When people discuss video-sharing platforms, the first thing that comes to their minds is YouTube. But what if I told you that there are plenty of other video-sharing platforms out there that, at worst, aren’t suitable for most people, but at their best, can be decent competitors to YouTube?
Today, let’s go over ten video-sharing platforms that may suit you!
Top 10 Video Sharing Platforms Available
YouTube has been the number one video-sharing platform for more than a decade now, and it’s easy to see why. YouTube houses hundreds of content creators, hundreds of thousands of hours of unique content, and is entirely free to use (paid subscription available to get rid of ads).
However, YouTube’s focus has shifted to advertisers over the past few years, so many online creators have been forced to churn out family-friendly content. Along with this, YouTube videos can easily be blocked in many countries, though there are a few ways to go about unblocking YouTube.
2. Facebook Watch
Facebook has done a decent job over the years of adapting to new trends, and one of the best features of Facebook is Facebook Watch, the social media giant’s video-sharing solution.
Facebook Watch functions similarly to other video-sharing platforms, the main difference being that all videos belong in Facebook’s ecosystem. This means that users can react, comment, and view your videos. But the videos in Facebook Watch aren’t your typical videos—they’re user-generated premium content.
What I mean by this is that Facebook Watch houses original shows, features, and vlogs made by Facebook users. On the one hand, this means that Facebook users have a plethora of exciting and creative content to watch. On the other hand, simple videos like commentary and gameplay don’t fit into Watch’s ecosystem.
For the average individual, YouTube will be all they need to upload and watch videos. For those that need an excellent video-sharing platform for their business, however, YouTube may not cut it, depending on what they need. That’s where Vimeo comes in.
In most areas, YouTube wins out against Vimeo. But Vimeo does hold an advantage in a few key areas. For one, Vimeo supports higher-quality audio, so those of you who care about audio will be pleasantly surprised by Vimeo. Vimeo also doesn’t force pre-roll advertisements on videos.
Where Vimeo really shines is its privacy options. See, YouTube only allows creators to delist their videos or private them simply. Vimeo allows users to go even further and add password protection to their videos, share exclusively with people that follow your account, and vice versa.
This all comes at a cost, however. Unlike YouTube, Vimeo requires a paid subscription to truly get the most out of the platform—a deal-breaker for many.
Twitch is a streaming platform that allows creators to stream their gameplay (and reactions) in real-time. But what Twitch also has is a way for creators to clip, record, and highlight their streams, making it a decent video-sharing platform as well as a streaming service.
Twitch is constantly growing, so there’s a sizable audience there for those who want to stream. After all, you can’t take much advantage of Twitch’s video-sharing capabilities if you can’t/don’t stream.
You or your viewers can clip parts of the stream, or you can save your streams as full videos that people can watch at any time. Keep in mind that these recorded streams (called VODs) are only up for a limited amount of time, 60 days, to be exact.
Back when YouTube was smaller, it had its fair share of competitors, and Dailymotion was one of them. Both sites promised content creators unlimited creative freedom and the ability to earn money through their videos, but in the end, YouTube won out. So how is Dailymotion now?
Let’s start with the good. Dailymotion works similarly to YouTube, but since its audience isn’t as big as YouTube’s, there’s less pressure for uploaders to cater solely to advertisers. Plus, Dailymotion offers unlimited bandwidth for all users.
But there are a few issues. One, users cannot upload videos longer than 60 minutes. But perhaps the larger limit is Dailymotion’s 2GB video cap; if your video is larger than 2GB, you cannot upload it.
These issues result in the majority of Dailymotion’s content being uploads of movie scenes, music videos, or explicit content. It simply doesn’t have the creative diversity of YouTube.
Videos and social media go together well, which is why many companies continue attempting to create video-based social media platforms like Vine and Musical.ly. The latest offering is TikTok.
TikTok is a social media video-sharing platform that allows up to 3-minute long videos, so it’s not as flexible as YouTube. However, the beauty of TikTok lies within its community integration. People can like and comment on your videos, and you can customize your profile to be appealing to new followers.
TikTok is a great way to build up a fanbase, explore creative creators, and find a niche with a large following. And with a max limit of 3-minutes, there’s no pressure to create 10+ minute videos, even if it means squishing your content down to fit the TikTok standard.
Wistia is unique compared to the other offerings on the list. Unlike YouTube, Vimeo, or Dailymotion, Wistia is not a video-sharing platform but a video-hosting platform aimed primarily at businesses that need custom video players and a way to host videos on their site(s).
