A good miniature tells a story. Maybe not a whole Russian novel, but it should at least stimulate the viewer's imagination to think of the figure as a "character", with context and background. A good display base can enhance or strongly guide how the viewer sees the figure, depending on the creator's preference (and skill). For example, I chose a rustic forest floor base for my Mousling to suggest he is a wandering minstrel traveling between towns. However, more futuristic figures like Princess Leia or "Greybo" require something more artificial/technological.
Right now I'm working on a base for my Black Legionnaire. I contemplated a stone floor representing a temple or palace, but I decided that he too is a wanderer, questing for some arcane knowledge or artifacts for his own mysterious purposes. So he gets an outdoor base. The base I'm making uses thin slabs of cork (from cheap IKEA coasters) to simulate weathered rock.
I'm using snow to indicate the season, mostly because I want to practice the technique, but also because it makes his milieu a little more exotic. The "snow" is sodium bicarbonate mixed with white Elmer's glue. Quite simple, but I don't want to distract from the miniature itself.