Looking into starting the next big podcast? With 68 million weekly podcast listeners and 50% of households in the US being podcast fans, podcasting is a great way to build your online presence and engage your fans.
Podcasts are a great way to connect with leading experts and influencers in your industry. Having an influencer on your show comes with two major perks.
First, it’s a great way to build your brand and your show’s credibility. Listeners will also begin to see you as an authority or expert in your niche. It’s also a good way to create backlinks that drive more traffic from search engines to your website.
The second major benefit is it helps you build your audience, by tapping into your guest’s online following. Podcasting by itself helps you increase and better engage your online following which can drive more traffic, build your mailing list, or even drive sales.
So having a guest just supercharges this advantage and increases your reach, since most influencers will tell their followers to tune in.
And finally, if you’re looking to build another source of online revenue, podcasting when done right can eventually become a cash cow, generating 100s to 1,000s of dollars per episode. For example, Joe Rogan of the Joe Rogan Experience podcast earns more than $100,000 per episode!
But how do you get your audio to all those listeners? The answer is podcast hosting sites.
A podcast may seem as easy as simply recording audios and sharing them online, but this presents a unique challenge.
That’s why you need podcast hosting.
With many free and paid podcast hosting sites to choose from, how do you know which one is right for you?
In this guide, we’ll help you choose the best service for your new podcast based on your goals and what you want to do.
We’ll compare these podcast hosting sites based on storage, user-friendliness, cost, technical support, app integrations, upload volume caps, monetization, and even marketing features.
Our goal is to help you confidently pick the best podcast hosting platform for you.
What is Podcast Hosting?
Podcast hosting sites offer a hosting service that allows you to store and manage your podcast audio files. It makes them accessible to listeners on a platform of their choice by organizing them into a simple list (RSS feed) which they can easily access.
A podcast by itself is just a bunch of audio files bundled together like a pack of cards, but are very bulky. Consider the size of a standard 3 minute mp3 audio file and imagine if that were a 15 or 30-minute audio instead. Huge!
If you tried to store these files on your regular web hosting server, they would take up too much space and resources. Assuming multiple users tried to download your files at once, the server may crash
A podcast hosting site simply gives you space, bandwidth, and creates an RSS feed for your listeners to download your content. Good podcast hosting platforms may offer additional features like analytics, direct sharing to social media, unlimited bandwidth, and streaming compliance.
Other providers may even go the extra mile to give you a free website and domain complete with podcast marketing tools to grow your audience.
Most people think of iTunes and Spotify when they hear podcasts, but these aren’t hosting companies. They are simply podcast directories where listeners go to find content.
For your content to get on a directory or podcast platform like that, you need a podcast host. Good podcast hosting can make all the difference between success and failure for a new podcast.
What are the Best Podcast Hosting Sites?
If you’re brand new to podcasting, then BuzzSprout is the best place to get started for free. Other great options include Podbean, Transistor, and Simplecast.
As you draft your podcast’s topics and episode ideas, choosing a platform that gets you maximum visibility is key. Each platform also comes with its unique hosting requirements.
We’ve simplified and ranked the best options based on…
- Price range
- Storage size / Number of hours of content upload
- Ease of integration with other apps and platforms
- Monetization features and marketing tools
This will eliminate the guesswork and confusion when choosing podcast hosting services, so you can focus on the creative process.
Here is a list of our top picks for podcast hosting sites in 2020.
- Podcast Websites
Best beginner-friendly option with extensive features on their free plan. Paid plans start from $12/month including free $20 Amazon Gift Card.
Buzzsprout has been in the business of hosting podcasts since 2009. They serve over 100,000 podcasters and give you a full 90–Days to try their service for free.
This is why Buzzsprout tops our list.
One of the features that make Buzzsprout unique is its embed feature. This lets you embed a podcast player directly to your website. Not only does it let you embed a player, it even lets you choose an episode or list of episodes to play at a time.
You can also upgrade and get high-quality 128k optimized stereo so your audio sounds almost perfect. Podcast transcription is also available as an add-on service if you need it.
Another amazing feature is their simple analytics dashboard that tells you how many times each episode has been downloaded and where your listeners are located. This information is highly beneficial when you are trying to improve content for listeners.
Getting your podcast published is as simple as uploading your audio files, editing the description and title, and simply hitting the submit button. This instantly sends your podcast to all relevant podcast platforms, putting it at your listener’s fingertips.
Perhaps you want to make things easy for your audience by giving them an overview of each episode. Buzzsprout has a handy feature that allows you to mark episode chapters, almost like an episode outline.
This may not be a necessity, but given that it’s not a common feature on the other apps mentioned here, it’s a bonus.
Though their free plan allows you only 2 hours of content monthly, their free plan is one of the few plans that offer unlimited team member accounts. That means you can work with any number of team collaborators on your account for free.
While their free account limits you how much content they host for 90 days, you can easily upgrade to any of their paid plans. Prices range between $0 – $24/month, all of which come with unlimited storage and enough bandwidth for 20,000 to 40,000 downloads.
Their broad list of features (even on the free plan), a user-friendly dashboard, and monthly billing make Buzzsprout our top choice for podcast hosting.
- 90-day free trial with hosting
- Unlimited team member accounts on their free plan
- Episode chapter marking feature
- Analytics reporting available on their free plan.
- Very limited hours on their free plan
Get started with their $12/month so you can enjoy unlimited hosting and monetization right from the beginning.
Most popular, user-friendly podcast hosting serving 225,000 podcasters. Plans start from $29/month with 1 month free.
Coming in a close second with 10 years of experience in podcast hosting, PodBean is popular for being very easy to use. Their free plan gives you 5 hours of content per month, higher than Buzzsprout’s three hours, but only 10,000 – 15,000 downloads a month.
PodBean also helps you promote and distribute your content on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, Amazon Alexa, Overcast, and all other major podcast directories. Got a vibrant social media following? PodBean provides a mobile app, with automatic posting to Facebook and Twitter too.
Their experience speaks volumes, as they have served thousands of podcasters and their platform has over 7.1 billion downloads.
For podcasters with an existing YouTube channel, PodBean creates a YouTube version of your podcast for free. You can then schedule an auto-upload to your YouTube channel when publishing.
