This is a guest post, written by Mantas Padrostis
If you are one of those who is planning to start a blog or website at almost nil cost, go for WordPress, the no. 1 open-source content management system in the world that is entirely free to download and use. When you choose free self-hosted WordPress hosting along with it you have your site up even without opening your purse strings.
However, if you are serious about your online business, it is always better to go for premium WordPress hosting and locate your website on servers of a reputable hosting provider.
In this post, I will talk about a few pros and cons of free WordPress hosting. I hope this post will help you choose an ideal hosting solution for your next online project. But before that let’s find out what exactly free WordPress hosting is!
What is Free WordPress Hosting?
As I said above, the platform WordPress is free itself but to host a site you need to buy a hosting plan. As the name suggests, free WordPress hosting is a non-paid hosting service that is offered by a provider for the WordPress platform. There are many hosting providers that deal in free WordPress hosting. Some popular names are:
- WordPress.com (not to be confused with the actual WordPress project/software at WordPress.org)
Advantages of Choosing Free WordPress Hosting
Enhance Your WordPress Skills
As you may know, WordPress is one of the most popular content management systems in the world. If you learn WordPress, you can have a good future as a WordPress developer. Plus, free WordPress hosting is a good way to test your WP skills and improve them without paying a single dollar.
With free WordPress hosting, you can make your WP site live in a few minutes and improve your skills.
Try Things Before Paying
As a newbie, you may like to try things before you put money on the table. Well, free WordPress hosting gives you this choice. With free hosting, you can get an idea of how a hosting provider is going to serve you if you go for their premium hosting.
Moreover, people who are not sure about the WordPress platform for their online businesses can also go for free hosting and try things out.
Your Site is Receiving Limited Traffic
If you are running a website that has limited content and traffic, you may not like to bear the cost of premium WordPress hosting plans.
SEO & Website Speed is Not Very Important
If your website is at the stage where you don’t see that much importance in SEO and Website loading time, free WordPress hosting can help you save some dollars.
If you are an amateur or hobbyist blogger and want to showcase your talent to the world, free hosting can be a good option for you to launch a blog at zero cost. With the passage of time, if you find your blog is growing and needs a powerful hosting environment you can go for premium plans.
Disadvantages of Free WordPress Hosting
Limited Amount of Space
With most free WP hosting plans, you get a limited amount of bandwidth and storage space. Therefore, there is not enough room for large amounts of traffic or a growing website. If you have a site that has multiple pages, videos, and colorful graphics, you should definitely avoid it.
This is the biggest disadvantage most people complain about. Most free WordPress hosting companies enforce users to show ads on their blogs or websites, which is quite unprofessional.
No Main Domain
Some free hosting providers do not let users use a separate domain name for their sites. They only provide a sub-domain on the name of their own domain (like my-awesome-site.random-free-web-host.com). It can be a big problem if you want to create a professional website.
Poor Customer Support
Another big disadvantage of free WordPress hosting is that you get limited tech support (if any). So in case any technical error occurs, you will have to rely on a tutorial to solve that problem.
In comparison to pros, the list of cons is bigger. If you don’t want to compromise on performance, but can’t spend too much on hosting, you may look for cheap hosting for your WordPress site.
If you ask me, is it worth to use free WordPress hosting? I would say “Yes”, but not for everyone. Free WordPress hosting can be a good option for startups, learners, and those who are running out of budget, but not as a long term solution for a serious website.
Editor’s note: If free hosting is NOT for you, check out our article on Managed WordPress Hosting.