In this article we will put two of the best podcast hosts up against each other: Podbean vs. Buzzsprout! Because wouldn’t it be nice to have an all-in-one podcast host? Imagine a solution that can easily handle audio podcasting while giving you unlimited storage space and a bunch of handy features.
If that sounds like the dream, Podbean and Buzzsprout could be your ideal podcast hosting platforms. Each podcast platform can handle the basics of uploading and distribution. But how do they stack up against each other?
The Beauty of Buzzsprout
Buzzsprout offers a fast way to publish your episodes to podcast directories. Scheduling is a breeze, and its comprehensive statistics help you get under the hood of podcast performance. Add unlimited team members and the ability to host multiple podcasts, and you have a superb package.
The Power of the Podbean Podcast App
Podbean offers many of the same publishing and monetization tools as Buzzsprout. It also has advanced podcast statistics for those who want to dig deeper into their recordings. Uploading existing podcasts is as easy as creating new episodes. And with its sharing and directory tools, podcast distribution is a doddle.
Podbean vs. Buzzsprout – The Feature Comparison
So far, things are equal in terms of what each app offers. But the Buzzsprout vs. Podbean comparison requires us to dig a lot deeper to find the best choice for you. Let’s look at all the features the platforms offer.
Podbean’s Key Features
- Publishing scheduling
- A free podcast website with your choice of themes
- An unlimited hosting platform
- Ability to upload video recordings
- Live streaming functionality
- Private podcast channels
- The mobile Podbean app
- Embedded social sharing tools
- Advanced analytics for audio and video podcasts
- Three types of monetization
Buzzsprout’s Key Features
- Podcast publishing on a host of streaming platforms
- Free for the first 90 days
- Tons of advanced statistics
- The Magic Mastering service
- Manage unlimited podcasts
- Paid automated transcriptions
- Unlimited team members
- Automatic episode optimization
- Dynamic content tools
Podbean vs. Buzzsprout – Going Head-to-Head
As you can see, both podcast hosting platforms offer something unique. But there are similarities too. Both give you the tools you need for publishing. If you want something simple to upload podcast episodes, the battle of Buzzsprout vs. Podbean is moot.
The differences shine through when we get into the more advanced side of things. Here’s a more direct comparison of each podcast host.
Getting on the Web
With websites being such valuable marketing tools, it’s no surprise that both services offer podcast website creation suites.
However, it’s Podbean that comes out on top in this category. Its website builder is more advanced and flexible than Buzzsprout’s.
For example, Podbean offers free themes and paid templates for your website. If you’re on a free plan, you can only do a little with these themes. But moving up to a paid tier unlocks customization and branding options.
You get free podcast websites with Buzzsprout too. They’re just simpler. The platform features fewer themes and offers less customization. You still get some social sharing buttons and a custom domain, though.
Having more features for website building doesn’t mean much if you can’t make money from your work. The paid plans of both platforms offer several ways to make money from your podcast episodes.
Podbean tackles the subject from three directions:
- Podcast advertising, which involves getting sponsors to jump on board with your podcast
- Premium content so you can create and charge for private podcasts
- A patron service so people can donate money and virtual gifts in return for bonus content
Buzzsprout keeps things more straightforward with its affiliate marketplace. This marketplace exposes you to potential sponsors for your existing and new podcast episodes. Unfortunately, there’s no option for going private with your podcasts.
These premium hosting packages have top podcast directories to get you onto the most popular podcast networks. Whether you have an Apple Podcast or Google Podcast or want to get on Spotify, you’ll find what you need with both.
RSS feeds come as part of each package too. As soon as a podcast upload completes, it goes onto a podcast RSS feed that simplifies sharing.
Beyond that, Buzzsprout’s “Visual Soundbites” feature helps it stand out. It lets you create short previews of episodes that listeners can check before jumping into the whole thing.
If you want to publish podcast episodes to your website, you’ll need an embeddable player. Again, both podcasting platforms have this feature.
Podbean’s player is the simpler of the two. You’ll see your podcast’s title and header image. Plus, you get a handy widget code to copy into your website.
Buzzsprout also gives you an embedding code. Only it also lets you embed a single episode or multiple within one code.
