Are you curious about video hosting sites as you venture into the world of video marketing?
YouTube and its built-in mega audience are certainly tempting, but it’s monetization strategy is focused around ads. So, you as a creator have limited control.
Even worse, the platform’s oversaturation, demonetization issue and rampant copyright abuse have made it harder than ever to grow an audience and earn your fair share of ad revenue.
In this post, we’re going to cover six video hosting sites you can use to host your videos offsite, and they’re all great alternatives to YouTube.
The best video hosting sites for content creators and entrepreneurs
Vimeo is a video platform founded in 2004. It put itself on the map in 2007 when it became the web’s first video platform to offer high-definition videos. Today, it has over 90 million creators on its platform.
Vimeo is a popular alternative to YouTube. While it doesn’t receive nearly the same amount of traffic, it is listed within the top 200 sites (typically around 170) on Alexa’s global rankings list.
Its popularity is part of the reason why it’s able to compete with YouTube. Like the more dominant platform, Vimeo allows anyone to take advantage of its built-in audience by uploading original content.
What features is Vimeo known for?
- Better Quality Videos – This site is much more flexible than other platforms from a technical perspective. It accepts most codecs, frame rates, bit rates, resolutions and color settings while also offering a guide you can use to better prepare your video for the platform’s, however lax, built-in compression settings. The outcome is videos that look sharper and more detailed than other platforms, most notably YouTube.
- Ad-Free Platform – Vimeo does not show ads on its site or in your videos, which is why it offers the pricing plans mentioned below.
- Embeddable Video Player – Embed your videos on your website, and allow users to change quality and volume settings.
Who should use Vimeo?
Vimeo has five plans, making it suitable for all creators. All plans offer unlimited bandwidth and embeddable videos. If you simply want to add a few videos to your website, use the free Vimeo Basic plan.
If you need more than 250GB of storage per year, want to upload in 4K or HDR, and wish to have access to more stats and customizations, upgrade to a paid plan. Pricing starts at $12/month or $84/year (a 40% discount) and maxes out at $900/year.
2. Jetpack Video (WordPress Only)
The Jetpack WordPress plugin is a jack-of-all-trades kind of plugin. It offers dozens of functionalities in a single tool all while preventing itself from becoming bloated by allowing you to enable only what you need.
While the Jetpack plugin itself is available for WordPress.com and the self-hosted WordPress.org, its .com counterpart allows you to host videos on WordPress’ servers and embed them anywhere with Jetpack Video.
All you need is a subscription for Jetpack Premium.
What can Jetpack Video do you for you?
- Unlimited Video Hosting – You can upload an unlimited number of videos to your Media Library so long as your subscription is active. Unfortunately, you cannot upload videos larger than 2GB. Vimeo, in contrast, has no file size restrictions so long as you stay under the storage limit allotted in your plan. YouTube’s file size limit is 128GB.
- Better Video Block – Jetpack uses Automattic’s VideoPress video player and comes with more options to configure in Gutenberg’s video block.
- Affordable, Ad-Free Video Hosting – Jetpack does not run ads on your videos, and you can use it for as little as $9/month or $99/year.
Who is Jetpack Video for?
Jetpack Video is a great video hosting option for WordPress websites. If you don’t use Jetpack, you can still get a lot of use out of this option at a cheaper price than the other options on this list. This is especially true if you create shorter videos or videos with lower resolutions.
3. Hippo Video
Hippo Video is an all-in-one video marketing suite in addition to being a video hosting site. It has its own video player, and you’ll have your own landing page to customize for each video if you have one of the cheaper plans (embeddable videos are only available on the Pro plan and higher).
The service’s marketing functionalities allow you to acquire more leads, increase sales and form a better understanding of your audience through video content.
What are some of Hippo Video’s best features?
- In-Video Opt-In Forms – Inserting inline opt-in forms before or after videos is great, but it’s not nearly as effective as inserting them in the video player itself where your viewer’s eyes are focused.
- Professional Videos – Hippo Video offers a professional video editor you can use to polish your videos without third-party editing software. You can also personalize the video player with custom branding and your hosted landing pages with a custom domain.
- Customer Service Functionalities – This service integrates with tools like Zendesk, Freshdesk, Intercom and Zoho Desk, allowing you to accept video support tickets. It also supports video conferences.
Who is Hippo Video for?
Hippo Video is a fantastic option for creators who want private, ad-free, non-platform video hosting at an affordable price and without needing to rely on a tool like Jetpack, which requires use of WordPress.com.
It’s also one of the best solutions for entrepreneurs looking to grow their businesses with video marketing.
This service does have its limitations. Bandwidth is capped at 200GB, for instance. You also can’t upload videos larger than 3GB, and the highest resolution you can use is 1080p.
Each plan also has a limit on the number of minutes each video can be, starting with 15 minutes/video with the free plan and maxing out at 120 minutes/video with the most expensive plan. You also can’t embed videos unless you pay for the Pro plan or higher.
You can get started with Hippo Video for free with premium plans starting at $10/month.
