Hosting Your Podcast Episodes - Evaluating Your Web Hosting Options
In the previous section you learned about the software needed to record your podcast. Once you have your recording complete, you will need to upload your MP3 file to a web hosting service.
For hosting your podcast, there are two options:
- Host your MP3 at a podcasting hosting service, such as AudioBlog.com or other similar sites.
- Use a generic web hosting service that will allow you to not only host your MP3 files but also register a domain name and build a website to promote your podcast.
If you decide to go with the second option and build your own website, we've collected all of the information you need to get started with this exciting initiative.
With your podcast complete and in an MP3 format, you will need to use an FTP program to upload your MP3 to a web hosting service.
The purpose of web hosting is that you need somewhere to store your MP3 files, making them available to the world wide web. Look for a web host that will provide you with sufficient disk space for at least a years worth of podcasts. This would be about 1000MB of web server space (1 podcast per week, about 30 minutes long).
Register your own domain name for your website, for example, www.My-Podcast.com, by partnering with a reputable web hosting company. Operating your own website will give you increased flexibility and control when adding new features or content to compliment your podcast.
Building Your Own Website - Secure a domain name first
If you are considering building your own site, you will first need to register a domain name.
You can check to see if the domain name is available by visiting http://www.networksolutions.com or http://www.register.com. If your preferred domain name is available, for example, www.yourname.com you can purchase it and move ahead with selecting a hosting company to host your site.
You can always purchase a domain through your hosting company as well - many hosting provides will allow you to specify a domain name for your site when you sign up with them.
Find a Webmaster - Avoid costly mistakes and hire a webmaster
Technology can be imposing, so if you would like someone else to build and manage your website, you will find no shortage of people, commonly referred to as webmasters, who can provide these services for you. Be aware that webmasters will have their own set of fees in addition to the fees that you will be responsible for including hosting, domain name renewals, enhancements to your hosting package, and any technical support that you may require.
Web Hosting - The provider of online storage for your MP3
A Web host is a business that provides hardware and services to store, maintain, and present Web sites and provide an Internet connection to those sites. In essence, a web hosting service will store your podcast at a designated location on the World Wide Web. You will have the ability to upload your podcast from your personal computer onto the Web server using a File Transfer Protocol service.
Web Hosting Services - Find a partner for your business
Most web hosting services charge a monthly fee and give you all the tools you need to build and maintain your website using your own domain name such as www.my-company.com . Below you'll find a few companies that have delivered outstanding service, 99.9999% uptime and 24-7-365 technical support by telephone and email.
Liberated Syndication is a premiere media distribution service built from the ground up with do-it-yourself content creators in mind. Libsyn is the first full featured provider tailored specifically for podcasting with pricing models that make sense for this new generation of content creators. Website: https://www.libsyn.com
A starter Podlot.com package costs just $5.00 and gets you a personalized web address (ie. http://yourshow.podlot.com) to access your show files, 150 megs of storage, and no bandwidth limitations. This space is yours to manage. Website: http://www.podlot.com
For most podcasters, you pay just $5 per month for 300 MB of storage space and 5 GB of monthly bandwidth. All you need to do is upload your podcast to your own podbus virtual server. Everything else is taken care of for you. Website: http://podbus.com
AudioBlog.com, a subscription service with a seven day free trial, is a tool where you can host your podcast or video blog. Both listeners and producers must subscribe to use the service fully. Website: http://www.audioblog.com
OurMedia.org provides free storage and free bandwidth for your videos, audio files, photos, text or software. Forever. No catches. Website: http://www.ourmedia.org
1&1 Web Hosting
From convenient Instant Domain and Instant Website packages to all-inclusive Shared Hosting plans, powerful Dedicated Servers and ready-to-run eShops, 1&1 offers a complete range of web services for every need, every skill level and every budget. All 1&1 products have been designed to provide the ideal combination of features and affordability, with no pricing gimmicks or hidden costs. Website: http://www.1and1.com
Network Solutions is the original domain name registrar and the leading provider of Internet services including: Web hosting, Web site design, online marketing, e-mail and more. Network Solutions is committed to making it easy and affordable for businesses to build and grow their Internet presence, no matter what their technical skill level. Network Solutions' approximately 500 employees are dedicated to providing excellent customer support and offering innovative, reliable products and services. Website: http://www.networksolutions.com
Free Web Hosting Services - Do they exist?
There are some free web hosting services available but be warned that many require you to display advertising on your web pages. As might be expected, free web hosting services offer limited technical support, so you'll be on your own if you need the help of an expert or have a question about getting started.
Summary - Key points about web hosting
In this chapter, we looked at many different web hosting options. If you are going to build your own website, review the selections again and see which company will best meet your needs.
Written by David Ciccarelli