Video making takes some serious blood, sweat, and tears (especially if you’re into watching TikTok videos). However, according to reports, by 2021 videos will make up more than 82% of all online traffic. It is, however, important to choose the right hosting for the right situation: some are better for growing a following on the video platform itself, while others are better for embedding high quality videos directly on your website.
What Exactly is Video Hosting
Since video files are bulkier than normal files, it gets pretty difficult to host directly on your website, as it would mean a lot of bandwidth and storage space. Even when the former issues could be avoided, there’s no saying that the video won’t face playback errors since every time someone requests for your video(s) to play on your website, it would still strain your resources.
Some people even opt for direct, on-site video hosting but that also leads to decreased page speed, and can even lead you to tumble down into your SERPs (Search Engine Page Results Rankings), since you don’t have the resources to quickly and reliably serve video content anywhere in the world.
This leads to hosting your video through a dedicated video host, which provides an embed code that you can add to make your video accessible on any web page. This serves as a universal solution to all your former problems related to video hosting.
But, there are plenty of such dedicated video hosts to choose from, and each of them seems to have a different purpose. While some of the platforms can be good for building your followers, some are more analytics-oriented to help you understand trends better. There are also certain video hosts that are for premium users and come with a subscription fee, but cater to better content quality as well as have their own pros and cons over the free options.
This boils down to the fact that choosing a video hosting platform can solely be defined by your purpose for creating videos. If you’re a business owner, it’s crucial for you to explore and learn how to keep your customers invested with informative and engaging videos.
For users who have access to their dedicated server on a virtual machine, having your videos hosted on such infrastructure could also put a load on your server, even when you have significantly smaller traffic. In case of a general web page containing images weighing only a few megabytes, it may not be a big deal to host, on the other hand, even a single 720p video of 2 minutes can weigh over 100MB. Now if this video is viewed by 10 visitors watching just 60 seconds of this HD video, it can need at least 1GB server bandwidth. The cost, the storage space, and the bandwidth requirement all multiplies accordingly when you have a larger website, with a larger audience and therefore the need for more such videos. In such cases, going in for a third-party video hosting platform is a no-brainer as it’s cost-effective, organized, and hassle-free at the same time.
Now that you understand how it all works, we’re going to cover six video hosting sites you can use to host your videos offsite, and we bet you already know a couple of them:
1. YouTube (Free)
It’s almost impossible to think of online video hosting platforms without thinking of YouTube. It has been fifteen years since the first YouTube video (if you’re curious about the first-ever video on YouTube, it was posted by the original Co-Founder of YouTube, Jawed Karim from his zoo visit in San Diego.). Though it took several days, months, and years to solidify as a platform, YouTube was soon bought by Google in 2006 and since then has never looked back.
Today, it’s worth more than USD $160 billion and gets more than 6 billion hours watched every month! In case you’re wondering YouTube isn’t just for making vlogs or music videos. According to Buffer, 62% of business owners distribute their content to viewers across the world via YouTube, the second-most popular social media platform after Facebook.
Since Facebook is primarily a social networking website, YouTube is the first in our list. Given that more than 1.9 billion active users are present every month on YouTube, which also includes brands big and small, it’s essential to know why nothing comes close to the growth potential that makes businesses choose YouTube as their video hosting platform.
These are some pointers that makes YouTube unique in every way:
- It’s super-easy to use
- YouTube doesn’t come with any data storage or bandwidth shortcomings giving you the liberty to just drop in video of any length without having to compress them yourself generally
- As a creator yourself, all you need to access YouTube is to sign-in with your Google account and click ‘Upload video’ to start right away
- You can generate revenue and earn your fair share generated from your video on YouTube
- Free unlimited cloud storage for all your videos
- Build your own subscribers base, right from scratch
Despite all the hands-on features, there are a few limitations on YouTube as well:
- Video embedding options are basic
- Auto-ads that play even when you’ve embedded a video on your website, if your videos are monetized
- No download option without the help of a third party plugin
That said, YouTube still remains as the largest video hosting platform in the world and is a beckoning option for every business owner to drive more traffic and reach newer viewers everyday through videos.
2. Vimeo (Paid)
Founded in 2004, Vimeo has been considered a super-artsy, elder brother of YouTube which is a relatively serious video platform, without any ads and or toxic comments on your videos. Embedding code in Vimeo is simpler than YouTube and also looks cleaner than the YouTube counterpart.
