Why Free Photography Website Hosting Isn’t Always Your Best Option

As I’ve been running my studio for nearly a decade now, I’ve had quite a few new photographers ask how to get started with their digital photos online. There are a number of website, template and hosting options. Throughout the quest of starting your own website, you’ve likely considered turning to a free photo website hosting company. While you may feel that a free website hosting provider is your best option – especially when you’re strapped for cash – the old saying is true, “you get what you pay for.” When it comes to free hosting providers, this statement couldn’t be more accurate. While a free website hosting provider may be your ideal choice if you’re looking to start a small blog, there are many reasons why you should avoid this tempting option and go for a paid hosting account if you’re trying to gain new clients from your photography website.

If you’re interested in joining a free website hosting provider, take a few minutes to continue reading and discover exactly why this may not be your ideal choice.

Reason #1 – Forced Advertisements
The bulk of photography hosting providers that offer free plans, like Wix, do so not because they wish everyone to have a special space on the Internet to host your photos, but rather as a means of making money for their platform. These providers tend to force advertisements across your photography website, sometimes without your consent. These ads can be placed on practically any area within your website, even over photo galleries. Moreover, their placement (and content) are completely out of your control. While there are some free hosting companies that customize these advertisements based upon the niche and content within your website, others simply place any type of advertisement they desire. The biggest issue with this is the sheer amount of advertisements on your website can scare off visitors as they deem these ads as being a direct reflection on your studio’s brand. This can be truly detrimental to those who are running a business website for their photography.

Reason #2 – Lack of Customer Support
Because a free hosting package is just that – free – the majority of companies offering such packages offer very little customer support. In the best case scenario, you’ll have access to a forum where you can seek answers to your questions. In the worst case scenario – which is typical among free hosting providers – you are simply left on your own.

Reason #3 – Limitations With Site Customization
When you choose to go with a free portfolio hosting provider, you’re faced with a host of limitations – especially when it comes to customizing your actual site. Most commonly, you’re limited to the actual design and style of your website to a limited number of templates. While this may not be a big deal for those who are seeking to establish a basic-level blog, those who wish to establish a more professional and authoritative website will likely find these pre-determined themes are lacking in usability and authority.

Professional Photography Website Hosting

If you’ve decided that a professional hosting option if for you, then see the article, Web Hosting for Photographers by WebHostingProf. They break down the best hosts for serving up a fast portfolio to your clients, each and every time. Also, remember to compress your images before uploading to the web. This is best done in Photoshop: File > Save for Web & Devices.

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Jesi Haackney Wedding Photography