YouTube Video Hosting: What You Need to Know

There’s no doubt YouTube is the biggest video hosting platform around. With 400 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute, it continues to dominate the video landscape. But does that make it right for you?

The truth is, it’s a little hard to get noticed on YouTube thanks to just how popular it is, but if you’re not using it, you’re also missing out.

Let’s start by taking a look at some of the benefits of YouTube and how you can get the most out of this video hosting platform.

YouTube is the second largest search engine.

A total of 6 billion hours are watched on YouTube across the globe every month thanks to 1.5 billion active monthly users. YouTube is the second largest search engine, second only to parent-company Google, and you can watch it in any of 76 different languages. This makes it a behemoth, giving users access to one of the largest video audiences around.

Want views? Go YouTube.

It’s undeniable. YouTube has the most users, super easy search functionality, and one of the most intuitive video players, making it perfect for companies whose top goal is a high view count. But, because of the noise, videos can also get lost in the shuffle. Less than one percent of all the videos uploaded on YouTube ever get more than 1,000 views in their lifetime. Those odds aren’t great, but that isn’t necessarily YouTube’s fault. With the right marketing strategy, YouTube can actually be the perfect video host — you just have to know how to use its benefits to your advantage.

YouTube will help you reach a mobile audience.

Who’s your target demographic? No matter who they are, chances are they’re active on their smartphones. And that makes YouTube prime for their attention. More than half of all YouTube views come from mobile devices and they offer the best chance for mobile video discovery and reach. YouTube’s mobile dominance makes them your best bet for video hosting if your goal is to reach a largely mobile audience.

Free, unlimited storage can save you big.

One of the main reasons for its popularity? YouTube is entirely free and offers unlimited video storage, great for any company that can’t afford some of the more expensive video hosting alternatives. Of course, this comes with its own set of drawbacks, but we’ll discuss those further below. Regardless, this makes YouTube almost a no-brainer — even if it’s not your primary video host, it exposes your content (and your brand) to more people at no cost.

Unfortunately, there are also some limitations when it comes to using YouTube as your main video hosting platform.

YouTube isn’t great for CTR.

Even if someone absolutely loves your video, chances are low that they’ll actually click out and visit your website. That’s because YouTube does an expert job of sucking in their viewers — with autoplay, playlists, and related suggestions at the end of every video, it’s no wonder why average view time on YouTube is over 40 minutes per session. Once users are watching a video, they’re likely not doing anything else for a while.

Need lead gen? Try something else.

Another reason YouTube isn’t great for CTR? The platform doesn’t make it easy to embed links or lead generation tools within your video. If you want to introduce your brand to someone new, it’s perfect, but for anyone further down the marketing funnel, you have better chances capturing an email address or contact number with a different video host.

YouTube introduces your viewer to your competition.

There is no way to know what videos will be suggested once your video ends. Your viewer might see music videos, your other branded videos, or your competition’s branded videos. This uncertainty makes it difficult to ensure your brand stays top of mind.

So, is YouTube right for your company? Only you’ll know the answer to that question. Figure out what your primary goals are for your video marketing efforts and weigh your hosting options fully. Though YouTube may not meet all of your needs, it can be an excellent tool for video advertising and distribution, as well as for brand discovery, and can be crucial for engaging the right audience.

Laura Cueva

Laura Cueva