The Amount of Storage
Today, most othe the website hosting providers offering UNLIMITED disk space. But be advised, if you are planning on using this as a file storage that will not be possible. This hosting is for websites only, most simple websites do not need much space and should be fine with 200mb with a few pages database and some images. Only if your site contains downloadable content or will be updated frequently with new content and images than you should be worried about your disk space.
The Amount of Bandwidth
What exactly is bandwidth? It is the amount of data that is being downloaded or uploaded from your account. So it means that if your page is 1mb and your limit bandwidth is 5 mb, you can only view it five times before you reach the limit. If you are planning to have a very popular site full with rich content, than you should be worried about this but if that is the case, you probably better off with a VPS hosting.
Most hosting plans will not limit bandwidth and if they do it will be only if you have crossed the “normal website behavior.
Number of Domains and Subdomains
This is basicly the limit of domains and subdomains that you can have on your account subdomains are like subfolders www.mydomain.com and blog.mydomain.com. if you are planning to have a blog separate to your site the you can have it under such subdomain.
Email Accounts and Features
Email account are also pretty standart as most people like to have an email under their domain. Make sure to check out what kind of webmail client they offer and also if it is possible to sync with outlook gmail apple mail etc’ but most will do all that.
Today even small websites like wordpress installations seem to have a database on the back end. Make sure the hosting provider you choose support your website requierments. In most cases MySQL is just about good for everyone, but if you need any other type like PostsgreSQL, Oracle, SQL Server look for that in the that in the hosting plan details.
Framework Support and Easy-Install
Many of websing hosts offer support for popular CMS, blogging systems, and other frameworks.It is safe today to say that most websites are based on wordpress and it is nice to have a one click instulations to ease the proccess. Althogh you can find other CMS like Drupal, OS commerce and many others.
This one is a very important factor in your hosting provider. Make sure you know how to reach the support, is it only email? via a private ticket system? can you phone them? all these are important to know so when you do need it like your site is down, you the server is having problems, you’ll want to talk to someone.
A server is just like a big computer and it also stores file like a computer but it can lose them just the same. Backing up your account or sites is extremely important. not only for safety of server problems but it might be some wordpress update gone wrong and you are stuck with no backup of your old site. Do yourself a favor, chose a hosting with backup plans.
Choice of OS
This is simple - if your site developed in ASP.NET than you’ll need the windows server. This can sometime be more expensive in some providers. If you plan on having a site with open source language like PHP for example, then you’ll go with the Linux server.
Most hosting providers offer domain registration and some even for life. It is always nice to have domains :)
Some of the hosts out there offer Google Adwords credits, while not name will need it, it is valued in advertising money that you can promote the site with.