Vimeo vs YouTube: Who Rises To The Top?

Choosing Between Two Online Video Rivals

Everyone knows about YouTube, and it has a positive online reputation. Yet Vimeo has a more specific following and can companies focus on a target audience. It can be difficult to choose a video platform for sales and marketing. This guide provides an in-depth look at Vimeo vs YouTube for business. Both websites are popular and have a variety of features. It will all depend on what a company hopes to achieve and who they want to reach. Today brands need to include video content in order to stay up-to-date with the competition. This guide will point out the positives and negatives of each site.

Table of Contents

  1. Choosing Between Two Online Video Rivals
  2. YouTube vs Vimeo - Which One is Better?
  3. What is the Difference Between Vimeo and YouTube?
  4. Frequently Asked Questions
  5. The Final Word

YouTube vs. Vimeo – Which One is Better?

Who is the target audience? What is the topic of the video? These are some questions to consider before choosing a video service. This list explores the differences between Vimeo vs YouTube quality. It will show how the two providers differ in terms of ads, subscriptions, and price. All of these points will help professionals decide.

1. User Statistics – Audience Reach & Engagement

First, people should look at how many active users are on each website. YouTube has an advantage because Google owns it. So many individuals prefer this search engine, so they get pushed to YouTube. However, their competitor has a better reputation for having good quality videos. The user statistics are not the only numbers to look at.

Winner: YouTube

YouTube: Over one billion people use YouTube, and they watch a lot of videos. The community posts many hours of content each and every day. The site belongs to a top-rated company and has a #2 rating among online search engines. This helps to bring even more folks to the video-sharing platform. This is the winner when it comes to Vimeo vs YouTube for business.

Vimeo: In contrast, there are about 240 million people using this platform every month. They pay to utilize a premium version of it, but many others use it for free. It is not going to land in the top of Google’s search rankings. Even so, experts know that the website shares more professional videos related to business.

2. Efficiency of SEO

Search engine optimization is important because it helps people notice certain videos. Companies should pay attention to their subject matter and how they label their content. It will affect where it lands in the search engines like Google and Bing. SEO experts will point out an obvious winner in this category.

Winner: YouTube

YouTube: This is clearly the winner as for of its partnership with a big-name company. YouTube is the king of video tutorials and vlogs. Those with their own channel know that the site has a variety of SEO tools. These help with finding the right tags and categorizing content. This makes it a winner here.

Vimeo: While this website has a lot of videos based on specific subjects, it loses to YouTube. Google does not prioritize Vimeo, so even the best videos have trouble gaining viewers. If a business needs to share a video with a special focus, it won’t have the best luck here.


3. Subscriptions & Plans

This is an important consideration for businesses that would like to post their own videos. Membership shouldn’t be too expensive because some brands only have one or two people. On the other hand, a subscription plan needs to be worth the money. Which site offers the best benefits to its members?

Winner: Vimeo

YouTube: Their premium membership eliminates ads from videos. This is a huge lure for consumers. Besides that, the plan allows individuals to download videos from the platform to their computer. While using the YouTube app, individuals can minimize the screen and still listen to a video. Members also get free, early access to original series.

Vimeo: A Plus membership costs $7 per month and includes 5 gigabytes of storage each week. The Pro plan gives people 20 gigabytes per week for $20 a month. The Premium subscription includes live streaming and supportive analytics. It costs $75 per month. The memberships allow for user customization, too. They’re the winner here.

4. Maximum Video Capacity

Those who utilize a video service for vlogs and updates want lots of storage. This category looks at the video capacity and uploads limits. Nobody enjoys feeling limited by their provider, so which one wins? To find out, it’s important to look at the capabilities of each service.

Winner: YouTube

YouTube: People with a basic, free account can upload as many videos as they desire. However, their vids need to be less than 15 minutes long. Individuals with verified accounts can post content that is hours long. This isn’t a bad deal. Users can still upload a lot even without paying.

Vimeo: The number here depends on which subscription plan a person has. The basic membership allows for about an hour of videos per week. This number increases as the plans get more expensive. This can be okay for individuals who plan their content and make it work. Still, it can be annoying because there are restrictions.

