When the first HTML-based websites were going up, the institutions that made the sites were the same ones that were hosting them. It took some time before companies started experimenting seriously with the idea that individual users and smaller businesses would also like the opportunity to have a presence out on the Internet. Once this happened, though, people never really looked back. It’s just a lot easier to pay someone else to take care of those details than to try to maintain everything on your own. Today, instead of picking the perfect server, your time has to go into finding the right web hosting provider for your needs.
You’ll want to focus initially on making sure that you are setting up a site with someone who is going to provide for all of your needs. There are providers that put a strong emphasis on their ability to support certain very popular pieces of software. For example, a lot of people will go out of their way to get a site with someone who is willing to offer them cPanel as their management tool for their site. If you happen to know of a specific tool or program that you absolutely must have, starting out by screening for options that are willing to offer this is a good way to narrow down your choices to begin with.
From there, you need to make sure that you are choosing someone who has a generally good reputation for reliability. You shouldn’t expect a perfect record of keeping all of their sites up. Even the most expensive plans can’t promise this, as some people learn on the odd occasion where even massive cloud hosting providers end up having their services knocked offline by major natural disasters. If you’re willing to spend a lot of money, you can get something very close to perfect uptime. If you want to spend less, on the other hand, you should expect that the site will be up the vast majority of the time, but may go down for a while for maintenance or due to problems here and there.
As you’re sorting through your options, take a look at HostingZoom and what they have to offer. Their focus on cPanel is very popular with many of their clients, but you’ll also appreciate the access to tools like PHP and MySQL.