Top 5 Video Hosting Services on a Budget

Top 5 Video Hosting Services on a Budget.

What use would an edition about video be without a top five list? So here it is.

Video has come a long way since the early days of Google video and low-res web cams. Most smart-phones pack more punch than professional cameras of just a few years ago, and it is globally recognized that video is where it's at.

Once you have created the next academy award winning movie what's next? It needs to be out there, in front of the viewers.

For many the immediate choice is YouTube, and rightly so in many cases. But let's take a look at what's out there for the smaller business and the cash conscious.

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It has been around for a while and is not only the most popular video service in the world but also the second biggest search engine. The go-to place when you want to see cats in uniform or learn a new skill quickly. It offers everyone the chance to show what they can do for free and that is pretty amazing.

Although not strictly a hosting service (it is officially a video sharing site) it is by default a hosting platform in its own right.

The tools are powerful, and the quality is good but it lacks the professional look when it comes to content on business class websites.


  • Free to use.
  • Unlimited videos.
  • No bandwidth charges.
  • Sound management tools.
  • Easy to share and embed.
  • Device friendly.
  • High profile for content.
  • Easy to use.
  • Integrates with nearly everything.
  • Good analytics.
  • Easy to use with Muse (Video widget is built into Muse)


  • Players are not very customizable.
  • Videos can not be secured to a domain.
  • YouTube branding can diminish the presentation of a video ad make it feel amateurish.
  • Advert supported videos can cheapen a brand's appearance.
  • Support.


For most videos and business, YouTube is the right choice and will give you just about everything you need. Although the player is a bit inflexible, you can get around it with tools like reEmbed (see our article here).

However, when it comes to a polished feature video presentation on the landing page of a site, I would say it feels a bit cheap. Great for educational and support videos but not the best feature video service.

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Vimeo, another video sharing service that has become the hosted video platform of many. The entire presentation of the service has more of a design feel then the mass media YouTube outlet.

The service also offers pro-feature-rich accounts that make the Vimeo more than just a video sharing service.


  • Very high-quality video.
  • Modern player design with easy customization.
  • Videos can be secured.
  • Good device support.
  • Good analytics.
  • Easy to use.
  • Unlimited bandwidth.
  • Pro features are relatively inexpensive.
  • Integrates with nearly everything.
  • Good analytics.
  • Easy to use with Muse (Video widget is built into Muse)
  • Support.


  • Secured videos are a pro feature.
  • Limits on uploaded video per month on free and pro accounts.
  • Only one style of player.


Vimeo is a good choice, especially the Pro account for a service that's affordable for the small business that offers a professional presentation.

Although the player has limited customization, it has enough features to look good on any site. We chose Vimeo as our hosting service because of its balance of fair pricing and features.

For the price, you can't beat it.

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Dailymotion is one of the biggest video sharing websites in the world similar in nature to YouTube. Not as feature rich as the other services so far, but it is still a very polished tool. Easy to use and good quality video. The player itself is a bit lacking in style but is functional.

Although they do not offer pro accounts, they do offer a clever way to earn money with videos with the OpenVOD service.


  • Fast and easy to use.
  • Good quality video.
  • Easy to use with Muse (see our widget)
  • Good video management and analytics.
  • Unlimited bandwidth.
  • Works well with Sublime Video Player.
  • Support.


  • It is like YouTube but is not YouTube so why not just use YouTube?
  • Player is dated and not many options unless you use Sublime video player.
  • No pro accounts.
  • No secure video tools.


There is nothing wrong with the service but it is not outstanding either. Now that it has acquired the Sublime video player service that might all change. Worth watching and is a real alternative to YouTube.

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Flowplayer started out as just a player but has evolved into a fully fledged video hosting service that offers good quality video playback, large bandwidth, storage accounts and a great player.

As the Flowplayer Drive is a relatively new venture, we will have to wait and see how it performs. A quick glance shows promise. Their free account gives you storage and bandwidth to get you started.


  • Easy to use.
  • Good quality video.
  • Analytics.
  • Superb player flexibility.
  • Easy to use with Muse (see our widget).
  • Excellent free and pro accounts.
  • Supports all devices.


  • Not a fully proven service yet.
  • Limited analytics.
  • Not very polished service as of yet.
  • Does not have any domain locking for videos.


The player is good, as for the hosting, the jury is out. If you want the best player and a secure hosting service, then this is a good choice.

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Wistia is a professional video hosting service. It takes a unique approach to videos and turns them into selling tools with lots of options and customization.

If a client is using video to generate email address and calls to action, then this would be the tool of choice.

Their approach is fun and uncluttered and very polished. Prices start from free so its well worth a look.


  • Fast, high-quality service.
  • Offers the most website targeted tools for video.
  • Easy management and good analytics.
  • Excellent customizable player and then some.
  • Good support.
  • Fair Pricing with tiered accounts.
  • Excellent video SEO.


  • Player has many features but not very many customization options.
  • Small number of videos on the free account.
  • Interface is buggy in Safari.


If you are looking to use video to drive actions, this is one of the best on the market. The toolset and ease of use make it a pleasure to use and could make a real difference to a small enterprise looking to video to boost signups.

Well, worth deeper investigation.

So what are our overall suggestions?

  • If you need to host many videos to gain awareness or are offering them for free and you need a quick, easy, free solution, YouTube and Dailymotion are useful options.
  • If you want a higher quality service and don't mind opening your wallet, then Vimeo Pro is an excellent choice.
  • If you need a very customizable player but need to keep the costs down Flowplayer is a real option.
  • If you are looking to do more with your videos and use them as sales tools rather than just content you can't go wrong with Wistia.

Other services not in the list...

There are so many video services out there we could not cover them all. The services covered are aimed at projects on a budget but if you have the dollars here are some of the big boys of the video hosting world.

Viddler Ooyala Brightcove
Sprout Vzaar Kaltura

Article Author: Chris Kellett

Chris is one of the worlds leading experts in Adobe Muse and skilled in all aspects of HTML, CSS and Javascript a graphic designer, animator and film producer.

A freelance web developer for 19 years with 150+ muse templates and over 100 muse widgets (and counting) for other Muse template providers under his belt.

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