It mainly depends on what you're using the hosting for - if it's for a blog, consider services such as Tumblr that only need you to register a domain (hence skipping the part of looking for a reliable and affordable hosting service). However, for other purposes, have a look at site5.com, it offers some great shared hosting options, and Amazon Web Hosting (which seems to be one of the main go-to hosting places).
I've been evaluating lot of hosting providers and I found Heroku to be the best of all. Heroku offers Free service (no credit cards required). I first tried it to build a Facebook app and now I'm extending it to all my apps. I've hosted my static website to heroku app as well. It works.
Steven, at work, I used Microsoft technologies (ASP.NET and Silverlight), and in my most recent freelance project, I've used PHP. So, I can use either technology, and based on the price point of the hosting, I've usually used PHP, given the choice. Thanks for the mention of Site5.
I recommend site5.com for shared hosting. They can do SSL and 10GB/month would not be a problem. It would be helpful to know what you're going to do with the site. Site5 pricing starts at $5/month. SSL and a dedicated IP address add to the cost a bit. Asking if you should use ASP.NET or PHP leads me to believe you don't really have this application designed.
Thanks for the helpful information, guys. I am thinking of a shared hosted setup with a small business need. SSL would likely be an extra expense per month. I would be interested in pricing if bandwidth is < 10 GB a month and PHP. What if I used Microsoft ASP.NET? Some brand names that you have worked with would be great, and some sense of expected pricing. I have used iPower, but haven't explored the gambit of web hosting providers.
What is your estimated traffic level, monthly bandwidth, and technology platform. Do you need SSL or is straight http ok? Are there security issues that require a non-shared server or can you live on a shared we host?
If you're looking for a personal or small business website, then $5/month is a reasonable expectation. If you're going beyond that, a lot more information is required.
That's not really enough information upon which to base an answer... uptime is one thing, but the type of site you're running and the associated traffic volume is another. Perhaps given a class of service (shared vs. VPS vs. dedicated) more meaningful responses can be offered.