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  1. #1
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    Do you use free hosting for your websites? I assume you don't need any server technologies for the merchant links right?

    Any advice would be appreciated

  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador
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    The straight poop:

    If you are trying to SELL something online, do not use free hosting.

    Granted, there are a lot of stupid people in the world, but anybody who has enough brain cells to be able to navigate online and proceed through a shopping cart to make a purchase is going to have the sense not to take you seriously if your site is on a free server.

    A top level domain name costs about 9 bucks a year. A small but reasonable hosting account can be had for about 6 bucks a month.

    This works out to about 23 cents a day. If you do not take yourself seriously enough to invest 23 cents a day to operate a business, then don't expect anybody else to take you seriously either.

    ------------------------------
    "It be's dat way sumtimes." ~ Coco B. Ware

  3. #3
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    Yup, a domain name and hosting is cheap compared to the time and effort to buildup the site with content and drive traffic to it.

    Web_Novice
    "Should I encounter a moment of clarity, I hope to have it recorded in these journals."

  4. #4
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    Chief is right...Don't use free hosting. It's really cheap to have your own domain. I recommend you check out Godaddy.com for good prices and excellent service. Cheers!

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador swampy_webber's Avatar
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    I agree with the already posted comments. Don't use free hosting. I host sites for some clients as well as myself but I wouldn't even think about hosting on a free account.

    As for server technologies, you don't need anything specific for the standard links but if you decide to venture into datafeeds or are looking for a specific type of log analyzer, etc., you may want to carefully consider the technologies you will need in place.

    You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.
    --Mark Twain

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador buy_online's Avatar
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    If you want to play around, and don't want to make any money then free host is the way to go !

    I'll skip the down side to free hosting, the list is simply too long. Suffice to say that one can't go that route anymore - if one is serious that is.

    Fred

    Are you sure the nurses know you're using the computer?

  7. #7
    Resident Genius and Staunch Capitalist Leader's Avatar
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    I started with free hosting for my first site, and it worked fine. Great even! But free hosting was a different animal in 1999! It used to be that people couldn't tell if you had paid hosting or not. There was an ugly banner that said so in little type (next to the CPM ad the host had), but people ignored that or missed it altogether so sales weren't affected.

    This isn't the case anymore--most, if not all, free hosts now bombard visitors with more popups than almost any paid-hosted site (at least any *family friendly* paid hosted site)! I'm not talking about a pop or two--some places really blast visitors with lots of them! Even if the people don't realize that it's a free host--and I really think that most visitors still have NO CLUE WHATSOEVER that it is (Chief Beef gives the general populace WAY too much credit )--after the 4th or so popup on each single page (and sometimes download attempts, too) from the host, they are still gone.

    The other main downside is your domain name. If you leave a free host, it changes. This instantly deadens all the links coming in to your site--sending it back to Square One in terms of Google PageRank! When you inform link partners of the change, not all of them will make the update. Some of them may no longer even be reachable--when I moved that original site to paid hosting, I got quite a few bounce notices when I tried to notify those who had linked to the old site.

    In other words, fork up the cash. It's worth it in the long run, at least for any site that's even remotely likely to get links to it, just because your domain name doesn't change when you switch paid hosts. Plus you have total control over what ads show, and how they are presented, when you have paid hosting.

    ~Cheapskate merchants need not apply

  8. #8
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    Leader,

    Excellent points made.

    If you leave a free host, it changes. This instantly deadens all the links coming in to your site--sending it back to Square One in terms of Google PageRank

    Keep in mind swapping form HTML to Database for datafeeds has the same exact effect!

    SandraR

  9. #9
    ABW Founder Haiko de Poel, Jr.'s Avatar
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    [Moved to newbie Faqs]

    <font size="2" face="Verdana">Haiko


    The secret of success is constancy of purpose. ~ Disraeli
    </font></p>

  10. #10
    Pimp Duck popdawg's Avatar
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> Keep in mind swapping form HTML to Database for datafeeds has the same exact effect!
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    I wouldn't put changing hosts and losing all traffic in the same category as changing from html to database driven(dynamic).

