You need a great podcast website to grow your podcast show. With your own podcast website, you get more leverage and control. Podcast statistics indicate that those who have podcast websites are more likely to succeed than those who do not.
The problem with podcasts is control and searchability. Today, I will help you fix that problem. In the end, you should be fully equipped to build podcast websites.
Before you build your own podcast website, there are two important items that I want to explain.
This name refers to the unique name of your website. While some domain names are free, paying for yours is better. You can easily buy domain names from a domain name registrar like GoDaddy. However, the domain name has to be renewed annually, which means you will pay yearly.
A web hosting provider is a company like Bluehost, Hostgator, and Siteground. It has two main functions: storage and server.
When you build a website, you need files. You store these files in the web hosting provider’s system. Then, they take care of “serving” your content to the people who attempt to access your website.
Here are the steps to build a podcast website.
You can use website builders such as Wix and Weebly. These are companies that also host your website. Over the years, hosting providers such as BlueHost and GoDaddy also introduced website builders in their plethora of services.
A website builder makes everything easy for you because they offer a drag-and-drop function. You do not need to know how to code. They also have templates that you can use for your podcast page or podcast websites.
While some of these are free, the functions you can use have severe limitations. Nevertheless, I think these website builders are excellent options if you are a beginner at building podcast websites. After all, you only need a blog and a landing page.
Website builders, however, are notorious for their lack of flexibility. Although all of them offer integration, they cannot beat the top CMS builder in the market, which is WordPress.
Here are the steps to build a podcast website with Squarespace.
- Sign up for a Squarespace account
- Secure a custom domain name and integrate it with Squarespace
- Look for a template or build from scratch using the Squarespace system
- Add content to your website; edit the template
- Publish the website and share the URL
Squarespace is easy to use, and you can also add a blog to your website if you want. In addition, you can send your podcast audience to your website so they can sign up for updates.
Webflow is a website builder whose selling point is its ease of use. It is no different from other website builders in terms of services, but it has more than 3.5 million users.
Webflow has a free plan. Building podcast websites are accessible, but you can get more if you purchase the Business Plan, which costs $36 per month.
Here are some of the features of Webflow:
- Code export
- Site transfer
- Charge payments
You cannot use a custom domain on the free plan; you must pay at least the Basic Plan to be able to use your custom podcast domain name.
You can use the site builder as an individual or as an agency. In the free plan, your site is not hosted, which means that they only store your website’s code, not the content.
WordPress is a content management system or CMS. It is a website builder on its own, and it powers 455 million websites.
The beauty of a WordPress site is that it is free. There are two types of WordPress. These are WordPress.COM and WordPress.ORG.
The free one is the ORG. It is a system that you need to download and install in your host, like BlueHost or HostGator. Then, it is from that system that you build your website. Then, your website will be hosted in BlueHost using the WordPress system as the CMS.
The COM one is paid. Unfortunately, it is a tad expensive. In this paid plan, WordPress is the one that hosts your website, so you no longer need to do any kind of integration with a third-party web hosting provider.
To create a free podcast website, follow these steps.
- Buy the domain name; it must be the same as your podcast name
- Look for a free website builder
- Integrate the domain name
- Choose a template
- Edit the content of the template website
- Publish the content
After choosing the template, it would do you well if you stopped and checked what types of photos and videos you need to prepare. Then, take the time to study how to edit the site itself, and plan how you want to use images.
It is also at this point that you need to understand where to place your pop-ups. You also need to work on the pop-ups themselves. If it is your first time, it can take a while, but I guarantee you it will be worth it.
Here are some of the best reasons why podcast websites are necessary.
Create a podcast website so you have a single place to dump your content—not the podcast itself, but your announcements and updates.
The last thing you want is to be all over the place. So there has to be a single repository of information about you, your show, your offers—everything.
If you do not know yet, uploading Apple podcasts is not enough. Your content will get drowned in that distribution channel. The same thing goes for Spotify and other distribution networks.
As such, a person who types “podcast for dog training” may not even find your podcast in the podcast app’s results. Podcast websites, however, have a fighting chance to rank on Google.
Why? Because you are in control of your content. You control your meta title, description, content, availability, etc.
There are many podcast episodes on sites like Spotify. Chances are that yours will drown. In addition, people inundated with content will likely shift to another podcast show.
Building podcast websites enables you to keep your audience on your site only. Here they will not experience distractions from other podcast channels. Instead, you can communicate with them. If you want, you can even add a chat box.
You can post additional content on your website, like blog posts. Your site visitors can even use your podcast RSS feed if you have one. Unfortunately, podcast directories and distribution networks do not allow you to do this. As such, there is little to no room for you to grow.
Do not host your podcast on your website. Why? Because web hosting providers did not design their offerings for this type. They developed their websites to cater to blogs only.
An audio file takes up a lot of storage space when you host a podcast. Before you know it, you are out of space, so you will be forced to upgrade.
