Hosting Considerations For Online Video

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Hosting Considerations For Online Video

Many webmasters (you may be one of them) have probably considered using video on their web site for promotional purposes. Video is an excellent way to command attention from your viewing audience.

However, the two largest concerns with video are file size and bandwidth.

File Size

Video is the largest of all currently deployed files on the web due to the fact it has audio and moving video. If you plan to host video on your own web site, it is important to know how much free space is available for your web hosting account due to the fact you can run out of space very quickly with video.

A general rule of thumb is that a medium-quality video will consume one megabyte per one minute of video. For example, a five-minute video would be 5MB in size on average.


Because video has a very large file size, it also consumes a lot of bandwidth. Every time someone downloads or streams a video from your web site, an excessive amount of bandwidth is used. Again, you should check your web hosting account to see how much bandwidth you have available.

For example, let’s say you have a web hosting account that allows five gigabytes (5GB) of data transfer per month. You have one five-minute video available for download on your web site that is 5MB in size. Without anyone downloading anything else, your video could be downloaded 1,000 times. However, in combination with your web pages and images, that number will decrease significantly. Also, if you have additional videos for download, the number is even less.

Alternatives to Hosting Video on Your Web Site 

If hosting your own video consumes too much space and bandwidth, an alternative is to use a video hosting service. There are both free and paid hosting services available. Free services are YouTube and Google Video. For pay services, do a web search for video hosting and plenty of options will present themselves.

The advantage to paid hosting is that you can host files yourself without any “branding” that does not belong to you on your video. For free services, branding does exist which may drive traffic away from your web site.