We all love FREE right? Most everyone I know does. But there are things to think about when it comes to free websites. What appears to be free is not always real clear until you are too far in and then comes the bait and switch. “Oh you want that, well that option will cost you $$$.” Here are a few things we would like you to consider before doing a free website.
- Do you own the website? Is the domain they give you for free really yours if you decide to build a website somewhere else after a while? This is huge because you will have branded yourself and your website already with this domain, and if you do not own it and have to start with a new domain, it’s almost as if you are starting over. Do you want that?
- Storage Space. Most free websites limit your storage. For some,t hat may be ok, but if your website requires a blog (which everyone should have!) pictures, and or videos, this will not work well for you. They usually limit your storage space, unless of course you want to pay extra.
- Ads. Again, unless you pay for them to not be on your website, ads are usually placed all over your website. Whether it’s for another company, or for the place you are getting the website from, the “FREE website by….” is not a good first impression for a potential customer. When they see you did not invest in your company with a well built website, makes them question what value you are going to give them with your products or services. We know budgets play into websites, but this is one area you really need to budget for.
- Number of Pages. Most people have their website not only for credibility, but to build their business. One way to grow your business is by having a well built website that turns visitors into customers. Not having enough content and pictures can hurt you, not only in SEO results, but in that potential customer leaving because they could not find what they were looking for. Most free websites limit the number of pages, unless you pay for more!
- Bandwidth. In non techy terms, bandwidth basically means how many people can visit your website per month. If you exceed your bandwidth, your website will not be “live” anymore until you either pay for more bandwidth, or the bandwidth is reset at the beginning of the monthly cycle you are on.
- Favicons. Favicons are the little icons in the URL up next to your domain. It’s another way of branding yourself. Most free websites have their logo in the favicon place, so you are not getting the identity or recognition.
- Limited support. Ever called a business to only find out that you do not have the support package and you can only get it for paying for it? This is another thing you may face with a free website. You may here ” Oh we can fix that for you for $$$.” These companies have to make money too, and that’s how they do it. They get you in a tough spot, and what do you do?
- You more than likely will not have flexibility with the design with a free website. Do you not want to be able to design the site of your dreams or that fits your business properly? Do you want to use the same template that 1000’s are already using and have the possibility of yours looking just like a competitor? Then FREE is not your best option.
These are just a few reason why we say invest in your company website. Tell the world you take your business seriously and want your company to be around for a long time. It also tells them you value their time for even looking at your website. I can guarantee you will not find a website that was built on a free platform (except for the actual company offering the websites possibly) on any first page of a search.