Freenom is the world’s first free domain provider, which is based in the Netherlands. In fact, Freenom hosting is the second-largest registry after .com. It is pretty amazing how one company decided to provide free domains (TK, ML, GA, CF, and GQ.) However, the ones that you might be more interested in, like COM, NET, and ORG, aren’t entirely free, but they still come at affordable prices. Another reason why Freenom is worth reviewing is that it is well known in Europe, the USA, Russia, and China.
In terms of hosting plans, the customers can only purchase a Reseller Hosting plan. This plan comes with an affordable price and no setup fee. Freenom’s customers will also enjoy features such as transferring a domain for the same price as you can buy it, email forwarding, URL forwarding, and complete DNS services. But how reliable is this company and is it the right choice for you? Let’s find out!
Is Freenom the Right Host For You?
How great ut us that I got the chance to do the Freenom review, mainly because it’s the first company in the world that comes with free domains. To be honest, I heard about this company a while ago, but I never had the chance to get more into the details and learn more. And now, I am overwhelmed because I got this perfect opportunity.
But I got a bit shocked when I started this research. I always read other customer reviews, and I didn’t like what I saw. There were terrible ratings for this web host, and that only intrigued me more to test it out. After I finished the testing process, I wasn’t impressed, but, on the other hand, I didn’t have such a terrible experience. Personally, I loved the affordable prices for the domains, as well as the Reseller Hosting plan. Are you ready to see what else I ran into? Read my Freenom brand review below!
Here Is How We Review:
When I decide to write an expert review, I always tend to deliver only the best of it. However, I want to be transparent, so I also provide the drawbacks, so you won’t be as surprised if you decide to purchase the chosen web host provider. Therefore, my team and I always go into the minor details to test them out. Here is how we do that.
- The testing process starts off with purchasing a hosting plan. I usually go with the cheapest hosting plan as I only need the essential elements of the web host. According to my previous experiences, it is more than enough to purchase the most affordable plan.
- The second step includes carefully and thoroughly testing each provider’s feature. In the meanwhile, our expert team tests the host’s performances.
- After we are done with the first two crucial steps, our process continues to check the customer support, analyze the pros and cons, and make sure that their overall services are worth the money you may pay.
- The first three steps are crucial, but how can you read the review if we don’t publish it? That’s why our fourth step is based on publishing the brand review and updating it as soon as there is something new.
- Last but not least is the importance of the customers. Sometimes we get more relevant information from them than from the company itself. Our final step is considering the customer reviews we read online, and with their help, we write a transparent and helpful brand review.
Pros and Cons
- Straightforward control panel
- Free domains (some of them)
- Affordable prices
- Decent security
- No higher renewal prices
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Limited customer support
- Lack of features
- You don’t really own the domain (you get rights as a user)
|Parameter||Score||Why did we give this score?|
|User Friendly||8.8||Freenom is a relatively user-friendly company that comes with an easy-to-navigate control panel and straightforward steps, but the score I gave it is 8.8 because I’ve read many customer reviews that claimed their domains were taken without an explanation. In fact, the company doesn’t give you a license. You are treated like a user, and this is quite a drawback and makes them less user-friendly.|
|Support||6.3||Customer support is one of the most important elements of one web host. Unfortunately, Freenom didn’t do well in this part. I decided to give it a score of 6.3 because it only provides email and phone support and a knowledge base without much information. There isn’t ticketing support or live chat.|
|Features||8.4||In terms of features, Freenom doesn’t offer a wide range of them, but the ones that it offers are pretty decent. The customers may benefit from its global presence, security, domain migrations, IP Agencies, etc. Due to this, Freenom has gained a score of 8.4.|
|Reliability||5.6||Freenom has pretty lousy reliability and performance. According to my tests and other expert reviews, Freenom comes with a terrible uptime, it crashes often, and it doesn’t come with the fastest speeds you’ve seen. However, it comes with a DNS service that makes up a bit for the bad performance. We give it a score of 5.6.|
|Pricing||10||The pricing of this web host is maybe the best I’ve seen in a while. Some of the domains are totally free, while some of them come at affordable prices. Also, the renewal prices aren’t higher than the starting ones. In terms of hosting plans, you’ll get a Reseller plan for a deposit of $10. Due to this, we gave Freenom a score of 10.|
|Overall Score||7.8||Freenom might be the first free domain provider in the world, but there are many things that this company has to work on if it wants to become the best of the best.|
Freenom Prices & Plans – 2022
So far, I have explained everything briefly in a few words. Now, I’ll get to break down each segment of this web host. Let’s start with the prices of Freenom. As I already mentioned, the customers will enjoy free domains or domains at affordable prices. The prices I’ll provide below are for annual plans, but you can cancel the plan any time you want. Also, Freenom offers a 30-day money-back guarantee which won’t let you lose your money.