If you’re serious about building revenue from your podcast, Podbean’s Unlimited paid plans offer more functionality to help you achieve exactly that.
- 5 hours of content on their free plan
- Mobile app for easy sharing to Facebook, Twitter
- Distribution to all major podcast directories
- Auto upload to YouTube
- Allows for monetization
- Limited download limits on the free plan
Choose the $29/month PodBean Unlimited Plus Plan. This plan allows you to place ads, add your Patreon program, and start monetizing your podcast from the get-go. Save up to $120 if you pay annually.
Best podcast hosting site for channel-specific analytics and podcast distribution.
Launched in 2004, Libsyn has built a strong reputation for supporting both beginners and podcast veterans looking to create income from their work and to widely distribute their content.
The Libsyn platform has hosted 74,000+ podcasts, with over 6.2 billion downloads in 2019 and has over 110 million listeners, making them a heavyweight in the podcast space.
While Libsyn’s plans start from $5, the value you get at that price is unmatched by most other free options. Not only do you get unlimited audience but you also get video, pdf & text hosting and even a podcast page mini-site.
Libsyn helps podcasters distribute to more destinations with custom feeds for better control to key players (Spotify, Pandora, Gaana, Deezer, Amazon Music,..).
Libsyn is committed to listeners privacy and applies GDPR privacy to all listeners globally.
If you need more storage and monetization options, you can easily upgrade to any of their advanced or enterprise plans. Storage ranges from 50MB – 1.5GB per month together with advanced analytics and their app. IAB V2 certified stats and Custom Smartphone apps are also available.
Use Promo code – FounderJar – to get the rest of this month and all of next month free for any plan.
Best option for content-heavy podcasts that need easy scalability and comprehensive analytics. Plans start at $19/month.
What makes Transistor.fm different from its competitors is the fact that they don’t charge you extra for additional content. Once you subscribe, you can upload as many podcasts as you like, each with as many episodes you like.
Their next biggest feature is their comprehensive analytics dashboard. Learn which of your podcasts got the most downloads and the most subscribers easily.
Transistor’s extensive tool kit includes multiple team accounts, branded websites with your own domain name, and easy access to all podcast directories including iTunes and Spotify. Plus they even give you integration with email marketing software like MailChimp and ConvertKit.
Email marketing generates $38 for every $1 spent, so finding a platform that integrates with a tool that will help you promote your podcast should definitely be on your list.
Also, Transistor makes it easy for you to import your content if it’s on a different hosting platform e. g. Anchor by providing easy migration tools.
If you’re looking for the best podcast hosting platform that you can grow and scale with, Transistor.fm is the perfect fit for you. Currently, Transistor has three pricing plans with the least plan starting from $19/month up to $99/month.
- 14 –day free trial
- Unlimited team member accounts even on their basic plan
- Unlimited podcasts and episodes allowed on all plans
- Branded website and domain name
- Email marketing integration
- Comprehensive analytics reporting
- No free plan.
Get started with their 14-day free trial and test-drive all their features. Subscribe for a year and get two months free.
Best choice for cutting-edge industry features. Plans start from $15/month.
Simplecast hosts some well-renowned brands in podcasting like Nike, Kickstarter, and HBO. Thus it goes without saying that their podcast hosting service is high-performance.
Whether you have one or one million listeners, their suite of top-notch tools will provide everything you need to grow, manage, and market your podcast.
They offer unlimited uploads and storage with distribution to all popular podcast directories. Aside from that, you’ll get a full suite of analytics, collaboration, and team management tools
If you’re a fan of reposting content, Simplecast’s RecastTM feature gives you the option to schedule and share your podcast on social media without hassle.
Simplecast has powerful tools for amateurs right up to experienced podcasters to make the entire process easy e. g. one-click publishing and different web players with full embed functionality.
You have three options to get started with Simplecast (all plans come with unlimited storage and uploads).
- Basic Plan ($15/month): an easy to embed player, two team accounts, and 20,000 downloads and email support.
- Essential Plan ($35/month): two additional team accounts, 50,000 downloads monthly, additional web players, in-depth analytics of audience location, and other specifics.
- Growth Plan ($85/month): 120,000 downloads per month, 5 more team accounts, ISP analytics, detailed listener persona analytics including suburbs.
If you’re just trying your hands at podcasting, their basic plan is a good place to get started. As your listeners grow and your content evolves, you may upgrade so you can benefit fully from other advanced tools.
Sign up for their basic plan at $15/month (billed annually) and save up to $24.
- 4-day free trial
- Easy reposting to social media
- Unlimited storage and uploads
- Distribution to all major podcast platforms
- Both beginner and pro-friendly
- No analytics on their basic plan.
Take advantage of their 14-day free trial so you can decide which plan works for you.
A good option for in-depth analytics, marketing tools, and quick monetization. Plans start from $19/month.
Touting themselves as “The World’s Only Growth-Oriented PodcastTM”, Captivate’s sole goal is to combine ease of use and resourcefulness for big results.
They are fairly new to podcast hosting. But their parent company, Rebel Base Media, has harnessed years of experience from running Podcast Websites into a vibrant new service.
Captivate’s best features include built-in calls to action with their embeddable player. That means you can have an opt-in form shown to listeners while they tune in helping you monetize or grow your email list right from the start.
Again, their top of the line podcast marketing tool lets you link directly to podcast directories like Pocket Casts and Overcast, putting your show in front of new audiences.
You also get a mobile-friendly website with built-in donation or Patreon support.
Any plan you choose gives you unlimited team accounts, podcasts, additional marketing tools, and analytics.
Captivate has also partnered with the Interactive Advertising Bureau to upgrade its analytics software. That means more in-depth metrics and smart monitoring of your show’s performance.
They have three plans, depending on how many downloads you average monthly:
- Podcaster Plan ($19/month): A maximum of 12,000 downloads monthly.
- Audio Influencer Plan ($49/month): Maximum of 60,000 downloads monthly.
- Podcast Brand Plan ($99/month): Gives up to 150,000 downloads monthly.
With a ton of great podcasting features and pricing that fits every need, Captivate is sure to become a heavyweight in the podcast hosting space.
