15 Best Podcast Hosting Platforms
Podcasts have moved from a niche market of discussants in their parent’s basements to being spread across the globe into everyone’s earsets.
However, it’s more complex than just creating a decent show and uploading it. First, your website needs to be able to handle the traffic, lest you want your listeners attempting to sign up for your newsletter on a frisbee. But where does one start?
And that’s where podcast hosting sites come into the picture!
You need a podcast hosting service to publish your podcast episodes online and make them available to your audience. Podcasts are called interactive audio content for a reason. Your podcast listeners can get in touch with you through the comments section, emailing you their feedback, sharing your episodes on social media, and more.
It doesn’t matter if you’re looking to become a mega-star or want to solidify your brand; knowing which podcast hosting platform to use is essential to the podcasting process.
In today’s article, we have covered the 15 best podcasting sites. So whether you are looking for free or paid podcast hosting sites, we have covered everything in detail.
In the above image, you can see how Podbean will ask you to set up your podcast. Podbean makes it easy to create a professional-looking site from title and description to category and podcast logo. Once you upload your episode, you can also pick a theme for your site.
As you see in the below image, you can customize its fonts and colors and test the audio and appearance before it launches.
Podcasts can also be listened to on Apple, Google, Shopify, and other podcast apps. If you want to embed your podcast on your website or blogs, Podbeans Embeddable Players will make that easy for you. The Embeddable player is also customizable and lets you add branded elements, making the design professional.
You can even connect your social media handle with your Podbean account to directly share podcasts on your social pages.
It doesn’t skimp on statistics, either. Podbean statistics will give you all the insights you need to know about your podcast’s audience, including the top 10 episodes, how many downloads there are at a particular time, where your customers come from, and user retention data.
All in all, it’s a great option to get started with your podcasting journey. However, one downside is that the podcast website isn’t as polished as some podcasters might prefer.
It starts at $9/month for unlimited storage space, unmetered bandwidth, distribution on significant podcast apps, customizable themes, and more.
You can start with easy and free learning material provided by Buzzsprout, including podcasting guides, courses, video tutorials, industry podcasts, and community.
It’s also worth noting that Professional-sounding podcasts don’t come easy. That’s why Buzzsprout’s MagicMastering tool is available for you to use. It’s an audio filter that sweetens your podcast and optimizes it for the best industry standards.
That said, the Magic Mastering feature is only available with the pricier plans, so you’ll have to shell out more money for it.
You don’t have to worry about optimizing your episodes yourself either because Buzzsprout optimizes all episodes in terms of file type, bitrates, ID3 tags, etc.
The best part is that it has dynamic content flexibility, letting you decide whether audio should go at the beginning or end of an episode. It does everything to make your podcast search engine friendly, including transcribing each episode for people with hearing disabilities.
Buzzsprout’s users also usually have good things to say about the platform.
“I have been lucky enough to host a few different podcasts in various industries. Every time, my hosting platform of choice is Buzzsprout. They just get it. Buzzsprout makes it super easy to publish and syndicate your podcast episodes across various mainstream streaming platforms and directories.
If you need a website for your podcast, Buzzsprout gives you the tools to create one. Simply pick a domain and host your podcast there for the world to see. It’s quick and easy to set up and won’t cost you the earth. Go, Buzzsprout!”
Starts at $12/month for 3 hours of upload, advanced statistics, unlimited storage, and more.
Your podcast can be set up anywhere, including Shopify, Google Podcast, Apple Podcast, and other podcast directories. Simplecast gets your podcast on these directories and apps as soon as you publish any episode and then automatically sends it to your listeners.
Then it will provide you with advanced analytics to show how many listeners you have, how many downloads you get, your listeners’ locations, and more. See below for a visual representation of how this works:
It also has a website. That’s right; you’ll get your own website.
This website automatically updates as you publish new episodes and is customizable, mobile-friendly, search engine optimized, and Google Podcast optimized. You can even use your own domain names.
In addition, it allows the user to manage multiple shows in a single account. The image below will show you what the Podcast Dashboard looks like. It displays the number of episodes for each show and other information, such as role and owner.
It starts at $15/month for two seats, unlimited storage and uploads, basic analytics, a custom domain, a customizable website, and more.
Creating Music+talk episodes on Anchor is as easy as pie. Choose any song from Spotify’s library, place it in your episode builder, add an audio file that you wish to go with the music file, and then submit your episode for review.
Some of the best ways to make money from your podcast are by building an audience and monetizing that audience. And with Anchor, you can monetize in various ways, including by adding paid advertisements to your podcast or asking for donations from listeners.
In addition, the IAB 2.0-certified metrics from Spotify let you measure your podcast’s performance in detail. For example, you can see where listeners are abandoning you on the track and adjust accordingly by adding content that really matters to them. You can also see what type of listeners interact with your podcasts – how old they are, what gender they identify with, and more.
