Podcasts are becoming more popular daily, with everyone having a go-to podcast they need to listen to. While you might think that making a podcast is all about recording and then putting it online, there are other steps to consider before you can hit it big.
Regardless of your intentions for your podcast, you’ll want to make a solid plan to ensure yours will stick out.
So let’s take a look at some of the best podcast websites (see also ‘Can You Make Money From Podcasts?‘) out there to choose from. The ones mentioned on this list are Buzzsprout, Transistor, Castos, Podbean, and RSS. Here we will discuss the benefits and disadvantages of using each host.
A buyers’ guide will follow this, and a short FAQs section to help you on your journey.
- Buyers’ Guide
- Frequently Asked Questions
Buzzsprout is a great podcast host to start with, as they have a variety of beginner-friendly tutorials to help you get started. They even have advanced promotional features such as a free website to help you as you take your first steps into the world of podcasts.
While there is a basic plan, it’s only available for a limited time, so you will need to continue to pay to use it, which will cost you each month. The good news is that they have an excellent customer support team to help you if you need software guidance.
However, the good news is that it’s easy to navigate, but you may want to be careful with how much you upload at a time, as unlimited audio is unavailable. All-in-all, Buzzsprout is an excellent choice for beginners hoping to take a serious step into the podcast industry.
- Beginner-Friendly: Buzzsprout has a collection of beginner-friendly tutorials to get you started with making and promoting your podcast.
- Customer Support: Even with the ease of use, Buzzsprout’s customer support is quick and easy to talk to when you need help with the site.
- Easy to Navigate: Buzzsprout isn’t challenging to navigate and is easy to get to grips with.
- Advanced Promotional Features: Alongside professional tutorials, they include a free website that you can customize, alongside other great analytical features to see what you’re doing right.
- Transcription Service: Using Buzzsprout, you can have your podcast transcribed for those who are hard of hearing.
- Limited Basic Plan: The basic plan is only available for a limited time and only offers a short free trial. It also doesn’t have as many resources available on that plan.
- No Unlimited Audio: There isn’t a plan that includes unlimited audio, so you will still have limits on the number of episodes you can host.
- No Annual Option for Payment Plans: Unfortunately, if you want to pay a lump sum all in one go, you won’t be able to with Buzzsprout. There are only monthly plans available.
Transistor is another excellent podcast hosting site perfect for anyone considering stepping onto the professional level or if they’re already there. While it is easy to navigate and great to use, it’s not designed for beginners to jump into.
It has no free plan available, but the great news about Transistor is that if you have multiple podcasts, you can put them all onto the same plan.
However, it’s better established for anyone who already has an audience for their podcast, as they have limited promotional features compared to other hosting sites. However, they make up for this with their great customer support team, who are always quick and ready to help anyone who needs it.
- Easy to Navigate: Transistor has an easy-to-navigate site that makes it easy to deliver your podcast professionally.
- Customer Support: The customer support team available at Transistor is quick to reach and easy to talk to.
- Unlimited Shows: If you have multiple podcasts under your belt, you don’t have to pay for another account for each show. You can access them all on one account.
- No Free Plan: No free plans are available, so if you’re a hobbyist, it might not be the ideal platform for you to host.
- Limited Promotional Features: The number of promotional features included is limited, so it’s assumed you already have an established audience before you start using it.
- Not Beginner-Friendly: As I mentioned above, this is a professional hosting site, and it’s not designed for beginners.
Castos is a great option, especially for WordPress users. They have a plug-in that allows users to share their podcasts on their own site.
Castos also offers unlimited storage, so you can upload as many episodes as you want, and a transcription service to improve SEO and make your podcast more accessible. Unfortunately, there are no free plans for Castos and limited promotional features, so you may struggle if you want to monetize your podcast.
- Unlimited Storage: Regardless of the plan you choose, you have access to unlimited storage to host as many podcast episodes as you want.
- WordPress Integrated: If you have a site hosted by WordPress, you should be able to connect your podcast through WordPress using their plug-in easily.
- Provides Transcription Services: Castos offers podcast transcription services that can help any hard-of-hearing audience members.
- No Free Plan: While there is no free plan, there is a 14-day free trial that you can use to try it out.
- Limited Promotional Features: Castos has limited features when it comes to native advertising for your podcast.
Podbean is a great option for a beginner, with free plans and remote recording options. That should make it easier if you don’t have your own studio. You also have access to unlimited storage on all plans, but you need to be careful when you upload due to file size restrictions.
While Podbean can be a great access point for beginners, there is an issue where customer support is concerned, as a live chat is available but only for business users.
- Beginner-Friendly: Podbean is easy to use and beginner-friendly, so you can quickly jump into it and start immediately.
- Free Plan Available: A free plan is available on Podbean, so you can start with a free plan and choose another later if you prefer.
- Unlimited Storage: All plans have unlimited storage, so you can upload your podcast episodes and have as many as you want.
- Remote Recording Options: There are remote recording options available, so if you have co-hosts living elsewhere, you can all record from the comfort of your home.
- Maximum File Size: Compared to other sites, you have maximum file size for upload. So, if you have a longer podcast, you may struggle.
- Customer Support: Podbean has a live chat option, but only for business users.
RSS is a podcast host where you can start your podcast for free. However, while it is free to start your podcast, this doesn’t mean it’s free to continue. RSS has an easy-to-use content management system to navigate the site and unlimited storage for your shows.
If you have any challenges using it, the customer support team is quick and reliable and is there to help. However, if you have a WordPress site, you may struggle to host it there as there are currently no available plug-ins on the site.
