Creating Free Websites

So you're thinking about saving some money and creating a free website? Don't start until you read this!

Although creating free websites can save you money, it also comes with some major disadvantages. Before you go ahead and create your free website, you should try and understand the pros and cons.

Advantages of Free Websites

That's about the only thing completely free websites have got going for them!

Disadvantages of Free Websites

Here are some of the major disadvantages of most free websites:

If you aren't happy about the disadvantages of creating a free website, you might prefer to create a more professional website.

If you're happy to accept the disadvantages of creating a free website, read on...

Try to get your own Domain Name

If you really must create a free website, at least try to register your own domain name (that's the thing that looks like "").

Without your own domain name, your website will always be attached to another website. On the other hand, if you do register a domain name, your website's address will be 100% yours. Plus it will always stay the same — no matter where you host your site in the future.

Advantages of Domain Names

The main advantages of having your own domain name include:

What is a Free Website?

This might seem like an obvious question, but there are several aspects to keep in mind when creating your free website.

Free Website

This is the actual website itself — the collection of pages, images, and other files that make up your website. There are usually two ways of getting a free website:

Free Hosting

All websites have to be "hosted" on a server (so that it's available to the world). Usually this is with a hosting company. Some hosting companies provide free hosting. In return for the free hosting, they usually display ads on your website. This is how they earn money — by the advertising revenue earned by displaying ads on your website.

Free URL ("Web Address")

A URL refers to the location of your web pages. You have one URL for the home page, and one for each other page. To get a free URL, your website needs to be attached to another, larger website. This is usually the site that provides the free hosting.

Unfortunately, having a free URL means that you can't have an address like "". It will be more like "". Sometimes it could be even worse, like ""

The reason you can't have a proper URL for your free website is because this part costs money. The part after the "www" and before the first "/" is the domain name.

One problem with this (apart from the ugly URL), is that, the hosting company could one day change the format of your URL. If they do this, your website will no longer reside at the previous address — nobody will know where it's gone! Then, all you can do is start giving out your new URL (and hope it doesn't change either).

The good news is that domain names are cheap. You can register them for as little as $10 — $15 per year. Once you do this, nobody else can touch it — it's yours, and only yours. That way, you can give your website's URL out to anyone, confident that it won't change.