- 7-day free trial
- Unlimited team accounts on all plans
- Built-in opt-in forms with their podcast player
- Mobile-friendly website with built-in donation and Patreon support
- Trial period too short to notice any significant metrics.
If you want a feature-rich, podcast host you can grow your show with, start with their Podcaster plan at $19/month.
Best budget option for storage and customization. Plans start from $6/month.
Spreaker’s biggest standout feature is its storage. You can get up to 500hrs of content storage and just under 3 hours of live broadcast for a great price.
They also focus on providing a mobile-friendly experience on its site but also provides desktop and mobile applications like its speaker tool.
Other available features on their paid plans include easy-to-embed website widgets and episode scheduling.
Their free plan gives you 15 minutes of recorded content and 5 hours storage which is very limited compared to other plans. You’ll get much more functionality if you upgrade to any of their paid plans.
All Spreaker’s paid plans come with unlimited storage, RSS feed customization, and in-program monetization through ads.
- On-Air Talent Plan ($6/month) – comes with unlimited podcast shows
- Broadcaster ($18/month) – comes with analytics and limited access podcasts
- Anchorman ($45/month) – everything in previous plans plus full analytics, limited access podcasts, and customizable player colors.
For folks whose shows and episodes require hours and hours of audio, Spreaker is a great option.
- Free plan available
- Multiples podcast hosting on all paid plans
- Advanced analytics reporting
- Large storage for content-heavy podcasts or bulk recordings
- Free plan is limited to just 15 minutes of recording and 5 hours of storage.
Get started on their Broadcaster Plan and save up to 20% if you pay annually.
Best All-In-One Toolkit for Creating and Embedding Podcasts. Plans start from $8/month.
Fusebox presents a powerful arsenal of tools for savvy podcasters. This product was born out of the need for an easy and engaging way to make podcasts directly accessible on a website.
Created by veteran podcaster Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income, the goal was a website podcast player that drove engagement. Pat combined his years of podcasting experience together with tech know-how and created a simply amazing service.
Need a podcast transcript? Fusebox offers a number of premium features like a transcript plugin that creates SEO-friendly transcripts in seconds and adds them directly to your site. It also comes with a WordPress plugin that makes its functionality available on your website.
It’s also one of the few podcast players that allows you to capture emails during a show.
Not sure how to get Fusebox to work on your website?
All you need to do is install the Fusebox WordPress plugin and add your RSS feed. Now, type in which subscriptions URLs to link your content directly to all major podcast platforms. Finally, customize the look of your podcast player and add it wherever you like on your website.
So if you’re looking for an all-in-one solution to host your show, distribute to big directories and display your podcast on your WordPress site, Fusebox does it all.
The best part is Fusebox is super budget-friendly! There are two plan options available:
- Free plan which gives you a site-wide sticky player and SEO-friendly live transcripts with downloadable pdfs
- Pro plan ($8/month billed annually) which gives you multiple player formats (single and full track player), downloadable mp3s, email capture, social sharing options, and even timestamps.
- Free plan available
- Easily embeddable player
- Advanced analytics reporting
- SEO-friendly live transcription available
- Email capture during the showSocial sharing and downloadable mp3s available
- No monetization available on free plan.
Get started on their budget-friendly pro plan billed at $8/monthly billed annually and save $48.
9. Podcast Websites.
Best choice with integrated website and podcast hosting solutions. Plans start at $77/month.
Podcast websites provide a unique solution that gives you all the tools you need to create a professional website specifically for your podcast.
It’s like you signed up for web hosting but with additional tools to help you upload, record, and create podcast content. So you get all the features of a regular website like landing pages, web pages, opt-in forms, etc on top of added podcast tools.
What’s amazing is that you can get a personalized demo on their homepage, just so you are sure their podcast hosting is right for you. Just enter what you’d like to know and they’d do a demo just for you.
Also, you can get FREE access to their Podcast Success Academy, even without subscribing to a plan. The academy has plenty of useful videos, tutorials, pro tips, and a community forum where you can interact and learn from other podcasters too.
Aside from 24/7 tech support, you also get unlimited podcast hosting, website development, and hosting, distribution to all major podcast platforms with advanced analytics.
They even go ahead to welcome you to their community with a personal one-on-one strategy call when you first sign up! How cool is that?
- Full suite web hosting combined with podcasting and branding essentials
- Unlimited podcast hosting
- Advanced analytics reporting
- Distribution to major podcast directories like iTunes
- Personal one-to-one strategy/welcome call
- Multiple team accounts
- Fully stocked video tutorial library
- Free community support and forum
- 24/7 web and podcast support
- No free plan
- Price may be too steep for those on a budget
- Multiple features may make it confusing to beginners.
Podcast websites offers month to month billing at $97/month, but for maximum savings choose their annual billing plan at $77/month (and save $240).
Best budget-friendly option for high ROI advertising and monetization. Plans start from $9/month.
Audioboom is your go-to service if you’re looking for dynamic ways to monetize your podcast. They also provide hosting, distribution to big-name platforms and a simple embedded player with social integrations.
As partners with the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), Audioboom offers you intelligent ads that match your brand and listener demographic for best results. This functionality is available once you reach 10,000 plays per episode.
You can get advertising solutions like live reads or host endorsements from top talents or shows with a bigger audience than yours. Better still, there are sponsorships that align with your own story and reach your target listener group.
Audioboom has two plans, Podcasters’ Plan and Podcast Pros. Both plans offer
- An embeddable podcast player with social integrations
- Unlimited episodes per month
- Advanced analytics with listener demographics and location
- Distribution to some major directories like Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts. iHeartRadio and Spotify.
- Up to 10, 000 and 25,000 plays per month on their standard and plus plans respectively.
- Unlimited episodes per month on both plans
- An embeddable player with social integrations
- Distribution via Apple Podcasts, iHeartRadio, Spotify, Google Podcasts and Stitcher
- Advanced analytics with breakdowns by app, device, and geographic region
- Live Reads and host endorsements from all the top podcast advertisers on pro plan.
- No free plan
- 10,000 episode plays needed to get monetization benefits.
