A Free Domain Name is Not an Option
Free domain names are a false economy. It is much better to buy a domain name for your website so that you can keep control of it. This article compares the benefits of purchasing a domain name with the disadvantages that come with getting a free domain name.
While a "free website" may sound like a good thing, especially for someone who is setting up online on a shoestring budget, there are several compelling reasons why it is better to buy your own domain name and pay for web hosting.
When you buy a domain name, you are the owner, and, provided that your choice is available, you can use any name you like. But with a free web service you are not completely free to choose the name of your website. The name you choose will be attached to the URL of the main website.
When you set up a contract with the fee-based Web hosting service, you are effectively renting some real estate on the Internet. However, with free web hosting service you simply borrow space.
OK, let's look at the detail why it is much better to spend some money buying a domain name when you set up on the Internet.
First, if you buy your own domain name you can use it to brand your Internet business. You will not be able to do this with a free domain name. A free domain name is not really a domain name at all. You see, what you really get is a URL that is an extension of the host provider's domain name. What that means is that every time you promote your website you are also giving your web host provider some free publicity.
If you have your own domain name, it can transport with you if you want to change your web host. Nobody who visits your website will be aware that you have changed web host. You won't be able do that if you have a free website that provides you with a free domain name. If you do move your website, you will have to set up under a new domain name, and that means you will lose a lot of your former traffic.
If after reading this article you still wish to set up on a free website, at least use a service such as bravenet.com, where you can combine a free website with a domain name of your own.
Some free websites insist that your web pages carry their advertisements, whether or not they are appropriate to your site content. You may have to post a banner ad at the top or bottom of your home page, or even on every page of your website.
Before you set up a free website, ask yourself whether you really want to post advertisements on it for companies that you might not endorse. But that is how a free web service makes its money - by advertising and other means. When you pay for your own site, you get to post ads of your choice and you get paid for posting them. However, with a free site, the web hosting company will make money off your promotional efforts. And you won't get one penny of those profits.
Another objection to free domain names is that they do not look professional. Free domain name shouts "MEAN" loud and clear to your visitors. People just have to glance at your domain name to see that it is a freebie that you have been given by your web hosting company. You'll seem like the sort of person who expects people to pay you, but you won't pay others. Think about whether that is the message you really want to be conveying on the Internet. No matter how good your website is, a free domain name sends out the wrong message.
In short, a free domain name makes you look stingy and amateurish.
And here's another problem with freebie sites - they don't have much space. Hopefully your website will get bigger and attract more visitors. Now you are going to run out of expansion space. Now you will be required to pay for the extra space you need.
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