YouTube vs Vimeo. Which Should You Use to Host Your Videos?

Woman holding a cellphone, shooting video

Whether you’ve already created a video or are only thinking about it, there’s one very important decision that you need to make: Where will you host it? In this article, YouTube vs Vimeo, we address the pros and cons of each.

And if you’re not sure why you need a host, read our article: Which Video Hosting Option is Right for You?

YouTube vs Vimeo. Which Should You Choose?

For many people, YouTube is the obvious place to host a video. However, before you jump in, review our pros and cons of YouTube vs Vimeo.

YouTube Pros

  1. YouTube is the most popular video hosting platform in the world. This is important because hosting your video on YouTube has the potential to expose your message to many more people than will ever visit your website. And social sharing features encourage others to share your video.
  2. YouTube searches can drive traffic to your website. YouTube is the world’s second most popular search engine, after Google. When properly optimized, posting compelling content to YouTube can be a valuable source of traffic.
  3. There is no fee to post your videos. YouTube’s business model is built on selling ads, but posting videos is free.
  4. Strong analytics. Tracking analytics is an important part of any online marketing strategy. YouTube’s in-depth analytics can help you see what’s working and what’s not.
  5. Useful video editing options built in. The YouTube Video Editor allows you to remove content from the beginning and end and link to other videos, channels and playlists.
  6. Videos hosted on YouTube generally do better in search. (Search Engine Watch)

YouTube Cons

  1. YouTube is ad supported. YouTube wants to keep viewers watching, because their revenue comes from ads inserted during playback. Therefore, when someone finishes watching your video, YouTube will suggest other videos that it thinks the user might be interested in. You have no control over what YouTube suggests, and those videos might not enhance your message or your brand.
  2. No live customer service. Support is limited to community interaction and online instructions. 

Should You Host Your Video on Vimeo?

Vimeo Pros

  1. Vimeo is Ad Free. Unlike YouTube, Vimeo’s business model is based on charging for its hosting. Therefore, there are no ads on your Vimeo page. The basic level is free. The price goes up with increased storage and features. 
  2. More Privacy Options. YouTube has just two options for limiting the availability of a video: Unlisted and Private. Vimeo privacy controls are more advanced. Some options include allowing you to set up a password, create a private link, or limit where the video can be embedded.
  3. Allows you to replace an old video with a new one without changing the URL. This is not possible on YouTube.
  4. Allows you to sell video directly to users. Vimeo On Demand allows you to sell your work directly to your audience who can then view it online in HD quality from a wide range of devices. You keep 90% of revenue after transaction fees.
  5. Allows for higher quality video with better sound.
  6. Provides documentation and live customer support. Sometimes it’s easier to speak to a live person who is familiar with your problem.

Vimeo Cons

  1. Vimeo has a smaller base of users.
  2. Weaker analytics.
  3. Fewer video editing tools built in.
  4. Videos generally don’t do as well in search.

YouTube vs Vimeo: How do you decide?

For most businesses, YouTube is the best choice. It’s free, has strong analytics, has more video editing options built in, generally does better in search and it is the most popular video hosting platform in the world. However, for those who have specific privacy or branding needs, want to sell their videos or be able to speak to a live customer service representative, Vimeo makes sense.

Learn more about our services by visiting our Website Design and Development page. If you’d like help setting up your YouTube or Vimeo account, give us a call at (518) 392-0846 or email [email protected].

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