Unfortunately, many newbies and amateur entrepreneurs fall for the marketing gimmick — ‘free web hosting sites’ — simply because it’s free. But, entrepreneurs should know better – in business, there’s no such thing as free lunch. Sure, you get free server space, free sub-domain and exposure over the web, but in reality, these benefits are masked by other drawbacks and limitations, rendering your website unsuitable for business use.
Here are some of the major drawbacks and limitations that you must consider before putting your business on a free web hosting site:
There’s nothing more that will make your business look amateurish and dubious than not having your own domain, which is exactly what will happen if you run your business on a free web hosting site. You will instead, be provided with a subdomain under the host site. We’re referring to sites that look like this: www.yourwebsite.wordpress.com, or www.yourwebsite.wix.com. To avoid this, you can buy your own domain from web domain service sites such as daddy.com and bluehost.com while still using WordPress and Wix as your platform. If you want your website to be easily remembered and recognized, you don’t want it to be overshadowed by the adjunct domain, right?
Unrecognized by search engines
Free websites are treated as less significant by search engines. Because you don’t have access to the backend, you can’t optimize your site and capitalize on SEO to improve your rankings. No matter how ‘nice’ you make your website look, it still won’t get that much attention.
Almost 2/3 of the world population owns a mobile phone. In 2017, 17.19 million people in Australia accessed the internet through their mobile phones; and this is expected to rise to 19.27 million by 2022. So, what does this mean for businesses? — You would have to ensure that your website is mobile-optimized! The bad news is that free websites are not mobile-friendly. Just consider how many potential customers you are likely to lose!
There’s a reason why all free websites look the same. It’s because the majority of free websites offer only a limited number of optional themes. These follow the very basic header, body, footer structure, which is neither suitable nor sufficient for certain business types. At most, you would only be able to layout the design to your liking, but not the interface that will yield the best customer experience. It’s always better to build your website professionally from scratch, customized for your type of business model, brand style and target audience, rather than add functions to free templates and themes that were not initially there — which definitely costs higher.
Limited disk space and bandwidth
Free web hosting providers will give you only limited disk space and a restricted amount of bandwidth. The number of monthly visitors permitted on your website is referred to as ‘bandwidth’. This means that you will be able to upload only a limited number of high quality photos and videos. To make matters worse, no one will be able to view your page once the permitted bandwidth has been exceeded. When this happens, some free web hosting sites will require you to purchase their premium web hosting plans with additional disk space and bandwidth. Depending on the hosting site, you might actually end up having to spend more, compared to having your own professionally made website with unlimited bandwidth, and you having the ability to control your disk space!
Slow loading speed and unexpected downtimes
Slow and sluggish loading will be inevitable because too many free websites share one server, bandwidth and disk space. Expect to get low uptime, consistent downtime, sudden page unavailability, or complete data loss — which brings us to our next point.
You can’t expect security from free websites, EVER. Free web hosting sites are allowed to use and sell your data in whichever way they want. This becomes a serious issue as your website increases in popularity, and in most cases, the Ts and Cs of free hosting sites grant them complete legal immunity from whatever happens to your website. To put it simply, your website becomes their property and commodity. In addition, free websites may be vulnerable to hackers due to the lack of protection, exposing it to easy attack from malicious software, hackers and breachers. On the other hand, with your own website, you can rest easy that it will be fast, secure and private with its built-in privacy and security plugins and extensions!
Lack of support and maintenance
Free websites do not get on-going support and maintenance from their host sites. You can only get these features by paying their premium plans. You can opt to invest in hiring professional web developers instead to maintain your website at a more reasonable price.
Free websites are for personal use, ‘REAL’ websites are for businesses
We’re not completely disregarding the advantage of free websites. In fact, we recommend them to those looking to build their personal websites that are not commercial or income generating. However, if you want to establish a commercial website or blog, then we recommend that you consult with development experts and invest on a ‘REAL’ website.
Entrust your business to top web developers, without having to break the bank!
If you’re looking for tech experts who can provide the best return on your investment, then look no further. At LemonApp, we believe that every business deserves a ‘REAL’ website without having to spend too much. Our team provides web and web app development on a WordPress CRM platform. You can still expect a high performance website that is customized based on your brand and customer needs even with our already marketing-leading prices. Further, our team will monitor and fix any issues that come up, and handle your website from backend to frontend.
If you’re looking to have your website built, we would like to offer you our EOY discount:
Our starter package begins at $399 only!
To top it all, with our ongoing guarantee of 100% obligation-free ideation and scoping, we’ve ensured you’ve got nothing to lose in exploring possibilities! Let’s get you a REAL website for FY 22!