He believes that the end-to-end control of the whole process is what makes Anchor.fm unique.
Colos further shares,
“Even if you’re not a technical person, the interface is so simple that you’ll be able to learn it in minutes. I’ve been using it since the day I started my podcast, and I’m so glad I found it. It’s also worth mentioning that the support on the platform is great. If you ever have a question, you can contact the staff on their Discord channel and will get an answer within minutes.”
It’s a free platform.
Creating a SoundCloud profile is also as simple as pie. You can personalize your profile with your own username, profile URL, custom profile image, and header.
SoundCloud is also one of the few podcast-hosting platforms that allow you to create a community around your podcasts. This is handy if you want to grow awareness about your podcast among other users.
Users can comment on specific moments of the track, and other users can see those comments when they reach that moment on the track.
The podcast hosting platform is available for Android and iOS, and you can sign up for free. Of course, there’s an affordable fee for upgrading your account to a creator account.
In addition, SoundCloud lets you distribute your tracks on various channels, including Spotify, YouTube, Apple Music, and more.
Then you have the SoundCloud Analytics dashboard that gives you a quick overview of the number of streams, revenue, and top tracks — but it’s not as detailed as you can get with other podcasting sites. After all, it’s a music streaming platform primarily rather than one specifically for podcasts.
There is little to no knowledge on their website for beginners, which is another disadvantage. That said, it’s pretty easy to use, so anyone without experience in podcasting can easily use the platform.
It starts at $2.50/month for monetization, distribution, promotion, and split payment features.
Once your podcast is recorded and ready to go, you can invite multiple members to contribute. Its analytics software provides clean visuals and robust insights into listener trends.
For instance, the below image is an overview of the podcast performance:
Now observe that the amount of data and clear visuals make this less overwhelming. As you can see, it gives you insights into average downloads per episode for the specific period, estimated subscribers, and total downloads (month-wise visual presentation).
“I’ve been super happy with Transistor.fm for hosting all my podcasts. Instead of paying for each one individually, Transistor allows me to host all the podcasts I want for a single price. This made me feel free to experiment and start as many podcasts as I wanted. They also have great integrations, analytics, and sharing capabilities to embed on a website or newsletter.”
It starts at $19/month for unlimited podcasts, private podcasts, live customer support, a built-in podcast website, and more.
The best part? You can host both audio and video podcasts on Libsyn.
To get started with Libsyn, you’ll have to provide a few details, including podcast title, subtitle, description, category, owner’s name & email, author, website URL, and more.
The below image shows what the Libsyn podcast settings look like:
You can also add your own artwork to your podcast. Click “Add artwork” or drag and drop the images in the upload area. Suppose you don’t have your artwork ready. In that case, you can design one on Canva – Libsyn’s integration with Canva makes creating a professional-looking podcast cover simple without any graphic design experience.
Once you are ready with everything, publish your podcast and distribute it to the platforms where your listeners could be, such as Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Google Play Music.
Libsyn gives you more ways to make money with your podcast, including advertising and subscriptions. For example, you can pitch to the big advertisers on Libsyn’s AdvertiseCast Marketplace or build a community of members who get exclusive access to your content.
“When I started podcasting on the side, I wasn’t sure which hosting platform to use. There are a lot of options out there, and it can be overwhelming to try to figure out which one is the best. After trying out a few different platforms, I found that I liked Libsyn the best.
It was easy to use and had all the features that I was looking for. I also liked the fact that they offered unlimited storage and bandwidth, which was important to me since I wanted to be able to grow my podcast without having to worry about running out of space. The only downside is that it can be a bit expensive, but overall I thought it was the best option for me.”
Starts at $5/month for 3 hours of uploading, 162MB storage, stats snapshot, basic social promotion, unlimited bandwidth, ad-free website, and more.
It takes just a few clicks to get Podcastincs up and running. The editor is clean and self-explanatory, as shown in the image below. Just follow the steps, and your podcast will be ready in minutes.
Moreover, if you already have your podcasts on the Apple Podcasts platform, you can easily import all of them into your Podcastics account in just two clicks. Simply type your podcast name in the search box and select yours from the list that appears. This will collect and save all your data, such as titles, descriptions, episodes, etc.
Podcastics is also one of the few podcast hosting platforms that allow you to host multiple podcasts with unlimited episodes under one roof.
Once your podcast is up and ready to be distributed, you can share it with the world on major listening platforms such as Spotify, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, and more. Podcastics makes distribution so much easier by automatically creating an RSS feed for you.
Its magic link never misses redirecting your listeners to the correct platform. You can also add QR codes to your magazines or print flyers to get user subscriptions.
Starts at $8/month for worldwide distribution, easy import, unlimited episodes, private/unlisted episodes, and more.