Get started with Audioboom for $9/month billed annually, and save up to 20%.
What are the Best Free Podcast Hosting Sites?
If you’re now building your podcast presence or are on a budget, there are several free and cheap paid options. Most free plans are very restricted in terms of how much content you can host or share.
They are however perfect for testing out and finding which service works best for you. They’ll also help you get a firm grip on how podcasting generally works.
Below are our top picks for the budget-conscious podcaster.
Buzzsprout is number one on this list simply because their free plan is one-of-a-kind. Compared to other free plans mentioned here, they have the most features and most storage.
Their free plan gives you two hours of uploaded content hosted for 90 days, with a podcasting dashboard too. If you’re experimenting with podcasting, this plan is ideal for understanding the process and figuring out what works for your show.
Buzzsprout makes it easy to share your audio files to all major podcast platforms. They even give you analytics to help you better understand your listeners on the free plan.
It’s no wonder then that they call themselves the easiest way to start podcasting.
Get started for free on their free plan or choose the Advanced 800 plan that gives you 800MB along with monetization and opt-in forms, billed at $40/month.
SoundCloud is one of the biggest online communities for uploading and sharing music and audio content.
Started in 2015, SoundCloud hosts over 175 million monthly users globally, even receiving support from investors and media companies like Twitter and more recently popular online radio Sirius XM.
SoundCloud has been the platform of choice for many upcoming artists to launch their careers or gain traction. It provides the same opportunity for podcasters as well.
A unique yet powerful feature of SoundCloud for podcasters is that it allows you to see your top-listeners and other analytics. You can also promote your audio directly using their Repost feature.
It gives you the option to embed your audio directly to Twitter, Facebook or your website with an embeddable player. You can share up to 3 hours of audio and get real-time stats like plays, likes, reposts and downloads with a free account.
SoundCloud’s Pro Unlimited account gives you more advanced features and is suited for podcasts that have already built some momentum. You’ll get unlimited upload time, scheduled releases, embed controls, and can pin up to five podcasts to your profile.
Paid plans start from $16 per month. For maximum savings, choose the annual billing option and save up to $48.
Podomatic lets you publish your podcast with ‘nothing to download, nothing to buy and nothing to learn’. All you need to do is record, upload, and promote your content right from one simple dashboard.
They provide a simple app from which you can record directly on your phone and publish right away or save to edit later. But where Podomatic really shines is their integration with Advertisecast and Patreon.
Podomatic makes it easy to start monetizing your podcast through ads and crowdfunding on Patreon. So you can tell your listeners to support your content by subscribing on your Patreon page.
For those who are social media savvy, Podomatic gives you easy social sharing options. You can share to Facebook and Twitter and have your fans listen directly on their feeds.
They even have a free app and podcast player for iOS and Android which makes distribution easy.
Podomatic has a free plan that gives you 500MB storage, 15GB bandwidth and basic analytics monthly. So if you’re still testing your podcast show ideas, they’ve got you covered.
If you’re ready to go pro, however, they have four paid plans, starting from above $8 a month to above $20/month. Paying annually gets you 2 months of free podcast hosting.
Blubrry is quickly becoming a podcaster-favorite because their approach is customer-centric. Their service is unique because it combines managed WordPress hosting with the leading WordPress plugin for podcasters, PowerPress.
PowerPress is a well-known plugin in the podcast community. With over 75,000+ active installs, it is consistently updated, free to use, supports SEO, and MP3 tagging.
Blubrry believes in providing great tools for podcasters with zero interference, which fits their client-first approach.
Aside tools, you’ll get a detailed podcasting manual with tips to help you navigate their services and succeed with your show. They are also compliant with Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) standards.
Their plans start at $12/month to $80/month for professionals which comes with unlimited hosting.
Apart from their professional plan with custom pricing, there are four paid plan options, giving you anywhere between 100MB to 1,000MB in monthly storage.
Get started with their small plan billed at $12/month and enjoy unlimited bandwidth and uploads.
How Do I Choose the Best Podcast Hosting Site?
For those looking to build an engaged online audience, podcasting is the way to go.
The average amount of time spent weekly listening to podcasts increased to 6 hours and 39 minutes in 2020. The average listener downloads 6 podcasts within a week, with die-hard fans listening to 11 or more podcasts weekly!
To take advantage of this fast-growing market, you need to know what exactly your needs are.
- How much storage do you need?
- What’s your expected monthly audio storage and content upload?
- Will you link each new episode to a blog post or do you need a new website from scratch?
- What podcast format are you comfortable working with?
- How in-depth do you need your analytics to be?
- What are your monetization plans?
- What’s your budget for podcast hosting services?
These questions will help you narrow down your needs and find which hosting service best aligns with them. After answering the above questions, you’ll know how to modulate your audio and determine how long each episode should be.
For example, you’ll know if your podcast should run daily for thirty minutes or twice a week for an hour. And this will influence how much storage you need.
You may also look into building a community before you start your show so you can monetize it early on. This will help you cover your podcast hosting costs and give you room to choose a host without worrying too much about price.
Below are some more pointers to help you pick the best podcast hosting site for you:
1. Know your monthly audio hosting needs.
Some podcast hosting plans limit the number of hours you can upload, while others limit the actual size of files you can upload. The best options will allow you unlimited uploads at reasonable prices.
2. Look into server reliability, bandwidth options, and uptime guarantees.
Choose options that accommodate more downloads and users at any given time (bandwidth), preferably unlimited options. You also want a podcast host that is online 99% percent of the time, so that your show is always accessible.
3. Sign up for free-trials and compare sign-up fees with renewal fees.
A lot of podcast hosting companies offer free-trials on their paid plans for 7 – 14 days. Test drive different companies and try out their features. Be sure to compare sign up and renewal fees as some companies charge more for renewal.
4. Make sure the host has all the essential features you need.
Not all features are created equal. Things like media validation, File Transfer Protocol (FTP) uploading, no-fault overages, and ID3 tagging which let you store information that makes your podcast discoverable are important features for your podcast’s success.
Buzzsprout does a good job of providing the above features for new podcasters making them ideal to get started with.
What Are Podcast Directories?
