Buzzsprout vs Podbean: Which is for Beginners?

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Today in this post we are going to review Buzzsprout vs Podbean.

Buzzsprout is one of the simplest podcast hosting tools while Podbean is a feature-rich and powerful tool that has some learning curve if you are a beginner.

Both these tools offer various strategies to monetize your podcasts, like running affiliate marketplace, ad campaigns, Patron programs, premium podcasts, etc.

Podbean has a mobile app for both podcasters and listeners, unlike Buzzsprout which doesn’t offer any mobile app.

Let’s get started with the review.

FeaturesBuzzsproutPodbean
Free plan available?YesYes
Starting price$12/mo$9/mo
Mobile appAvailable for both
podcasters and listeners
User retention graphsNAAvailable
Episode transcriptionsIntegrates with Temi and Otter.ai
for adding the transcriptions
You can either use the built-in feature
that transcribes at $0.2 per minute
or else use third-party tools and then
upload the SRT file.
Visual soundbites
Explore moreExplore moreExplore more

Overview

Buzzsprout is an affordable tool best for beginner podcasters. Compared to this, Podbean costs are quite higher.

Podbean has an edge over Buzzsprout with its mobile apps. For listeners, it has iOS and Android apps. And it has an “Audio recorder app” for podcasters to record and broadcast the episodes on the go.

You can read my Buzzsprout review for more detailed information.

What do we like about Buzzsprout over Podbean👍?

  • Buzzsprout is easier to use than Podbean. Buzzsprout’s main selling proposition is its ease of use and simplicity.
  • It has a magic mastering feature that processes your audio removing unwanted noise. It makes your audio crisp, clear, well-balanced, and perfectly matches the industry’s best practices.
  • It has an affiliate marketplace inside the tool. Along with the native brands, you can even integrate with custom brands and promote them as well.
  • Buzzsprout provides integration with the Canva tool right inside the platform for designing podcast artwork. You can design from over 250,000 free templates, stock photos, fonts, and customizable logos.

What do we like about Podbean over Buzzsprout👍?

  • Podbean comes with a mobile app for both iOS and Android. The app has features like intelligent speed, volume boost, customizable playlists, etc. It also has Audio Recorder App for podcasters to record, edit, and publish audio podcasts with studio quality anywhere anytime. This is a big plus.
  • Podbean integrates with Alexa. Sharing your episodes on Alexa distributes it across all the Alexa devices thus increasing the reach of the podcasts.
  • Podbean comes with several free plugins to extend the functionalities within the app. Some of them include Google Analytics, SEO Meta Tags, MailChimp, DropBox, etc.
  • Podbean comes with a built-in live streaming feature. With this, you can record, publish, and broadcast the episodes in real-time. You can also invite remote co-hosts or guests to your show and provide more value for your audience.
  • Podbean supports premium channels where you can create and sell premium episodes or podcasts for a fee. There are no costs associated with downloads and storage. Listeners can buy the premium content within the app, i.e. in-app purchases.
  • Podbean integrates with Patron where you can set up a crowdfunding page to collect recurring and monthly donations. You can even set different levels of donations/rewards with Patron.

Upfront bottomline✨:

If you are just beginning your podcasting career, Buzzsprout would be the best one to get started. It is very simple to use and doesn’t need any learning curve.
If you are an advanced podcaster, Podbean would be the best choice as it needs some learning curve.
When it comes to monetizing your podcasts, both offer various strategies. The one thing where Podbean excels over Buzzsprout is its Studio app for podcasters.

User interface and ease of use

Buzzsprout interface
Podbean podcast tools

Buzzsprout and Podbean both have an easy-to-use interface. Buzzsprout’s interface looks modern while Podbean’s interface looks quite outdated.

Podbean has neatly arranged the tools incorporating the logical flow while Buzzsprout just has randomly kept the tools.

With both, you can access all the tools within 3 to 4 clicks.

Winner: Tie.