Spreaker’s how-to guide for podcasting will get you started in no time. Once you have your podcast’s name, length, and format ready, Spreaker Studio will help you record it, add sound effects, and crop or trim your audio. Finally, add the cover art, and you are ready to publish your first podcast on Spreaker.
“I find Spreaker the best and most reliable platform. My favorite thing about it is that it provides most of the essential features in one place – pretty much everything related to your podcast can be done on Spreaker. It’s also very intuitive, so it’s effortless to use, even for beginner podcasters.”
Martyna mostly has good things to say about Spreaker, but one thing that bothers her – it doesn’t support video podcasting, so she can’t post on YouTube with it.
It starts at $8/month for 6-months statistics, 100-hours storage, auto-upload to Spotify, iHeartRadio, Apple Podcasts, and more.
To upload media, you must first add it to Podomatic’s library of supported file formats. It supports file formats including m4a, mp3, mp4, BMP, jpg, png, mp4, m4v, and more.
Podomatic will store your audio and video files in an unpublishable section if they are larger than 350MB, lack an extension, or has an unsupported extension.
To upload a podcast, you only need to determine the title, tagline, cover art, description, category, tags, and language. Then, once published, you can start monetizing it using Patreon, Popcorn, and What For Apparel ads.
You can also get stats on your podcast, including total plays, mobile plays, embeds, downloads, visits, and more. The service goes further into analytics to show your performance over a selected period of time, the performance of individual episodes, and listeners’ graphs.
Starts at $2.49/month for 100GB bandwidth, 2GB storage, and more.
With Blubrry, you can get more than just a podcast hosting service. You can grow your audience and connect with listeners by using Podcast Audience Surveys. These surveys give you valuable information about your audience, allowing you to develop a more robust publishing strategy.
For instance, you can see who completed your surveys and see their entire profile with information like identification, age, employment, education, demographics, audience’s listening habits, feedback, and more.
Once you’ve got all these metrics in place, you can then use them to compare and contrast with one another to come up with a more robust publishing strategy. This is something that no other podcast hosting platform does.
Blubrry also offers a free and optional managed WordPress website – designed with all the necessary modules a podcast website needs. In addition, this site automates podcast publishing on your website by using PowerPress Plugin.
And if you’re not looking to host an entire website, Blubrry offers a podcast landing page with a quick display of the show and listen and subscription module.
Want to further know where your listeners are coming from and which device they’re using? Blubrry Stats can help you analyze all of that!
However, it’s worth noting that Blubrry’s Standard plan is so basic that you can’t even use your own domain with it. It doesn’t come with advanced statistics or additional themes and plugins either – so be prepared to buy a pricier plan if you want all of those features.
It starts at $10/month for 125MB storage, standard statistics, monetization, email and phone support, unlimited downloads, a custom embedded player, and more.
Although it does not come for free, the range of hosting features and storage and upload capacities makes the price worth it. Captivate is designed by podcasters for podcasters, so it knows about their needs.
Creating a podcast in Captivate is a 5-step process. First, you’ll need the podcast name, author name, podcast cover art, description, category, directory setting, and more. Once you have all the necessary details, you can start importing your podcast into the Captivate Dashboard.
Then copy your current RSS feed into the current feed URL box and choose the current host—and voila! You are ready to go.
As soon as you publish your first episode, your podcast can be listed on one of the directories that Captivate integrates with.
With Captivate Analytics, you can see total downloads, total listeners, unique listeners, website traffic, listener demographic, and more.
It also offers responsive podcast websites where you can select from 3 templates, add bios, sign-up forms, lead generation modules, and more.
“What I like the most is their dashboard – minimalistic yet providing everything you need. If you’re experiencing some trouble, Captivate’s team is there to support you. Considering the above, there’s nothing to dislike there. The platform offers a seven-day free trial. All paid plans cover unlimited podcasts and team members, with access to analytics and marketing tools.”
Starts at $17/month for 12K downloads, unlimited podcasts, unlimited uploads & storage, podcasting 2.0 support, and more.
You can create your podcast on Sounder either from scratch or by importing it from an existing platform. Once you sign-up for a free account, you can start with the podcast by entering details such as title, description, category, and artwork.
You can tinker with many more details, including your podcast’s name and description, author name, language, timezone, and more. While setting up these details, you can enable monetization by simply clicking on the relevant option. And that’s it!
Now you can create an episode by uploading an audio file and adding its title and description. Here you can set episode numbers, types, and artwork. You can also pre-schedule them.
If you’ve enabled monetization, you can select whether pre or post-rolls ads should go to your show.
Once you publish your podcast, Sounder will help you distribute it to popular listening apps such as Spotify, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, iHeartRadio, Amazon Music, Pandora, and more.
With Sounder Analytics Dashboard, you can get insights into streams, listeners, revenue, listeners’ demographics, keywords, referrals, and more.
