Sometimes you may need free hosting for your website for a short period of time. Or you may need to test the website before you actually switch to a premium plan. Just a matter of side note, if you want to find the cheapest hosting, see this post after (below 3 dollars per month).
Anyways, there are also some cases where you may not have too much traffic or visitors. So a free website can be enough for you to get started.
In this post, I will show you a couple of reliable free hosting platforms where you can build your website.
Reliable free hosting platforms to build a website
- 1.1 000webhost
- 1.2 Hostinger free hosting
- 1.3 AWS Lightsail VPS server (3 months free)
- 1.4 Wix website building platform
- 1.5 WordPress.Com
- 2 Why free web hosting isn’t always safe (things to consider before you choose one)
- 3 Conclusion
Reliable free hosting platforms to build a website
Every free thing has a reason behind it. And free hosting is no different. However, the reasons could be not good always. Even it could be harmful to you & your website visitors.
But I will introduce some hosting companies & website-building platforms that are reliable, secure & trustworthy.
Let’s explore them one by one below.
This is one of the old companies that have been offering free hosting services for a long period of time. They have been online since 2007.
You can build a website with PHP, MySQL, HTML, CSS, and even WordPress. They also give you access to the cPanel with a free account.
Back in 2015 (as far as I can remember), I tested their hosting platform and built a WordPress website for free. And it worked.
That means you’re getting information & data from a real user of this free hosting platform who used it before. And this is not just another hosting review online and the information is not taken from someone else’s copy.
They also have premium hosting plans but it’s not mandatory to purchase any of them after a certain period. However, you have a few limitations with their free hosting packages as mentioned below.
000webhost free hosting limitations
- No email accounts
- No customer support
It means you’re not allowed to create a custom email account with your free hosting plan. And also, you’ll not get any customer support if you face any trouble.
To wrap up, the limitations are very obvious and not a barrier to building the actual website. If the custom email account is important, you can use Zoho which is also free. And if you face any technical issue on your website, you have to solve it yourself.
Hostinger free hosting
Most of you may already know Hostinger. They are one of the fast-growing hosting companies.
But do you know that they also have a free hosting package?
Yes, they offer a hosting package for totally free.
With their free hosting package, you can build up to 1 website. Believe it or not, you’ll also get 300MB of SSD storage.
However, your website will receive a limited bandwidth of 3GB. But I think it’s more than enough for a new website. For example, if your average web page size is 200KB, then it (3GB) can serve 15,000 visits. If one user visits 3 pages (average), then it can serve 5000 visitors.
Don’t you think it’s enough?
Hostinger free hosting limitations
- No business email accounts
- No free SSL certificate
Just like 000webhost, Hostinger does not allow you to create a custom email account with the free account. However, you can use Zoho to create free business email accounts as I mentioned earlier. Lastly, for the lack of an SSL certificate, your website will load over HTTP instead of HTTPS. But you can also manage a free SSL certificate from other 3rd party websites such as “sslforfree.com, letsencrypt.org, etc.”
You can build WordPress and static websites on Hostinger.
AWS Lightsail VPS server (3 months free)
AWS (Amazon Web Services) is one of the best cloud platforms around the globe. There is nothing so much I need to explain about them. Because most of you may already know Amazon by the name.
They have so many hosting solutions that are really hard to understand for newbies. And this is where I came into play. I will explain the right hosting plan which is free.
However, this is free for only 3 months. So keep that in mind.
AWS has a virtual private server which is known as Lightsail. They have multiple tiers starting from $3.5 per month. You can choose any of the bundles from 3.5, 5, or 10 and use it for 3 months.
Limitations of AWS Lightsail free tier
You can not consume more than 750 hours each month during the trial period. Think of these hours as the replacement of bandwidth as you saw in the last sections.
But they won’t charge you if you exceed this 750 hours of allocation. You’ll get notified via your email if you already consumed 85% of the resource. Each month this will reset and you can continue to use up to 3 months for free.