SproutVideo is a direct competitor of Hippo Video in that it’s a video hosting site that offers marketing functionalities. It doesn’t offer as many features, but it does offer more in the areas that matter most, including bandwidth and video resolutions.
Still, it’s another service that offers ad-free video hosting at an affordable price.
What can SproutVideo do for you?
- Lead Marketing – Capture more leads and direct viewers to key landing pages with in-video calls to action and post-video screens.
- Restrict Access – Restrict access to your videos in many ways, either by making them public or protecting them via password. You can also limit access to logged-in users (logged into SproutVideo, not WordPress) or certain countries and IP addresses.
- Video Analytics – View and monitor video analytics with stats on number of plays, visitors, play rates, hours watched and average engagement. You can also see which countries your viewers are watching from and which domains they use, such as your website, Twitter, etc.
- Customizable Video Player – SproutVideo uses a non-branded video player. You can customize the colors it features as well as the way your videos operate for viewers. On-video social sharing is available as well.
Who should use SproutVideo?
SproutVideo is another ideal choice for creators who want ad-free videos not linked to a platform with a built-in audience. It’s a more expensive choice than Hippo Video with pricing starting at $24.99/month and no annual options, but it comes with a maximum bandwidth limit of 500GB.
There are also no file size restrictions so long as you stay under the 500GB storage limit, after which you’ll be expected to pay $0.08-0.25 per gig. You can also upload videos with resolutions as high as 8K.
Vidyard is another video hosting site that offers a way for entrepreneurs to host ad-free videos not linked to a platform. It’s a competitor of Hippo Video and SproutVideo but a more direct competitor of Hippo Video due to its marketing and sales functionalities.
In fact, its primary focus is lead marketing and sales videos where you’re able to add potential customers to your email list and continue the sales funnel with relevant videos and screencasts.
What are Vidyard’s best features?
- Lead Marketing and Sales Functionalities – Add opt-in forms directly to your videos, and view stats telling you which videos, how many videos and how many minutes leads have watched. You can also record videos, via screencast, your camera or both, and send them to leads to continue the sales process.
- Video Analytics – View stats for your entire Vidyard library and individual videos as well as leads. Metrics include total number of viewers, total minutes watched and your most popular region. You can also view click-through rates.
- Unlimited Video Hosting – Vidyard offers unlimited video hosting while other services limit the file sizes you’re allowed to upload or how many videos you can have. There are also no bandwidth limits, and support for 4K videos is available.
Who is Vidyard for?
Vidyard is ideal for entrepreneurs who want to incorporate more videos into their marketing strategies. This includes using video content in place of blog posts, written landing pages and regular email content.
It’s also a great solution for marketers looking for unlimited video hosting and support for 4K, but it does come at a price. There’s a Free Forever plan that allows up to five videos, but the $19/month plan only allows you to embed up to 20 videos outside of Vidyard’s hosted pages.
If you want to embed an unlimited number of videos and have access to calls to action, analytics and a customizable video player, you’ll need to pay for the Starter plan.
This costs $1,800/year as it’s only billed annually, making this service a much more expensive option than its competitors.
Wistia works similarly to YouTube and Vimeo in that it gives you a channel to host your videos on. The major difference with this service is that it doesn’t have a built-in audience and will not feature ads on your videos.
There’s also no platform built into it, meaning your videos will not be advertised across Wistia nor will your channel feature promotions for others’ videos.
Wistia also comes with marketing functionalities, making it similar to the other services on this list as well.
What are some of Wistia’s notable features?
- Lead Marketing – Wistia allows you to capture email subscribers on videos with interactive tools. These include simple opt-in forms and calls to action as well as things like annotated links and chapters.
- Collaboration – Invite team members and advertisers to provide feedback on videos by leaving comments at specific timestamps. You can also choose who has access to what and limit access by the video, a great option when bringing in freelancers or when you need an advertiser’s approval for an advert.
- Analytics – Optimize your content and marketing strategies with detailed analytics featuring stats on play rates, actions and engagement rates. You can even track individual viewer engagement with stats and heatmaps to optimize the content you send based on viewers’ actions.
Who is Wistia for?
Wistia is a quality service that offers “high bandwidth limits” and support for 4K, and it’s a fantastic option for business’ that need collaboration tools. Unfortunately, it’s not a cost-effective solution.
The first paid plan is $99/month and only comes with 10 “free” videos. You’ll need to pay $0.25/month for every additional video you upload. This plan also only allows you to acquire up to 250 channel subscribers.
The next plan up is $399/month and only allows up to 100 free videos. You also aren’t able to embed your videos outside of Wistia unless you subscribe to this plan. Other video hosting sites on this list offer quality video hosting and similar features at much cheaper prices.
Over to you
That’s our list of six video hosting sites for content creators and entrepreneurs to use outside of YouTube.
If you’re looking for a YouTube alternative – one of these platforms should do exactly what you need.
Each of these services have different pricing structures, but the one you ultimately decide to use should come down to the amount of videos you create, the file sizes and resolutions you use, and the additional tools you feel you need.
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