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Never before has it been so easy for individuals and businesses to run a website online. There are many free options available for hosting your website, but remember free always comes with a catch. For companies and brands a paid yet professional hosting solution seems the only logical choice.

If you are serious about your business then you should consider web hosting to be among the most important paid services essential to the function of your company. As a small business owner or entrepreneur who’s just starting out, funds may be in short supply, and so you have to juggle between core expenses of the business in order to keep operating.

Don’t make the mistake however of going the free route for the hosting of your website. Reliable hosting can start off as basic and can be upgraded as your business grows to benefit from enhanced features and functionality. Here are some of the main benefits of paying for a secure web hosting solution.

Digital Real Estate

When paying for web hosting you are in effect renting space on the hosting company’s server. The first and obvious advantage of this is that you are guaranteed uptime and your website is always on and available to visitors. If you are not yet a homeowner and are renting an apartment then you know the commitment required at the end of each month to ensure your rent gets paid and what you expect in exchange for this – it’s the same with hosting.

Most often you would strive to take care of your rent before any other expenses. In the same way, hosting fees for your website should occupy the same level of importance if you want your business to be live on the web.

A Professional Business Image

If you have already delved into free hosting before then you are probably familiar with the way websites are handled by these so called free servers. A popular example is Google’s own Blogger platform. When you make use of free web hosting, you are typically given a spot on the hosting server which falls under the web domain of the host.

So keeping with the example, your website’s URL could very easily look like http://mybusiness.blogspot.com/

This is not professional looking at all and if you want people to regard your business with the respect it deserves, then a proper domain name and solid web hosting is the only way to go. Investing in your website name and ensuring your business is always easily found online, gives the impression that you are conscious of your business image and brand.

Reliable Website Configuration

On the surface, a fancy business website hides many essential core functions without which the website would simply not work. These comprise the foundations upon which the website is built. A paid web hosting solution predetermines that all the underlying functions related to the proper running of your website are taken care of in the best possible manner.

This is because the hosting company undertakes to set up your website on systems which are solid and work reliably over time. The service you pay for includes the setup of databases and the configuration of your website. Some hosts require an initial payment to get the site going and then regular maintenance of your website is taken from your monthly subscription.

No Unwanted Features

One of the key reasons some companies are able to offer free hosting is because they have found a way to generate an income through the medium of advertising. For the website owner, this means obviously that your site will have to play host to any number of advertisements, often not related to your business. These advertisements may definitely harm the reputation of your business or at the very least disturb an otherwise genuine experience for your visitors.

It’s also possible that ads may show up on your site which favours your direct competitors in your market. Paying for decent web hosting means you always have full control over the appearance of your website, and never have to worry about unsightly adverts spoiling your web presence.

Built-In Email Services

The majority of web hosting packages these days include a dedicated email address which you can use for your business. This is usually mapped according to your website’s URL to give your email address a professional look that reflects the name and brand of your business. You don’t have to pay any additional fees for this useful service since it is covered by your monthly hosting fee.

Ongoing Support and Site Monitoring

No free hosting solution can compete with a reliable hosting firm when it comes to fault finding and maintenance. In fact, with the free hosts, you are left largely on your own when things go wrong with your website. A good web host has systems in place to detect problems with your website and technical teams are available 24 hours of the day to assist you with any issues you may encounter.

As part of your hosting package, this support gives you peace of mind that if your site is harmed or broken in any way, experts will get on the problem right away and get you up and running in no time.

Backing Up Your Site

The best web hosts have easy to use functions which include being able to backup your entire website in quick short steps. This is often overlooked when people decide to go after free web hosting services. Backing up your site becomes critical when you need to make major changes and updates to your website. It also gives you the flexibility to move your site over to another host if you ever have the need to. The ability to run backups is another useful benefit included in your hosting membership fee.

Other benefits of paying for web hosting includes access to tools and software that help you the business owner to improve the performance of your website. Most hosting companies give their members access to the backend of the website. Here you can view website statistics in real-time in addition to easy uploading of files to your web address.