Are you planning on launching a website or are in the middle of the process of setting-up one? If yes, you must be looking at your options in terms of which platform to build the website in and which hosting platform to go with.
There is no dearth of options in the market if you talk about paid or free web hosting. In fact the options are so many that you may end-up feeling more confused than ever.
Speaking of free hosting, you must have come across one name that’s doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue effortlessly. It’s called 000webhost.
This post is an attempt at reviewing the free hosting services by this company.
Let’s take a look at what it has in stock and whether or not it’s an option worth exploring.
Website creation options
Upon signing up with 000webhost, you get three options to create a website. They are –
- Using WordPress
- Website Builder Tool
- Direct Uploading
Now, you wouldn’t normally expect so many options coming from a free platform. This one factor alone is quite impressive. Along with that, you get 1 GB of disk space and 10 GB bandwidth. That should be totally fine if you don’t plan on suddenly uploading a lot of images or heavy files. For a relatively simplistic website, this space and bandwidth are more than enough.
Ads free experience
One of the commonest things that bug website owners is the ads that are run without their permission. It’s basically a way for hosting companies to earn money on the side. This is not the case with 000webhost. You get a complete ads-free experience.
Uptime is of the essence when you’re a part of the online visibility spectrum. People turn to your website for accessing whatever you have to offer. And, a downtime of even one hour can cause huge losses especially if your site is the primary point of revenue. As per industry standards, an uptime of 99.5 and above is considered ideal. But, even than you get to endure 4 hours of downtime every week. Now, that’s a lot. Talking about 000webhost and the kind of uptime it provides, it should come as a surprise that the company offers an amazing uptime of 99.%. That’s a huge plus point if you’re big on availability and cannot afford a lot of downtime.
Easy Website Builder
If you don’t want to build a website in WordPress or some other platform, then 000webhost gives you the freedom to create one in its website builder tool. In only three steps you get to choose from hundreds of beautiful and professional templates suited for all kinds of themes. Simply pick a theme, add content, hit ‘publish’, and the site is ready. Without any expertise or coding knowledge, you can create galleries, subpages, forms, etc. Like most companies offer WYSIWYG, 000webhost offers SiteReptile – the editor which adds multiple add-ons to make the site livelier. You can include stuff like vote polls, publishing systems, etc with this editor.
If you don’t want to depend on professional developers and be able to manage your website on your own, then you should know that 000webhost gives you access to cPanel. In the absence of cPanel access, you have to turn to the support for things like changing the password, creating backups, and most file management related functions. If you are particular about having access to cPanel, you should definitely consider going with 000webhost.
MySQL and PHP
Almost all websites today have to manage a database no matter how small. There may be an exception or two. After signing up with 000webhost’s free hosting services, you get access to 2 MySQL databases. Additionally, you also get access to PHP; the language in which you create website. This gives you a lot of freedom to change the way websites looks and feels. One may not expect this kind of technical freedom with something that’s free but apparently the company surprises you. If you consider these factors, it’s clear that the company offers a lot of technical freedom.
Although 000webhost does not offer phone support to free users (it’s limited to paid users only), but it does offer other avenues of resolving customer queries. One of those avenues is the support forum. If you run into any problems related to managing your account, you can always reach out to the forum and get a quick response. The forum also comes handy if you face any coding or HTML related issues. To serve a wider community, the website has included dedicated forums in German and Spanish languages.
Free domain hosting
Getting a domain for absolutely free; what more do you need? This is a huge plus point considering you’re not paying anything. Just by signing up with the company, you get a unique website name – one that looks, sounds, and reads professional.
What you don’t get –
SSL certificate – This certificate is essential in case you want to go an extra mile in protecting your site from unscrupulous online activities. For e-commerce websites, having an SSL certificate becomes a necessity to safeguard the online transactions. But, since it’s a free platform, you can surely put-up with this one shortcoming. Besides, you can always buy one separately for a nominal fee.
Phone support – We already covered this point. Phone support is available to paid users only. This is another point which is missing from the free hosting plan by 000webhost. But, the other avenues of customer support are just as satisfactory and this comes from personal experience.
Free things are usually not promising, but free website hosting from 000webhost is not one of those things. Looking at everything that the company has to offer, one can create and manage a fairly simplistic website without running into any troubles. Of course, there’s always the option of springing to a paid plan should the need arise. All and all, it’s definitely a name worth exploring.