By 2022, online video content is expected to account for more than 82% of all web traffic (15 times more than in 2017). If you haven’t already considered how video fits into your long-term marketing strategy, now is the time to take it seriously.
Before you start creating videos, it is important to find out where you are hosting them. YouTube is obviously the largest video hosting platform on the web, but it may not be the best choice for every business.
To help you find the best solution for your company’s unique needs, we compared YouTube directly to the smaller niche platform Vimeo based on a number of factors. Read on to see the results and decide for yourself.
YouTube vs Vimeo
YouTube will be a better choice for most businesses. It’s free, generally performs better than Vimeo on search, has solid analytics for businesses looking to track ROI, and has a large number of users. If you have specific branding needs or need advanced support, Vimeo might be a better choice.
Number of users
There is no real competition here. YouTube has an audience of over two billion monthly users – nearly half of all internet users. Vimeo’s 240 million monthly viewers and 90 million registered users, on the other hand, seem insignificant. For maximum reach, choose YouTube.
YouTube leaves Vimeo in the dust here. YouTube is the second largest search engine on the Internet after its parent company Google. If you want to create a video that is tailored to a specific search query (such as how to choose a font for your website), your video belongs on YouTube. Not only does it appear in search results directly on YouTube, Google also seems to prefer videos from YouTube over those on other platforms.
Cell phone, mobile phone
70% of all YouTube views come from mobile devices, and the YouTube mobile app absolutely dominates mobile streaming – even outperforming formidable competitors like Netflix, Hulu, and Twitch.
Videos uploaded to Vimeo and YouTube are both automatically optimized for mobile devices, but YouTube offers more options for mobile discovery and reach.
YouTube is free – even for companies. But you might be wondering if Vimeo is, too.
Is Vimeo free to use?
Vimeo operates on a tiered pricing model that ranges from a free basic plan to a $ 50 / month package for businesses.
Vimeo Pro vs. YouTube
While Vimeo has a free basic plan, it limits you to 500MB of maximum storage per week.
If you’re okay with paying some cash, you can get a Vimeo Pro plan. In Vimeo Pro you have access to support, advanced analysis and professional privacy.
On the other hand, you can get unlimited storage space on YouTube for free.
With their paid packages, Vimeo offers multiple levels of technical support that could be game-changing for companies with little video expertise. YouTube offers plenty of free help documentation and access to a (rather crowded) support community, but if you’re looking for personal on-demand support, a paid Vimeo account is a better option.
YouTube offers unlimited, free storage space for all accounts, while Vimeo charges storage space on a tiered basis. The simple, free Vimeo account option gives you 500MB of storage per week. The highest package, $ 50 / month, allows you to store a total of 5TB with no weekly limits.
No pre-roll ads
If you upload your videos to YouTube, there is a good chance that a pre-roll ad will play before that, which may prevent some viewers from staying around. Vimeo doesn’t currently allow ads and it doesn’t look like they will be changing this policy anytime soon.
Running advertising campaigns
If you are thinking of running your own ads on a video platform, you can’t beat YouTube (you can’t buy ad space on Vimeo even if you wanted to, as it’s not allowed).
YouTube offers an advanced, easy-to-use ad platform and personalized assistance from a “YouTube Advertising Expert” when you spend $ 10 a day on ads.
User numbers don’t tell the whole story. Obviously, with such a large audience on YouTube, the environment is more competitive. It’s easier for thousands of others to drown your video if you don’t plan on showing it anywhere outside of YouTube. Vimeo’s smaller, community-powered platform may be a better option if you’re looking to tap into an existing creative niche or be featured on the hand-curated employee selection page.
Advanced privacy options
Both YouTube and Vimeo give you the option to set videos private or public (the default on YouTube is public), but Vimeo offers a handful of more nuanced, more specific privacy options if that’s your interests. You can add a password protection option to videos, share a video only with people who follow your account, or even hide it from the Vimeo community – which can be useful if you want to embed the video on your website and only want it in one place visible.
Vimeo’s sleek embedded player has a number of useful customization options that YouTube can’t, including customization of the hex color and the ability to add a custom player logo (on Business and PRO accounts). If you change the default customization options in your account, any previously embedded videos will be automatically updated to reflect the changes without you having to go back and tinker with code.
YouTube wins here because all of their analytics – from basic stats like views to advanced options – are completely free. Vimeo also has powerful analytics tools to evaluate performance, but you have to pay to access everything but basic statistics.
When it comes to video quality, Vimeo beats YouTube. In a test conducted by Medium, Vimeo’s video quality was crisp, clean, and easier to read. On the other hand, the same video on YouTube was blurry, which made it a lot harder to follow.
Vimeo is also at the forefront when it comes to quality. The sound quality is higher with Vimeo as the platform supports 320 Kbps. However, in order to enjoy higher quality videos and audio, you need to subscribe to one of the paid plans.
Both Vimeo and YouTube have live streaming options, but YouTube is the clear winner here as it’s free. Vimeo offers live streaming with a paid plan. However, Vimeo allows you to upload new versions of the video and still use the same URL, as well as upload higher quality recorded versions of a live stream that you can edit before posting.
So which one should you choose?
It largely depends on what exactly you are trying to achieve with your videos. If you’re looking for a creative community where you can network with other video artists and get known in a particular niche, Vimeo is a better place to start sharing your content. If you have business goals that are heavily focused on search optimization and ads, YouTube is your best bet.