5. User Security

If something is online, then it needs to be safe. It’s easy to share content and have it be gone in a matter of minutes. Maybe someone steals it, or it gets a lot of ugly comments. How do these two providers do with user privacy? Who wins this category?

Winner: Vimeo

YouTube: Here, creators can set their uploads to private. This means that only people who are subscribed to their channel can see it. Another option is naming it “unlisted.” This way, no one can find the content unless the owner shares the link with them. On any video, it’s possible to disable comments. This is another way to add some control and security to it. Most subscribers know that the comments section on YouTube can be a scary place. So, there are three options: public, private, and unlisted. Private videos are a good idea but may have limitations. Unlisted ones are basically hidden from everyone.

Vimeo: Like its rival, the platform lists videos as public, private, or unlisted. If a person is paying for a subscription, they can keep their URL only on their own website. This adds another measure of safety. They can also protect their content with a password. It seems that it is very useful for people who are willing to pay for membership. Their privacy controls are more comprehensive than YouTube’s as well. Another cool feature is that they can restrict their videos from Vimeo. This means that not even the original website can play the content. The owner really does have all the power.


6. Smartphone Usage

The ability to utilize an app on a mobile device is crucial. Big brands won’t do well if they aren’t mobile-friendly. Video-sharing apps need to work well no matter where a user is. They want to access their content from their desktop computer, laptop, or smartphone. Both video websites have phone apps. But, are they created equal?

Winner: YouTube

YouTube: Their app is one of the most successful, especially in the video category. It is a top competitor and has a simple mobile interface. People can access the same elements and controls as the desktop version. Also, users watch about half of the videos from a mobile device.

Vimeo: They also have an app, and it has over 10 million downloads. On the App Store, it has an average rating of 4.0 stars. It is compatible with Chromecast, and it connects to live streaming videos. People can upload content straight from their phone, too. However, it doesn’t have anywhere near the same number of mobile users as YouTube.

7. Post-Production Changes

It’s very important to edit published videos if there is a pressing error. How easy is it to edit after a video is already uploaded? Do creators have to get rid of all their progress just to do a slight change?

Winner: Vimeo

YouTube: If a person needs to change a video and upload a new one in its place, it gets tricky. They can do this, but all of the analytics for their video will be gone. That means they will have to start from scratch. This can make it difficult to get an accurate view of statistics.

Vimeo: Unlike its competitor, users here can replace an entire video while keeping the stats. It is much easier to fix silly mistakes such as misspellings and sound issues on Vimeo. The editing work will not do a thing to the analytics.

8. Ease of Editing

Video editing is a lot of fun, but not when the interface isn’t user-friendly. How do these two platforms compare to each other? Sometimes a person just wants to manage or edit their content after they publish it. This category will look at how hard that is on YouTube and Vimeo.

Winner: YouTube

YouTube: The video editor here can access a user’s Google photos. It also pulls information and references from previous content the person uploaded. This can make the editing process go much smoother and faster. The controls are easy, so people get used to it very quickly. Even beginners get the hang of it in no time.

Vimeo: This is one area where Vimeo falls short of its rival. It has basic features such as adding captions and titles. However, there are not any end cards or annotations at the end. This aspect usually helps creators share more of their videos. Without it, viewers might not be as likely to check out a user’s other content.

9. Platform Interface

People on these websites may prefer to use a custom video player. It makes sense as it adds more personality and a streamlined look. However, this is an area that most folks aren’t keen to spend too much time on, so it needs to be easy.

Winner: Vimeo

YouTube: There is the possibility to change player information, theme, and layout. It can be a fun little project for some YouTubers. Even so, it is not very intuitive, so most consumers might not even know about it. It is not a publicized part of the software.

Vimeo: They allow for more user personalization. With a paid membership, people can add more custom elements to their video players. This includes specific colors to match their brand and their logo. Best of all, the changes they apply go to all of their other videos, too.

10. Archive Size

When someone is a video creator or vlogger, they need all the space they can get. Storage size is a huge factor when choosing between these two websites. Storage limits can hurt workflow and reach.

