Earlier today the forums were spammed about starting your own homepage communities. I felt that this is actually a worthwhile topic for promoting your site. By offering your visitors free homepages you give them a reason to return to your site on a frequent basis. This works the same as with free email from companies like Everyone.net and Bigmailbox.com. While free homepages are pretty ubiquitous now just like free email accounts, a savvy markerter will be able to add this to their offering quite well. Imagine the web designer that offers all their clients free web hosting. This will be especially attractive to those promising low cost development and lots of features. If you did it right you could even offer them their own domains and redirect that traffic to their free site.

I have looked at several different companies offering these services. These include the one mentioned in the original spam and several others that came up as well.
<< URL DELETED DUE TO POSTING VIOLATIONS >>: This was the site mentioned in the spam. The site doesn't contain very much information and you don't seem to have many options compared to some of its competition. The site also seemed unprofessional to me with incorrect grammar, misspellings and other similar errors.

www.wigloo.com : Another site offering free email and free webpages. They got their email services through a third party so I am inclined to think that they are doing the same for web hosting. The site wasn't very professional either but their parent site was. It could be the first version or a work in progress.

www.treeway.com : I had actually found this site a week ago. They offer free hosting under www.treeeway.com/yourname/. This builds a good brand for them but isn't good for you service.

www.northsky.com : This is the company I liked the best. They current host over 1 million websites for different companies. They are owned by About.com which is a large respectable company and they own Freeservers.com which hosts over 500,000 sites using the same technology. Northsky also offers integrated email and instant messaging services for you to offer your visitors and customers. They have solutions that range from free to custom built ones that will cost you.

I think Northsky can do for free homepages what Everyone.net did for free email. They by far seem to be the most professional and able to get the job done.

Wayne Luke
WR Moderator
ICQ 29015947

[This message has been edited by jonese (edited April 26, 2000).]