Table of Contents
Need To Use a Video Hosting Service?
This article should be of interest to you if you’re looking at building your own site where you’ll be selling access to videos and you want to use a video hosting service rather than self-hosting your videos…
…whether that’s directly or as part of a membership site, for example.
How do you prevent others from stealing your video content and sharing access to your paid content for free?
In the past, when I’ve built sites that had tutorial videos, I’ve hosted the videos on my own webhosting account.
The downside of this is that the more people who look at the videos, the more bandwidth is used along with a greater amount of server resources.
I’ve had sites go down on occasion because too many visitors were watching videos at the same time.
That doesn’t give a good experience to anyone.
So I looked at alternative ways of hosting and serving/streaming videos to people/viewers/visitors.
YouTube was the obvious choice.
Until I looked closer that is.
While anyone can upload a video to YouTube, with new accounts you’re restricted to uploading videos under 20 minutes in length.
That’s not too much of a restriction and one that can be lifted pretty quickly.
The real problem was that once a video is uploaded to YouTube, it’s available publicly.
There are two ways.
The first is to make your videos “private“.
The person who uploaded the video is the only one who can watch it.
You can share it with whomever you want, but only by specifying their email address.
That makes sharing/embedding a video like this on a site unworkable.
So that option was out.
Next up was making a video “unlisted” on YouTube.
This hides the video from being found via YouTube search but if someone should stumble across the video just trawling through YouTube, the video URL can be shared.
So content can’t be protected by this option either.
So YouTube is a bust as a video webhost for non-free videos.
I suppose it goes against the ethos of YouTube anyway.
The next option I considered was Amazon S3.
Many marketers use this option for hosting videos.
You only pay for video views as I understand it but it does mean there are ongoing costs for hosting videos.
Plus, it looks too complicated to get things set up.
So I put this option on the back-burner, pretty much as a last resort.
The Vimeo Video Hosting Service
Vimeo is a video webhost I’d never paid any attention to.
I always thought of them as a YouTube wannabe, small fry in a big video ocean.
It’s true that you can upload videos to Vimeo just as you can with YouTube but there is a difference in ethos.
Whereas YouTube will accept pretty much anything, Vimeo don’t like marketing-style videos; i.e. the kind of videos designed to sell something or describe marketing methods.
To be more specific, Vimeo don’t like marketing/sales videos to appear in their listings (i.e. they don’t want such videos to turn up in their search listings).
They’re quite happy to have such videos hosted on their site so long as they’re private videos (i.e. not publicly shared).
So I thought Vimeo was a bust too.
Until I looked at their paid options. They offer four:
- Plus – $84 per year or $12 per month. Upload up to 5Gb per week. This is the plan I have.
- Pro – $240 per year. Upload up to 20Gb per week. Can have 3 team members. Save 10% a Pro subscription with code: PROU10Q121
- Business – $600 per year. No upload limits. Can do lead capture on videos and add Calls To Action. Can have 10 team members.
- Premium – $900 per year. The Live Streaming option. Unlimited live events. Live stream to multiple destinations. Live Q&A, graphics and polls. Audience chat.
After reviewing the features in each option, I picked Plus.
This allows up to 5Gb a week of videos to be uploaded.
I could never see myself uploading more than that amount of videos.
Hosting is included in the annual fee, regardless of how much you’ve uploaded.
By comparison, a standard website hosting account costs $120+ per year.
But what really drew me to Vimeo were the video privacy options.
You can make your videos private (as on YouTube) so they don’t show up in a search on the site, but what you can also do is set what websites are able to embed your videos.
So it’s simple to list just your own sites where you want your videos to appear.
But what if someone just copies the video URL to share it?
They will see this message:
You also have the option of disabling the embedding option so there’s no way for anyone to share your video without your permission.
Here’s a screenshot of the privacy settings that Vimeo lets you change:
As you can see from the screenshot, playback of the videos available to paying members on Niche Site Institute is locked specifically to that site (that site is no longer online, btw).
That kind of privacy control for videos is worth $84 a year.
So if you’re thinking about building your own video tutorial site where you want full control over who can see your videos and where, Vimeo may just be the best option out there for you.
All the best,
P.S.: Don't forget, if you want to create an internet income of your own, here's one of my recommended ways to do that:
And you can get some free training here on how to build an online business and start list building here: