When it comes to hosting video content online, the good news is that you have plenty of options nowadays. Whether you want to go the free route or use a paid tool, the right choice will depend on how you intend to use the content after you upload it. If it's something short, sweet, and personal, free platforms will work well enough for most of us, but if you plan to host video content for work, that's another story altogether.
Without a doubt, most people get turned around when they need to find a safe place to host videos online because it’s hard to know which tools work best without trying them all out first. So, to make it easier to decide which websites would work best for you, we put together this post to give you a basic breakdown of what’s out there right now.
For starters, YouTube is good enough to host personal videos if they’re relatively short and to the point. A great example is hosting a video resume that you don’t plan to keep posted forever. You’re using it for a specific purpose, which is fine for most of us since we don’t usually use YouTube for business purposes.
The downside to YouTube is that it doesn't give you access to critical metrics, and no matter what, your viewers will have to watch ads before they view the content – unless they buy the premium version of YouTube. Yet, it's a mistake to assume that your target audience will use it. Not only that, but viewers may have to watch several ads if the video is long enough. Aside from those two drawbacks, uploading videos to YouTube works well for simple use cases.
Staying within the Google suite, we come to Google Drive, an under-rated option most people forget about even though it’s widely available and easy to use too. If you need to host video content for work, Google Drive works well in a pinch when you need a quick fix. You get plenty of storage space without upgrading, but the catch is that video content will consume this allotment faster than most people think. Still, it’s a decent option because you can readily share links or make them private if you choose. Best of all, since Google Drive is cloud-based storage, you can access your videos via smartphone apps in a snap.
Moving up the ladder, we come to Vimeo, a more advanced hosting platform than YouTube and Google Drive. You can create a basic account for free, but the paid subscriptions to Vimeo come with many helpful features like engagement and performance stats. Best of all, there are no ads when you pay for Vimeo, and your content will be easily sharable. You could even choose to create embeddable playlists with premium versions, including a basic line-up of video marketing tools. Whereas YouTube is more for amateurs and those who don't need to host videos for work, Vimeo is more robust, versatile, and comes in several paid packages.
Next, we come to Wistia because it's one of the more sophisticated solutions you can buy. For starters, you get a customized, brandable video player, and you can also use several lead generation tools. You can also retarget audience segments and drill down into key performance metrics. Honestly, it's a tool developed by and designed for video marketing pros who need more features than the usual line-up of video hosting sites.
Not only that, but Wistia can also host podcasts on the same platform, which the other websites on this list can't do. As such, think of Wistia as a media hosting website. The only catch is that the free basic accounts limit the amount of content you can upload and embed; however, the paid versions work well enough for work.
So far, we’ve gone over the simple platforms, but what if you’re a professional marketer and need a video hosting website with more sophistication? In that case, many people turn to Vidyard because it offers integrations with enterprise-grade IT. Use-case-wise, this platform works great for sales, marketing, and enterprise communications as well. You get access to an analytics dashboard and can add extras like interactive playback. Additionally, you can use Vidyard APIs with popular customer relationship management software like Hubspot, SalesForce, and Marketo, just to name a few.
Undoubtedly, there are other options out there, but this list gives a breakdown of what most people use when they need to find a website to host video content.