I was asked recently: “What is the best platform to upload my videos to so that I can share them on my website?”
YouTube and Vimeo are the first to spring to mind and are definitely two of the most popular sites.
They are both great platforms for uploading and sharing videos; they offer somewhere to watch good, quality content and they both offer free services.
But, did you know they offer different premium services? Or that Vimeo allows for much higher video quality?
They seem very similar so, before making a choice, there are some things you need to take into account like costs, upload limits, audiences and the privacy and editing of each platform.
Vimeo works differently to YouTube. It lets viewers watch videos for free, but charges creators to upload their content.
A Vimeo Basic account is free however, it comes with some strict limits on the amount of data you can upload – and I’ll talk about that in a minute.
For the different Vimeo accounts you can expect to pay;
- Plus: $7 per month billed annually
- Pro: $20 per month billed annually
- Business: $50 per month billed annually
- Premium: $75 per month billed annually
YouTube has a different way of encouraging you to buy into the Premium upgrade.
Watching videos for free, just like Vimeo, but if you want to skip the constant ads, you’ll need to upgrade to YouTube Premium. Their pricing structure seems simpler – it’s free for this first month, and $11.99 per month after that.
So, it’s cheaper Vimeo’s Premium account but you may want to look at some of the other factors to see what suits you.
For example, YouTube Premium also lets you play videos in the background while you use other apps on your phone, which is perfect for music videos, and you will have access to YouTube Originals which includes any TV series and movies commissioned by YouTube.
Sound good? Don’t get carried away yet – there’s still some other factors to consider…
YouTube lets creators upload videos for as long as 15 minutes and you can extend this by verifying your Google account and your YouTube account because YouTube is owned by Google.
If you would like to do this, tap the camera icon in the YouTube app to upload a video, tap next and follow the instructions. Once you have done that you can verify your account with either an automated call or a text to your phone. Easy.
Once your account is verified, your upload limit will be extended to 12 hours or 128GB.
Vimeo upload limits work on a weekly basis.
People with a Basic account can upload 500MB per week and can only upload 10 videos in 24 hours. They can upload a total of 5GB to their account.
People with Vimeo Plus accounts can upload 5GB video per week, and if you want to upgrade to a Pro account, it will let you upload 20GB per week.
One extra bonus is that there is no limit on your overall storage space on the platform whichever account you opt for.
There’s no question that if you want to reach as many people as possible, YouTube is the way to go.
More than, 2 billion users log in and watch videos on YouTube every month, whereas Vimeo has around 973,000 registered users in total.
Just because you are publishing a video online, does not mean you want everyone to see it. Privacy may be important to you and YouTube and Vimeo handle their privacy policies differently.
YouTube offers three privacy settings for videos you upload:
Public: These videos are publicly accessible by anyone. They can be searched, listed, and displayed across YouTube platform.
Unlisted: These videos can be accessible by anyone who has the URL. However, they will not appear in YouTube search or related videos
Private: These videos are only visible to you, and specific users you choose.
YouTube will also allow you to disable comments on your video, disallow the embedding of your videos on other websites, but this will also block you from embedding a video onto your website.
YouTube may not therefore be an ideal platform if you want to host private videos and Vimeo does offer more privacy options than YouTube.
Their privacy settings allow you to make videos public, private, or unlisted. You can also share a video with just the users you follow.
Paid account users can also restrict other people’s ability to embed their video on other peoples websites. They can even disallow their videos to be viewed on Vimeo.com itself.
On Vimeo you can also password protect your videos. If people want to watch them, they need to use the right password. If you want to have more control over who watches your videos, then Vimeo is a much better platform for you.
Both platforms have great tools to upload, edit, and manage your videos.
YouTube offers really good video editing features. It has a video editor that allows you to create new videos from your previously uploaded videos, photos, titles, and more.
You can also create videos using your videos and photos in Google Photos as long as you’ve connected your accounts as I explained above.
With YouTube, you can add links, captions, and subtitles to your videos. It also offers a live streaming feature where you can live broadcast events, news, or just casual vlogs.
Vimeo, in comparison, does not offer as many video editing features as YouTube but it does have all the basics you’ll need.
It allows you to add a video title, description, category, tags, license, and audience rating. You can also upload captions and subtitles to your videos.
One drawback is that Vimeo cannot add clickable links into your videos.
But… the best part about Vimeo is that you can replace your video with a newer version without having to change the video URL or stats. This is something that you cannot do on YouTube without uploading a new video on a totally new URL.
This specific feature is really handy because if you made a mistake or just need to update screenshots in your tutorials, then you can easily do so while keeping all the view count and the same video URLs across your membership site.
So, to answer the question…
YouTube and Vimeo are both excellent platforms for your website videos. Depending on what you want to achieve with your videos, one platform could be better suited for you than the other.
If you are a blogger, or small business who wants to use videos to build a subscriber base and reach a much larger audience, then YouTube may be better.
Alternatively, if you want a website with membership options or you are selling courses or services, then you need more privacy and an ads-free platform with a high quality video experience. In which case, Vimeo is a great choice.
Either way, it’s easy to make the features work for you.