For about a year now, I’ve been making use of the free web-hosting service offered by Microsoft called Office Live Basic.
Most people have probably stopped reading already, as soon as they saw the name Microsoft. Truth be told, I can’t really blame you. Their free website tools, all ASP-based (don’t ask me what that means) are cumbersome, and definitely have a learning curve.
But, you can register a domain name for nothing flat, build a site pretty quickly using their template construction methods, and — in time — pick up enough tricks to make the site look and function reasonably well.
I’ve used Office Live Basic to build to build two sites which are both doing nicely in terms of steadily-increasing traffic. My latest is FirstMention.com where I indulge a peculiar fascination I have with word and phrase origins. If you visit the site, you’ll see several features of the ASP-based sites, including:
- Pages work okay when viewed in Internet Explorer, but there are some problems with Firefox and other browswers. I’m just beginning to work out how to fix these.
- It’s possible (but not easy) to incorporate Adsense. Text ads work well, but image ads, for some reason, seem particularly non-relevant to the pages, and I’m eliminating their use bit by bit.
- There are limits to page formatting options with the free service. For instance, there are only a handful of fonts available.
Anyway, just wanted to mention this, in case anyone feels like exploring a useful-but-not-perfect freebie for registering a domain name and quickly building a site.