If you want your audience to be able to listen to your shows on their mobile device, both services have mobile apps.
But it’s Podbean that comes out on top here. Buzzsprout’s app only lets people listen. With the Podbean mobile app, you can handle the basics of podcast distribution from your phone. Its podcast apps for iOS and Android lets you upload and tinker with your podcasts.
It’s hard to choose between the two regarding podcast analytics. Both have an intuitive user interface. Each also offers plenty of stats to break down how your audience listens and where they find your podcast.
We would d argue that Podbean has a slightly easier layout. But limiting its insights to paid users holds it back. Buzzsprout lets you see stats even if you’re on a free plan.
How much storage do you really need for some audio files? As it turns out, quite a lot. The more podcasts you create, the higher your storage needs become.
Buzzsprout is the slightly cheaper of the two. Its base paid tier costs $12 per month, compared to the $14 per month Podbean charges for its Unlimited Audio Plan. However, that cost-effectiveness comes with conditions. Buzzsprout’s top plan only lets you upload up to 12 hours per month, with Podbean having no such limits.
If you want to give the free plans a whirl, Buzzsprout appears to come out on top. Though it limits you to two monthly hours, those hours stack. The Basic Podbean plan only lets you upload five hours of audio.
But all is not as it seems with the free version of Buzzsprout. The host deletes podcasts after 90 days on its free tier. That means you’re getting about six hours of uploads per month.
Podbean vs. Buzzsprout – The Critical Differences
With so many similarities, choosing between these two podcast hosting platforms takes a lot of work (for more podcast hosting platforms, read here). That’s why we have a Podbean review and a Buzzsprout review so you can learn more about each offering. Still, it’s worth talking about the additional features of the platforms.
Podbean’s Unique Features
Podbean has a few handy features that help it stand out from Buzzsprout.
Feature No. 1 – Live Streaming
Many creators want more than basic podcasting. Podbean’s live streaming feature lets you get up close and personal with your audience. It includes live chat and even virtual gift-giving.
Feature No. 2 – Uploading From the App
You get much more with Podbean’s mobile offering than with Buzzsprouts. First, it offers iOS and Android apps. In contrast, Buzzsprout relies on its website to function as a mobile app for listeners.
We mentioned listeners there. Both platforms let the audience listen to your podcasts. But only Podbean gives creators a full editing suite. You can leave comments for fans, check out analytics, and even add effects to podcasts before uploading them with Podbean’s app.
Buzzsprout’s Unique Features
Though it looks like Podbean has the upper hand, Buzzsprout comes out swinging with some exciting features of its own. The caveat here is that both of the below are paid add-ons.
Feature No. 1 – Automated Transcription
Buzzsprout links up with TEMI to automatically create text versions of your podcast. At the cost of $0.25 per minute, you can improve how search engines discover your podcasts with a transcript.
If $0.25 per minute sounds too steep, you can also upload your own transcripts, either manually or via Otter.ai.
Feature No. 2 – Magic Mastering
Magic Mastering improves the clarity of your audio files. It balances the sound based on the podcasting industry’s best practices.
Let’s get one thing straight – Magic Mastering isn’t a replacement for an editor. However, it’s ideal for giving your audio an extra coat of paint before you publish. The only downside is that it’s an add-on that costs between $6 and $12 per month on top of your subscription. It also isn’t available for Buzzsprout’s free tier.
Podbean vs. Buzzsprout – Which Is the Best Podcast Host?
Picking a clear winner between Podbean and Buzzsprout is a challenging task.
On the one hand, Podbean offers unmetered bandwidth and unlimited storage space for its paid tiers. It has excellent video podcasting tools and a brilliant mobile app.
On the other hand, Buzzsprout’s transcription features make it superb for search engine optimization. And with Magic Mastering, you can clean up your audio automatically.
Beyond that, there’s little to choose between the two. Both come with a free plan in addition to paid plans. You get stellar podcast hosting and a nice collection of tools.
Ultimately, the choice may come down to what type of creator you are. Suppose you’re always on the go and want to incorporate live streaming into your arsenal. In that case, Probean’s superior mobile app and streaming capabilities make it a better choice.
But if you’re more focused on audio quality and have limited podcast publishing needs, the lower price of Buzzsprout makes it a better option.