Podcast directories are like catalogs that organize shows either by genre or alphabetically, making them accessible to your audience.
When you send your podcast files and RSS feeds to a directory, it will add your show to its feed and show to your listeners on whatever device they are retrieving the podcast from.
All you have to do is upload your file onto your podcast hosting site. The podcast host will distribute your audio file to these directories. Once the directories pick up the new content, they download and show it to their users.
What Podcast Platforms Should I Publish My Podcast On?
Let’s say you’ve finally chosen a podcast host. How do you get your podcast to as many listeners as possible? By choosing the best podcast platforms!
Not all podcast platforms are created equal. While some are popular and have lots of shows others may have fewer shows but that gives you a higher chance of getting noticed in your niche.
Also, some podcast hosting sites make it easy for you to distribute your content to all major podcast platforms, giving you easier discoverability. All you need to do is upload your show files to your host and decide where you want your audience to find you.
The platforms below have some of the largest numbers of active users, which will help you build your audience fast. They will also automatically update your feeds whenever you release a new episode.
Here’s a list showing you how to get your show on some of the most popular podcast platforms.
1. How to Submit Your Podcast to Apple Podcasts.
Apple Podcasts, previously part of iTunes is one of (if not the) biggest and most well-known podcast directories in the market. Most listeners believe it is Apple Podcasts that have brought podcasting to the limelight recently.
Apple Podcasts alone reached 50 billion podcast downloads and boasted of a staggering 550,000+ shows as of March 2018! That means chances are a huge chunk of your potential audience use Apple Podcasts, so it’s definitely the place to be..
Here’s how to get your podcast uploaded:
- Sign up for an Apple ID first, if you don’t have one.
- Then log in to iTunes Connect.
- Enter your RSS feed into the text box by clicking on the top-left area of the podcast dashboard.
- Your podcast’s information will load directly from your podcast host and you’ll see a feed preview. Your text and artwork should be catchy and compelling. Potential listeners browsing through the directory should be able to tell right away what your podcast is about and encouraged to listen.
- Hit the submit button and wait for the approval.
2. How to Submit Your Podcast to Google Play.
Like Apple Podcasts, all podcasts were previously found under Google Play, which has over a billion monthly active users. This was until the new Google Podcasts service was launched in 2018.
Google Podcasts is a perfect platform to gain quick visibility and traction without being buried under competition.
Here’s how to publish your podcast on Google Play:
- You’ll need a Google account first. Sign up for one and go to the Google Play Podcast Portal
- Click Get started. This will take you to the Google Podcasts Manager page.
- Click Start Now.
- Enter your podcast RSS Feed URL.
- Preview the feed to be sure it is accurate.
- Send the verification code to your email.
- Verify that you own the podcast by entering the verification code you received.
- Click submit and wait for approval.
3. How to Submit Your Podcast to TuneIn.
With over 75 million listeners and 120,000+ live radio streams, TuneIn’s platform is another great option for quickly getting noticed. TuneIn has an array of shows in sports, music and news meaning its listener base covers a wide demographic.
Here are simple steps to submit your podcast to TuneIn:
- Go to TuneIn’s podcaster support page and fill out the form.
- Read and accept their terms of service.
- Click submit and wait for their approval.
4. How to Submit Your Podcast to Stitcher.
Founded in 2007, Stitcher was an early leader in podcasting with apps available on both iOS and Android.
Today, Stitcher is one of the leading end-to-end podcast companies that participate in everything from content production, distribution down to monetization.
Here’s how to get your podcast on Stitcher:
- Go to their content provider page and enter your details.
- After you’re approved, log in and add your new show.
- Enter your podcast’s RSS feed and click submit.
- Wait for your show to be approved.
5. How to Submit Your Podcast to Spotify.
Spotify is arguably the second-largest podcast distribution platform. With an impressive 191 million active listeners and over 85 million paid subscribers, Spotify can help you reach your visibility and monetization goals quickly.
Spotify has premium plans that give users access to music downloads, unlimited song plays, and high-quality podcast audio.
Previously, there was no direct way to submit your podcast to Spotify on their website. Your host had to distribute your podcast to Spotify for you. Thankfully that has changed.
Their new Spotify for Podcasters program teaches you how to directly publish your podcast to Spotify. All you need is a Spotify account. Login via Spotify or Facebook, submit your RSS feed and Spotify handles the rest.
If you’re still curious about the alternative way of getting your podcast on Spotify, this article provided by Spotify themselves sums it up nicely.
What is the Best Podcast Equipment I Need for My Show?
You know about podcast hosting and how to get published on major platforms. But what’s the best equipment to get started?
You may have seen other podcasters with fancy setups and even podcast studios for recording, but that may not necessarily be what you need.
The most basic equipment you need to start a podcast is a computer and a decent microphone. But if you’re looking for professional quality audio on your shows, you will need more.
Given the tons of options available for good audio equipment and computers, it can get overwhelming. So we have narrowed it down to the bare essentials that the average person can get great output from.
Your computer’s microphone may seem decent on Skype calls, but they are a poor option for any other recorded audio. Because the microphone is far from you, it can easily pick ambient noises like objects shuffling, strong breeze, and even outdoor noises from pets.
The same applies for headset microphones. Because they are often too close to your mouth, you have little control over voice modulations and feedback. You’ll need a special podcast recorder.
It pays to invest in a USB microphone. They’re cheap, easy to use, and give you the benefit of controlling the distance between your mouth and the mic, which directly affects how you sound.
Just plug it in, set your computer’s audio input setting to external and record. If you intend to record a one-person show, a condenser mic works best (the Blue Yeti microphone is an all-round great choice).
However if your show will have multiple people at a time, a dynamic mic will work better (the Audio-Technica ATR2100 is a popular choice). Dynamic microphones work to increase the loudness.
When it comes to computers, technology improves every year. So you don’t necessarily need to find the newest and trendiest laptop to start a podcast.
Just make sure that your machine has lots of storage on its SSD (Solid State Drive) and high processor speed and RAM. This will ensure that it can handle your audio software without any lag.
The MacBook air provides enough space and a strong processor that should handle any audio software easily.
Podcasting may be about producing audio content, but video podcast shows are slowly gaining popularity. It’s also known that podcasters who share videos of their recordings via social media tend to get more engagement.
