- Q. Do I still have to pay for web hosting?
No. You pay absolutely nothing. Your hosting is free.
- Q. How can you offer free sites. Is this a scam?
Nope. Spanglefish sites really are free. Your site pages will include a small advertising panel, usually featuring Google adverts, and we'll earn a little money each time someone clicks on one, helping us subsidise the cost of your site. You get a free site, we get a little advertising revenue. It's that simple.
Editing your website
- Q. Can I add documents for people to download?
Yes. Spanglefish free websites let you upload formatted documents such as Word and PDF files at the click of a button, so your users can easily download them for printing later offline. By default we limit these to 700kb but will happily increase this on an individual basis.
- Q. Do I need special software to make changes to my website?
No. You use a simple online text editor which is built right into your website to edit it. And you can make as many changes as you like, as often as you like.
- Q. How do I add images to my website?
Using your Spanglefish free website you can upload new photos to your site's image bank at the click of a button, and have them automatically scaled and optimised too, ready for you to add them to whichever pages you choose. More information...
- Q. Can I get my own domain with a Spanglefish website?
Yes. Once you have signed up you are quickly and easily able to sign up for your own domain using your website administration panel. The domain will be registered through Calico, is charged at £20 + VAT per annum and includes a 1GB mailbox.
- Q. Can I use my existing domain?
Yes. If your domain is by luck already registered through Calico, simply contact them and ask them to point it at the Spanglefish server.
If your domain is registered elsewhere you have two options:
- Move your domain to Calico UK - they can handle .com, .org, .net, .biz, .info, .co.uk, .org.uk, .me.uk domains. They charge £20 plus VAT per annum for domain registration, 1 email mailbox and telephone and email support. They can also offer support for other endings such as .eu, .tv, .uk.com etc, although these would be at a different rate.
- Point your domain at your Spanglefish site using tools supplied by your current registrar. This may be a simple redirect, or by creating a blank frameset on your domain which draws the Spanglefish site into it.
We would strongly recommend the first choice for businesses, as search engine placement is vital for them. It is less important for non-commercial organisations, though we would still recommend it in most cases.
- Q. Pros & Cons of moving my domain to CALICO UK?
The benefits of moving your domain are that:
- Your site will run fully on the domain, so that your news page for instance will be www.mydomain.com/news.asp
- Search engines will be able to associate the domain with the content of your site
The downside is that:
- Calico may be a little more expensive than your current suppliers
- Q. Pros & Cons of pointing your existing domain at Spanglefish?
The benefits of this are:
- It will save the hassle of moving it
- It may save you a lot of work in changing over the way you pick up your email
- It may prove cheaper than Calico.
The downsides are that:
- This is a bad idea in terms of having your domain found by search engines - the domain is seen as empty by them.
- It may not look as professional if, once visitors come to your site, they see a Spanglefish address.
- If you plan to sell things using Paypal, you may not be able to. If you use a framed redirect, Paypal will reject attempts to purchase items as it will assume your site is part of a 'phishing' scam.
- Q. Why do we recommend CALICO UK for domain registration?
As background info, Calico are a separate company from Plexus/Spanglefish, but we have a very long association and are geographically very close - Calico host by far the majority of our and our clients websites and have proven over this time to be both the most reliable host we deal with, and the easiest to work with.
There are cheaper domain registrars around, and cheaper email services, but I think you would have great difficulty in 'phoning up 123reg to ask about your domain, or to 'phone Gmail to ask for advice on setting your email account up on your system.
The whole reason behind the Spanglefish system is to allow people who have very little web publishing knowledge or experience to create good looking, functional websites for their businesses, organisations or families.
Using Calico as the domain registration / email service for Spanglefish is an extension of this keep-it-simple philosophy - many Spanglefish Admins have benefited from being able to call Kirsty or Evelyn and ask them how to set their mailbox up in Outlook Express on Windows 98 for instance - as I said before, try 'phoning Google up and asking them about it!!!
Finally, there is nothing stopping any Spanglefish administrator from buying a domain at 123reg and forwarding it to their Spanglefish website, or registering a Gmail account and using it as the email address for their Spanglefish site feedback forms if they want to - we simply suggest that Calico's service is much better - over 1,500 Spanglefish sites run on domains registered through Calico, and we've yet to hear of a complaint.
I am currently recommending Spanglefish to everyone I come into contact with; for the opportunity to create a freely-hosted website it makes the opposition pale into insignificance.Patricia Colling
Thank you for a simply magical service!!John Birrell
As someone who goes into a sweaty fit at the mere thought of setting up a website, I was very lucky to discover the living wonder known as Spanglefish. Had it not rescued me from absolute techostupidity, I would still be working on where to put the Tippex on my homepage. In all seriousness, at what could have been an extremely stressful time (setting up not one, but two websites), Spanglefish did me proud.Grace Monroe