On the other hand, a dedicated podcast hosting provider designed its systems to serve the podcasting industry. First, you pay a monthly fee, and then they take care of the storage and bandwidth problems.
Plugins are apps or software programs that you can install on your website. Unfortunately, I have to tell you that as you add more plugins, the more difficult it will be for your website to load and work.
The plugins that I recommend are:
- Fusebox – it allows your users to download your podcast episodes and controls how they play
- Simple Podcast Press – allows you to increase listener engagement
- Google Analytics – you can track your traffic, analyze where the traffic is coming from, and how your SEO is working for you.
- Elementor is a website builder that allows you to make a professional website, not a cookie-cutter one.
Not all plugins are free. The best ones are paid. To address the problem of slowness, avoid the shiny object syndrome. Choose your plugins carefully and read the reviews. Find out if they work properly. The last thing you want is for your website to crash because of plugins.
Your website is a source of information. As such, you must have an area where a person can find a link to your podcast on Apple, Microsoft, or Google.
Let us say you are distributing your podcast on Spotify. On your website, you must provide a link to your Spotify Channel. It would help if you also provided a link to the Spotify app separately for Android or iOS.
Why do this? You do this to make things easy for your target listeners. If they do not know where to download your podcast, they would not even bother. Add the icons of iOS and Android, then hyperlink these icons or images, respectively.
A website will not have site visitors if people cannot find it. As such, you need to design it the right way with search engine optimization in mind.
SEO, in itself, is another beast to tackle. For your guidance, here are some of the most important things to consider:
- The domain name must be easy to remember
- Use .COM as a top-level domain, nothing else
- Pay attention to your meta titles and meta descriptions
- Use an SEO plugin
- Search for keywords that have a high search volume
- Make sure that your pages load fast
- Do not clutter a page; use lots of white space
SEO is a tricky thing to master. However, you need not be an expert to get it right. There are many SEO books that you can read for free. There are also masters of SEO that you can watch on YouTube.
If possible, each podcast episode must have a stand-alone page. Treat it like a blog where each article is unique. You want to do this because you want the site visitor to focus on that single episode.
Being on one page, the episode will now have adequate space for images, a short video, a short video clip or audio clip, and, more importantly, a description.
After publishing several episodes, you now have a list of the best ones that got the most attention. I recommend that you add a page of your best podcast episodes. You can hyperlink this page and put that link on the menu bar, so it is easy to see.
You can add a short clip of each episode and a short text blurb on this page. It is necessary because you are trying to market your best podcast episodes. A site visitor is more likely to listen to these episodes if they see the word “best.”
Finally, you must not gear too far from your niche. It just does not add value to your show. You may think that you can attract more people, but then the problem here is that you are a jack of all trades.
If your podcast is about wrestling, keep your topics on that. Sure, you can touch on the subject of MMA, but only if a wrestler moves to MMA or vice versa.
For example, it is okay to talk about Brock Lesnar if you have a wrestling podcast because, after all, he used to be a wrestler. You want consistency in your content because you want people to know what to expect from you.
Here are some tools that I recommend you add to your website.
Plugins are software programs that were not originally part of the website builder. When you make your own website, you want some programs to manage your business.
An example is Google Analytics. There is a plugin you can install so you can see your analytics about how your website is performing.
A pop-up builder is a software where you can create a pop-up window, usually one that has subscribe links. It is a window where you are trying to convince the site visitor to sign-up. The pop-up builder will also allow you to give something free, like a digital book.
A pop-up window is a powerful tool that can help you get email subscribers. Once you do have subscribers, you can send them emails about upcoming episodes or new announcements.
An email provider is one that allows you to keep your email lists, segment emails, and automatically send emails as you deem fit. One of the best out there is GetResponse, but there are many good email marketing software programs that you can use for free.
1. Do I Need A Domain Name?
Yes, and ideally, your domain name must match your podcast’s name. Before you even start, I suggest you check if your desired podcast name is available as a custom domain.
2. Can I Host My Podcast On My Website?
Yes, but you should not. A podcast file is a heavy file. People who download your podcast can cause server issues. Even if you can buy the service from your web hosting service, you will pay a hefty fee for bandwidth.
3. When Do I Need To Create A Website For My Podcast?
You need to create a podcast website so there is a place for people to find you. You can advertise that website and then ask people to sign-up through your email list. It can also be your blog of sorts, where you can convince people to take action by showing them what you have to offer.
When you create a podcast website, it does not mean that you will host your podcast on your own. You need a dedicated podcast hosting service if you want to be efficient. The podcast website is merely a way to showcase what you have to offer because podcast distributors limit your landing page space.
If I may suggest, start with free services like SquareSpace or WordPress. Keep the podcast website simple—the goal is to attract the visitor to visit your actual podcast channel and use the subscribe links on your website.