Here are some things that Vimeo does uniquely:
- The videos are served at a higher bitrate. Keep in mind, it doesn’t matter that YouTube has a 4k option, compression is a huge part of what can make a 720p video look better than a 1080p one.
- It’s an entirely ad-free platform, and therefore they offer pricing plans to keep it from playing ads in between your videos
- Your videos can easily be embedded on your website, without any change to its quality or settings
- You can also download your videos and make it social media proof with its Vimeo Create option
- It also lets you to choose a responsive or fixed size, toggle autoplay, or loops
However there are a few limitations that you may face on Vimeo as well. For example if you aren’t creating visual masterpieces, you may have to struggle a bit to earn followers on Vimeo. The low upload limits with free accounts, the filtered audience may make your brand less visible compared to YouTube, but if your products are related to the photographic/videographic domain or you are simply looking for something to embed videos on your website, you may find this platform better.
3. DailyMotion (Free)
It is one of the most direct YouTube competitors on the list, and is also another video sharing platform. Claiming over 300 million unique users, this platform is also built around a similar monetization business model as YouTube. Therefore, there is also the presence of well-known YouTube channels on this platform like T-Series with more than 120 million subscribers. While a lot of similarities exist between the two platforms, there are also other features that make it unique:
- Free unlimited video hosting for all users
- Videos can be made private and protected with passwords
- Because of lesser competition, subscribers can come easier than YouTube
Because the competition is lesser here, it can be a good place to build an audience from scratch. However, the potential growth that can be made on such platforms will be significantly less. Apart from that, DailyMotion has smaller maximum file sizes and like YouTube doesn’t allow video downloads other than third-party websites. This platform is apt for content creators who are looking for a secondary distribution channel.
4. Facebook (Free)
This is one of the only platforms online that beats YouTube when compared to the active users and audience online. There are billions of videos that get watched everyday on Facebook, and in recent upgrades, Facebook also came up with the Facebook Watch feature. This helps you to watch videos live with your Facebook friends together at the same time, across the world. With 2.45 billion monthly active users, Facebook is definitely where the world is at, and therefore it is one of the best places to make the audience aware of your brand.
However, since Facebook is first a social networking and a video sharing website second, there might be a few business owners that don’t consider tapping into its potential as a video marketing platform. Given the potential it packs, tapping into the Facebook audience is a great way to kickstart your business. Here’s why:
- It comes with free web video hosting and direct share options
- Audience building is the goal on Facebook
- Great for small business owners and creators to have online awareness for their brand
Apart from this, Facebook also has a higher chance for small creators to make viral videos right from scratch. However, because of saturation in the resources, there might be marketers who may end up creating lookalike campaigns for brand awareness. This would lead to lesser quality control in terms of videos and traffic.
5. JetPack WordPress Plugin (Paid)
This powerful plugin is an all-in-one tool with a bundle of features. Jetpack premium is available for all WordPress.com and WordPress.org websites that already have a premium Jetpack subscription. While you can upload unlimited videos to your Media Library during your subscription, the size per video cannot be more than 2GB. What makes JetPack unique is:
- It has a better video block, as it uses Automattic’s (WordPress owners) VideoPress video player having more configuration options
- It is affordable and ad-free at the same time that makes it apt for business owners
- The video analytics get directly fed into your WordPress dashboard
The only thing that many business owners find different than YouTube or Facebook is that JetPack comes with a subscription fee, unlike the former. But, since it is minimal compared to other premium platforms, it is totally worth the value because of its impressive functionalities.
The world of video hosting is vast and with each day the number of options keep growing. One thing that’s worth mentioning is that despite such options, you don’t really have to stick to one video hosting platform. The fun part is, the more the merrier. It may actually help you broaden your reach as different platforms cater to different audiences. While YouTube can be your go-to for all business, entertainment and educational needs, its basic embedding features can make you look uncouth to your peers online. Therefore, it is important to appeal to the mass in different ways, and now that you have a clearer perspective on video hosting, it all depends on you how you want to take it from here!
If you need a company that provides creative design services to help with your professional videos and other marketing material, CodeClouds is a great choice. They offer a myriad of services tailored for effective product marketing and website design.