Websites are essential for most businesses. A free website can then seem like a smart solution. Beware, such a strategy may not pay off. We will explain why.
Before you buy a website, think carefully about what you need the site and how you plan to develop it. Only then do you decide if you want a website for free, that is, sites that you click on yourself and run on a domain that will not be yours. Or you have the opportunity to invest at least a few hundred crowns. Even for that amount, you can have a well-designed website.
Free site benefits:
1. It’s free
You don’t pay anyone for the domain, hosting, or production site. There is no danger that you will invest tens of thousands in the web and in a year you will find that the business does not bring you as much as you expected.
2. It’s fast
You click the site yourself, you don’t have to wait for the time to “make a friend, who makes websites,” or look for a professional web designer.
3. It’s easy
You don’t need to find experts, you don’t have to coordinate the work of a graphic designer, coder and copywriter, choose web hosting, or get into the way content management systems like WordPress work.
Disadvantages of free web:
1. It’s never completely free
Even if you create your own website, it will cost you time and energy . After half a year, however, you may find that the pages load slowly or have outages due to low data transfer capacity. Or you need to add more features – a payment gateway, for example – and you’ll find that you either have to pay extra or have to look for another solution. And you can’t export and transfer a free website that you’ve worked hard to create.
2. You act untrustworthy
When you buy a site for free, it will run on a domain such as www.kvetinarkalucie.freeweb.cz. This shows potential customers that you run a somewhat garage business . And you won’t put such an address on your business card either. You will buy your own domain for less than two hundred crowns and it will be yours alone. You can then have the website on the domain kvetinarkalucie.cz
2. Poor traceability
The domain www.kvetinarstvilucie.freeweb.cz will be hard to find in search engines. In addition, few people can write such an address correctly. It’s also good to know that if you don’t have your own domain, you can’t put Google Analytics tracking codes on your site and track your site traffic and other metrics.
3. You don’t have an email on the same domain
If you write to your customers from [email protected], you will make a frivolous impression . With your own domain and professional email, you can build your brand much more efficiently, with every message you send.
4. Missing technical support
If your site suddenly stops working, you don’t have customer support to fix the outage immediately. If the web is a major part of your business, such as an e-shop, you don’t want it to break before Christmas, for example, when you have the most orders. This will unnecessarily lose revenue .
TIP: You can have a simple and professionally designed site for a domain, for a few hundred. Try Web Business Card.
5. Limited options
Free versions of web editors don’t have as many features as paid ones. As mentioned, they do not allow web analytics (or only to a limited extent, for example in the last 30 days), you can only create a certain number of subpages, they do not allow online payments or video placement on your site. That may be enough for a start, but if you want to grow your business, you may run into annoying.
6. Hosting may be down
Because you don’t pay anyone for anything, you can’t expect top quality from free hosting either. Capacity is limited, as is data transfer . The latter parameter affects the loading speed. Not only will your users wait for your site to appear completely, but it will also disqualify you in the eyes of search engines and make SEO worse. Not to mention that hosting can be down and your site will not be fully functional.
TIP: Reliable hosting will cost you a few tens of crowns a month. And you have 24/7 technical support.
You are not building your brand on your own domain, but you are advertising to the site provider for free (such as www.kvetinarkalucie.freeweb.cz ). Your ad can appear not only in the footer of your site, but in the top bar, distracting from messages or goods on your site.
8. The free site isn’t entirely yours
The content you put on your site (text, images, videos, icons) is not backed up for free. So, for example, if a provider decides to turn off your site, you will lose all the work you put into creating the site.
Photo: Bruce Mars, Pexels