Podcast creation and editing

Creating podcasts in Buzzsprout
Podbean interface

Creating podcasts is very easy with both of these tools. You can either import your existing podcasts or create them from scratch.

With the free plan, Buzzsprout allows you to upload 2 hours of content every month while with Podbean you can upload 5 hours in total.

Episode transcriptions:

Transcription services in Buzzsprout

Buzzsprout provides integrations with Temi and Otter.ai for adding the transcriptions. Also, you will get 20% OFF on Otter’s annual plans. You can use other apps as well and upload the transcript files. You also have the flexibility to manually add the text, in case you want.

Uploading the transcriptions in Podbean

With Podbean, you can either use the built-in feature that transcribes at $0.2 per minute or else use third-party tools and then upload the SRT file.

Adding these transcriptions helps people with hearing disabilities and also helps the audience to easily understand the content.

Chapter markers:

Chapter markers in Buzzsprout

In Buzzsprout, you can add chapter markers to help listeners know what they can expect in the episodes. This also helps in consuming the content easily. Podbean lacks this feature.

Visual soundbites (audiograms):

Creating visual soundbites in Buzzsprout
Soundbites in Buzzsprout

Also, unlike Buzzsprout, Podbean lacks the built-in ability to create audiograms (visual soundbites). You can share these audiograms on various social media channels to gain more traffic to your podcast.

Editing the podcasts:

Magic mastering in Buzzsprout

For editing the audio files, Buzzsprout comes with a feature called, magic mastering. This feature processes your audio file, removes unwanted noise and smoothens the audio file making it convenient for listeners to consume the audio easily.

Editing the podcasts inside of Podbean app

Podbean has a Studio app for both iOS and Android. This app allows you to add background music, and sound effects, and also support post-production actions like edit, split, merge and export.

To know more about these features you can click here.

Winner: Buzzsprout. Buzzsprout excels over Podbean with its unique features like audiograms and magic mastering filters. These features eliminate the need for external integrations.

Podcast player

Buzzsprout podcast player
Embedding the podcasts in Podbean

Both tools support single-episode players and multitrack players. You can either have a single player for all your episodes or have separate players for each episode.

Embedding code in Buzzsprout
Customizing the podcast player in Podbean

Note that Buzzsprout provides both iframe and Javascript embed codes while Podbean only gives iframe code to embed the podcasts on WordPress, Squarespace, Wix, or any other CMS platforms.

Adding tags in Podbean podcasts

In case of Buzzsprout, you can add tags to organize your episodes. While with Podbean, you need to install “Episode Tags”, a free plugin to get this feature.

Adding tags to podcasts in Buzzsprout
Episode filters in Podbean

In both, you can also choose to display the episodes based on the tags added. In Podbean, you can create custom playlists considering the publishing time and season numbers as well.

Podcast customization options in Podbean
Embedding the podcast player in Podbean

When it comes to podcast player customization, in Buzzsprout you can customize the player progress color, player style, artwork, etc. In the case of Podbean, you can choose the number of episodes to display, display order, and add episode filters.

Podcast website:

Podbean podcast website

Both Buzzsprout and Podbean offer a free website for you. Having a website helps you promote your brand with content marketing and get traffic for your podcasts. Also, it helps in improving the podcast’s SEO and increases the chances of getting the podcast featured on SERPs.

Let’s discuss how the player looks for listeners.

Buzzsprout podcast player features
Podbean player options

Both tools have features like rewind, forward, speed control, download, and share the podcasts. With Buzzsprout you can also choose to mention the season number and the episode number.

If you want to add custom messages or CTAs, this is not possible. But you can add them in the episode description.

Winner: Buzzsprout. Buzzsprout has more flexibility when it comes to customizing the player and also embedding the episodes on your website. While Podbean is better with custom playlists where you can display based on the tags, publish time, season, etc.

