Looking for video hosting sites besides Youtube for your business or educational website? Wondering if Youtube is really your best option?
I bet if you’re hosting (or planning to host) your business videos on YouTube it’s either because…
a) it’s an easy and free video hosting option…
b) you think your business video will get tons of free exposure.
Well, it’s all good as long as all you want to do is share the latest “I love cute cats” video. Or the “OMG look at all these people acting goofy, falling down goofy, singing goofy”, and that kind of silly stuff…
However, if you’re trying to build a serious business or eLearning website, you need to be serious about where you host and handle your video content.
Here’s the thing…video hosting sites besides Youtube definitely exist and they are quite different.
But let’s go through a few things first to get a good understanding of risks and rewards involved here.
The first thing you need to understand is that YouTube is not in business to help you with business (unless of course you pay for ads). YouTube is in business to help the YouTube community.
Yes, Youtube is free. That’s why people want to use it. Sure, no money is exchanged. But what is it really costing you?
If the videos on your website are embedded from YouTube, there are many ways it is costing you viewers, leads, and ultimately customers.
Let’s start looking at 11 reasons why a Youtube alternative may be a good idea for you.
1. Annoying Ads + “Related Videos” = Lost Customers
YouTube features ads inside your videos. Ads can be for anything, including your competitors. Think about the user experience of having the close those ads out all the time if you just want to get to the content.
These are all incredibly annoying distractions that are, in all likelihood, costing you lost leads or customers.
Then, if your viewer manages to stay attentive throughout your video, YouTube allows other videos, most probably belonging to your competition, to auto-play after your video ends. Yes you can turn this off so it doesn’t auto-play. But even if you remember to do that, it will still show related videos once your video is finished.
Sure, you can make your videos Unlisted (instead of Public) and there’s less chance you’ll get ads on your videos. But check Youtube’s terms. They have the right to put ads on any content you ad to the platform, no matter the settings. Plenty of Unlisted videos get ads placed on them.
Also consider that when you make videos Unlisted, users can’t search for and/or see your video when they are inside of Youtube. So they can’t search for it, don’t see it in related videos, and can’t stumble onto it in any way. But if you are using Youtube, isn’t the advantage the extra traffic you get from users inside of Youtube? You won’t see any of that if it’s Unlisted.
Want to join the Youtube Partner Program and actually make money from these ads? Sure, you can do that as well. But is your goal to build your Youtube channel or build your audience on your own web properties?
You really need to think about your goals when you consider how Youtube uses your content.
2. YouTube Logo On All Videos with Google Tracking Codes
Your prospects are only one click away from leaving your site.
Did you ever notice the big, fat clickable YouTube logo on the bottom right side? One click on that and your visitor is gone like the wind. YouTube literally siphons your visitors right off your website.
And it doesn’t stop there.
YouTube has another sneakier, more invisible way to grab even more customers right out from under your nose.
In every YouTube-hosted video, there’s a code that tracks the audience…your audience…and makes it accessible so advertisers (and competitors). Google keeps track of all the videos your audience watches and uses that info to serve them personalized ads.
When you use private video hosting, you choose what code is placed inside your videos. In fact, you can place your own code on your videos and track your own audience, and serve them personalized videos of your own content.
3. YouTube Videos Threaten Your Credibility
When a visitor lands on your site and see a video with YouTube branding on it, it’s a distraction. Sometimes it registers subconsciously and the visitor isn’t even fully aware that they’re being distracted.
A study was recently done by Tubular Insights, a well-known video marketing company.
According to their study, more than 43% of customers believe a website’s brand can be harmed by having a branded YouTube player on it.
In that same study, they found over 68% thought the website was more credible when the site used a generic player rather than a YouTube video. Their conclusion is that using a YouTube video can negatively impact the credibility of your company.
In many cases, using any other branding besides your own can be perceived as amateurish, and poses a real threat to your business’ credibility and professionalism.
4. Impossible To Keep The Video On-Brand
It’s important to try and keep all fonts, colors, media and anything you add to your website on-brand. You want your brand to be at the forefront of every visitor’s mind.
The ability to customize your the look of your video to stay on brand is very limited by YouTube. Forget about trying to use your brand’s colors on the player or add your logo. It’s obvious it’s a Youtube video, as everyone recognizes the player.
5. If The Video Ranks In Google, It Takes Them To Youtube
You probably already know that Google owns YouTube. It’s quite obvious that the Google search results are skewed to favor Youtube videos over videos hosted privately on website.
