WordPress: Embedding YouTube Videos vs. Self-Hosting
Categories: Tips & Tricks
Published On: April 27th, 2024


If you have videos you’d like to include on your website to showcase your products or services to your customers, there are different ways to achieve this. You can upload them directly to your WordPress media gallery and embed them from there, or you can upload them to YouTube and embed them from there instead. Both options have their pros and cons – so which should you choose?

Benefits of Embedding YouTube Videos

Embedding YouTube videos on a WordPress website offers several benefits. Firstly, it provides a seamless integration with the YouTube platform, allowing you to easily search and embed videos directly from your WordPress editor. This saves time and effort compared to self-hosting videos.

Secondly, embedding YouTube videos ensures that your website loads quickly. Since the videos are hosted on YouTube’s servers, they do not consume your website’s bandwidth or storage space. This is especially beneficial for websites with limited resources.

Another advantage of embedding YouTube videos is the built-in video player provided by YouTube. It is highly customizable, allowing you to control aspects like video quality, autoplay, and related videos. Additionally, YouTube’s player is compatible with various devices and browsers, ensuring a consistent viewing experience for your website visitors.

Lastly, embedding YouTube videos can also improve your website’s SEO. As YouTube is owned by Google, embedding videos from this platform can positively impact your search engine rankings, as Google tends to prioritize multimedia content in search results.

Drawbacks of Embedding YouTube Videos

While embedding YouTube videos offers numerous benefits, there are also some drawbacks to consider. One of the main concerns is the lack of control over the content displayed after the video finishes playing. YouTube’s algorithm may display related videos, which could potentially lead your website visitors away from your content.

Another drawback is the presence of YouTube branding on the embedded videos. This branding includes the YouTube logo and various controls, which may distract or divert attention from your website’s branding and design.

Additionally, embedding YouTube videos requires an internet connection for playback. If your website visitors have a poor internet connection or are in an area with limited connectivity, they may experience buffering issues or be unable to watch the videos altogether.

Advantages of Self-Hosting Videos on WordPress

Self-hosting videos on WordPress provides certain advantages that may be appealing to website owners. One of the main advantages is complete control over the video content and its presentation. You can customize the video player to match your website’s design and branding, offering a seamless and cohesive user experience.

Another advantage is the absence of any third-party branding or related videos. When you self-host videos, you have full control over what is displayed before and after the video plays, ensuring that your website visitors stay focused on your content.

Self-hosting videos also eliminates the reliance on an internet connection for playback. Once the videos are uploaded to your WordPress website, they can be accessed and viewed even without an internet connection. This is particularly useful for websites targeting audiences in regions with limited internet access.

Furthermore, self-hosting videos allows you to have complete ownership and control over your content. There are no concerns about video takedowns or copyright issues that may arise when using third-party platforms like YouTube.

Disadvantages of Self-Hosting Videos on WordPress

While self-hosting videos on WordPress offers advantages, there are also some disadvantages to consider. Firstly, hosting videos on your own server can consume a significant amount of bandwidth and storage space. This may result in slower website loading times and increased hosting costs, especially if you have a large number of videos or high-resolution videos.

Another drawback is the potential compatibility issues across different devices and browsers. Ensuring that your self-hosted videos play smoothly on various platforms can be challenging and may require additional technical expertise.

Additionally, self-hosted videos may not have the same SEO benefits as embedded YouTube videos. Since the videos are not hosted on a popular platform like YouTube, they may not receive the same level of exposure and visibility in search engine rankings.

Lastly, self-hosting videos requires regular maintenance and updates to ensure smooth playback and compatibility. This can be time-consuming and may require technical knowledge or the assistance of a developer.


In the end, each use-case is different and your decision should be made in relation to your goals and requirements. As a general rule of thumb, unless you’re paying big bucks for your hosting package, we usually recommend that you create your own dedicated YouTube account, upload your videos there and then embed them in your website to avoid clogging up your hosting bandwidth.

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