For those who are just getting into the idea of website design, free website hosting may sound ideal. The website, and often the tools to help you create the pages, are all there. However, as with most things, those offering the service must make money on it in some way. That could lead to advantages and disadvantages with the choice.
For those who want a personal site to share information with other family and friends, a free website hosting service may be the best way to go. The biggest advantage is that there is no cost. There is no need to worry about what the domain name might be because you will know everyone visiting the page and can send them the URL address directly. Thus, for those people, free website hosting is an easy answer.
Also, for those who are bothered by pop-up ads, it is best to check ahead and see which ads may be utilized by a free website hosting service. Some may make heavy use of such ads. Others may use ads that shake annoyingly and are a nuisance. Others may use questionable advertising methods, such as telling each visitor they are the 10 millionth visitor to the site and they have won a prize. Such ads may reflect poorly on you, even though they are not your ads.
For those who may be looking at conducting business over the Internet, especially through the use of an online shop, free website hosting is not a good choice. A website host may not offer any commerce ability at all. The domain name may be long, and may not truly reflect your business. Further, some pop-up ads, and other ads on the page, are placed there strategically after searching through the text on the site. Therefore, ads on your website could be promoting a competitor.
In some cases, for those who may want to attract more people to the website, free website hosting may not be the choice either. Some search engines are programmed to automatically exclude free web hosting domains, meaning there is no chance your site would ever be picked up. Others may put them down lower in the search listings. So if there are thousands or millions of sites on that topic, it is just as bad as not listing it at all.
Free website hosting services appeal to a very particular niche. For some, they may be the right choice. For others, it could be a very bad experience. The best option you have, if considering a free website host, is to thoroughly research the options available. Read reviews and look at other sites from the host. Some hosts may be better than others.