Video is taking over the digital world. Like some endearing internet fad, it has made an undeniably colossal impression across the globe. However, unlike the latest online craze, it isn’t showing signs of becoming old news any time soon. In fact, it is predicted that around 82% of internet traffic this year will be in the form of video and animation is riding the crest of this wave of popularity. The fact that you are reading this blog suggests that you are looking to join the trend and add video content to your marketing strategy. However, when it comes to video hosting where do you even start?

Well, before we dive into the benefits of all of the best video hosting platforms, let’s cover the two main ways that you can in fact host a video (animated or otherwise): self-hosting and third-party hosting.

3D Character Animation Graphics

1. Self-hosting

Self-hosting is a means of hosting the video yourself (believe it or not). It means that the video is stored on your own website using a built-in file uploader. Similar to how images are uploaded onto a site, the video will sit within the page and can be styled in a manner that suits your brand.

As you would expect, there are upsides and downsides to self-hosting animated videos…

  • Self-hosting your videos leads to more organic traffic to your site. Think about it – if people want to share your videos with others then they have to do so via your website. This leads to a larger quantity of quality leads landing right on your doorstep.
  • As the video is on your site, you have greater control over the interface. This means that you can have the video look the way that you want it to, from the style of the buttons to the thumbnail displayed similar to how it plays.
  • As you are the host site, your video will be free of distracting advertisements, giving your content a smoother, more clean-cut look.
  • It’s free. What’s not to like about that!
  • File sizes are limited, meaning that if you want your content to be a mind-boggling super high def experience, then this probably isn’t your best option.
  • Due to the large size of video files, they have a tendency to slow loading speeds on your website and can even lead to crashes.
  • Whilst you can customize the look of the video within your webpage, it will take a lot of hard coding to get the look that you want.
  • By hosting on third-party websites, you are increasing the exposure of your content, as it will be more widely spread over the internet. Hosting on your own website means that, unfortunately, this benefit totally disappears.

2. Third-party hosting

Third-party video hosting means that your video content is stored on another website (such as YouTube or Vimeo) and then embedded on your own. When we refer to embedding, we are talking about the act of posting your video outside of the third-part host’s domain and onto your website.

Obviously, like self-hosting, third-party hosting also comes with its upsides and downsides…

  • By hosting your video content elsewhere, you will be able to utilize a higher bandwidth. This in turn means a smoother, better quality video experience.
  • Third-party video hosting allows your company to upload larger video content, which allows for better quality videos. This makes it a good choice for those looking to wow their audience with eye-popping visuals.
  • Just as self-hosting will likely slow everything down, third-party hosting is likely to help speed everything up. And who doesn’t want faster streaming when surfing the web.
  • As you are hosting your videos on another site, you are adding greater visibility to your content, which in turn will lead to more traffic heading your way.

  • Unlike self-hosting, third-party hosting isn’t free. Far from it in some cases… However, this varies depending on the platform that you choose to host on (more on that coming up).
  • Whilst you can customise your player when hosting on a third-party website, this is often lost, resulting in an undesired alteration in the overall look of your page.
  • As always, it is important that you monitor the performance of your videos once they have been uploaded. Using a third-party site can sometimes lead to complications in this process.
  • This form of video hosting can lead to unwanted video redirections, taking viewers away from your content despite the fact that they are on your website.

3. Video Hosting Platforms

Judging by the fact that you’ve scrolled down this far, it’s fair to presume that you still haven’t come to a conclusion regarding your video hosting predicament. To help you get closer to your goal, here is a summary of some of the most popular third-party hosting sites going.


The big one. Everyone knows YouTube and most absolutely love it. The platform is completely free and attracts a gigantic audience on a daily basis (the platform attracts an astounding 2 billion visitors a month) as well as being very searchable on Google.

On the flip side, due to its colossal audience, your content can become somewhat of a needle in a haystack. The platform also uses Ads, which can become disruptive and divert traffic.

In terms of both metrics and customisation, YouTube offers the standard. That means an analytics dashboard with the standard information (plays, impressions, demographics etc.) and basic personalisation in the form of perks such as designable thumbnails, title removal and looped playing.


Whilst Vimeo isn’t as much of a household name like YouTube, it does still attract strong numbers to its site day in day out. It may not be as searchable as Google, but it does bring in a consistent crowd of creative individuals (and it is our platform of choice here at The Animation Guys).

The platform has a number of levels, varying from free to £70pcm. Obviously, the more you pay the greater your perks. Vimeo is Ad-free but those on the two most basic plans will be subjected to the occasional ad banner.

Like YouTube, Vimeo offers standard metrics and customisation features.


Completely Ad-free and highly customisable, Wistia offers three different plans to help you pick one that suits you best. It does not have a search engine presence like the two platforms mentioned above, but it does come with extensive SEO tips on how to fine-tune your content.

What really sets it apart is the in-depth analytics and dashboard that come with every plan. It gives you a seriously detailed insight into what it is that will help your videos meet their maximum potential.


In terms of price point, BrightCove takes the cake. The platform offers three different plans, with each priced upon request. It doesn’t have the searchability like YouTube, but does match Wistia in terms of lending a hand with optimising your content once it is online.

They also offer full customisation, robust analytics for their Professional & Enterprise customers, and personal support for all that sign up with them.

So, there you have it. Our advice on how to host your online videos and which platforms may be best suited to you. If you would like to discuss video hosting in further detail or require some help with creating amazing animated content, please get in touch with our friendly team.