Free domain names have come to stay on the World Wide Web especially free top-level domains attached to web hosting packages. However, it is not unexpected that to every coin, there are two sides to it. While there are merits to free names, there are demerits and this piece intends to reveal both of them.
One major merit of a free domain is cost effectiveness which is very essential for any website owner. With the reduction in expenses for creating a website, the owner will be able to save cost and have more funds for other web development tasks. Besides, since majority of free names are for one year, you will have enough time to raise funds for renewal when they expire and you can renew for one, two or three years and above. For a short period site, it is like a gift because there may not be need for renewal. Hence, free names are very useful for special events and festivals because once the events are over, there is no need for renewal.
In addition, web developers don’t joke with free domains because they enhance their jobs. Majority of web developers register multiple domains names for one website in order to defeat cybersquatters. What cybersquatters do is to register many variations of popular websites with the intention of selling them to the owners of the websites or benefit from their popularity.
On the other hand, one major demerit of a free domain is limited service. If you get a free TLD attached to a web hosting plan, you can only use it for one year and later renew it. If you get a sub-domain (which is not recommended for serious online business), you will not have access to the Domain Management System (DMS) which is the basic proof of domain ownership. Also a free sub-domain may be flooded with both wanted and unwanted adverts which may not be ideal for your business. It may also not be dependable because the owner of the domain can ban it at anytime and this can lead to loss of rank, visitors, back-links and so on.
Consequently, extra caution must be taken when going for free domain names. It is very important for you to get your free names from a reliable source especially if you are getting a TLD attached to a web hosting package. It is strongly advisable to stay away from free sub-domains unless you want to be online for fun. Sub-domains are not ideal for online businesses, hence, you can pay to register a name (after all it is not expensive) or get a free one attached to a web hosting package.