Storage and hosting

Buzzsprout storage and hosting
Podbean storage and bandwidth options

Podbean provides unlimited hosting and bandwidth on all its premium plans. Buzzsprout provides unlimited storage on all of its paid plans, but it doesn’t offer unlimited hosting. Based on the plan you choose, the hosting hours vary.

On the lowest premium plan, you can only upload up to 3 hours of content. If you want to upload more content, you need to pay an additional $4 per hour.

If you are an advanced podcaster and you need to upload more content, Podbean would be the best bet.

Winner: Podbean. Podbean’s all premium plans support unlimited bandwidth and hosting. Buzzsprout has limitations on the upload time. To upload more content you need to pay an additional fee increasing the cost.

Monetization

Buzzsprout monetization tools

With Buzzsprout you have an affiliate marketplace, support show links (to collect donations or Pay what you want), podcast sponsors, and ads to make money with your podcasts.

Podbean app

In case of Podbean, you have podcast advertising, you can sell premium content, and collect donations with its Patron integration.

Let’s discuss the monetization strategies one by one.

Affiliate marketplace

Buzzsprout affiliate marketplace

Buzzsprout affiliate marketplace has partnered up with brands like Allswell and Instacart. You can promote these brands to earn affiliate income. If you want to promote any other custom brands, you can promote them as well. Podbean lacks this.

Support show links

Show support links in Buzzsprout

In Buzzsprout, you can add support links to your Patreon/Podfan pages, add PayPal links so that the audience can pay the donations to support your show.

Buzzsprout podcast crowdfounding page

With Podbean, your fans can become patrons and support your podcasts by making monthly pledges. You can add links to your Patreon pages in the podcasts similar to support show links in the case of Buzzsprout.

Podcast sponsors

Buzzsprout podcast sponsors

In Buzzsprout, you can find sponsors and promote their products and services. Buzzsprout has partnered up with Podcorn which helps you find the right sponsors relevant to your niche.

Podcorn tracks the performance and gives you insights into the number of downloads and listeners. Based on these data, you can take further action to improve your monetization strategies.

Podcast Ads

Buzzsprout and Podbean both allow you to run advertising campaigns in your podcasts and earn revenue.

Buzzsprout has a very affordable ad budget. The rates start from as low as $100 and go as high as $1000.

Buzzsprout dynamic content for ads

You can run the ads as pre-rolls, mid-rolls, and post-rolls. You can add the ad beginning and ending transitions as you wish.

Podbean ad marketplace

Podbean has a free ad marketplace where advertisers can discover and run ads on your podcast. It has a service – PodAds which helps you insert the ads dynamically.

Selling premium content

Along with the above strategies, with Podbean you can gate access to your podcasts and charge a fee for it.

Selling premium content in Podbean

With Podbean you can create premium channels and sell your premium podcasts from there.

Earn money from Podbean app

You can sell ongoing series of episodes, a complete season/course/package, membership content, etc. for a fee. The best thing is the Podbean app supports in-app purchases. Your audience can purchase the premium podcasts directly from the mobile apps and consume the content anywhere, anytime they wish.

Winner: Podbean. Though both platforms have good monetization features, I give Podbean a thumbs up 🙌. Its PodAds service helps you in managing the ad campaigns easily and also its mobile app is a great advantage. The in-app purchases help in increasing sales.

Mobile app

Buzzsprout doesn’t have mobile apps. But its podcast is designed to be mobile responsive. So you can listen to the episodes on iOS or Android.

Podbean podcast player
Podbean mobile app features

Podbean offers a mobile app for both iOS and Android.

For educational organizations and training institutions, Podbean has an app called “Podbean Pro”.

This app gives access to private podcasts and it supports multiple content admins, analyzes podcast stats, segments the content into groups for easier consumption, etc.

Winner: Podbean, obviously.

Analytics

Both Buzzsprout and Podbean provide in-depth analytics to see how your podcasts are growing.

They provide colorful graphs for easier analysis.

