Do you host a podcast, or are you thinking of starting one? You’ll want to learn more about WordPress podcast hosting.
This post explains why WordPress websites are great for podcasts and offers tips for getting started with WordPress podcast hosting. You’ll learn why you should build a website for your podcast, the benefits of using WordPress for a podcast site, and the steps for hosting a podcast on WordPress.
Why Podcasts Need a Website
You can have a podcast without having a website. It’s not a requirement. But if you don’t have a website, you’re really missing out on some key benefits. Websites help you build your audience and deliver even more content.
Benefits of having a website for your podcast
- Discoverability. Yes, people search for podcasts in whatever app they use to listen to them, but many people still start with a basic internet search. A website increases your chances of appearing for relevant searches on Google and other search engines. In other words, it makes your podcast easier to find for expanded audiences outside of a single platform.
- Additional Content. Your website is the perfect place for show notes and other additional content. You can enhance your podcast by adding links and other resources for your audience to learn more about your topic. A website takes you from a podcaster to a content developer and helps you establish your brand.
- Revenue. Audio ads aren’t the only way to monetize your podcast. A website allows you to sell memberships or merchandise or do product endorsements or influencer posts to supplement any revenue you may earn from your podcast. Think about it. You can only do so many radio-like ad spots during one podcast. Having a website opens up a ton of revenue options.
The Difference Between Podcast Hosting and Website Hosting
If you launch a WordPress website for your podcast, you’ll need two different types of hosting.
First, you’ll need a place to host or store your podcast’s audio files. You probably already have that through a program like iTunes or SoundCloud, but you’ll want to also make your audio files available on your website. We’ll discuss the best ways to do that later in this post.
Second, you’ll need hosting for your WordPress website. This hosting provides a server where your website will live. Once you move your podcast files to your website, you don’t have to host them on another platform, but you may want to since doing so allows people to find you on your own site and on those podcast hosting platforms. It potentially expands your audience.
Why WordPress Podcast Hosting is a Great Choice
When creating a website, you have more choices than ever before. In fact, it can be a little overwhelming to pick which program to use to build your website. WordPress is the most popular web content management system. More than 40% of the websites in the world run on WordPress. Here’s why it’s the best choice for your podcast website.
WordPress is Easy to Use
You want to spend your time recording and editing your podcast, not figuring out a website. WordPress is incredibly easy to use, even for beginners. You can customize your entire website without writing a single line of code. The intuitive interface means you can easily create a basic website for your podcast without spending a lot of time learning the platform.
WordPress is Affordable
You probably spent a fair amount of money on podcasting equipment and want to continue to invest your money on the podcast itself, not a website to house it. That’s why it’s a great benefit for podcasters that WordPress is free.
It costs $0 to install WordPress. You only have to pay for a domain name and hosting. Domain name, which is your site’s URL, run $10 to $20 per year, and Pressable’s managed WordPress hosting plans start at $19 per month. So, for less than $40 a month, you can have your own little piece of the internet.
WordPress has Podcast Themes and Plugins
One of the biggest advantages of using WordPress is the large collection of themes and plugins. Themes are what control the look and feel of your website. Plugins are tools you add to a WordPress website to add different functionality. Many people use WordPress for their podcast hosting, so you’ll find a plethora of plugins and themes designed specifically for podcasts.
One thing to note is themes and plugins are another potential cost of using WordPress for podcast hosting. Many plugins and themes are free, but others work on a freemium model where you can use a limited feature set for free or purchase a subscription to unlock all the features. Keep reading for some plugins useful to podcasters below.
WordPress Makes It Easy to Monetize Your Podcast
As we said earlier, one of the main benefits of building a website for your podcast is the chance to add additional revenue by selling memberships or merchandise. Other website builders charge you to unlock eCommerce features.
With WordPress, the free WooCommerce plugin adds eCommerce functionality to any WordPress website. If you want to start a membership or community website, we’re big fans of the Paid Memberships Pro plugin. The base plugin is free and includes all the features you’d need to start a membership program for your podcast audience.
WordPress has an Awesome and Helpful Community
WordPress is popular and has an active user community. If you get stuck on something, there’s a good chance someone else (including other podcasters) has faced the same problem. You can find the answer to most WordPress questions on a support forum or with a simple Google search. And Pressable clients really don’t need to worry as our experts are always on hand to help.
How to Use WordPress Podcast Hosting
Setting up your WordPress site for podcast hosting is simple. Many people are intimidated by building a website, but WordPress is beginner friendly. Even someone with no technical skills can build a WordPress website for their podcast. Just follow these steps.
Step 1: Register Your Domain Name
Regardless of whether you choose to run your site with WordPress, you’ll need a domain name. You’ll want to follow best practices when choosing a domain name and use either your name or the name of your podcast. You want something that’s easily recognizable, and that will last.
Once you’ve secured your URL, you’ll need to tell the domain service where to point your domain name. Your hosting provider will give you instructions on how to configure this part.
Step 2: Set Up WordPress on Your Host
You’ll need to install WordPress on your server. If you pick Pressable’s managed WordPress hosting, this is the easiest step. We do it all for you. Within a couple of clicks, you’ll have WordPress installed and ready to use.
Another advantage of using Pressable is we also include automatic updates, so your site always runs the latest version of WordPress. Keeping your WordPress software updated improves site performance and security.
Step 3: Design and Configure Your Site
Now it’s time to build your site. Get a head start by installing a theme designed for podcasts. If you don’t find one you like, don’t worry. You can use any WordPress theme you want for your podcast site. The ones built for podcasts require less customization and often include dummy content you can edit for your podcast site.
Step 4: Determine How to Store You Podcast Media
The biggest consideration with using WordPress podcast hosting is deciding where and how to store your audio files. Yes, you can just upload them to your web server, but that approach has some disadvantages.
First, hosting too many files inside your WordPress site can bog down your server. In fact, for sites with a lot of media, we actually recommend offloading your media files to AWS S3.
Also, if you self-host the files, you’ll need to build and configure your own feeds to submit to podcast aggregators. Anytime you introduce this type of custom or manual work, you increase the chances of errors.
Most podcasts with WordPress websites use a podcast hosting plugin. Many of these plugins handle hosting the audio files and generating the feeds you need for submitting your podcast to different aggregators.
PowerPress by Blubrry and Seriously Simple Podcasting by Castos both include options for hosting your podcast audio files. Blubrry hosting plans start at $10 per month. Castos audio hosting starts at $19 per month.
If you want to host your own files, the Podlove Podcast Publisher plugin is a free option that helps build your RSS feeds and also includes a web player for your site.
Step 5: Submit Your Podcast to Directories
While many people will discover and listen to your podcast on your website, you still need to reach listeners where they like to listen to all their podcasts. Once you’ve built a site, you just need to set up a feed to submit to the different podcast services.
Popular podcast directories include:
- Apple Podcasts
- Google Play and Google Podcasts
Check the documentation from your podcast host to determine how to set up and submit the feeds for your podcasts.
The Best Host for Your WordPress Podcast Site
If you’re ready to upgrade your podcast with your own WordPress website, Pressable is here to help. Our managed WordPress hosting service is easy to use and set up. We offer premium support and some of the fastest WordPress servers in the world. We also protect your site from malware with the most advanced security features and settings. Sign up today and see why more people are making the switch to Pressable.
Nox has been using WordPress on and off since it was originally released in 2003, first as a blogger and later as a software developer. Her work on the Pressable support team blends her interest in technology, culture, and communications with her love of solving puzzles. When she's not at her computer she enjoys hiking, running, yoga, and street photography.