Wistia vs Vimeo for Video Content Marketing
Video marketing is growing faster and faster every year.
Creating video content used to be a secondary role for digital marketers.
Commercials or expensive video ad placements were big undertakings that were a lower overall priority.
Not only do we now watch more video than ever but including video content actually increases organic traffic from SERP’s by 157%
Businesses that aren’t producing regular video content are losing traffic and becoming less relevant to their audiences.
But more and more marketers are moving away from Youtube and toward other video software platforms whose goals align more closely with their own.
Youtube, for example, is a free platform that makes money when users watch more and more videos, so they place more and more ads on your videos which take attention away from your brand and your messaging.
When considering Youtube alternatives for video marketing, two companies are obvious candidates and in this article we’ll explore them head to head: Wistia vs Vimeo.
Should You Choose Wistia or Vimeo?
Here are some of the most important features to look at when comparing differences between Wistia vs Vimeo for video marketing.
Vimeo and Wistia both have free entry level plans and increase their features and video storage on their paid plans.
Wistia’s paid plan, Wistia Pro, starts at $80 per month when billed annually. It includes 10 free videos and each additional video is 25 cents/month. Wistia Pro includes all of the features of the Wistia Advanced plan except Wistia Channels.
Vimeo’s video marketing plans start at $50 (Business) and $75 (Premium) per month billed annually. Their business and premium plans offer 5TB and 7TB of storage respectively.
Video Player Customization
Both video players have similar player customization options. They allow you to choose your video player color, thumbnails, logos, links, and calls-to-action. Custom CTAs are only available in Vimeo’s Business & Premium plans whereas custom CTAs are standard on all Wistia plans.
Video customization makes custom branding possible so that your player matches your company and colors. In this category of Wistia vs Vimeo, they’re pretty equal.
Vimeo’s lead generation tools are not available in Plus or Pro, but are standard in Business and Premium plans. These tools allow you to push viewers toward certain web pages (via the CTA) or capture a lead if you make your video gated (with their email capture screens).
Wistia’s lead generation tools come with every plan, including the free plan (although you only get 3 videos on the free plan). CTA’s, and lead capture functions similar to Vimeo.
Wistia video analytics beats Vimeo analytics on this category. Wistia is more designed for marketers who are obsessed with analytics whereas Vimeo is traditionally known for filmmakers.
Wistia comes with beautiful heatmaps that show exactly what part of your videos are watched, re-watched, and watched again. This is a big win for content marketers who want to know how engaging their videos are and where their audience is falling off.
Vimeo analytics features are comparable to the rest of Wistia’s features. Their analytics tools include plays, social views, engagement rate, impressions etc.
Note: we built an audience profiling tool to make sure your videos are correctly addressing your audience. The Custom Avatar tool is the exact method we use for pinpointing our audience. Get it here.
The Wistia player injects metadata into your webpage’s header, without any manual work. This give you SEO credit for your video content and keywords. Videos can help with SEO ranking so this is an important distinction for the Wistia video player.
In my research I didn’t see anything indicating that Vimeo injects SEO data onto your webpage to optimize for search which is a missed opportunity for video marketing.
Do Wistia & Vimeo Have Video Player Ads?
Nope. Neither Vimeo nor Wistia show ads on your video player. Capture the full attention of your audience and control their customer journey without distracting ads that pull them away from your website.
Wistia and Vimeo both integrate with tons of marketing, productivity, and analytics platforms like Hubspot, Mailchimp, Infusionsoft, Marketo, Zendesk, Pardot, Google Analytics etc.
Video Player Size & Load Time
Wistia’s video player size steals first place for marketers. They’ve gone above and beyond the video player size standard to offer the smaller player size with the fastest load times.
Wistia’s video player size is 108KB and Vimeo’s video player size is 150KB. If you want to compare that to Youtube’s video player size at 505KB, Vimeo and Wistia will both load faster but Wistia’s is the fastest.
For marketers, this means faster page load and faster video player load which may reduce bounce rates and increase engagement.
Publish to Social
Vimeo allows publishing videos to Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn whereas Wistia only publishes to LinkedIn and Facebook as of the publishing of this article.
Vimeo does allow native live streaming to multiple social media platforms but only with a Premium account. Wistia does not have live streaming.
Wistia includes A/B testing with all of their plans. You can test 2 different videos to see what thumbnail, colors, and videos perform better in a given placement in order to optimize your user experience.
Vimeo plans do not come with A/B testing.
The Wistia player integrates with Facebook and Google ads. This means that you can set up retargeting ads on both platforms to send a tailored marketing message or encourage viewers to continue consuming your content. Retargeting audiences can be set up based on viewing specific videos or based on interaction with an entire Wistia Channel. Vimeo does have have retargeting integrations with Goole or Facebook Ads.
Wistia customers rave about Wistia’s customer support team that is very responsive and knowledgeable. Vimeo’s support team is reportedly very small so that customers lean more on their own ability to troubleshoot product issues.
Playlists & Channels
Video playlists, or channels as Wistia calls them, are great tools for episodic content, short courses, or for any series of videos that you want to guide users along a playlist of videos without distraction.
Vimeo has embeddable playlists for all 4 of their paid subscriptions. Wistia calls their playlists “channels” and makes them fully available on their Advanced Plan. The Pro Plan comes with 1 non-embeddable channel to link to from your website. The Pro plan includes up to 250 subscribers that get emailed when you add a new video.
Review & Collaboration Tools
Vimeo wins in this video marketing category.
Their collaboration tools have a beautiful interface with automatic version history saving. All notes are time coded and located right in the video player. Users can be assigned a role, such as client, team member, or freelancer and they can be given access to certain videos based on their role.
Wistia also has collaboration and review features, but their video review tool is more basic with fewer bells and whistles.
Bottom Line: Wistia vs. Vimeo
At the end of the day, it depends on what you want to do with your videos.
Wistia is built for businesses. Every inch of the Wistia platform was imagined and designed for marketing small and large businesses.
Existing features and, presumably, all future product rollouts will be about video marketing, content marketing, conversion optimization, and traffic acquisition.
If you’re a business looking for a hot video marketing tool backed by a company that is obsessed with video marketing for businesses, then Wistia is probably for you.
Vimeo is first and foremost a video platform for film producers. It has long been the go-to option for independent films, short films, and more. In the recent past, they’ve been rolling out video marketing tools similar to those of Wistia, but video marketing for businesses isn’t the backbone of the company.
Vimeo does offer many similar features to Wistia and offers plans that start at a lower price point, so if you’re cost conscious and happy with the tool suite available with one of Vimeo’s four plans, than Vimeo will likely be a great choice for you.
Update: October 2022. Wistia has updated their pricing and plans as noted in the image below: