The muse comes when you expect it the least. You might be driving home when it suddenly kicks in: a random wave of thoughts comes flowing, and you know for sure that it is an excellent material for your future podcast.
So you record it on your phone, trim it with a simple podcast audio editing software, and then: you’re stuck. It turns out that sharing your story with the world is a little more complicated than you thought it would be. You need a podcast hosting service, but you have no idea why.
That’s why you’re here, so don’t worry: we’ll tell you everything you need to know about the podcast hosting service and how to choose a proper one.
But before we start listing the criteria of a good podcast hosting service, let’s first understand what it is.
What is a podcast hosting service?
The podcast host is the place where you save your audio files for later, distributing them as your podcast episode. Here you get your podcast RSS feeds, which you later need to submit to Apple Podcasts or other podcast directories of your choice. You might wonder, though: what is an RSS feed?
It is just a listing of all your podcast episodes. RSS stands for “Rich Site Syndication.” In other words, it is a list to which people subscribe for getting updates on specific online content. If you want a more technical definition, it is a web feed formatted in XML that defines your podcast’s information.
Besides providing your podcast’s RSS feeds, podcast hosting platforms also give you access to web players, analytics, some scheduling tools, and other useful features. All of these make it easier to publish and track your podcast’s success.
Some podcast hosting services will also allow you to integrate your ad networks, share your podcast on social media, and other similar distribution options.
Now, the next question is:
Why do you need a podcast hosting service?
Unless your podcast is just a student project for a random class, you probably will be creating pretty heavy media files, and you need a decent place to store them all, and, of course, share them. One of the ways you could do it is by creating a website where your listeners would come for your episodes.
In this case, though, you’ll need to ensure that your website has enough bandwidth capabilities or storage. Otherwise, all these files will affect your load time or even cause your page to crash.
That’s why most podcasters start to look for a different solution, and that’s exactly when podcast hosting platforms come in handy. They provide you with a large enough space to store all your files no matter how long you need them. And if you choose the right hosting platform, you might even get assistance with the distribution of your show, allowing you to find and reach a larger podcast community.
This said, let’s now understand what you should pay attention to when choosing your podcast hosting.
How to choose a good podcast hosting service?
Here are a few things to consider:
1) Storage Space
If you dream, you should dream big.
Don’t you imagine your podcast growing year by year and turning into the best show of the decade?
Well, if you have such plans, before buckling up, make sure you have enough storage. After all, you want your listeners to access both the recent episodes and also the older content you made.
And that’s why your hosting storage space and bandwidth capabilities are essential. Unless your podcast is a short project, and you know for sure that you’ll be posting only a few episodes, then storage is the first thing you should consider when choosing your hosting provider.
Creating and sharing your episodes is not enough if you want to take your podcasting journey to the next level. You should also be able to track your success or understand why specific episodes failed.
And having analytics and reporting tools help you a lot with this task. So if your hosting provider offers them, you’ll be able to understand which platforms your audience uses to listen to your podcast, how your show performs, and other valuable data.
3) Simplicity and Support
Finally, make sure you don’t choose a complicated podcast hosting service that you can’t figure out independently. Your podcast hosting platform should be simple and easy to use without costing you extra time and effort. However, you might have questions even with the simplest hosting services, so another aspect you should consider is the support quality.
No one wants to wait for weeks to get their problem solved or question answered, so having a high-quality, 24/7 support service is always a huge advantage.
But you know what, we won’t leave you alone in your search for the best podcast hosting platform.
We’ve done the research for you, so here are a couple of really good ones!
The best hosting platforms
If you want simple hosting, which is at the same time filled with helpful and constantly updating features, Buzzsprout is your go-to. It also has a lot of learning materials that can help you create better content and grow your podcast audience.
As they say on their homepage, Captivate allows you to ” Host your podcasts everywhere.” They offer a single-click submission to the top podcast directories, like Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, and so on. They also provide in-depth analytics and allow you to share the account with several teammates.
Although Transistor is relatively new to the market, it has proven to be one of the best solutions. However, its primary focus are companies and people who take podcasting seriously, so if podcasting is just your hobby, this might not be the best solution for you.
The next time the sudden inspiration hits you and you create the perfect podcast episode; you know exactly how to share it with the world.