1. What is your current counter top?
Of course if you are open to changing your counters along with your backsplash this doesn't matter. Common types of counters are butcher block, tile, granite, laminate or engineered quartz. The type of counter you have will help determine the type of complimenting backsplash product that will go with it. For example, glass tile may not be a good choice with butcher block, but may work well with granite.
2. What is your budget?
The amount of money you have to spend obviously influences the kind of backsplash you can afford. However, my advice is unless you are tied to a certain kind of material, go to your tile store with a completely open mind. Look at all different kinds of materials, colors, etc. Why? You may find something that matches perfectly and is just a bit more than your budget. You can find ways to cut back on other kitchen expenditures. Of course, the opposite could happen as well. You may have sworn off a lower priced material but find a color and pattern you love. When you shop with an open mind, it also gives you ideas for other pieces of the big picture design
3. What is your color preference?
The kitchen I grew up in was relatively neutral (terra cotta floors, white counters, neutral walls) except for one thing: a bright orange sink! So think of what your color preference is. Some find neutral colors very calming. Some want lots of bold colors to highlight the bold flavors they cook up in their kitchen. And then there are some (like the builder of my childhood home) that wanted one big bold splash of color. Think about that before you head out to shop. That way you can eliminate choices easily.
4. How long are you planning in living in your home?
Putting aside the fact that life is unpredictable and you can be uprooted by a job at any time, ask yourself how long you think you will be in your home. And are you someone who likes to change up designs to stay trendy every couple of years or will you do a major update that lasts for 15-20 years? If you are planning to sell soon, you may want to opt for something a bit neutral vs. bold color so it will appeal to a variety of potential buyers. If you change your style frequently, you may want to look for more inexpensive options, as they will be updated in a handful of years.
5. What is your cooking and cleaning style?
If you love both or you rarely cook, you can easily choose any kind of backsplash. But if you love to cook and hate to clean, you'll want to go with something simple like a painted backsplash or a peel and stick than can be replaced for low cost.
Now that you have a basic understanding of the ideal backsplash based on your preferences and lifestyle, you are ready to shop! Don't forget to pick out a complimenting grout color or spice it up with a bold fashion grout color.