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  1. #1
    Senior Member I Brian's Avatar
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    I often see people asking for Free Hosting.

    While I can understand that not everyone can pay, I just thought I'd offer a few words.

    Firstly, the webhosting market is flooded. No - make that deluged. Once upon a time there was an easy profit to be made. Now webhosts has to fight just to make a profit. There are too many hosts and competition has driven the cost down so low you could get a full year's hosting for the price of a night out.

    So my point is this - the people who wander about various forums, looking for free webhosting, are completely missing the point. This is a buyer's market.

    That means there's plenty of room for negotiation with a lot of companies.

    Don't get me wrong - there are a lot of established hosts who will stick to their guns. But there are also a lot of newer hosts out who you can haggle with.

    You don't even have to be forceful - even a polite inquiry can work wonders (I know that from experience ).

    So what's the catch?

    The catch is simply this - because the market is so flooded with webhosts, there's a high failure rate. Many new hosts here today will not be here next year. So your site may not be safe in the long term.

    Some people will ride free hosting for kicks. These sites are disposable short term ventures that likely have no real webpresence - certainly not in the longer term.

    So my final point is this - if you feel too cash strapped to start your site professionally, or else you simply want to test drive webhosting itself with something simple and temporary, then talk to any of a range of new webhosts, and politely haggle.

    Who knows - any one of them could become a very successful long term business, and you could establish some excellent contacts and learn some important points.

    And if it bombs - you've likely lost the cost of a 6-pack. But I bet you also learn some value lessons.

    Free hosting is for jokers, and most webhosting companies know that except for some excellent exceptions (local charities, for example), this will be the general rule - and jokers aren't worth doing business with.

    But if you're simply looking to explore the business, the market is in your favour. It's up to you to empower yourself with that knowledge.

    Just 2c.

  2.  

  3. #2
    Senior Member filburt1's Avatar
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    Stickied, nice read
    filburt1, Web Design Forums.net founder
    Site of the Month contest: submit your site or vote for the winner!

  4. #3
    Senior Member Brak's Avatar
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    Heh... nice little... umm, rant. I agree with you though. I have 3 domains to my own name at this point, and a good 3gig tranfer/300mb space... and I"ve spent a grand total of 41.85. I spend more on shoes. If you're complaining about money - ride your damn bike and quit your complainin
    Kyle Neath: Rockstar extraordinare
    The blog | The poetry site | The Spore site

  5. #4
    Senior Member I Brian's Avatar
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    Thanks.

    It's simply that I see so many requests for free hosting on various forums - yet I can get a few hundred megs of space from a new company for literally a couple of dollars.

    It may not be a great long-term solution - but simply wanting to try out webhosting features or for website building and experimentation, it could be perfect.

    Reseller plans - for hosting multiple domains - can be a particular bargain hunter's dream with newer hosts.

  6. #5
    Member screenweb's Avatar
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    Yes I agree, being a host myself and lurking on WHT.

    You see ALOT of people asking for free space, not only do people give it, but then other companys try and beat it.

    Companys really bug me when they offer the world (10gb Transfer/ 3gb space or there abouts) for only $5/mo - Really P!$$$ me off.

  7. #6
    Junior Member
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    Well, I wont call them scam, but offering a good amount of hosting for $5... just ... sounds strange if you follow me.... Either that, or they just have a really bad server with a lot of downtime.

  8. #7
    Senior Member ironhacker's Avatar
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    Well I don't know about you guys, but icontact made me a very nice offer for free web hosting. http://www.chromehost.com. I don't know about downtime, because I haven't tested it yet. I am launching my new forum on it and I'll see what happens. I don't think there will be any downtimes at all.

  9. #8
    Member
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    Aug 2005
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    I got a web host reseller account a little over a year ago to host my personal website. I now host 5 websites of my own and several others for clients.

    I offer 100mb monthly bandwidth for $30 a year. It works well for me, I have had very few problems.

    This whole web design and hosting thing started as a side project for me and now this is my full time job


    Flutter
    Stylish and affordable website design with search engines in mind. - www.PlushDesigns.net *Ask about graphic design and hosting too!

  10. #9
    Senior Member
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    S.Wales, UK
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    Be careful of free or low cost hosting.

    Servers cost money, disk drives cost money, bandwidth costs money, running a business costs money.

    There are loads of hosts out there drastically overselling their resources and they are playing a dangerous game with web site owners. I've been selling for over 3 years now and have seen loads of budget hosts come and go, leaving a wake of angry customers in their dismiss.

    Place your own hobby site on a budget host and its no big loss if they go under. Place a paying clients site on a budget host and get ready to be sued by them when the host goes under or their servers get overloaded.

    Overselling example:
    Someone gets or rents a server with 80GB of disk space and sets up plans of 500MB each. There is therefore a physical limit of 160 accounts (if you exclude OS space etc). However he knows that most clients won't use anywhere near 500MB so he signs up 300 accounts (overselling). All goes well until those users start using up that 500MB each until the day comes when there physically isn't enough room of the disk to support 300 accounts at 500MB. That's the day the servers crash and they do a runner, and your clients start sueing you. The same applies to bandwidth/transfer.

    If you want quality and reliability you have to pay for it I'm afraid. You have to weight up the host with how reliable you want your clients website to be.
    Paul Creedy
    Visit my community site at: www.rhonddacynontaff.com
    My hosting: www.rcthosting.com
    My Content Management product: www.dynamiccontenteditor.com

  11. #10
    Member
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    Georgia
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    I have heard of problems like this too.

    For me, I know the limits of my server and I don't oversell. I only offer 100mb bandwidth for my starter $30 a year offer. I have 8 client sites plus 5 sites I own. I have been doing this for almost 2 years with no problems. Those hosts that oversell are all about the money and don't care about the customer.

    I don't think that you should label all 'affordable' hosting as bad. There are good ways to save money on this and lots of things you just have to do the research and make sure you know just what you are getting for the money.

    I use to have a site hosted my a well known host (starts with a Y) I think it was like $12 a month with was affordable at the time but I had nothing but problems with them. Downtime, slow customer support response and so on.

    Flutter
    Stylish and affordable website design with search engines in mind. - www.PlushDesigns.net *Ask about graphic design and hosting too!


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