I’ve been asked quite a few times whether it’s OK to use a free website hosting service like 000WebHost.
Now there’s a reason why free web hosting is free – it comes with its downsides. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t use it at all, however there are times when you should stay away from it. It depends on what kind of website you want to host.
In this article I’ll be explaining when it’s a good idea to use a free web host, and when you should avoid free web hosting like the plague.
Do Use Free Web Hosting When You’re Learning the Ropes
Learning should be free, and it’s totally OK to use a free web host if you want to learn the ropes of setting up a website. Most free web hosts, like 000WebHost, are loaded with all the standard features of a paid hosting provider, such as CPanel, MySQL and email.
I’ve hosted a website with 000WebHost to aid my learning of WordPress, PHP and MySQL. In this case, a free web host was the way to go, since I decided it wasn’t worth wasting any money. However, I’ve since started to use local server software instead for this purpose, and I recommend you try it if you want to learn PHP and MySQL.
Do Use Free Web Hosting When You’re Experimenting
If you’ve got a website online, it’s likely that at some point you’ll want to add some functionality with front end or back end scripting, or edit the CSS and HTML.
Now if you’ve got a lot of people visiting your site each day, you don’t want to risk writing some faulty code and bringing down your website.
I once used a free hosted site to experiment with WordPress themes for Code Conquest. It’s an ideal way to experiment with code, without the worry of alienating your visitors while your site’s live.
Don’t Use Free Web Hosting When You’re Trying to Make a Good Impression
If you’ve got any sort of blog, a personal portfolio, or a money-making website, you’re trying to make a good impression, right?
These days, everyone has their own domain name. If you have free web hosting, you’ll only get a subdomain, and that looks very unprofessional.
Code Conquest is a site where I want to make a good impression. I wouldn’t dream of hosting it with free web hosting.
Don’t Use Free Web Hosting If You Want to Show Up in Google
When was the last time you were on a website that used free web hosting? Can’t remember?
That’s because Google, and every other search engine, hates free web hosting and will bump search results for free websites as far down as possible.
Of course, with Code Conquest I want to get a lot of search traffic, so that’s another reason why I don’t use free web hosting for it.
A website hosted for free is great for experimenting, but if you’re intending to create a proper website, free web hosts are not the way to go. Instead, I recommend you use Name.com for buying your domain and HostGator to host your site.
The general rule that I recommend you should go by is if you’re the only person who’ll be seeing your site, a free host is fine, although Dropbox is another way of creating a site for free.
But if you want the world to see your site, stay away from free hosts. The small investment you have to make for a domain and hosting is worth it.