Disclosure: This content is reader-supported, which means if you click on some of our links that we may earn a commission.
Not many things beat free. So here at Crazy Egg, we couldn’t go without comparing some of the best free web hosting out there if you’re planning to go that route. We spent hours comparing what each free web host offered, how easy they were to use, how up to date they were, as well as accessibility, and storage features. In the end, we found the best free web hosting option for most people to be Wix. It came down to how easy it is to get started, its flexible site builder, and the number of reliable features it offers for free.
The Best Free Web Hosting for Most
Wix is a great paid web host solution— and that translates to its free web hosting solution too. Once you’re signed up, it can be as easy as getting used to its website builder to create a functional website that fits the bill.
Perks like free access to over 500 designer-created templates and the ability to create custom web applications with its Velo by Wix feature make it one of the most popular robust free web host solutions. Not only that. It comes with automatic backups, which some paid solutions aren’t always keen on offering. Once you hit publish on your site, it’s automatically protected with SSL certification. In short, it’s necessary features like these that make Wix a no-brainer solution for free web hosting.
The Best Free Web Hosting Options to Consider
- Wix – Best for Most
- Strikingly – Best for a free one-product ecommerce site
- Weebly – Best for free hosting with no ads
- Google Sites – Best for hosting an extremely simple site
- Notion – Best for personal portfolio or resume sites
When It Makes Sense to Invest In Free Web Hosting
We all love free. But we also know the truth of “you get what you pay for.” With free web hosting, it’s no different. The fact is, if you’re planning on creating a growing site that’s expecting a lot of traffic, you’re better off going with a paid hosting plan from the likes of affordable providers like Siteground or Bluehost.
However, if you’re looking to simply set up a test website, a site for a small project, a site for a small local business, or a site that isn’t ever going to expect lots of traffic, then the free route can work for you. In short, free web hosting only makes sense for a very small cohort of websites.
If it’s your first time creating a website and you’d like to experiment with free hosting options first, then just about anything we recommend on this list can do the job. But if your website grows into daily triple-digit traffic numbers, you’ll eventually have to upgrade to a paid account to allow for more storage and bandwidth. This way, you avoid downtime if your hosting resources are exhausted.
#1 – Wix — The Best for Most
Wix is a paid and free web hosting solution used by more than 180 million around the world to power their site. If you’re a new site owner, Wix is a step in the right direction as far as free web hosting goes. Not only do they provide a reliable free hosting service, they also provide an intuitive website builder with plenty of ready-made templates included that enable you to get a website up and running in minutes.
Wix ADI guides you through the initial site-building process by asking you a few questions and then putting together a template for you you can easily customize. As far as the technical side goes, Wix provides 500MBs of storage and bandwidth, SSL certification, claim a 99.9 percent uptime, and basic customer support. We’d say not bad at all as far as free hosting goes.
Though Wix is a great free option, it’s important to remember your site’s domain name will include the name “Wix” in it, and ads will be inserted on every page. This means your assigned URL will take the form of “username.wixsite.com/siteaddress” and you won’t necessarily be able to control the ad experience of your site.
This might not be ideal if you’re looking to create a professional website you’ll want to grow. That’s where we recommend you go with a paid option, which allows you to create a custom domain of your choosing and rids you of any unwanted ads.
If those features—which are pretty standard for free web hosting—aren’t an issue for you, then Wix is the best free web hosting provider on our list for most people.
Ready to start a sleek website for free? Get started with Wix here.
#2 – Strikingly — The Best for A Free One Product Ecommerce Site
Sometimes, you need to build a website that sells something. The solution? Strikingly. With it, you can say goodbye to needing coding or design skills, and gain a place where you can create a beautiful ecommerce site in minutes.
Once you host your site with Strikingly, you’ll have access to built-in shipping tools, coupons, and even membership logins. It even comes with newsletter tools, to ensure you keep your site’s audience engaged.
HTTPS is automatically included with your site as well as analytics to measure your site’s progress as it grows. To top it all off, it even offers around-the-clock support. It comes with 5GB of monthly bandwidth, 500 MB of storage, and you can build as many sites as you want with its many templates. The downside? You’re only able to list one product per site.
In short, if you’re looking to set up an extremely simple ecommerce site that sells one thing without having to pay for hosting, Strikingly is a pretty great option. All you have to do is connect your PayPal to start collecting payments.
To get started, you can head here and create a free account.
#3 – Weebly — The Best for Free Hosting With No Ads
A lot of free hosting providers come with a small caveat for hosting your site for free: they automatically install ads on your site once it’s live. Weebly helps you get around that—as it lets you create a free website ad-free.
