Stay Away from Free Web Hosting

A free or inexpensive webhost can disappear quickly or decide to start charging you money. You need to consider carefully what you have at stake - is your website just a toy, or is it the result of hours of work, pages of high quality content, and the heart of your business? Even if your webhost leaves you high and dry but you've backed your content up yourself, you'll lose prospects, sales, and your reputation while your site is down. If you haven't backed up your content yourself, you may lose everything you have built. Many web hosting companies have come and gone, leaving their customers without a site until the customer can find a new service. You have to understand fully that this is NOT uncommon.

One reason for this is obvious. A free service may be only covering its expenses with advertising. What happens when customers require service? A free or cheap webhost, by its very nature, caters to new webmasters, who by their very nature often require more time than those willing and able to pay for services.

Just crunch the numbers. Your webhost charges you $4-$10 a month. You require maybe 20 minutes of a customer service rep's time in a month. You do indeed get what you pay for. You can't expect much from customer service reps whose hours or wages just got cut in order to preserve the company's bottom line. A webhost like this has two choices in order to survive - cut their costs or raise their prices.

Think about who else besides you uses cheap or free web hosting: porn site webmasters, spammers, etc. These are people whose activities, when reported to the proper authorities, can get a webhosting service blocked or shut down. Either way, you have to realize that you are affected by how other people use the same service that you are using. Remember, just like with any other purchase you make, you get what you pay for. Don't be fooled by web hosting services that offer you huge database storage capabilities for cheap. This is because data base storage is indeed inexpensive, but the service you won't be getting is what has real value - technical expertise; guaranteed uninterrupted, high-speed internet access; and quality customer support.

Kathryn Beach has used 7 different webhosts for her 10 niche websites since 1998, and can help you find the perfect webhosting service for your needs.

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