We had decided that we wanted to go with a web hosting company so we could set up our own site. I did some research and here is what we decided.
We went with Inmotion Hosting. I did some research and they looked like they had very good uptime and support and the features we wanted, at a reasonable price. We pay $9.95 a month and got a free domain (with the 12-month package). If you get the 24 month package, it is $8.95 a month. I picked it especially because it is supposed to have very good customer service and it had a decent package (Power Business class – the middle business class plan) for a decent price.
Another company I considered was Host Gator. It was also supposed to be good. It was about the same price for similar features. And LunarPages got excellent reviews but had less plans. Actually, I probably would have gone with Blue Host instead, had I found it earlier. When I went to WordPress.org to set up WordPress on my site, they recommended it and it looks good and is cheaper. What I particularly liked about it was that they had an active developers forum where members helped each other.
CPanel is really a nice tool to manage your site and Fantastico is an easy way to install things (like WordPress). Subdomains are where you can add something to the front of your domain name, like I created clear.bluedei.com for my blog and Sean is thinking about deep.bluedei.com for his. You could also set up say support.bluedei.com or store.bluedei.com. Ours allows 50 mySQL databases. Some have less and some have unlimited. It appears that when something is installed through fantastico, it takes a database so it is good to have plenty (or at least more than you think you need).
Also, the web hosting companies have different servers that they can put you on and if you plan to do development or leading edge stuff, be sure to ask for one with the latest versions installed (like php or mySQL) since not all of them do.
You can do a search on: web hosting reviews, to get sites with ratings, reviews and overviews of the different web hosting companies. And here is a link to a blog post on MySitesAdvisor called Review of 3 Reliable Web Hosts that looks at 3 web hosts that they like. Blue Host was also on their list. They also have a post on 5 Keys to Choosing a Better Web Host that has a lot of good information in general on what to look for in a Web Hosting service.
We are in the process of setting up our own site at bluedei.com. We haven’t done the front web page yet, but I have set up a subdomain clear.bluedei.com and installed WordPress there and copied my posts over and am working on getting it set up. You can take a look if you want, but it is still a work in progress as I figure out themes and plug-ins and whatnot. I will do another post about the difference between WordPress hosted by them at wordpress.com and WordPress that you host on your own domain.
But this is the first step to having our own site.