Again, your webcam can help you record videos that you can share to your show’s YouTube channel if it has one. Aside from that, your webcam will make you look good on camera in case you have a video meeting with potential guests on your show.
Be sure to create a nicely designed space or background in your home or office specifically for recording any video content.
If you’re interested in only creating audio content, a webcam may not be necessary. But if you’re hosting an influencer, potential sponsor, or guest host, you’d want your video output to look sharp.
Buying a camera may be intimidating, but you don’t need to spend a fortune on fancy camcorders or professional cameras. Any 1080p or even 4k webcam should be powerful enough to give you clear video. Most are affordable too.
The Logitech C920S provides high-quality video at budget-friendly prices.
Good audio is a key part of having a successful show. Using good headphones will help you pick up any issues with your audio, e. g p-pops, background hisses, feedback, distortion, and similar problems.
Make sure to use closed-back headphones to prevent the possibility of any sound leakage being picked up by your microphone. The Audio-Technica ATH-M50x costs just under $150 and works perfectly for this.
A good USB mixer will help balance the sound levels, EQ, gain, and overall give you a better grasp of your audio output so you can continue creating a great podcast.
You want your voice and your guests’ voices to sound level and blend seamlessly in the conversation. The last thing you want your listeners to do is fumble with their volume knob throughout your podcast. This is where your audio mixer comes in.
Our top pick for podcast audio mixers is the Mackie PROFX8V2.
What is the Best Podcast Software to Record My Episodes?
So you’ve got your equipment set up and are ready to record. You now need podcast software to help you record, edit, and launch your show.
Thankfully, podcast technology is constantly improving. Most podcast software available today are pretty straightforward.
We’ve reviewed the simplest, easy-to-use software options below.
Anchor’s catchphrase is the easiest way to make a podcast, providing everything you need 100% free. And indeed they deliver on their brand promise.
Their podcasting software lets you record high-quality audio, upload, and edit from any device, regardless of your skill level. Anchor allows you unlimited episode uploads and one-click publishing to all major websites.
You can rearrange your audio clips into segments with a simple drag and drop functionality. Another great perk is a free landing page complete with your own custom URL for your podcast.
Anchor gives you 100% free unlimited hosting, recording capabilities no matter the device you use and one-click distribution. This makes them the best podcast software available in the industry.
Try Anchor podcast recording software today.
If you’re looking for studio-quality recording even when you and your guests are not in the same location, then Zencastr is your solution.
Zencastr allows new and professional podcasters to record themselves and their remote guests in studio quality right from just a web browser. Called Hi-Fi podcasting, this is a perfect solution if you’re not up for downloading and learning to use new audio software.
To record your podcast guest remotely, just share a link with them and you’ll receive a separate audio track.
Your guests’ live recording is done via a Voice over internet protocol that connects them through their microphone. Once you begin your recording, your guest’s audio is logged from their browser, without any tampering or reducing the quality.
This also makes Zencastr great for working together on shared projects, as you can share your audio either via Google Drive or Dropbox.
Zencastr comes with two plans. A free plan that gives you two guests and 8 hours of audio recording monthly.
You can also get pay-per-use post-production audio tools. Currently, Zencastr is running a promo for unlimited guests and recording time on their free plan.
If you have more than two guests and lots of large files, try their professional plan at $20/month.
This plan gives you unlimited guests and recordings, 10 hours of post-production automatically, and a live editing board. A live editing board means you can insert intros, ads and other audio live as your record.
Try Zencastr at $18/month billed annually and save up to 20%.
3. Avid Pro Tools.
Avid Pro Tools are an absolute powerhouse that will make your audio shine. Originally designed for artists, it is a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) from Avid Technologies.
Avid Pro Tools are an absolute powerhouse that will make your audio shine. Originally designed for artists, it is a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) from Avid Technologies.
Avid Technologies’ goal is to empower media creators with innovative technology and collaborative tools to entertain, inform, educate, and enlighten the world.
For a new podcaster or someone who doesn’t need a full bouquet of sound editing software, this may be too much. Nonetheless, this is by far the best comprehensive set of audio tools you’ll ever find.
Paid plans start from $29.99/month for a 1-year subscription, and you get $850 worth of bonuses, including Pro Sound Effects, and royalty-free music.
The Best Reasons Why You Should Have Your Own Podcast
With more people are spending working from and spending time at home, it means the potential podcast audience is booming. And the numbers prove it.
The number of people listening to podcasts has increased by 37.5% in three years. In the US, 75% of people are now familiar with podcasting, which represents an increase of over 10 million people within a year.
With only 850,000 active podcasts as opposed to 100s of millions of listeners on big podcast platforms like Apple podcasts, now is the perfect time to start a podcast. Here are a few reasons why.
You Can Build Your Personal Brand and Authority With Podcasting
The thing with being in the online space is that it can feel somewhat impersonal. People like to know the face and voice behind channels that they subscribe to. Podcasting lets you build a more personal connection with your followers.
It’s also a great way to build your reputation in a particular niche. For example, veteran podcaster Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income is a known leader when it comes to creating passive income online.
Having someone like him on your show adds credibility to your show and tells your listeners you’re also an authority in the niche.
Use Your Podcast To Interview and Connect with Leading Experts in Your Industry
A good follow-up to helping build your brand is how you can build strategic relationships in your industry. Depending on your podcast’s format, you can use your show as a basis to connect with and foster relationships with experts in your niche.
By having experts on your show, you build trust with your listeners because they know your show provides valuable information from credible sources.
You also tap into the expert’s following to increase your listenership since they would also promote that podcast interview to their fans. This is great because it will help increase your revenue when you decide to monetize your podcast.
You Can Make Money Online With Your Podcast
Podcasting can be very lucrative. Podcast advertising crossed $700 million in 2019, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau. The top podcasters of 2020, have together grossed over $70 million in earnings.
And podcast advertising revenues are expected to keep growing.
With more brands looking to spend money on podcast advertising, a podcast with a strong listener base can make a substantial amount of income. Some top podcasters make tens of thousands of dollars per episode.
