19 Sep 2018

Free Means You Get What You Pay For


How to write a blogWhen I first started out on the internet I thought free hosts were the most wonderful thing ever invented. That was in the days long ago in the forgotten realms of Geocities (since purchased by Yahoo!) and TalkCities (since purchased by MSN). In those days everything seemed new and fresh and wonderful.

It seemed like you couldn’t surf anywhere without running into a cool site on one of these free hosts. I remember wondering around for hours and hours late at night (when I should have been sleeping), checking out what new things had been created by people just like me! The coolest event was the explosion of Webring all over the web – surfing the rings could be a magical experience!

Of course that all ended long ago when the innovative companies such as Webring (not a host but a significant free resource for webmasters), Geocities, TalkCity, FortuneCity and endless others were purchased and merged with the mega-giant companies who took over the web. Somehow it’s not so fun and enjoyable anymore.

What happened? The huge giants realized they needed these upstart companies not so much because they made money, but because they owned an incredibly valuable commodity … you. Or rather, your web sites, your surfers, your traffic and your demographics.

That’s what the big companies wanted and that’s what they got. You see, you (webmasters) are less than a commodity to these companies. People who surf your sites are the commodity, and that commodity is being sold to the true customers … the advertisers.

So when you proudly put together your blog or website on one of the free hosts, please remember that fact. Before you complain for the thousandth time about the lack of service, remember that you are getting this for free. When you are screaming to your computer screen about your site being down, just tell yourself that you didn’t have to pay for it, after all.

It doesn’t help, does it? I know when I had my sites on free hosts it was so incredibly frustrating all of the time. Extremely slow servers, incredibly bad or non-existent customer service, unacceptably long down times and a host of other problems which never seemed to be solved.

What’s going on? The real answer is simple. You are not paying the free hosts … the advertisers are paying them. In fact, your web site, unless it is very high traffic, only makes a small amount of money for them each month. They know there are plenty of other bloggers who are not willing or not able to pay for hosting, so they simply do not care about you.

Which brings us to the other side of the coin. There may not be light at the end of the free host tunnel, but you can change tunnels easily enough. Stop playing the free host game and make a big move from amateur to professional.

You have to understand, a couple of years ago I was living under the exact same illusion as most everyone … paid hosts are incredibly expensive. Well, guess what? That’s completely false.

My blog costs less than $100/year. This includes over 40 gb (far more than most free hosts), unlimited bandwidth and hundreds of other special features. The customer support is awesome, the site has never been down and it’s always very fast. All that (and no ulcers) for about the price of a large pizza each month!

What makes the difference? In the case of the paid host, I am their direct customer. They do not make money off of advertisers, they make money off of me. While it’s not a huge amount of money, they know and understand who pays their bills.

And it shows. You see, you always need to position yourself so you are in one of two positions: the customer or the provider. Being the commodity in an arrangement can be uncomfortable, but when you are not even that high on the food chain you’ve got problems.

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Kathleen L.

Biggest rule I learned here through experience is you always get what you pay for. It doesn’t means FREE you get all the features and benefits. That’s just one of some marketing strategy to give a little taste of their products, they’re aim is to get people enroll or signup with them.



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