There is a lot of confusion regarding all of the complex terminology and lingo that flows across the Internet on a constant basis; web hosting is one of those terms that has been lost to the confusion. Web hosting isn't about the design of your site, but the quality and reliance of the servers you choose to support it.
These tips can help guide your decision a little better.
What types of sites does your hosting site offer? A lot of the time, free sites offer only static pages, which means you can't add any custom language scripts. A paid host account will entitle you to more flexibility.
Not only do you need to select a good web hosting company, but you need to select the right package. Usually the more expensive the package, the more bandwidth you receive as well as disk space. Disk space is important because it is where all of your pages and site information is stored. You need a large amount of disk space in order to have an advanced site.
You can choose to have multiple web hosting service providers if you would like in order to maintain IP address diversity. This is important to some people's business to pad security and other reasons. There are several ways to do this, so if it is also your concern, look into using multiple web hosting services.
To prepare yourself for the experience of using a free web host, get used to the idea that you will have a lot of downtime. Staying up all the time takes some specialized equipment that free hosts don't really have the budget for. As a result, your site may be down more than it is up.
Figure out how much bandwidth you need before shopping for web hosts. Keep in mind that you need more bandwidth if you plan to include photos or videos on your website. Compare different bandwidth plans and purchase a plan that gives you a little more bandwidth than you need so that you have room to expand your site.
Many web hosts rely on other major hosts. These types of companies buy huge blocks of web server capacity at a bulk discount, then re-sell it in smaller chunks to individual web site owners. Find out if your host has their own servers and where they are located. If your host relies on another company, perhaps you can find the exact same kind of hosting at a lower price from another company.
Make sure you understand how much bandwidth you are allowed to use for web hosting. Even if you have a lot of space available to store your site, you will need a sufficient amount of bandwidth to allow people to load your site quickly and to increase your traffic. Stay away from a web host that overcharges you if you exceed your allowed bandwidth.
Now you understand what it really means to host a website, so you can pay attention to these small details that you may have overlooked normally. It's always great to know what goes on behind the curtain.
One day, you may even decide to handle your hosting needs yourself and that's when things will become really interesting!