I am looking to improve my skills and sales. I would like to know what a web host looks for in the design for their site? Such as colors, set-up, what content they have on their main page, flash or no flash, curves or straight lines, etc.
From my experience every host has different requirements. You cannot just generalise hosts and hope that all hosts will want the same.
For example, you have "Modern Hosts" who have the whole plastic type thing going on. Plastic buttons, and so on, however still looks very professional.
Hostnexus is possibly the one site you do not see every day. I love it's uniqueness.
When you see corporate host sites, the designs and page setup are different, but never tend to stray away from a white background with blues or reds.
Everyone one wants different things, if you want to develop your skills in "host type" areas, I suggest developing a few different style websites and improve your skills in "effects", such as plastic buttons, "pill buttons" and so on.
EDIT: Knowing how to do different things prepares you for a client, but not only this, gives you a wider imagination on what a site could look like.
Lots of different ideas... Well, I guess it would be appropriate to post this thread in a place where hosters could see it, not the designers then. They all have their own idea of what a perfect webhosting design is. As it has been mentioned one wants plastic and glow, the other more classical feel. The only general thing we can say is that they all look for professional design, no matter what style they need.