Some domain extensions that this web host provider offers are entirely free. But which ones? Freenom comes with the domain extensions TK, ML, GA, CF, and GQ for absolutely no fees.
As you can see, you won’t pay any renewal fees or transfer ones if you have these domain extensions. But let’s move on to the more popular ones. Many websites on the Interner come with the extension COM, NET, ORG, BIZ, INFO, and EU. You’ll get each of these extensions for some of the most affordable annual prices.
The COM extension is available for $8.32/year, the NET for $6.67/year, ORG for $9.52/year, BIZ for $13.07/year, INFO for $8.63/year, and the EU extension for $4.30/year. As you can clearly see, you will pay the same price for renewal or for a domain migration.
Besides these domain extensions, Freenom offers many others. Each of the extensions has the same renewal and migration prices. Have a look at the chart below.
As you can see from the chart that I presented, Freenom has an extension for each website category you may think of. But these extensions aren’t frequently used; they are very rarely used. Because of that, some of them come at higher prices.
However, Freenom didn’t stop here. This provider has four additional services for its customer that are entirely free.
That was it from the domain extensions. A bit earlier, I mentioned that Freenom comes with a Reseller Hosting plan. This Reseller Hosting plan is definitely the most affordable one I’ve ever seen. You only need to pay a deposit of $10, and that’s it. The Reseller plan allows you to resell services to your customers, and it is suitable for smaller or more significant businesses.
But what exactly can you expect from this hosting plan? Now that I’ve explained everything that Freenom offers in terms of plans let’s have a look at the features.
Features & Benefits
Having a feature-rich web hosting plan means a lot. Every person wants to have the best website possible, and features have a key role in that. If you consider using Freenom, then you should have a look at its features. Before I start, I must say that I didn’t expect to come across a few features. But although there isn’t a variety of features, the ones that it offers are pretty decent.
1. Global Presence
One web hosting company can be considered a reliable one only if it has customers all over the world. Well, I am happy to share with you that Freenom has expanded in the USA, Europe, and Asia. This company is based in the Netherlands, but it still managed to reach more countries globally. More precisely, it has even got to Russia and China. Freenom is headquartered in Amsterdam, Netherlands, but has satellite offices in Weiswampach (Luxembourg), Alto (USA.), and Dakar (Senegal).
Personally, I found the security on a pretty high level. Why so? Freenom uses the latest AnyCast technology that guarantees stability and performance of all the domains it manages. Also, your domain will be monitored by their Anti Spam and virus protection. But that’s not all. This web hosting company comes with anti-hack and abuse technology to keep free domains safe and secure from vulnerable violations. Each of these security features will provide top-quality protection for your domain.
What’s more, the TK extension is one of the safest in the world, as it isn’t used by many customers, and it isn’t an easy target for hackers and other malware attacks. Here is what Freenom has to say.
3. Automatic Domain Migrations
Another beneficial feature is domain migration. Freenom allows you to transfer your domain in a few easy steps without wasting a lot of time. You just need to enter your domain name, choose the extension, and that’s it. You’ll have your domain in no time. However, some domain migrations cost a little bit, or more precisely, you’ll pay the regular price of the extension. The good part is that due to this feature, you won’t lose your already-existing domain name.
Freenom’s expert team claims that they would be happy to contact them for any issue, comment, or simply feedback. To do this, the customers can use their email that you can find in the ‘Contact’ section. Expect to get a reply within a day.
5. IP Agencies
Freenom also includes the IP Agencies as a beneficial tool. The IP Agencies are managed by account managers that are dedicated to their job and make sure that all questions and issues are answered as soon as possible. The best part is that you can even post-pay your domains by using this tool.
These features aren’t bad at all, but Freenom should work on adding more features, as it will also become more attractive to other users.
Performance / Reliability
Performance is the most crucial element in one web host provider. To achieve the level of top-quality performance, the provider should have high uptime, fast website speed, and fast loading time. No one wants to wait for ages for one website to load, so if you don’t make the right choice, you may even lose customers. According to other customer reviews, Freenom has one of the worst performances on the market. However, I didn’t like to leave it that way, so I decided to test it myself and see what kind of experience will I have. Are you ready to find out the truth?
Speed – Entirely Free DNS Service
DNS or domain name system is a service that is responsible for translating the domain name into a particular IP address so that the customers won’t have any hard time loading it on their requested Internet resources. This tool is of great importance for the speed of one provider, and due to it, Freenom doesn’t have any issues with its rate. The DNS service basically works like some kind of a boost for your website’s speed.
