Your website must be hosted on a web server that is connected to the Internet. There are many hosting service providers that provide and manage a server specifically for hosting websites. Many clients have heard of Go Daddy, especially if they have watched the Super Bowl in years past. Go Daddy is probably the best known of all the hosting services. However, as with many large corporations, the best known does not always equal the best quality.
We prefer hostmonster.com or Blue Host as our hosting provider. The UI is C-Panel and the management pages are well organized and intuitive. Some clients already have their sites on Go Daddy or some other provider. We are willing to work with their preferred provider, though we may charge extra depending on the interface and ease of use.
The hosting provider is transparent to our clients. We provide a human interface and the client never has to interact with them. When renewals come around we bill our clients and once our client submits payment we perform the necessary steps to renew both hosting and domains.
Why not host on my servers
Why do we use a hosting provider instead of hosting sites on our own servers? The primary reason is that they can take advantage of economies of scale. They already maintain huge amounts of bandwidth and many servers that are specifically optimized for websites. They can provide redundancy and backup equipment located around the world so that a disaster won't affect their services. Plus, the larger hosting companies can promise 99% up time and if there is a problem we can leave the headaches to them. This way we can concentrate on our core competencies and the work we enjoy most - building and maintaining websites. We have only had Hostmonster go down once and they were back up within minutes. Blue Host has yet to go down.
Another reason for hosting with Hostmonster or Blue Host is that we know they aren't going out of business anytime soon. A local hosting company had legal troubles and their servers were confiscated. Everyone hosting on their servers lost their websites. And those companies that had their sites built by this now-defunct company lost access to the code for their sites and thus had to start from scratch.
You own your own website
At the end of a development project, we always provide access credentials to our clients. That way we can't hold their websites hostage. And we always develop sites using common, well-supported development platforms and coding style along with current best practices as determined by the web development community.