    With a little work and some preparation, changing a site from static to html can be done with no ill effect on pagerank.

    With proper 301 (permanent redirects) I have been able to pass my pagerank from static to dynamic pages when I have rebuilt sites and added a database of products to them.

    If done properly you should see no ill effect on the change. Granted, it can be a lot of work depending on the size of the site, but the fact remains it can be done.

    Must Build More in 2004
    Game on!!!! - The DawgFather

  11. #11
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    Excellent point Popdawg,

    When I moved my 300,000+ pages to dbase it was a challenge.

    If your small enough you can follow paopdawgs advice without a problem.

    SandraR

  12. #12
    Just Lurking
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    I think a little discussion on reseller and shared hosting might help too.

    Shared hosting allows someone to host their own domain name on a dedicated server they share with other users who share the server's resources. Sometimes called virtual hosting.

    Shared hosting accounts can be provided by owners of dedicated servers or a resellers.

    Many hosting companies provide "reseller hosting" which allows someone to resell the space and bandwidth on a servers.

    Resellers can be hard to identify as resellers, they look just like they own the server they're reselling. You have to know a lot about DNS and IP addresses to even have a clue sometimes. You can always ask and see if you like the answer.

    Reseller hosting shouldn't be confused with shared hosting that allows you to host multiple domains. The only difference may be weather or not you can resell the server resources or not.

    Weather you buy your hosting from the owner of the server or a reseller the most important thing is the support you recieve. When the server is up and running does your host help you solve your problems? When the servers is down does your host keep you informed?

    ------------------------------
    "If all the newbies are going to start writing ebooks maybe I should get started on mine!" -- Buddha

  13. #13
    Affiliate Miester my2cents's Avatar
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    I agree with Buddha...

    I resell my excess space to help pay for my server..

    Support is the KEY... will the reseller give you the support you need when there is a problem...

    In my case the answer is yes...

    but I have hAD accounts with resellers that would not answer my email when there was a problem...

    Another point... many resellers give a discount if you buy a year and sometemes for 2 years of hosting...

    DONT FALL for this "trick"...

    try them out on a monthly basis for 5 or 6 months... if you have no problems take the discount...


    Joe

    And, that's the bottom line because it's my2cents!

  14. #14
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    Here are some key features that I have found to be of great value in setting up websites and to allow a potential for growth:

    1) Look for a hosting setup which will allow you to create multiple websites within one hosting account. The one that I am currently using, for example, includes 5 Gig of space, 40 Gig bandwidth, unlimited MySWL, and allows me to create several dozen websites (for around $30 per month).

    2) Get a reseller account with WHM (web host manager)control panel and CPanel control panels for each website. This allows you to set up and manage almost all features directly without going through a administrator on the server.

    3) Get a hosting service that will allow telnet or shell access. Many hosting services do not generally allow this feature, but some will turn in on for a specific request. I consider this feature a "must" for uploading websites that contain thousands of product web pages (using a Gzip, FTP upload, and GunZip commands). Search WebMerge disussion group for more info on this tipic.

    Have a Creative Day!
    FRANK, Baertracks
    Be More Creative

  15. #15
    Just Lurking
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Baertracks:
    2) Get a reseller account with WHM (web host manager)control panel and CPanel control panels for each website. This allows you to set up and manage almost all features directly without going through a administrator on the server.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>I found Plesk a lot easier to manage multiple sites, if your not reselling. (End user seem to prefer cPanel.) In Plesk you can access everything from your reseller account. So far Plesk seems more stable.

    Shell access is nice, just don't grow dependent on it because it's a big secuirty risk for any server. It's almost always the first perk to go everytime.

    One more thing to always remember, don't keep all your eggs in one basket. Yeah, reseller account make great egg baskets but servers go down. Sh#t happens. Be prepared. Nothing like being down for a week or more to screw up to SE rank. It happens to the best of them.

    ------------------------------
    "If all the newbies are going to start writing ebooks maybe I should get started on mine!" -- Buddha

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