- Unlimited Storage: You have unlimited storage on RSS to host numerous podcasts simultaneously.
- Customer Support: RSS is known for their excellent customer support, where they are quick and reliable and easy to get back to you.
- Advanced Promotional Tools: RSS has various promotional tools to make monetizing your podcast easier.
- Easy to Use: RSS has a simple-to-use content management system, making it more beginner-friendly.
- Limited Free Plan: While it is free to start your podcast, you can’t continue it for free. So, you will need to consider this when you upload.
- No WordPress PlugIns: No WordPress plugins are available, so you may struggle to host it if you already have a WordPress site.
We’ve compiled a buyers’ guide to help you understand how we decided on the podcast hosting sites on this list. These are all features we have considered when looking for these podcast hosting sites and how they may benefit users.
When you’re using a hosting website for the first time, you want to know whether it’s beginner-friendly or not. There are a variety of ways that you can know if a site is accessible to new podcasters, as they tend to offer more free plans and more helpful features.
In many cases, these podcast sites are easy to navigate and accessible to anyone being introduced to the area.
To tie into the beginner-friendly aspect of podcast software, you want to know that your site is also easy to navigate. This is essential to consider, regardless of your experience, to make your podcast without being too challenged by the site.
When working with any podcast host, you want to ensure there’s a good customer support network behind you. They can answer any questions you have and will quickly help you find a solution. They should be easy to contact, so we included any benefits or disadvantages for this area.
Price of Plans
Pricing can be a huge factor in deciding whether you want to use a site or not. So we included whether there are free plans available. While many of these sites have free trials, it doesn’t mean they will last for a long period.
To help you decide, we ensured that we mentioned whether any of these hosts have a free plan available to use.
Remote Recording Options
One feature that I felt would be great to mention, especially for beginners, is remote recording capabilities. If you’re starting your podcast with your hosts living in different locations, it’s better to know whether you can record remotely from your own home or studio.
These options are also great to use if you have guests on your podcast, as you can reduce travel costs.
Depending on how many podcasts you have and how many episodes you make, storage can be a huge dealbreaker. Knowing whether you can put all your episodes on one plan is also essential.
By knowing this, you’ll be able to save some money, and rest assured that you can host your show without any limitations.
The promotional features are essential depending on how you want to market your podcast. You may not mind these so much if you already have an established audience. However, these are important for anyone beginning in the industry.
Knowing what tools and monetization options you have available can help you decide whether you want to use these hosts or you may have to go elsewhere to focus on the marketing. It usually just helps to have everything in one place, so these are always good to have access to.
WordPress is one of the biggest content management systems used today, and many websites use it. So if you have a WordPress site, you may be pleasantly surprised to find a host for your podcast that has a plug-in available.
So, you can quickly put your podcast on your WordPress site to help your marketing process.
Some sites, such as Podbean, will have a maximum file size to upload. Unfortunately, your file may need to be compressed, and the audio quality may change. So, knowing the file size limitations can help you understand what size you need to get the highest quality content.
There are transcription services available for many podcasting sites on this list. These can make your podcast more accessible and easier for SEO. While many of these services aren’t free, they are still a better way to get your podcast noticed by a wider audience.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do You Start A Successful Podcast?
Before you start a podcast, you need to know what topic you want to focus on. You want to ensure you concentrate on this and ensure your research and content are of high quality.
The best way to gauge this is by listening to other podcasts, so you can see what they’re doing and how they succeed. Before you start out, consider live streaming and invest in the best equipment to ensure your podcast succeeds.
However, you can’t just record it and upload it. You need to edit each episode and maintain a consistent upload schedule. Once you improve, you can collaborate with other podcasters and market yourself online.
Then, when you’ve gathered your audience, make sure you listen to what they like and continue improving from there.
How Long Should A Podcast Be?
A podcast episode depends on the subject your podcast is covering. Some podcasts are only between fifteen and twenty minutes long, while others may even go over an hour.
Each podcast depends on the industry and genre you focus on, with more specialist topics likely covering a ninety-minute episode.
How Hard Is It To Have A Podcast?
Starting a podcast is much easier than continuing a podcast. The biggest challenge to podcasters is remaining consistent in their schedule.
How Often Should You Release A Podcast Episode?
If you want your podcast to become popular, you should work on a weekly schedule. However, depending on the length of your podcast. You could also choose to do one every two weeks or monthly.
Overall, as long as you create a consistent schedule, your audience will know when to expect a new episode.
What Are The Top Podcast Genres In The U.S?
The most popular podcast is a comedy, followed by news, society and culture, true crime, and sports. However, just because these are the most popular podcasts, it doesn’t mean they are the only genres available.
Each genre has its niche audience, so you could still make a podcast in a field you prefer.
Do Podcasts Make Money?
You could make money with a podcast depending on the type of podcast you have and the amount of success it has. You would need a combination of monetization strategies and build up your audience to do so successfully.
To do so, you may need to create an affiliate program or a subscription through Patreon and even make custom merchandise for your fans. Overall, there are many strategies that you can use to make money through podcasts.
Podcasts are a field that has gained more popularity over the years, but stepping into the world of podcasts can be daunting. When you make a podcast, there are multiple factors that you need to consider, such as what hosts you can choose for your site.
Then you need to market it and ensure that you edit your content to a high standard.
Each podcast is different, and everyone brings a new aspect to the table with each new show that is made. If you do want to make a podcast, ensure you choose the best provider for you and stay consistent with each episode.