Top Free Web Hosting Services
Welcome to our information site for top free web hosting services on the Internet.
To run a website on the Internet, you need a web host to serve your web pages to visitors. A web host is simply a computer with web server software connected to the Internet. It is possible to host your website on a computer at your home or business, and indeed, many universities host their websites on computers located on their own premises. However, to run a server at home, one would need a fast broadband connection, excellent technical expertise, and a considerable amount of time spent on setting up and maintaining a server. For this reason, most websites are hosted by companies which specialize in running web hosts and offer a variety of web hosting plans. These web hosting plans can be divided into paid plans costing from a few dollars to a few thousand dollars a month, and free plans for small websites. This article will focus on free web hosts, examining their pros and cons, and how to use free website hosting sites successfully. Also you will see a big list of top free web hosting sites at the end of the article.
What are free web hosts?
For the purposes of this article, free web hosts are defined as hosting services with no out-of-pocket expenses. However, you may be required to pay in other ways. For example, some companies stipulate that they have a right to use content hosted on their services on a royalty-free basis. Other services may require that customers contribute to their forums, or complete surveys or other requests. Furthermore, some of these plans may limit the functionality of their client’s websites, or place compulsory banner ads on users’ sites, which can cause inconvenience to visitors resulting in lost revenue for websites. Still, all of the above sites will qualify as free web hosting sites for the purposes of this article, because they incur no out-of-pocket expenses.
Why would you use a free website hosting plan?
Obviously, if you are on a tight budget, the zero cost aspect of free webhosting services will be particularly attractive. However, there are many other situations in which this type of website hosting solution is appropriate. Students doing projects on HTML coding may find it convenient to host their creations on free hosts. Most paid hosting plans involve relatively long-term contracts, so websites meant for short-term temporary use are better hosted on free website hosting services. Event-based sites to be shared among a small group of friends, such as wedding websites or holiday websites, are especially appropriate for free hosts. Small business owners may find that a free host is sufficient to give their businesses an online presence. For example, many restaurant websites consist of nothing more than a home page with the name and location of the restaurant, and a few pages of menus. Small sites like these can be easily hosted on free web hosts.
Free website hosting plans often come with many restrictions and drawbacks compared to paid plans. This is partly to ensure that they do not get abused by unscrupulous webmasters, and partly so that the hosting company does not run up large costs operating the services. Typically, free plans are limited in storage space and bandwidth, so media-heavy sites with lots of picture and video files are not appropriate for these plans. There is usually no telephone customer support, and webmasters using these plans may have to rely on community or forum support, and should be prepared to troubleshoot any technical difficulties that arise by themselves. Security and reliability of free sites are sometimes not a priority for the hosting company, so the use of these sites for mission critical commercial use is not recommended. These service plans may also not support scripting languages such as PHP, Perl, or Python, and may not support MySQL databases. This would rule out the use of popular content management software such as WordPress, Joomla, Drupal and phpBB. Some of these plans place restrictions on the number of items that can be sold in web stores, and on the number of domains and sub-domains that can be hosted. However, almost all companies that offer free site hosting plans also offer paid plans with much better features and far fewer restrictions. These companies typically make it very easy for free clients to upgrade to a paid plan, so there is a way to overcome any troubling restrictions should your website traffic grow to exceed the limitations on the free plan. Finally, you can, of course, simply choose to move your entire website to another new server, although that is typically more involved and difficult than simply upgrading on the same server.
How to choose free website hosts on the market today?
If you intend to create a large website with large graphics and video files, then storage space and bandwidth will be your primary considerations. For large websites, site hosting service plans with FTP uploading capability will make it easier to upload your many files. If you intend to run a blog, you may want to look for webhosting sites with WordPress software to host your blog. If you want to earn income from your website by displaying ads, then you may want to focus on plans with no ads so that your own ads will not have competition. If you intend to host multiple sites on the same host, you may want to look for a domain hosting plan which allows you to host multiple domains and sub-domains. Many free website hosting websites also provide drag-and-drop website building tools, which can make life easier for new webmasters creating a new website. If this is what you need, free website builder and hosting sites might be what you are looking for.
Beyond these functional considerations, you should also consider the reputation and support of the free web host. You can find out how good the web host is by reading reviews and testimonials about the companies on the many webmaster forums dedicated to reviewing hosting sites. If the company has a community support forum, you should also read some posts on the forum to check if the company and community are generally responsive to issues raised by clients of the free plans. Finally, you may also want to check the Better Business Bureaus for any complaints against the hosting company. You should choose several popular free web hosting services and compare the various free website hosting plans.
In conclusion, free web hosting sites provide the opportunity to save money when creating a new website, but you should do your own research and choose an appropriate hosting company according to your needs.
List of Top Free Web Hosting Sites