To wrap up, you can build WordPress, NodeJS applications, MERN, etc. It’s very easy to create an instance and install WordPress on AWS Lightsail. However, you need a little technical knowledge and familiarity with the command line interface in order to work with AWS Lightsail.
Wix website building platform
It’s a drag & drop website building platform where you can signup & start your website for free. Just like any others, they also have premium plans. But you can go with only the free option.
Wix best suits beginners & non-techies. Its drag & drop interface is easy to understand & use. See more beginner-friendly web hosting.
Also, there are hundreds of pre-made templates that you can choose from. If you’re creating a portfolio type of website, Wix could be a choice for you. See how you can create a portfolio website for free.
Wix limitations for free plans
- Default subdomain
That means Wix will generate a random subdomain for your website. For example “your-username.wix.com/site-name” and if that is okay for you, then you can try Wix for free.
To get started with Wix, you need to signup for an account using your email. From there, you can start creating your site without upgrading to any premium plan.
It’s a CMS (content management system). There are two types of WordPress however, I am discussing wordpress.com here. And it’s not the self-hosted version. So keep that in mind. But if you’re interested in the self-hosted platform and want full control of your website, you can check the appropriate hosting for it and compare their prices in this post.
It’s a freemium platform. You can signup for an account using your email and start building your website.
There are hundreds of free themes (templates) that you can choose from. It could be a good fit for creating a blog, portfolio, informational, and small business website.
Limitations of the WordPress free plan
- Random subdomain
- Not able to upload your custom themes
- No plugins
Just like the Wix, with a free WordPress plan, your website will load over a subdomain (based on your choice & availability). For example, “yoursite.wordpress.com.” There are hundreds of themes that you can use for free. But you’re not allowed to upload your own made or custom themes. Also, you’re not allowed to install any plugins using a free account.
It’s one of the most used content management systems around the globe.
Why free web hosting isn’t always safe (things to consider before you choose one)
Not all free hosting is good for your website. As I mentioned earlier, every free thing has a reason behind it. And this reason for giving you free hosting is not always safe.
There are some hosting companies who give it for free but there is a caveat.
Not all free hosting companies are secure & reputable. Even in a few cases, some of them are dangerous.
Lack of security, your website can be malware injected. Hackers can hack them & they can be redirected to awful sites.
Last but not least, some of the free hosting companies could display unwanted ads on your website themselves.
However, the sites and free hosting platforms I mentioned above are safe & secure. And you can use them with peace of mind (if that suits your need).
Below I have listed the vulnerabilities & limitations that may happen if you do not choose it wisely.
It’s obvious to have limitations with your free plan. Otherwise, the companies will have a hard time running their business.
Free website hosting costs you nothing but are they worth it? Whenever going for a free website service, look for the limitations too.
Server speed, storage, bandwidth, SSL certificates, random subdomains, etc are some examples.
The major risk of many free web hosting is that you tend to lose reliability. Lots of free hosting service providers are new companies. They attract customers by claiming to provide free services. But they pitch you very frequently which is annoying and charge high fees at the end.
If these companies will get shut down, you will lose your website too. You might not have a backup of your website. Even if you renewed again, you may lose your domain too.
So make sure you’re going with a reliable company. Also, feel free to read reviews & feedback from multiple sources.
No server control
Free hosting means you will get limited services as you are not paying for anything.
There are fewer chances of growth of your website. Most free web hosting companies cannot handle huge traffic.
So if your website starts getting traffic, it will become slow which may cause a bad user experience & higher bounce rate.
In most cases, you do not have access to the file system, creating an FTP account with your free plan.
You got a list of free hosting companies to build your website. These are secure & reliable based on my personal experience & observation.
Free hosting has many limitations that are obvious & logical. Otherwise, there are no reasons to give it for free. And there are no ways for them to make money to run their business.
Not all free hosting companies are equal. Some of them are trustworthy & reputable, and some of them are not.
So you have to be very careful when choosing free hosting for your website.