Someone has said that the best things in life are often for free. But is that the case with web hosting? Let's say you have made the decision to create a stunning website. Now, you are obviously torn between whether to opt for paid web hosting or cheap web hosting.
It's understandable that sometimes, the cost of web hosting can seem a little daunting at first. In that case, free hosting plans can entice new website owners. Now the question arises, is there a major reason to pay a for or a crucial service when you can always get it free of cost? Well, it depends.
In this post, we are going to take a detailed look at the difference between free and cheap web hosting providers. Consider it a quick guide to help you make a sound decision. Let's dive into the details.
Points to Consider for Free vs. Cheap Web Hosting
To differentiate free web hosting from cheap counterparts, it's important to consider certain parameters and whether they align with your website goals. Let's take a look.
1 - Beginner-Friendliness
If you have just created a website, it's natural for it to not have as much traffic as a popular site. This means that you don't need a massive network bandwidth, additional disk storage, and other high-profile web hosting features. In that case, free web hosting would offer efficient data transfer.
So, by the time you accumulate more visitors or use up storage, there is no harm in using free web hosting. However, if you have gained a decent customer base and regular traffic, you will need a sophisticated back and infrastructure. That is something only paid web hosting can provide.
2 - Reliability
The uptime of cheap web hosting platforms is definitely more than the free ones offer. Paid ones have better infrastructure and can handle more traffic. If your site is slow to load, you can lose out on valuable customers. Free web hosting can make you compromise a little bit on reliability and decrease conversions. Cheap web hosting decreases the chances of downtime and keep your conversion rates unaffected.
3 - Customer Support
No matter how sophisticated technology becomes, customers will always encounter problems. Technical issues are unavoidable and the same goes for web hosting. While even free hosting platforms like Hostinger offer assistance, lack of prompt support can delay troubleshooting. On the other hand, even if you opt for cheap web hosting, paid hosting plans usually offer priority support.
4 - Advertisements
Ads are something that proves that free web hosting solutions are not exactly free. After all, these platforms have to do something to keep running, right? They are not getting any monetary benefit directly from you, so, they make their profits by displaying ads on your site.
To be very clear, you won't be earning a dime if your web hosting this place these ads. Moreover, if you are trying to build a brand, ads can turn out to be distracting and cluttering. If you don't want to drive attention away from your web page, a paid cheap web hosting is the way to go.
5 - Security of a Website
As technology undergoes a massive advancement, hacking attempts increase. Whether you have a small or big website, security always has to be your first priority. While free web hosting accounts offer a certain extent of security, the level of safety that comes with paid web hosting is definitely higher. The real question is, how confidential is your back-end data. Do you need an SSL certificate? The more security services you need, the more web hosting is going to cost you.
The bottom line, whether you should opt for free vs. cheap web hosting depends on your requirements. Are you planning on scaling your business in the near future? If not, you can surely opt for free web hosting. However, if scalability is a priority for you, it is advisable to opt for paid web hosting even if it's cheap. Of course, you can always upgrade later according to the traffic your website gets.
All in all, a common point to note is that free hosting will always come with limitations whereas you are going to have to pay something even if you opt for the cheapest web hosting. In the end, it's all about your budget and goals. If you are just starting out in the webspace, you can begin with free web hosting.
But if brand building and conversions are your short-term goals, cheap web hosting will keep you running smoothly for a longer time. Just try to see the bigger picture and come to a conclusion that suits your own website needs. If you have any questions regarding this subject, feel free to reach out via the comments section below. You can also sound off your own experiences about free and cheap web hosting.