One of the first things you need to decide when you get your first electric guitar is whether you want to use humbucker or single coil pickups. Pickups are magnets placed under the string, and transmits your sound to your amps. Single coil pickups use, well, a single coil, and humbuckers use two coils.
Before I briefly describe the difference, have a listen (humbuckers go first, then single coils):
I use a pair of Seymour Duncan humbuckers. I installed a push-pull pot, which is a really useful and cheap (about US$8) device to switch between having two coils or one coil. But the single coils probably don't sound as 'authentic' as dedicated single coils, but the video should be enough to give you a broad idea.
Humbuckers have a much thicker and distorted sound ('higher gain') than single coils. Single coils have a kind of twang which is quite suitable for blues and country music, but not for heavier rock.
But it isn't a hard and fast rule, because many rock players use single coils, and some blues players use humbuckers. It really boils down to your personal preference.