Uptime – Disappointing (0.75% in the Last 30 Days)
Those who are longer in this industry understand the importance of uptime very well. The uptime is actually the result of how long your website has been accessible to your customers. In order to engage page traffic and also keep your loyal customers, you must choose a web host provider with a decent uptime of at least 99.90%. Unfortunately, Freenom is far from good. Its uptime is 0.75%, which means the website will have more downtimes than uptimes. With an uptime like this, you will indeed lose a lot of loyal and potential customers.
Loading Time – Lousy Compared to the Industry Average
The loading time of one website is also important for your business. The maximum loading time should be about 2 seconds. In other words, the industry’s average loading time is somewhere between 430 ms and 435 ms. Freenom once again disappointed me, as I faced a loading time of 4588 ms, which is quite a lot. So, if you don’t want to lose any page traffic, I wouldn’t recommend using this provider.
Level of Support
After the performance, the support is the second most important element of one web host provider. I must say, I didn’t expect to run across that bad performance. Can the support make up for what I’ve recently seen?
Freenom offers a few support options. If you open their official website, you can find a knowledge base, two phone contacts, and an email. Freenom ensures you that their expert team is available 24/7, but from what I’ve read in other expert reviews and customer ones, I’m not sure who to believe. People claim that Freenom’s support isn’t reliable at all. I decided to continue my Freenom review by explaining the knowledge base.
The knowledge base can be found in the main menu on their official website. If you click on ‘Support,’ you’ll see a down-falling menu, where you will find the knowledge base.
Once you click on the knowledge base button, you will get to the following screen.
I really like that Freenom is well-organized. As you can see, everything is neat and divided into categories so that you can easily find what you’re looking for. You can even type your issue in the search bar.
But, let’s get back to the knowledge base. The customer may not find everything they have an issue with. Personally, I think that Freenom has to work on adding more problem solutions.
At the beginning of my Freenom brand review, I mentioned that there is also email and phone support. If you scroll down the screen, you will see two phone number and their official email, where you can ask them everything you want.
So far, everything looks fine. But is everything as Freenom hosting claims to be?
When I started doing my Freenom brand review, I witnessed many customer reviews with critics about their late replies and that they took away domains from customers without even asking. I wanted to be sure that this was true, so I checked out other expert reviews. Unfortunately, the rumors are supposed to be true. Freenom takes ages before they reply, and sometimes they even don’t write an answer. But I was more interested in whether they really took the domains just like that. Once again, I was disappointed to find out that customers had an unpleasant experience with this. Because Freenom doesn’t give you a license for the domain, they treat you as a user, and they take away your domain randomly. What a shame!
Freenom is, in fact, a pretty user-friendly company that comes with a straightforward platform that is easy to navigate, and everything is neat and can be easily found. This free domain provider makes up for the bad performance and support with its cPanel, which is the most straightforward control panel in the industry. It isn’t weird that everyone loves it. But what benefits will you have from this panel?
1. Creating an Account With Freenom
Creating an account with Freenom is a bit different than with another web host because here, you don’t purchase a hosting plan. I mean, you can purchase the Reseller Hosting plan, but the domains are the main focus of Freenom hosting. To register a domain, you will need to open their official web page, type in the domain you would like to get, and then click ‘Check Availability.’ If the domain is available, just proceed to checkout, and that’s it. The whole process is pretty simple, and it will be done in a few minutes.
2. Migrating a Domain
I already mentioned this feature once, but I must explain it a bit better. Freenom allows its customers to either register or migrates their domain. If you already have a domain and don’t want to lose it, you just need to log in to your account and choose the ‘My Domains’ section. Then, open ‘Management Tools’ and select URL forwarding. After you do that, just enter your domain, and there you go! You’ll get your old domain in the blink of an eye.
3. Connecting Freenom to WordPress
Before I start, this process may take a bit longer, but it is very straightforward. If you want to connect your Freenom domain to WordPress, you should signup to the www.seekahost.app. Then, pick a hosting plan with their seven free trial days, add your registered domain and copy the name servers. Once you do that, you need to enable the SSL certificate in SeekaPanel, and you can start enjoying your WordPress site.
Step by Step Walkthrough – Freenom
Freenom is a domain registrar that gives you the opportunity for a free domain. But how to get a domain. After I finished reviewing each segment of Freenom hosting, it’s time for the more exciting part – my step-by-step walkthrough. I already briefly mentioned how to get a Freenom account, but now, I’ll explain it more thoroughly, so you don’t have any issues with the process.
The first thing you should do is, of course, open their official website.
