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YouTube vs Vimeo for embedding videos on your WordPress website

YOUTUBE

YouTube is the biggest place to promote your videos – so they get discovered when people are surfing around on Youtube watching related content. So it’s good to have a presence there and it’s easy to embed any Youtube video onto your website or other social media. There are some useful options when embedding a YouTube video but there will always be a link back to Youtube when so that’s not the cleanest experience.

The player will never be really clean and distraction-free. If your goal is to keep viewers on your site it’s not the best option.

  • YouTube embeds suffer from 2 main opportunities for viewers to be distracted or sent off-site 1) when pausing the video and 2) after the video has finished playing
    • The title of the video and the YouTube logo will also link over to the YouTube website
    • These user interface elements of the video player can not be turned off (there is no option to remove the title)
    • there used to be an option to remove “related videos” (URL parameter is set to “rel=0”) but Google stopped supporting it in 2020
    • This “rel=0” option will now show related videos from YOUR channel, instead of showing competitors.
    • So it’s still good to use this option but the related videos from your channel will open over on youtube.com when they are clicked.
    • there is no guarantee that YouTube will support this feature long term since it goes against their advertising-based business model

other notes:

  • YouTube videos can’t be used as a background video on a website
  • No limits on the number of uploads
  • Great for SEO and SEM
  • Great analytics
  • Auto-Embeds on WordPress – and works with any website CMS
  • There is no “pro” version of YouTube for creators. Don’t get confused by the YouTube “Premium” – that is only for users to avoid seeing ads and allows saving videos in the mobile player and other ways to use the app that make it feel more like NetFlix and similar streaming services.
    • So you might get ads showing sometimes on an embedded YouTube video.

VIMEO

A free Vimeo account let’s you embed a clean player and you can be sure there will never be any ads. But it still links back to Vimeo via their logo at bottom right. A big limitation of a free account is how much you can upload: the maximum is 500MB per week (5GB total account storage) and 10 files per day.


A paid account gives you more customization options: you can display your logo and colors on the video player  – or opt for no logo and much more minimalist player: starting at $7/mo

  • Vimeo offers more privacy options than YouTube
  • Paid users can restrict video embeds to their own websites—and even disallow videos to be viewed on Vimeo.com
  • Vimeo allows replacing a video with a newer version without having to change the video URL or stats—something that you cannot do on YouTube
  • YouTube offers more in-depth analytics — Vimeohas basic analytics — this is important to businesses who want to dive into what videos are working, how long people are viewing videos, and where traffic is coming from.

A Sampling of Embedding: YouTube vs Vimeo

Vimeo:

YouTube:

This sample includes the new “Enable privacy-enhanced mode.” option.

Other options

VIDEOPRESS

  • https://videopress.com/ 
  • $9 / month or $99 / year
  • VideoPress via Jetpack Premium is a WordPress-native video hosting solution with a clean interface
  • https://jetpack.com/support/video-hosting/

WISTIA

  • https://wistia.com/
  • Free account adds their logo
  • Paid account starts at $100/mo – Add your own branding to the video player
  • extensive analytics – visually see when audience members are leaving your video
  • A/B testing
  • integrate calls to action
  • Better security – harder to download videos
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