too for a few minutes only.
Check here how to improve your website performance on paid hosting.
There come times when you might need expert technical support to resolve your website issues.
Free web hosting gets you no technical support from your web host. You are basically on your own.
However, in paid hosting, you get priority technical support. You get your website checked & issues handled that you don’t even know existed.
Here, we have discussed both free hosting and paid hosting services. For free hosting, you can use blogger, wordpress.com, Wix, etc and for paid hosting, you can choose HostGator.
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