When you start your search for a web hosting service for any new website you wish to create, you will soon come to realise that there is no shortage of choices to be made. There are several different types of hosting services, and an absolute abundance of hosting providers, all hoping you will choose them.
Whilst many of the choices you make have several variables, one decision only has two options to choose from and that is the choice as to whether you wish to pay for your hosting or choose a hosting service that is free of charge. There are merits to both, but in this article we are going to explain, why, in most cases, opting for a paid hosting service provides several important benefits, that free hosting cannot give you.
Ability To Have A Unique Domain Name
If your website is related to your business, and in particular, if you wish to build that business into a recognisable brand, it is essential that you have a unique domain for your website. Many paid hosting companies actually include a free domain of your choice when you sign up with them.
With a free web hosting company you will have to pay for your domain separately, and the other main issue is that you might not even be able to use a unique domain name. Instead, you will only be able to use a sub-domain. That means that instead of your website having ‘myawesomebrand.com’ as its domain, for example, you may only be able to use ‘hostingservice.com/myawesomebrand’, which is far from memorable and looks ugly.
You Have More Disc Space
Every file that is required to create your website, and every piece of content you use on the website such as images, videos, and audio files, will be stored on the servers your hosting company uses. The more disc space which they provide within your hosting plan the more ability you have to add more content as your website and audience grows.
Unfortunately, on a free hosting plan the amount of disc space you are allowed will be minimal, and this means that, not only will you not be able to have much content on your website, but its design may also be compromised given that some of its design elements, such as graphics, use some large files.
Uptime Guarantees Are Adhered To
Your website is of little use to your business if it is not live, and this is why paid web hosting services offer their clients a guarantee that their website’s uptime will meet a certain level. This is usually close to, but not quite 100%, so you are looking at 99.99% or thereabouts.
Given that they use less reliable and lower quality servers, a free hosting service will either not offer an uptime guarantee, or its guarantee is unlikely to be met. Even if they were to only offer a 99% uptime guarantee, that means that in any given month your website could be down for at least 7 hours, which could mean thousands of dollars of lost revenue.
Greater Bandwidth = Faster Website Load Times
With hosting, bandwidth can be compared to the flow rate of a water pipe, and the more bandwidth your web hosting provider gives you, the faster your website will load, even if it has lots of multimedia files. Paid hosting services will offer you far more bandwidth than free ones.
Greater bandwidth which helps your website load faster will also enhance the user experience of those who visit your site, meaning they are more likely to become a lead or a customer. It also contributes to your SEO and thus can help your Google and other search engine rankings to improve.