According to Listennotes, ad rates range from $25 to $50 for every 1,000 podcast downloads (minus broker fees).
One podcast episode may average 2 to 3 commercial breaks, so if you have 20,000 downloads per episode, that’s a cool $1,500 – $3,000 in revenue per episode.
7 Useful Steps to Start a Podcast.
Now you’ve seen how powerful podcasting can be if you’re trying to build a strong online presence. Statistics show the podcasting trend is not slowing down anytime soon.
Most people tune in to podcasts to learn something new or use time more efficiently and while they are doing other activities at home or work.
That means before you even start recording your show, it needs to have a direction and a specific niche. These will influence the length and content of the show.
There are several genres your podcast can be in from entertainment, news, personal development, comedy, etc. You can even have an age-specific show like a podcast for teens.
Top podcasters Karen Gilgariff and Georgia Hardstark have earned over $15 million from their true-crime comedy podcast, My Favorite Murder. Point being, don’t underestimate any niche!
Here are the steps you should follow to start your podcast.
- Choose a Podcast Name
- Choose a Podcasting Format
- Get The Necessary Podcasting Equipment and Software
- Record Your First Podcast Episode
- Edit & Upload Your First Episode
- Create Podcast Artwork, Categories, and Show Notes
- Get Listed in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify
1. Name Your Podcast.
Your podcast’s name is more than an identity for the show. It is also a marketing tool for your creation. So you’ll want it to be catchy and support your long-term goals for the show.
There are different ways you can choose to name your show.
- Brand it with your name/ something related to you – e. g. The Dave Ramsey Show
- A title that describes the show’s content – e. g The Smart Passive Income Podcast by Pat Flynn
- Something unique and catchy – e. g The Valuetainment Podcast by Patrick Bet David
The method you choose depends on your preferences and long-term goals. If your show will have guests, or discuss topics in different industries, it’s better to go with a name that doesn’t limit you to one niche.
If you’re just starting and haven’t built a strong personal brand, you may choose a creative name rather than a personal branded show.
Another interesting option is using a podcast name generator. You simply enter the words you’d like to have in your show name and the generator will give you options to choose from. Some generators will even check if the name is already in use.
2. Choose A Podcasting Format
How do you want to present your show? Is it going to be
- a solo-cast/monologue?
- conversational with a co-host or panel?
- interview-based with a new guest on every episode?
- non-fiction storytelling like a news review?
- fiction storytelling based on drama(also called podcast theatre)?
- based on existing written/recorded content?
- A hybrid podcast format?
The answers to these questions will directly affect your podcast’s format.
Each podcast format comes with its pros and cons. For example, interview-based podcasts are great for keeping things fresh and getting new audiences. But you’d need to build relationships and send out emails way ahead of time to book guests.
If you choose a fiction storytelling format, then there will be more upfront editing and set-up work needed to match the scene in the story. Whereas if you’re doing non-fiction storytelling like a news review or opinion piece, you can be more liberal.
A popular show format is Teaser + Intro + Podcast + Advertisement + CTA + Podcast + Subscription Reminder + Outro.
Your podcast format is also an extension of your podcast’s brand and marketing tools. Keep it consistent so your listeners know what to expect any time they download an episode.
3. Get Your Equipment and Podcast Set Up.
The minute you decide to start a podcast, you have to invest in getting the right gear. Getting the best podcast equipment will make your podcasting workflow much easier. The good thing is you can get good podcast equipment even if you’re on a budget.
To get started you’ll need;
- A good quality microphone. The Blue Yeti microphone and/or Blue Snowball Mic (available on Amazon) are highly-reviewed, easy-to-use options with excellent features.
- A decent laptop or computer that is not more than three years old. The Macbook Air (also on Amazon) with its fast processor and large hard drive can handle storing and software processing of your files
- Recording software. There are lots of free and paid options but Audacity is a free, downloadable option that does a good job. Anchor is a great paid option with more functionality.
- A podcast hosting platform. You may choose to take it a step further and create a space specifically for recording your shows, a podcast studio of sorts.
If you’d like to learn directly from the pros, you can check out what some famous podcasters use. Joe Rogan, known for running one the highest-earning podcasts in 2020 (over $100,000 per episode), has shared his entire equipment list on his blog.
The takeaway here is, once you have the right tools producing your podcast show becomes much easier.
4. Record Your First Podcast Episode.
Your podcasting schedule can be as flexible as you want. You can choose to bulk record your episodes or record one episode at a time. The number of shows you can record at a time depends on how long each episode is.
For your podcast to gain and hold the hearts (and ears) of your audience, you need to give them an experience they’ll want to keep coming back for.
This means right from the intro through your transitions to the outro needs to be a unique and enjoyable listening experience.
In terms of content, have a draft for your podcast topics, episode outline, and key takeaways
Then pick a podcasting style. It may be banter, pre-planned interviews or segments or even entirely scripted. Having a well-thought structure for your podcast helps you stay on track during the show, improves your confidence and your performance.
It will take creativity and lots of retries to perfect your show in a way your target audience will love. Your welcome message, how you introduce yourself, and explain what your podcast is about all add to your listener’s experience and build your brand.
Try to always be upbeat and positive. You can even add a slogan or byline to your intro that simplifies what your podcast is. Work to make your intro and podcast delivery unique to your personality.
Popular online entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk for example is known for his no-nonsense, real-talk style and use of strong language. His listeners love him for that and appreciate his delivery style.
5. Edit and Upload Your Episode.
Editing your podcast can be a chore or a breeze depending on how you record your content. Practicing skills like good interview and mic techniques can save you time during editing.
Before you start editing, listen to your entire recording, take notes, and decide what’s important to you and your listeners.
Mark out the timestamps where you want to change something and why (called a punch list). This will stop you from getting carried away on needless edits.
If you want to create a podcast with transcripts available after every show, look into a host that offers transcription services like Fusebox. Transcripts are best produced after editing your show so that you can omit your recording errors.
The next thing is using the right podcast software. You’d need a digital audio workstation (DAW) which is simply software that will help you edit your podcast. The basic functions you’ll need are the trim, cut/split and fade functions.
There are lots of options when it comes to DAW and audio editing software.