But why choose Wistia over YouTube? Well, Wistia not only works best for businesses looking to host videos, but it also gives them advanced analytics that even YouTube can’t compete with.
There is one caveat, however: Wistia is expensive. Clocking in at around $99/mo, it’s not cheap. Though, there is a free, limited version that individuals and sprouting businesses can use.
Flickr is a complicated site. It’s changed hands multiple times since its inception in 2004, and with sites like Imgur and YouTube taking the forefront of photo and video uploading, it sometimes feels like Flickr isn’t talked about much anymore. Dig deep enough, however, and you’ll find that Flickr is home to an active community—a community that’s constantly publishing images and videos of both the mundane and the exciting.
Many see Flickr as an image-hosting website. And while that is its main purpose, the site also allows users to publish their own videos. With Flickr being completely free to use, it’s a decent option if you’re looking for a way to upload personal videos. For more complex videos—like animations, skits, and commentary—you’re better off uploading to YouTube. Flickr is best when used as a social media platform.
However, Flickr’s premium subscription, Flickr Pro, has been incentivized even further by limiting the number of photos and videos free users can post to only 1,000.
In 2016, Steemit Inc. released a social media platform built on the foundations of the STEEM cryptocurrency. The social media platform’s name? Steemit. It worked like Reddit, except users could gain STEEM crypto by participating in discussions and contributing to the site via posts.
Steemit never saw much of a following due to its niche appeal. In the end, only diehard cryptocurrency hobbyists gained any use out of the platform. But Steemit inspired other creators, and in July of 2016, Adrien Marie launched DTube, a video-sharing platform built on the STEEM blockchain.
Unlike YouTube, DTube pays creators on a 7-day schedule (the same schedule the STEEM blockchain uses). Uploaders are not allowed to monetize their videos after seven days, nor can they edit or delete videos. Once a video is uploaded, it stays on the platform forever.
Because DTube is on the blockchain, it is decentralized, so users are not restricted in the content they post or required to be family-friendly. There are also no advertisements on the site, so users can enjoy the service without being bothered by ads.
Back in the early days of the Internet, sites like eBaum’s World and Metacafe were the central video-sharing platforms for internet users everywhere. And while eBaum’s World is basically defunct and sites like YouTube and Twitch have made most other older video sharing platforms obsolete, Metacafe is still around.
Granted, it’s not the most popular platform. The majority of Metacafe’s content is old, viral clips, and newer content is typically relegated to reposts and obscure content many may not find themselves interested in, and the website’s layout can only be described as archaic. However, Metacafe is free to use and has somewhat of a cult following 18 years later.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. Which is the best free video-sharing site?
As of writing this, YouTube is the best video-sharing site available. Yes, there are a few issues with the platform, like content creators feeling pressured to produce family-friendly content. However, by far, YouTube has the largest following, reaching over 2 billion users in 2020.
Q2. Which is the best website for video hosting?
Which video-hosting website that’s best for you depends on what you’ll be using the website for. For example, business owners will want to use Wistia or other enterprise video-hosting solutions. For those who just need a website to host videos and don’t care about special features, YouTube and Dailymotion work just fine. Just stay away from social media-oriented platforms like TikTok and Facebook Watch; these platforms work better as social media, not video hosting solutions.
Q3. Why is YouTube the most popular video-sharing platform?
There are a few reasons why YouTube has managed to gain over 2 billion users since the mid-2000s. For one, Google buying the platform helped YouTube gain tons of traction. Secondly, the early days of YouTube were promising to online content creators—they were free to be as creative and wild as they wanted. This attracted many content creators that helped give YouTube tons of exposure. And lastly, users could be paid for their videos via Google’s AdSense program.
These two factors helped snowball YouTube into today’s main video-sharing platform.
Q4. Which is the best platform to upload videos?
For general uploading, you can’t go wrong with YouTube, especially if you’re looking to cultivate a sizable audience one day. If you’re looking for a platform that isn’t as restrictive as YouTube, sites like Dailymotion and DTube are also good. If you think you might enjoy streaming and want to make videos/highlights out of your streams, Twitch is your best bet.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, are the ten best video-sharing platforms on the Internet today. We looked over some of the most popular sites like YouTube and Twitch and then shed some light on smaller, niche platforms like DTube and Dailymotion.
Which video-sharing platform do you prefer? Which ones do you think reign above the others? Let us know in the comment section below!