People love to watch videos. Period. The popularity of YouTube is proof of that. So if you have a WordPress website and video content to share, the question is: Do I upload the video to my WordPress site, or embed it from YouTube?

Uploading vs. Embedding Videos

First, we need to understand the difference between embedding videos from another site and uploading the video to your WordPress website.

Embedding a video is when you upload the video to a site like YouTube or Vimeo, and then use their code to embed the video within your web page. This is the recommended and most common method.

Uploading a video to your website is the same as when you upload images to your site for inserting into a webpage. This means the video only lives on your web hosting server. Although, this does allow for complete control over who can view the video (such as restricting it to paid members), there are many reasons to NOT upload, but instead embed. Why?


If you plan on receiving any kind of decent traffic, having your video watched hundreds or even thousands of times will seriously eat up your web hosting bandwidth. Most websites use “shared” hosting instead of “dedicated” hosting. “Shared” hosting means that a single server hosts a large number of other websites in addition to yours. So even if you have an unlimited bandwidth hosting plan, your website (and your video) will probably start to load more slowly as more users view it. You may even have your website go down from the increased server load. If a video is getting popular, the last thing you want is for your website to slow to a crawl or completely crash.

Embedding videos from a third party, though, places all of the video bandwidth and load on their servers.

SEO & Traffic

Over a billion people visit YouTube EACH MONTH! Having your video on YouTube, then, will greatly increase your chances of being discovered. It will also increase your chances of being displayed in search engine results.

Features & Management

Sites like YouTube and Vimeo have a large number of features that you would not have at your disposal if you uploaded the video to your own website. For example, social media sharing options, user comments, video editing tools, and a single location to manage and promote all of your videos. All of this will help your videos to go viral and build a fan base!

So unless you have videos that need to be restricted from the general public, embedding your videos instead of uploading them to your website is the best choice.


About Steven Higgins

Steven Higgins is the owner and lead designer of Inception Web Designs. Steven and his wife have spent considerable time doing volunteer and mission work both in USA and recently Uganda. Inception Web Designs has supported them in their efforts.