As you can see, you should write the domain name in the tab and click on ‘Check Availability.’
I went with providertesting.tk, as Freenom offers the .tk extension for free. After I clicked on ‘Check Availability,’ I was forwarded to the following screen.
I had luck because the name I chose was available. Once you come to this step, you should click on ‘Checkout.’ This is where that one click got me.
On the right side, you’ll find the period of how long you want to purchase the domain. This is where I got a bit confused because there were two options – 12 months and one year. The 12 months option was free, while the one year requested additional fees. However, I went with the 12 months option.
Then, I clicked on ‘Continue’ and got to the Review & Checkout screen.
Here, the customers need to put their email address in the left bottom corner and click ‘Verify My Email Address.’ I was pleasantly surprised when I got an email immediately. Here’s what they sent me.
I followed the link in the email, and that led me to the following section, where I had to provide my personal information, such as first name, last name, company name, address, ZIP code, city, country, and phone number, email address, and password. I didn’t expect that they would recognize my location and put it there, but I guess I was wrong.
Once you are done filling in all the requested information, tick the box for Terms & Conditions, and click on ‘Complete Order.’
This process didn’t take any time at all. I got it done in less than 10 minutes. But we’re not done yet. To add your domains to Cloudflare, you should do the following few steps.
First, open the official Cloudflare web page.
Then, enter your domain and click on ‘Add a Site.’ After you do that, select plan ‘Free’ and click ‘Confirm Plan.’ Once Cloudflare scans for existing DNS records, it will give you two nameservers.
After this, you should return to Freenom, open ‘Services,’ then ‘My Domains,’ and you’ll get a preview of all domains you have registered. Next to each domain, you’ll see ‘Manage Domain.’ Click on it.
Then, you’ll be forwarded to another section, where you’ll need to click ‘Management Tools’ and then ‘Use Custom nameservers.’
In this section, the customers should enter the nameservers provided by Cloudflare, and after they do that, they should click on ‘Change Nameservers.’
Once again, you should go back to Cloudflare, but this is the last time. Open Cloudflare, click ‘Done, Check Nameservers,’ and wait until your domain is configurated.
In the end, I just can say well done, Freenom. You made up for the slightly bad experience in some parts of my testing process.
Using and Managing Your Website on Freenom
In the step-by-step walkthrough, I mentioned how to connect your domain to Cloudflare. Now, let’s see how to manage it.
To do this, you need to click on ‘Manage Domain.’
Once you click on that button, you’ll be transferred to the following screen.
Here, you will need to click on the ‘Manage Freenom DNS’ section. Once you click on it, you can edit your domain.
For example, you can correct a typo (if there is any), add a new record, or delete an already-existing record.
Once you are done with these steps, you should log in to your created account. When you get in, you can access a user menu in the top left corner.
When you click the icon, on the screen appears the whole menu. You will find ‘Dashboard,’ ‘Account Settings,’ ‘Teams,’ ‘Plan Info,’ ‘Integrations & API,’ ‘Add Domain,’ and ‘Sign Out.’ Below these sections, there are two other sections where you can see your personal domains and your team domains.
If you click on ‘Add Domain,’ you will proceed to the following screen.
The customer will run into three options – ‘Try For Free,’ ‘Buy Short Domain,’ and ‘Add My Own Domain.’
The first option lets you test your domain for free. The test will allow you to create short links and explore features, and check out the API and Integrations. The second option gives you an opportunity to buy a domain and use it for a short link without needing any technical skills, and lastly, the third option gives you access to add a new domain.
I selected exactly this last option.
Here, you will need to enter your domain and select the box that says that it is a short domain used just for links.
In conclusion, Freenom offers a smooth domain experience, which has everything explained, and you are guided with each step. I didn’t come across any issues while I was creating or managing my account. However, there are some slight inconveniences that Freenom should take care of.
Conclusion: Do We Recommend Freenom?
My Freenom review has definitely been the most inconsistent experience in my life. I honestly am not sure whether I would recommend or not this domain provider to anyone. There are many factors that affect my decision.
On the other hand, the performance, reliability, and support of Freenom are pretty lousy. Their support section doesn’t provide a live chat and ticketing service. It only comes with email and phone support and a knowledge base. The knowledge base is pretty limited, as there aren’t enough options. The other part of Freenom’s support isn’t reliable at all, as they take days to answer, or they even don’t answer at all. The performance is one of the worst I’ve come across as it has slow speeds and a lot of downtimes. And who wants that?
So, if I had to choose a provider, Freenom won’t be my choice. Personally, I think that performance and support are the most crucial elements of one web host, and they should work flawlessly. This company has a lot to work on.