- Popular free options include Audacity and GarageBand (for Mac users only).
- Paid options include Reaper and Hindenburg Journalist. For automatic audio processing options, Auphonic gives you 2 hours for free processing per month on their Auphonic XS plan, after which paid plans start from $11 for 9 hours of processed audio a month.
Music often sets the tone and mood for an event. Likewise, intro music can also set the tone for your show and hook your listeners. It’s an equally big part of your show’s brand and identity because your listeners will associate your show with that sound.
Choose music that fits your niche and builds excitement for the show. This guide provides more details on how to pick music for your podcast.
Ideally, podcast intro music length is between 5 – 10 seconds long.
These sites have free music clips that you can download and use for intros, transitions, and outros. Most of their clips are royalty-free and are under the Creative Commons License, so you can use the music freely.
6. Create Podcast Artwork, Categories, and Show Notes.
Podcast artwork builds your brand and markets your show
Your cover image will speak volumes about your show’s content, category, and brand. Since that may be the only visual a potential listener will associate with your brand, it should be catchy, unique, and niche-appropriate.
Podcast hosting companies usually offer services to help you create cover art for your show according to your specifications. Nonetheless, you can easily get a custom-made cover image for as little as $5 by hiring talent on Fiverr.
Get more visibility using categories
Apple Podcasts is the largest podcast directory and it organizes shows into categories. There are currently 16 main categories with approximately 51 subcategories. The graph below shows the leading podcasts genres on Apple Podcasts.
It pays to optimize the visibility of your podcast by choosing the right category. A well-selected category may even boost your podcast ranking.
Apple Podcasts gives you the option to pick three categories, but only the first one counts.
Apple Podcast finds these categories in your RSS feed, so you’ll want to update your categories with your podcast host.
If you can’t find an exact match for your podcast genre in their category list, choose a broad category that fits your general niche and work from there.
Buzzsprout offers a more definitive guide to selecting a category.
Your show notes will hook busy listeners
Podcast show notes are written versions of each episode including links to other content that may be useful to the listener. Thus they are perfect for hooking busy listeners and converting potential listeners.
They may seem like a chore but can do wonders for your organic traffic and search engine ranking, especially if you have a website.
Show notes are also easy to share on social media, in forums and on blogs. Making them an easy way to drive engagement and increase audiences.
7. Get Listed In Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and Spotify.
You’ve put in the hard work to create a podcast masterpiece, now it’s time to get it to your audience. Getting listed on the three most popular podcast directories is a good start.
Sometimes your podcast host will handle this on your behalf, all you have to do is select which platforms you want your show to go out to.
There’s also the option to publish it manually yourself.
Getting listed on Apple and Google Podcasts needs you to have an account or ID with both platforms first. Next, you log in and publish your podcast’s RSS feed link, submit and wait for approval.
To get your podcast on Spotify, check out this useful FAQ page that simplifies the process.
After getting published, it’s worth noting that you will still have to put in the effort to market and promote your podcast. Podcast marketing is how you get discovered and grow your audience fast.
Get the word out about your new show on social media and forums! Share links to your episodes with your followers, influencers and even on guest blogs. It is worth investing in building a social media following for your show too.
Podcast Hosting FAQ.
If you mean can you make money quickly, then you should look into other options for making money online. Podcasting can be lucrative and even fun if it matches your personality, skills and things you are passionate about.
The best podcasters enjoy talking, have good speaking and conversation skills, love interacting with people, and are good at expressing themselves.
Hosting a podcast is not a quick way to make money online if that’s what you want. But if you’re looking to build a strong, online personal brand in the long-term then it’s a good place to start.
Eventually, you will be able to tap into the revenue potential of your online brand through your podcast.
Some of the most successful (and high-earning) podcasts have been running for over a decade. The success of your podcast depends on your digital marketing and relationship building skills.
There are many podcasting services to choose from. Our top picks are Buzzsprout, PodBean, Transistor, Simplecast, and Captivate.
Free podcast hosting services exist. Buzzsprout and Anchor are good examples. But free options often come with restrictions which will slow the growth of your show.
Once you’ve decided to start a podcast, you’ll need high-quality and feature-rich options to host and store all your audio files. Only paid plans will meet such needs.
Yes, you do. A podcast hosting service will store your files and help you get them on popular podcast directories like Apple Podcasts and Spotify. You can’t directly upload your audio files to these directories yourself.
A podcast hosting company will handle that and keep your podcast feed updated for you.
Yes, you can if you take the time to build an audience first. Once you have a loyal listenership, you can monetize your podcast using sponsorships, product sales and affiliate marketing.
You may sell ad slots to companies or brands that want mentions on your show. You also mention discount code on-air or share a link in your show notes to make commissions as an affiliate.
Your niche, audience, and episode length together will determine how often you should publish a podcast. If your episodes average 15 – 20 minutes, you can publish a daily podcast.
If they last 45 minutes to an hour, on the other hand, you may want to consider a weekly podcast. Try to balance delivering rich content in a concise yet engaging manner.
Your focus should be on providing the ultimate listening experience for your audience, so they always look forward to your content.
Wanna Start a Podcast? Remember This …
Starting a podcast can be exciting! By taking your niche, podcast content, and goals into consideration you can pick the best podcast host for your show.
- Do your research on each podcast hosting service’s features. They should match your upload and storage needs, allow enough downloads, and help you understand your listener demographic through analytics.
- Your podcast host should at least help you distribute your show to all major podcast platforms. If you want to build revenue early on, they should make it easy for you to incorporate ads and find sponsors for your podcast. Audioboom and PodBean both offer great monetization features and distribution.
- If you don’t have an existing website, choose options that integrate web hosting, possibly email marketing, and social sharing. Transistor and Captivate both offer budget-friendly plans with these features.
You want to easily tell your followers when you upload content and where they can go to find it.
A good podcast host reduces the stress involved in distributing your show and growing an audience. They provide the necessary tech support you need to grow in your journey to podcast success.
For new podcasters, we recommend Buzzsprout. Buzzsprout’s 90 – Day free trial will help you know for sure if podcasting is for you.
Remember to choose your host based on your needs and more importantly, enjoy your podcasting journey!