Weebly is one of those free hosting providers that come with an easy website builder, so you can be off to an easy start. Its templates stand out as modern and sleek, so if you decide to go the Weebly route, you know you’re in for a great-looking finished product. It also comes with free SSL security, so one less thing to spend money on.
Though I qualified Weebly as a great free hosting solution to build a site for free without ads, Weebly is also a stellar free choice for ecommerce sites selling several physical products. Though if you want to sell digital products, you’ll have to upgrade to a paid plan.
#4 – Google Sites — The Best for Hosting An Extremely Simple Site
Often, simplicity goes a long way. And Google knows that. With Google Sites, you can create a website through your existing Google account and get it up and running in record time. And yes, all for free.
You can design your header, embed images, add buttons and dividers, text, and more with its easy-to-use dashboard. One of the best perks? It allows you to collaborate with others when building the site—much like you’d collaborate on a Google document. Once created, you can publish the site to everyone or only choose to share it with a select group of people.
In short, your Google site is essentially a group of cohesive interlinked files people can access with a link. As far as custom URLs go, you can easily buy your own custom domain name and attach it to your Google site.
The value you get for free with Google Sites is a lot more than I can say for a lot of free hosting solutions out there. And a big plus is how ridiculously easy it is to get started.
Ready to get started with Google Sites? Create a free website with Google here.
#5 – Notion — The Best for Personal Portfolio Or Resume Sites
You might know Notion as the viral note-taking and task list application that everyone seems to be using. But surprise! You can also use it as a free hosting option to design and publish a personal portfolio or resume—what essentially becomes a personal website.
Once you create your personal portfolio with Notion’s various easy-to-use design tools, you can hit the publish button, grab the link, and share the page (or set of pages) with anyone. There are plenty of examples and templates of people that do this all the time— no paying for hosting, a theme, or any of that other stuff necessary.
With the free plan, you can create, interlink, and publish as many pages as you want. However, if you level up to its $4 a month plan, your published resume or portfolio will be able to be indexed by Google to be found in SERPs.
It’s a pretty great way to get a quick resume or portfolio up and accessible for prospective employers that you can easily update. And it’s hosted by Notion for free. Amazing.
Methodology for Choosing the Best Free Web Hosting
The best way to choose the best free web hosting option out there? Don’t, and instead go with the cheap paid route. That’s what we advise anyone who asks—simply because a paid plan automatically upgrades you to the hosting resources and features need to create and publish a professional site successfully.
All sarcasm aside, what should you really look for if you’ve made up your mind about going the paid route? For starters, you want to make things as easy as possible on yourself. Any extra perks, like a website builder, that a free web host provides is a bonus and one less thing you have to integrate a third-party tool to do.
However, here are a few key factors you’ll want to think through before jumping to any final conclusions.
If you’re hosting a website for free, the more bandwidth you have access to, the better. This way you’re minimizing your site’s downtime and your website can load faster than people visit it. A generous amount of bandwidth can mark the difference between an accessible site and a site that takes too long to load or that comes across as low quality.
When you’re checking out free web hosting solutions, take note of bandwidth. It’s a key usability factor that will affect your site for the duration of its free plan.
Does your free web hosting plan come with a website builder? A built-in site builder makes it easy to build a website off a template or from scratch without having to know advanced web design or worse, having to invest in a paid theme.
It can help you get through the learning curve that comes with putting together a functional and presentable website that gets the job done. The easier and more intuitive your free web host can be the easier time you’ll have bringing your site to life.
Depending on how you slice it, ads can be a minor con when you’re looking for a reliable free hosting solution. Some free hosts depend on the automatic ad insertion on your site to make a profit. For the most part, they can play in the background without being too intrusive.
Other providers are generous enough to not force ads onto your site’s pages. If you decide ads are going to take away from the overall experience of your site, you’ll have to carefully consider your options as you opt for a hosting provider that omits them. Though keep in mind, no ads might mean you’ll have to compromise elsewhere. With free plans, it’s almost always a case of compromising and weighing your overall options. Again, it’s why we recommend you start with the lowest possible paid plan instead.
There are lots of free hosting solutions out there, but not all of them are built equally. You’ll want to consider your choices carefully before deciding.
Here’s a quick recap to help with that:
Wix takes first place as the most well-rounded and easy-to-use free hosting option for anyone out there trying to start a website without paying for any hosting costs. Strikingly is great for building a one-product ecommerce site while Weebly is a great option if you want free web hosting that won’t automatically insert ads on your pages.
Google Sites is a great option if you want to publish a super simple website. And last but not least, Notion can be a great free option for anyone wanting to build a resume or portfolio website to showcase their work to potential employers.