Buzzsprout podcast statistics
Buzzsprout podcast statistics based on geographical location

You will get insights on –

  • Podcast performance and trends over time.
  • Episode downloads.
  • Apps & technology used by listeners.
  • Listener location.
word image 59329 40
Podbean user retention

With Podbean you will get the stats on –

  • Where your audience comes from
  • Top 10 most downloaded episodes
  • User retention graph
  • Daily listeners

Podbean’s retention graphs help you analyze how the users engage with your podcasts and where they are dropping. With this analysis, you can take action to improve their engagement with your podcasts.

action

Refer to the images above to know more about the stats available.

Winner: Tie.

Podcast distribution and integrations

Buzzsprout and Podbean both have built-in podcast distribution helping you distribute your shows to other podcast sites and share them on social media increasing the reach.

Buzzsprout podcast distribution and integrations
Podbean podcast distribution apps

Both these allow you to distribute your podcasts to major platforms like Google Podcasts, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music, and much more.

Once the podcast gets listed in Apple podcasts, the show will be automatically distributed to –

  • Overcast
  • Castro
  • Castbox

To submit your files to these apps, simply copy and paste the RSS feed URL.

Podbean has a feature called “Alexa Skill” that automatically distributes the podcast episodes on all Alexa devices.

Podbean social sharing feature

Podbean also has a social media auto-sharing feature that allows you to share your podcast episodes on all the major social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, etc.

In the case of Buzzsprout, you need to manually share on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Podbean free plugins to extend the functionality

Podbean provides 18+ plugin integrations making the tool more feature rich. This flexibility you won’t get in Buzzsprout.

Winner: Podbean. I liked that Podbean has social media auto sharing and Alexa Skill features to promote your podcasts. Apart from these, distributing the podcasts on other platforms is really simple and straightforward.

Pricing and support

Pricing

Both Buzzsprout and Podbean come with a free plan with limited features.

Buzzsprout pricing

Buzzsprout’s premium pricing starts at $12/mo but this plan limits to only 3 hrs of upload duration. All the premium plans support unlimited storage but none of them support unlimited hosting.

If you need a magic mastering feature you need to pay an additional fee on top of the plans.

Podbean pricing

Podbean premium pricing starts at $9/mo. All its premium plans support unlimited storage and unmetered bandwidth.

If you need the Podbean Pro app, live chat, or private podcast features you need to go with their highest plan which costs $99/mo.

Winner: Buzzsprout. Buzzsprout is very affordable and is also very easy for beginners to get started. If you are an advanced podcaster and need unlimited storage and bandwidth you can consider going with Podbean.

Support

Buzzsprout provides in-depth knowledgebase articles, and email support and has a YouTube channel to support its customers.

While Podbean also has knowledgebase articles and also email support. On its highest plans, it also gives you live chat support.

Both these tools have an active community on Facebook. You can join these groups where you can actively engage with other users.

Wrap up

Buzzsprout and Podbean are two of the best podcasting platforms available today. Buzzsprout is best for beginner users who need a simple and easy-to-use platform. Podbean comes with a lot of features and it needs some learning curve.

I recommend you to go with Buzzsprout if –

  • You need a simple tool to get started.
  • You are not concerned with the mobile app.
  • You need audio editing and transcription feature built right inside of the tool.
  • You need monetization features like affiliate marketplace, ads, show support links, etc.

Go with Podbean if –

  • You are an advanced user and you can deal with any technicalities.
  • As a podcaster, you need an app to record your episodes. (Useful a lot if you travel more).
  • You need monetization strategies like ad marketplace, Patron programs, premium podcasts, etc.

The final choice depends on your personal choice. I hope you find this post on Buzzsprout vs Podbean helpful.

Akshay HallurAbout me

Hi, I’m Akshay Hallur. The founder of this blog BloggingX and many other online ventures.

I’m a professional full-time blogger, a digital marketer, and a trainer. I’m here to help bloggers like you to create an outstanding blog and earn money from it.

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