However, that’s not to say that it’s impossible to rank videos private hosted and embedded on your site. But if you use Youtube, any ranking video will take your visitor to Youtube.
Yes, you will likely get that view and your content watched. But now they are on Youtube. Will they go to your site next? Or get lost in a Youtube black hole?
Remember, your goals are important here. In this article we are discussing embedding videos onto your site and why NOT to use Youtube for that. But should you still upload your content to Youtube? Sure, why not. The goal for your videos inside of Youtube should be to drive your viewers from Youtube back to your own website (not the other way around).
And there are some strategies you can use to try to rank inside of Youtube, as number of searches worldwide inside of Youtube are 2nd behind searches inside of the Google search engine.
6. Your Video Can Disappear without Warning
YouTube, of course, sets their own guidelines and they can be incredibly arbitrary. They can take your video down for what they perceive is a violation of those guidelines.
And once they’ve made their decision, it can be extremely difficult, if not altogether impossible, to get them to change their mind. Your video just ceases to exist.
7. Your Account Can Be Shut Down (Just Like That!)
Or, even worse than videos disapperaing, YouTube can simply shut your account down with no warning, for any reason they choose, or for no reason at all. They will simply direct you to their extremely extensive terms of service.
Reports of Youtube accounts getting shut down are all over the internet.
8. No Decent Customer Service
Just hope you don’t need customer service. Sending in your request may or may not get you an answer.
And even if you get a response it may not be from an actual human being. It’s just as likely to be a canned response that offers no help.
Luckily, when you move away from Google services and go with a custom video hosting solution, chances are you are going to get good customer service (time to toot our own horn, as customer service is a #1 priority at Spotlightr).
9. Limitations on Video Length
Unless and until you verify your Google account, you’re limited by default to uploading videos no longer than 15 minutes.
Of course the best length for videos is an often debated subject among video experts, most business and marketing videos don’t surpass 15 minutes. But if you are creating a course or eLearning website you very well have videos longer than 15 minutes.
Even then, YouTube could decide at any time to restrict the length, the type, even the content if they so choose.
10. Your Valuable Videos Can Be Downloaded
If you’re a membership site owner or you’re planning to sell training courses, you know how important it is to have a video hosting provider that secures all the time and effort you put to create these products.
If you’re considering hosting your videos on YouTube, your valuable videos can be stolen, downloaded and shared in torrent sites in seconds. Piracy might be one of the best reasons to look for video hosting sites besides Youtube. Your content is your website’s heart and soul, so protecting that should be paramount.
There are tools and plugins such as vDownloader and 8downloader that allow the unscrupulous black-hats of the internet to download video content. Or simply use any number of Firefox or Chrome browser exensions that can steal from almost any video platform including Vimeo and Wistia.
11. Missing ESSENTIAL Marketing & Customization Features
Probably one of the biggest reasons people are so often searching for video hosting sites besides Youtube.
You use video to deliver your courses. You use video to market your courses and your business. Video should be one of the most important aspects of your website.
Video serves a multitude of purposes, across a wide diversity of industries and niches, so you need a bounty of features to use.
For example, with a YouTube video…
– You can’t add your own logo to your video
– You can’t capture leads within the player.
– You can’t customize player colors and match it to your overall brand
– You can’t include any timed buttons, opt-in forms or calls to action either.
As mentiond before, even though Youtube is free and has what seem to be some advantages, you need to understand there is a cost, a substantial cost, associated with this “free” platform. A boatload of missing features, disadvantages and serious risks to the growth of your business.
Even if you’re new to video…
And even if you have almost no budget…
There is no reason to handicap your business by relying on YouTube.
Especially when there’s a better and very affordable choice.
Meet Spotlightr. A video hosting and marketing suite that thousands of teachers, coaches and businesses use to attract millions of students, leads, and sales every single month.
Spotlightr solved all the problems stated above PLUS it allows you to do ANYTHING and EVERYTHING inside your videos, including…
– Customizing the player’s branding and match it to your overall brand
– Opt-In forms for capturing verified email addresses and phone numbers within the video
– Viral “Share This Video” gates for driving more traffic
– Display cleverly timed “Calls to Action” to direct visitors or students wherever you want
– And maybe most importantly, secure your video content with our encryption process which makes all of those browser extensions and plugins useless when trying to steal your content.
With dozens of other features like like video heat-maps and viewer-based tracking.
The full feature set is very extensive. Far more than you’ll ever have with YouTube. More than you can get with Vimeo or Wistia.
Want to see how Spotlightr works? Sign up for a free trial account today, no credit card required.
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