Hack-Proof Hosting: Comparing the Bluehost and iPage Security Features
Hosting a Free Business Website
Hosting a Free Business Website
Many hosting companies offer a free website option for small businesses. Host providers are aware that small businesses need an online presence to be found by customers. The online market moves very quickly, and requires companies to keep up to date with trends and website capabilities. As a small business owner, you’ll know that each customer, each sale really matters. You’ll be more likely to focus on building lasting relationships with regular clients than playing a numbers game and getting as many people in through the proverbial door as possible. The good thing about a website is that it opens that door to allow you the best of both worlds. As a small business, a web presence means you can still provide for one-off clients while using your in-person resources to maintain longer lasting relationships. Where possible you’ll want to save on costs. This is where a free website might be perfect for your small business.
What Makes a Quality Domain Host for a Small Business?
Ideally you’ll want hosting that supports e-commerce and allows a shopping cart (if that’s how your business runs). You might want to consider paying for a designer to create a unique site for you, one that really reflects the tone and style of your business. The first impression that people have about your business will affect the kind of clientele you attract on the web, just as how you lay out your store or display your portfolio changes the kind of business you attract in person. If your budget is small and you want to keep the design costs to a minimum there are plenty of free website designs available online that you can slightly adapt for your small business. You might want to invest in hosting that supports customer feedback. Having a good CMS (content management system) that can store customer details and allow them to give you their opinion can be invaluable to your online presence. It could give you the ability to adapt to what your customers need online and improve their experience of your company. This can only work in your favor!
What are your hosting options?
In truth this depends on a variety of factors. What do you want your website to be? Do you want your site to essentially be an advert for your business? Even now, for example, there are plenty of clothing stores – both high street and high end – that don’t have online shopping. You might be able to buy some things from other stores that stock some items, but the in-person boutique shopping experience still exists. For some companies their website acts as an information point rather than a point of purchase or sale. However many companies do rely on online sales.
In the event you don’t need your site to do anything other than display information about your business, you’ll be fine with a free hosting package. This is known as having a “static page” – there is no interaction required by the user other than reading. This is very simple and would only need the most basic hosting. You could easily host this kind of website for your small business for free. One way to do this is with a free website builder like WordPress or Wix as a subdomain, for example mywebsite.wordpress.com. This way you’re have the information out there for anyone that needs it, but it looks unprofessional and unimpressive.
The next level up would be a shared hosting plan. This is when you share the space on a server and can allow for quite high functioning sites. The cost of the hardware is split between the people sharing the space and resources and this is considered an economically effective and often high quality option. This is great for a company that doesn’t anticipate having high volumes of traffic or a surge in business. Shared hosting can be very cheap, just a few dollars a month. There are also free shared hosting sites that will host your site totally free of charge, but these options don’t provide the free domain name so it’s really more worth it to opt for a paid yet cheap option.