Podcasts are rising in popularity because they are engaging, draw attention to your business, can be experienced on smartphones and other mobile devices as well as help sell your products or services. But they often take a lot of work to create.

To create a podcast, you need audio editing software, microphones, and podcast hosting. Using a podcast hosting service is one option. However, users give up some control over where to store the podcast, how it is distributed, and how listeners can access archives.

The solution to maintaining control is to self-host your podcasts on WordPress (WP) as the platform of choice. Numerous plugins enable users to launch podcasts from their own website.

Getting Started

Start by choosing a domain name and getting a hosting package.  The next step is to set up a media hosting service.

Podcast files are very large and would take up a lot of server resources. As a result, your website can be too slow and even unresponsive. If you want to store your audio files on your web hosting server, you will need to get a larger package or increase your bandwidth and storage on your current account.

For the best user experience, you can also use a media hosting platform such as Blubrry, Buzzsprout, PodBean, Castos, or Simplecast.

The WP community has responded to the increased demand for podcasting by developing numerous plugins that enable users to launch a podcast directly on their WordPress site. This article will discuss some of the best on the market today.

Smart Podcast Player

Simple, versatile, and powerful, Smart Podcast Player is a podcasting tool known for its vast functionality, including direct downloads, library display settings, and playback slowing.

Key features include:

  • Customizable and web-based.
  • Keeps listeners on your site and allows them to download episodes directly from the player.
  • Supports all MP3-based podcast feeds.
  • The audio library automatically updates.
  • Choose from a variety of colors for your audio track bar so that it matches your site brand colors.

There are two pricing tiers: $8.09/month (billed annually) and $12.00/month (billed annually). Both options are very reasonable.

Seriously Simple Podcasting

Users can broadcast multiple podcasts on the same WordPress site with Seriously Simple Podcasting. The simplicity of this plugin differentiates it from the others and makes it an excellent choice for beginners.

Primary features include:

  • Simple settings to get your podcast up and running quickly.
  • Running multiple podcasts from the same site with unique RSS feeds.
  • Choice of where to host your media files, on your site or on their integrated hosting platform called Castos.
  • Robust RSS and highly configurable feed for all feed readers and podcast services, including Google Play and iTunes.
  • Supports both video and audio podcasting.
  • Use widgets and shortcodes to display single episodes, episode lists, and playlists anywhere you choose on your website.
  • Manage podcast episodes with series taxonomy and post type.
  • Free add-on to gather listener stats.

Simple Podcast Press

As the name implies, Simple Podcast Press is easy to configure. However, Its impact on your podcast is powerful. It is designed to help you build your email list quickly, increase listener engagement, and boost the number of subscribers and downloads.

The key features and benefits include:

  • Enter your iTunes or SoundCloud URL to set up a podcast and let the plugin handle all the details for you.
  • A mobile-friendly player is inserted on a unique page for each of your episodes.
  • Includes a full description of each episode and images taken from your podcast feed.
  • Every time you publish a new episode, WP will update it automatically.

This plugin is suited best for podcasters who have an established iTunes or SoundCloud podcast and want to use their own website to showcase their episodes.

The plugin has three pricing tiers based on the number of websites, starting at $67 for a single site.

PowerPress Podcasting Plugin By Blubrry

If you are looking for a plugin that includes simple and advanced modes, multiple audio/video player formats, subscription tools, and a way to quickly kick-start new podcast projects, check out PowerPress Podcasting plugin by Blubrry.

What makes this plugin stand out from others is its Podcast SEO feature. Users can specify custom podcast titles for RSS feeds.

Set up your podcast in Simple Mode in three steps as follows:

  • Use only the essential settings to set up your podcast.
  • Create your podcast.
  • Submit it to Apple Podcasts (previously called iTunes Podcasts).

When you are comfortable using the Simple mode, switch to Advanced mode for greater functionality.

Significant features in Advanced mode include:

  • Fully supports Google Play and iTunes.
  • Imports from podcast feeds including Squarespace, SoundCloud, and Libsyn.
  • Integrated HTML5 media players.
  • Users who host their podcasts on Blubrry can also submit their episodes to Spotify.
  • Create subscription pages with subscribe embed shortcodes or sidebar widgets optimized for mobile.
  • Access to free Blubrry statistics from your WP dashboard.
  • Supports multiple languages.
  • Enables emojis in podcast feeds.

Promoting Your Podcast

Once your podcast is up and running, develop a marketing strategy to get new subscribers and grow your audience.

Use social media to spark interest in and promote your podcast. Try running contests, giveaways, or promotions to encourage listeners to tune in. Including guest hosts or interviews can help keep your audience engaged.

Getting started with podcasting can be stressful as well as exciting. Publishing your podcasts on WordPress helps your launch run smoothly by using one or more of the many plugins it provides.