Winner: YouTube

YouTube: All of the storage here is free to all users. They can archive as much content as they like. This is great for those who upload vlogs and other material every day. It would be awful if they had to pay for additional storage space every month.

Vimeo: Unfortunately, not all of the archive space here is free. It depends on the membership plan that a person has. The basic version includes 500 megabytes of space each week. This could limit some users and the content they share.


11. Customer Service

Support teams are important, especially on a video-sharing website. Users might need help with technological issues, or there might be copyright claims. A customer service team needs to be constantly available as well as knowledgeable.

Winner: Vimeo

YouTube: Sad news for YouTube: their customer support does not have a good reputation. They accept copyright claims and flagged videos without much investigation. This can make it difficult for creators to post regular content. The help page on the website is not user-friendly. It just directs people to different pages and forums.

Vimeo: When someone pays for membership on the platform, they get access to a comprehensive tech support team. These experts can assist with upload problems and other video issues that businesses might face. It is particularly useful for individuals who don’t have much experience on Vimeo.

12. Plans & Prices

Both of these sites are useful for brands of all sizes and industries. How do they treat members and those who use the software for free? Here is a closer look at the plans and prices that each platform offers. Pricing is a crucial part of the decision to choose a video-sharing provider. Any kind of paid plan needs to be worth it!

Winner: YouTube

YouTube: Anyone can utilize this platform for free. Whether they want to browse or upload content, it does not cost anything. The trade-off is that YouTube shows a lot of ads. It may be annoying, but this is how they are able to offer their services for free. YouTube Premium is the paid subscription service. It used to be called YouTube Red. The Premium version is new and improved and includes ad-free content. It also allows users access to any original YouTube TV series. It’s sort of like having a Netflix plan, in a way. It costs just $11.99 per month.

Vimeo: Unlike its competitor, Vimeo does not generate money from posting ads online. What they do is sell their services. While YouTube is free with ads, Vimeo has no ads, but a paid plan. Of course, there is a trial version, but it has limited options. People with a free subscription can upload videos up to a certain storage limit. They can also comment on other content. As the pricing plans get higher, users can do more things. They can customize their video player and get marketing tools. They can also sell their videos, movies, TV series, and tutorials. Vimeo takes 10% of the revenue, and the creator gets 90%.


13. Ads

People have a love-hate relationship with ads. They can be great for users who are sharing their content online. It creates more revenue for them. On the other hand, it can be annoying to watch a ton of ads just to see different videos.

Winner: Vimeo

YouTube: For a viewer, the ads can have a negative effect. People can find ads on the website’s sidebar, as well as banner ads and video ads. It can be overwhelming. For creators, the ads can help them earn more money, so it’s a trade-off.

Vimeo: Since they charge customers for service, they do not have to post ads. This is a breath of fresh air for many users. They can focus on the videos they prefer, and they might feel more compelled to support Vimeo rather than YouTube. Still, they have to pay if they want these benefits.

14. Data Statistics

Data statistics, research, and analytics are a big help for video creators. It can make it easier to target an audience and track progress. Here is a review of how the two compare to each other on analytics.

Winner: YouTube

YouTube: Users can get access to the site’s analytics tools no matter their subscription plan. This is a wonderful benefit for people who use the platform for free. They can see their progress on engagement, view time, clicked ads, and more.

Vimeo: Vimeo also has a lot of useful digital analysis tools. The trouble is that users have to pay for these features. On the free version, the marketing and engagement support is not available. Some advanced analytics include the video’s shares on social media and views around the world.

15. Pre-Video Advertisements

Sometimes when people click on a video, they see an ad, and then they just stop watching. While ads can bring revenue, they can also scare viewers away. They don’t want to watch a promotional video, even if it is just 30 seconds.

Winner: Vimeo

YouTube: YouTube is all about pre-roll advertisements. While the AdSense platform tries to match the ads the viewer’s interests, it is not guaranteed. It can feel intrusive and frustrating for people, especially if they’re binge-watching. That means more ads to watch!