Available on request.
To start a podcast using Fusebox, you need to choose whether you’re starting a new podcast or importing from an existing one. In the below image, you can see that the UI is straightforward and easy to follow, even for newbies to podcasting.
If you’re creating your podcast from scratch, you must be ready with the details, such as the podcast title, description, and cover artwork.
Here’s what the form will look like:
You can also import data from your existing podcast by simply entering your feed RSS URL. It will lead you to the subscription page, where you can select a free or pro plan.
If you’re a new user of Fusebox or creating a podcast for the first time, you should enable Easy Hosting from your dashboard. It comes in every paid subscription.
Here, Fusebox will find your podcast and import all the files and data into your Fusebox account – you can just sit back and relax.
Once you’ve set up podcast information, you can start customizing your podcast player. The Branding page lets you select the brand colors that match your podcast or website branding.
You can also add a call to action – a button that prompts listeners to buy your music or sign up for your mailing list.
You can further:
Starts at $7.50/month for a single track player, essential analysis, easy hosting, and more.
You can start by creating your podcast from scratch or importing it from an existing podcast platform. Both are super easy. To create from scratch, you will need to enter its title, description, language, and more.
Check out the image below to see what you will need:
As you can see, the UI is clean, easy to use, and self-explanatory. Every field is explained as you fill it out, and tips appear onscreen if you need more information. Once you create your podcast, you’re ready to upload your first episode.
The good thing about episodes is that they can be assigned season numbers, episode numbers, and types – giving you the flexibility to publish your episodes in the form of different series or trailers.
If you want to monetize your podcast, you’re in luck – RSS has in-built tools for that. The activation process is also easy and just takes one click.
Rss.com offers you three ways to monetize your podcasts: donations, bitcoin payments, and sponsor ads.
You can also distribute your podcast to listening platforms such as Google, Amazon, Spotify, Samsung, Amazon Music, and more.
It starts at $4.99/month for unlimited episodes & audio, cross-platform analysis, RSS feed, free website, custom embedded player, and more.
Podcast hosting platforms are the middleman between you and your audience. They’re a necessary part of the podcast ecosystem — they provide the basic infrastructure that makes it possible for you to create and publish your show.
There are many factors to consider when choosing a podcast hosting platform, including:
If you’re just starting out, then it might be easier for you to use a podcast hosting platform because there are so many options available. However, if you have some experience with WordPress, then you can host your own podcast to avoid paying monthly fees and have more control over your content and website design.
Podcast hosting services provide a platform to upload your audio files as well as convert them into an MP3 format. After uploading your content, it will be available on their servers so that anyone can access them online.
Most of these services also offer some basic analytics and statistics that help you track how many people have listened to your podcast and where they live.
Some even offer more advanced analytics like ranking charts, number of downloads per episode, etc., which helps you understand what people like about your show and how they listen to it (e.g., through mobile devices).
Hosting refers to storing your files on the Internet. It’s like storing your files on an external hard drive, except that they’re stored online rather than on a physical device. When you upload an episode to a podcast hosting platform, it will be saved there so that listeners can access it easily.
You need to sign up for an account with a podcast hosting platform (like Libsyn). Once you have your account set up, there is usually an upload tool that allows you to select the files from your computer and add them to your account.
Libsyn, Buzzsprout, Blubrry, and PodBean are all popular options for podcasters. It really comes down to personal preference and what type of features you’re looking for. You can also check out our post on how to choose a podcast host if you need more information on making this decision.
No, those aren’t podcast hosting platforms — they’re directories that people use to find podcasts. You’ll need to host your own MP3 files off-site so that they can be accessed by these directories (and other apps/devices).
No! Your podcast will be hosted on a website provided by the platform you choose, so you don’t need your own domain name or web hosting account. You may want to create an email address for your show so listeners can contact you directly with questions or feedback, though.
There are two main types of podcast hosting: free and paid. Free hosts do not give you full control over your episodes, while paid hosts usually offer more features and flexibility.
Hopefully, we’ve answered a few of your questions and given you the information you need to help you pick the right podcast host for your needs. Whether you’re looking for the best professional podcast host, the cheapest option for monetizing your podcasts, or something in between, there are podcast hosting sites out there that will help you meet your specific requirements.
We think the best way to choose whichever podcast hosting service is right for you is to check out how they handle certain features and what level of support they offer.
Note that free podcast hosting services are a great way to get your podcast started. The free option is perfect for a hobbyist or someone who is interested in the process of making a podcast. From there, you can upgrade to paid accounts for a more dedicated podcast hosting service with some of these platforms or go with a self-hosted option.
Whichever you choose, make sure you read the fine print, so your podcast isn’t censored for inappropriate content or hurt yourself by not having the proper legal disclaimers in place.
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