Many podcast hosts provide an embeddable podcast player than you can use on your website.
These act similar to how you see people embed YouTube videos.
You probably wouldn’t decide which podcast hosting company to use based solely on their embed player, but I thought it would interesting to compare them.
There are also stand-alone podcast web players you can use no matter which host you use.
We’ll take a look at what features are included, what is customizable (if possible), and how they look.
I’ll try to embed an actual player on this page if possible – hopefully that doesn’t make it too slow to load.
|Smart Podcast Player||Yes||Yes||Yes||No||60s||15s|
Hosting Provider Embed Players
You can customize what info is included around the actual player itself. So if you can decide if you want to display the show title, episode title, date, etc.
You can even have the embed code display the description/show notes (which I’ve kept out of this example).
Learn more about Buzzsprout here (and get a free $20 Amazon gift card when you sign up).
Podbean has a nice looking, yet basic, player. You can customize the background and play button color, as well as make the audio autoplay:
Even if you don’t host your podcast with Podbean, you can still use their embed player exactly like I did above.
I personally think Transistor has one of the best players available.
You get tons of options (skip, rewind, playback speed, etc.) and they do an excellent job of fitting in lots of features without making the player too large.
Nothing too fancy here, but it looks decent and works. I’d like to see some sharing and subscribing options added though.
Blubrry‘s player feels a bit old to me, but you can customize the colors to match your branding. You can also change the start position.
It’s easiest to use if you integrate with the PowerPress plugin.
Simplecast has an amazing embeddable podcast player.
There are a ton of cool features, their branding isn’t in your face, and it looks great.
They have a whole post about it, so read this if you want to learn more (or just click around above).
Audioboom has a basic responsive player. If you’re on WordPress you can simply paste your episode URL into the editor.
Backtracks includes a player with all of their plans, but if you want to customize colors, it costs extra.
The Fireside embed feels dated to me.
Podiant has tons of subscribe options, plus the ablility to share, embed, and download.
You can also click around to skip to certain spots.
Podigee has some really cool features:
- You can click the chaptermarks button and it will drop down clickable timestamps with notes
- You can download different audio formats
- The “i” icon drops down full show notes with clickable links.
- Lots of share and embed options
This is a really clean way to display lots of info and options, although I would like the buttons to be a tiny bit larger.
Whooshkaa is doing lots of cool things around audio for creators and brands.
BlogTalkRadio doesn’t seem to offer podcast hosting anymore (they send you to Spreaker now) but there appear to be grandfathered customers still using the service.
You can use the Spreaker embed player whether you host with them or not. They also have a show/playlist embed as well.
When you go to copy the embed code you get a number of options to customize:
Libsyn has a decent player with a bunch of options.
Anchor’s embed player works, but it’s a bit on the small side and hard to read and press the smaller buttons.
Another major issue I just found is that they are the only player that downloads the entire MP3 on page load, potentially inflating numbers and causing your page to load much slower.
Stand-alone Embed Players
Smart Podcast Player
Smart Podcast Player is a premium WordPress plugin with a few options to select what sharing options are available, how the background looks, and more.
There is also a playlist player (see the Set Sail podcast page for an example).
Simple Podcast Press
Simple Podcast Press is a full-featured podcast embed player and WordPress plugin.
It gives you clickable timestamps, customizable buttons, email capture, and more.
RadioPublic is a cross-platform podcast app that is doing a bunch of cool stuff for podcasting.
Thanks to a comment from a reader for the recommendation to add Castbox.
Spotify has the ability to shared an embed code for individual episodes or the whole podcast.
I guess if you don’t have a Spotify account you can only listen to the first 30 seconds – or in the case of the above, you have to open Spotify to listen.
Not the best experience.
Stitcher is a podcast app and directory that lets you get a player.
Modern browsers also support an HTML5 player that you can provide with or without controls.
It supports MP3, OGG, and WAV formats.
One major problem with this is that the entire file is downloaded on page load.
The code looks like this:
<audio controls> <source src="podcast.mp3" type="audio/mpeg"> Your browser does not support the audio element. </audio>
How To Embed A Podcast
If you want to embed a podcast and you’re not sure which hosting provider they use, the easiset way is to:
- Visit RadioPublic.
- Search and click on the podcast
- From here you can share the whole show or choose an episode
- After clicking an episode, click share
- Click the embed tab and copy the code
- Paste code into your web page
It’s interesting how some podcast players give the option to embed when you go share, while others don’t. I believe that’s a useful feature, especially when you look at how popular YouTube embeds are.
Remember that you don’t have to use your host’s player if you don’t want. You can always use a third-party one like RadioPublic above.
Am I missing any? Let me know and I’ll get them added.