Free WP Hosting for Testing (and What to Expect)

If you’re looking to try out a new platform or want to see how a specific one functions before investing in it, you can use free WP hosting. These hosts provide all the basic necessities for setting up a WordPress blog: a domain, hosting, and a WordPress installation with limited features.

Even better, some of these hosts provide premium features that you might not find in the basic version, such as free malware scanning and backup, free spam filtering, and free advanced security features like encrypted URLs and email addresses.

How are these free options different from the standard, paid hosting accounts? There’s a reason why you might want to try these out first instead of going with one of the more expensive options: the billing cycles are usually quite flexible, so you won’t end up paying more than you need to. In addition, some of these hosts provide features that make website administration easier for novices. For example, some hosts provide one-click installers for WordPress or simply give you access to a fully featured WP dashboard.

What Type of Blog will you Create on a Free WP Hosting Account?

The great thing about these accounts is that they give you a blank slate upon which you can build any type of blog you can think of. This makes it easy to try out different content management systems (CMS) and look for the one that fits your preferred style.

Since these are free accounts, you won’t have the flexibility to install third-party plugins that you might use on a premium account. For example, if you try out a blog template that comes with too many advertisements or isn’t mobile-friendly, you’ll have to remove it before you can move onto the next.

Features They Provide

Besides the fact that these hosts are completely free, there are a number of amazing features that you might not find on higher-priced options. Here’s a short list:

  • Free Domain
  • Free Soft Swapping
  • Free Backups
  • Free Spam Filtering
  • Free Malware Scanning
  • Free Easy to Use Dashboard
  • Free Premium Features For Plus Members

If you have a specific blog idea in mind when you visit their website, the sales representatives might be able to help you find a hosting plan that suits your needs. They’re usually very experienced and can point you in the right direction.

Advantages

These types of accounts provide you with a great opportunity to try new things out without the fear of loosing your content if you make a mistake. One of the biggest advantages of these types of hosts is that you’re not bound to a certain theme and can install any type of WordPress-compatible theme you want.

If you’re worried about running out of storage space due to the sudden influx of visitors or want to try a different CMS, you can use the built-in disk space to your advantage. You won’t have to worry about storing any content on external servers due to quota restrictions imposed by the web host.

On the downside, if you make a mistake while installing WordPress or trying out a new theme, you’ll have to remove it and start from scratch. This means you’ll have to re-install WordPress and re-upload all your content from scratch. Luckily, this is a fairly simple process that many users perform on a regular basis.

Disadvantages

While the above description might make these free hosts seem ideal, there are a few significant drawbacks. First, while most of these hosts provide you with a fully featured WordPress dashboard, some of them give you access to only a few key elements. For example, some of these hosts provide you with a custom-tailored solution that doesn’t give you access to the popular WooCommerce plugin or the WordPress Marketplace. In these cases, you won’t get the benefit of many third-party plugins unless you pay for them.

Second, many of these hosts place a cap on the number of allowed database queries per day. If you go over this limit, your account will be penalized with a hefty bill. Fortunately, this can be avoided by keeping track of your daily queries and avoiding overuse.

Last but not least, these hosts aren’t dedicated to your cause alone. Since these plans are generally aimed at providing useful solutions to everyday users, they often have application-specific restrictions like quota limits on the amount of storage space or bandwidth that you can use. If you’re a business, you might want to look into a business-specific solution.

To put it simply, while these types of free accounts provide you with a lot of flexibility, you’ll have to be strategic about the features that you want to use and avoid any misconceptions that you might have about the quality of their service. Always keep your host provider’s website in mind when making your decision-making process easier and safer:

  • Trustworthy: Make sure that you’re dealing with a reputable company. Check out their site for reviews, testimonials, and FAQs.
  • Reliable: Be sure that they offer a reliable service. Check out their complaint department and look for signs of stability.
  • Professional: Make sure that the people you’re speaking to are professionals. If you’re worried about the quality of their service, it might be a good idea to look elsewhere.
  • Supportive: The more support that you get, the better. Most importantly, make sure that they’re willing to help you. You can’t expect them to be available for live chat all the time, but at least have the courtesy to inform them that you need help.
  • Open: These types of accounts should be as open as possible. Ideally, you want to contact the owner of the account and not some automated system when you have questions about the service or want to report some malfunction. Unfortunately, not all web hosts are as open as they could be and some of them even have restrictions on who they’ll allow to contact them directly.