Hosting services can be confusing for non-techies. However if you aks the right questions your task will be many times easier. Narrow it down to a few hosting companies and then compare their offers, prices and reviews.
Don't skim over this part! It's important for a Joomla website owner, especially if just starting out to have some help available. Let's say a Joomla extension breaks your site - what now? Before jumping in and buying a hosting plan, take a look at what tech support is offered by the company. Do they take queries over the phone? This can save you countless hours of agony and grey hairs.
Is your Joomla-powered website going to cover a viral topic? If it does you might want to check how much monthly traffic it would be allowed to generate if you go with a certain plan. Also, if the site's going to have a ton of pictures, videos, etc., you should see if it's going to fit the disk space quota.
If your site doesn't have enough bandwidth available it's going to become very slow. The fact is, unresponsive websites don't do very well. Point being, your bandwidth quota should be high on your list of priorities.
Has this hosting company been in the biz for a long time? It's a booming market which means there are lots of hosts that don't make it in the long run. Save yourself the trouble and go with a host that has been around for a few years and won't disappear along with your site.
Software Specific Support
Don't assume all web hosting packages are going to be the same. A number of companies target niche markets like Joomla web hosting where there's less competition and they can offer more personalized service. It's a good idea to choose such host because they'll be able to assist you better with the CMS and the servers are going to be optimized for it. Keep an eye out for install wizards like Softaculous or Zacky Script Installer which can guide you step by step in the install process of Joomla - http://www.alotspace.com/app-installer-php-scripts/joomla-web-hosting/.
What About the Environment
A company may seem perfect for your needs but does it share the same care for the environment as you? Some hosting companies have policies in place to reduce their environmental footpring by using energy from renewable sources. Check that out before buying, don't make a compromise with your ethics.
How do I know if this web host is the right one for me?
In the end you have to make a choice. Going with the bigger and better known operation or the smaller more niche focused host. In bothe cases this article should offer you some general advice to keep in mind while shopping.
The Price Tag
There's no escaping it - the price tag. Good web hosting often doesn't come free or cheap. Remember that most providers showcase their monthly prices which are available only when you buy for a year or more. That's a commitment you'll have to be ready to make.
One option is to buy a web hosting package when you have your Joomla site ready and developed. This a good idea if you want to save some money and don't waste time from your hosting subscription without having your site at hand.
If you want or need extras with your hosting you're going to pay extra. SSL certificates, domain names, disk space upgrades - all of these are considered separate products and are not inlcuded in the initial price you paid. Keep in mind semi-dedicated and VPS services are more expenisve than their shared counterparts and ususally are not very budget friendly solutions.
If you're not a tech person all of this can seem a little too much. But armed with this list of useful advice you can cut trough all the confusion and become an aducated website owner. Don't get frustrated, pick a few web hosting companies and compare them according to your criteria - I guarantee you'll be able to find the best fit for your purpose and website.