I see it all the time: people trying to grow their business on a budget and creating their website with a free hosting provider. I cringe every time this happens because I know it will cost them in the long run. Now you know I love freebies – and even wrote an ebook on them – but there are some places you should not scrimp and one is your website.
1. You don’t own it.
When you use a free service, they own your site instead of you. They dictate what you can and can’t do on that site and may prevent you from doing things such as selling and including payment buttons. You’ll also be limited on how much customizing you can do to the site. For example, with wordpress.com you cannot install plugins and that severely limits the amount of customizing you can do.
2. Subject to their changes.
They may suddenly require payment or remove options and reserve them for premium customers. Then you’re faced with sticking to those limitations or the hassle of moving your site.
3. Could disappear or be unreliable.
Businesses cease operating all the time. What happens if, one day, you wake up and your site has disappeared? Also, free services usually have no guarantee and if their servers are down there will be nothing you can do about it – this could make you lose potential clients when they go looking for you.
4. Looks unprofessional.
Most free services will display their own ads and/or links and you have no control over them. It is obvious you are using a free service and it reflects poorly on you. It also looks unprofessional if your business email address is yahoo, msn, aol, gmail, etc.
5. If you won’t invest in your business, why should other people?
Let’s get real here: are you serious about your business? Then treat it like a business! Invest in yourself and get something professional – and hire a coach! If I could do this so can you. When I started working with my first coach, I was paying her almost 50% of my income. It wasn’t easy but I was determined to be successful and avoid mistakes. I now have clients and an income from my business because I made that commitment to my coach and continue working with her. In fact, at time of this writing, I am working with three coaches for various reasons. Not investing in a coach is COSTING you money!
I went off on a bit of a tangent there but I know the importance of coaching. Every business owner should be working with a mentor, guide or coach.
Your next steps:
Purchase hosting from a reliable provider such as HostGator or HostMonster, then install WordPress. Create business email addresses such as firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
WordPress based sites are highly customizable, you are the owner and you have the freedom to do anything you want with the site. In the past three years, my site has not (to my knowledge) been down at all and the only ads you’ll see are ones I have chosen to display (and I may get a commission if someone purchases through the links.)
To get your website done fast, with proper security installed and have it look and perform the way YOU want, visit my Website Services page.
Disclosure: Some links in this article are affiliate links. This means if you click the link and make a purchase, I may be compensated.