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Free Webhosting

Dec 15, 2007
People say that the best things in life are free and this could be quite true for many aspects of life. The basic necessities such as air, sunlight, among many other things are still accessible to people without bills or tag prices.

But there are many great things in life that you really need to pay for in order to acquire. This is true mostly with new
stuff like gadgets, cars, and whatnot.

To get the best, you have to shell out some money. When it comes to webhosting this may be true because free webhosting services are great for a small site starting out.

However once a site gets busy and is growing, the free option is not really recommended, particularly for ecommerce websites. The reason why is because free webhosting companies usually cannot provide three important things: a good up-time guarantee, good support turnaround time, and quality customer service. You get what you pay for.

Good and Realistic Up-time Guarantee

A good webhosting service should be able to provide a realistic up-time guarantee. While most free webhosting services may indeed promise to keep your website throughout the year, they usually do not have enough resources to guarantee this.

Free webhosting services are a bargain for a small hobby site, but are bound to be subject to glitches and technical problems and you cannot really complain as much since your not paying for their service anyway. The service is free and ranting does not make much of a difference unlike for paid companies who see you as a customer that should be king (or queen) rather than just a free member.

Of course paid webhosting services may also be subject to some technical glitches - they do get downtime sometimes, but since they have more resources to deal with problems, they can guarantee a better downtime than free services. Plus since you are paying you can demand customer service. Realistically, paid webhosting services may not be able to guarantee 100% downtime, but they can guarantee up to 99.9% downtime, which is pretty good compared to how much free services can promise. Because of this, free webhosting services are not really recommended especially for business websites that require their sites to be up and running at all times, or at least 99% of the time.

Good Support Turnaround Time

Another important thing that a webhosting service should make available for their clients is a good support turnaround time. Webhosting services should be able to respond to your inquiries as fast as possible. If you encounter problems like downtime and send an inquiry or request to your web host, you need them to respond immediately, or else your website and your business might be compromised.

You might not be able to expect this from free services. You didn't pay so why should they jump when you say so? At the most you can expect them to have only web-based or email inquiry aside from a preset troubleshooting FAQ page. While these could suffice for minor problems, they may not work for dire situations where you need immediate action.

Only paid companies could guarantee good support turnaround time because they are the only ones who can usually afford to hire support staff to work around the clock. Most paid webhosting companies have 24-hour support teams that could help you practically anytime unlike free services who probably only have voluntary teams that work from time-to-time.

Quality Customer Service

The above is very much connected to the quality of support service. You should be able to obtain a high quality of customer service from your web host. Not only should they be able to respond to you fast when you have problems, they should also be able to provide you with useful answers that can actually fix your dilemmas.

Free services usually do not have customer service personnel who are specifically trained to troubleshoot problems. Again, they might just have volunteers who provide services when they can, but they most likely do not work in an established customer service system that paid services implement. But hey, the free price is right.

Paid services actually hire and train people to work on customer service specifically. They are bound to be ready to help you when you have problems, and they are highly skilled to give practical and effective solutions to most, if not all of the glitches you might encounter.

Free stuff are always welcome because money is indeed useful to hang onto, however there are important things that you cannot really just cut corners about. If you own a business website, it is not recommended for you to get free webhosting services.

You might get something good for something free but you cannot always be sure that you would get what you need for your business. Free webshosting is great for a hobby or family site or something simple. But when you get busy and professional you need to switch to some professional webhosting too.
About the Author
Pat Caymus writes about reseller webhosting and related topics such as how to create a website .
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