Vimeo: They’re different as for they do not have any ads at all. Viewers can come and watch all the videos they desire without interruptions. Vimeo definitely beats YouTube in this area. They choose to make money in other ways.

16. User-Created Advertisements

Sometimes content creators want to make their own ad campaigns. It can help creators attract more attention and appeal to their target audience. It isn’t always an easy task, but if people have experience, it can be worth it.

Winner: YouTube

YouTube: Since they allow advertisements, users can create their own campaigns. If they spend $10 a day on the ads manager, they will get YouTube support. They will provide advice and tips on how to reach the most viewers online.

Vimeo: Users can’t buy ad space on Vimeo. That makes sense because they do not allow any ads. This has its positives and negatives. It would be nice to earn extra money with ads, but it is also less intrusive.

What is the Difference?

When people decide between YouTube vs. Vimeo, they need to consider different aspects. It depends on what they need the software for as well. If they are more interested in SEO performance, YouTube is better. If they like to have more control over their privacy and analytics, Vimeo is best. Each provider has its pros and cons, so research is essential. Businesses large and small can have great success with either one. YouTube offers more for free, but Vimeo has no ads. It’s a tough choice!

More Features for Free
Tons of Ads
Public, Private & Unlisted Videos
Performs Better in SEO
Creator’s Studio
Different Plan Tiers & Benefits
More Privacy Controls
Has a More Niche Community
Engagement & Lead Generation

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Vimeo Replace YouTube?

No, because different audiences don’t have the same needs. A company might really like what Vimeo offers, and that’s great. They can show their videos without ads or interruptions. However, they will have to pay for a subscription, and they might not want to do that. On the other hand, a business might prefer YouTube because they can use it for free. Even without paying, they can access many features. They have ads, but they also have better chances of ranking high on search engines. At the end of the day, it depends on what the customer is looking for. There isn’t one obvious best choice.

Is Vimeo Free to Use?

Yes, it is. This version does not have nearly as many features though. A paid membership brings a lot of benefits, such as privacy settings and more control. On the free plan, users can browse videos, comment, and share their own work. The paid versions allow for more liberty. This includes controlling the privacy of videos and more personalization tools. It is also good for teams or colleagues who are working together. The higher plans include even more features, as well as the elements of the free membership. In summary, Vimeo can be no-cost, but only for a limited version.

How Much is YouTube Worth Today?

The site has a net worth of over $75 billion. It is the second most-visited website around the world. Some estimates place its net worth at about $90 billion. YouTube is worth more money than 434 of the top companies in the S&P 500. Its success is due to several factors. First of all, there is such a wide variety of content on there that anybody can find something they like. YouTube has also produced many lucrative careers, such as singers (Justin Bieber) and entrepreneurs (Lilly Singh). It’s safe to say that this is a social-sharing site that isn’t going away.

Can I Earn Money From Vimeo?

Yes, the tip jar and Vimeo On Demand help creators make money. The tip jar is available to users with a paid subscription. It’s a way for viewers to send donations to video-makers that they like. On Demand lets people sell their videos online around the world. Filmmakers set the price and receive 90% of the revenue the video earns. It also provides marketing support and tools to help independent creators make money. The service costs $20 per month. It’s something to consider when looking at Vimeo vs YouTube quality.

Does YouTube Own Vimeo?

No. As a matter of fact, Google owns YouTube. Anyway, Vimeo is independent software as a service company. It bought Livestream in 2017, so it could offer live video services. Vimeo also owns VHX, a digital distribution platform. Google bought YouTube for $1.65 billion back in 2006. Google also owns AdSense and Google Maps. YouTube earns additional revenue from AdSense, thanks to its expert marketing and SEO. Their partnership program is based on the AdSense relationship. In the Partner Program, 55% of a creator’s revenue goes back to them while 45% goes to YouTube. Vimeo has a similar subscription program.

The Final Word

By now, businesses are probably asking which platform they should choose. The truth is that both of them are worthy, just in different ways. YouTube is the best choice for companies that want to reach a large client base with advertisements. Meanwhile, artists and independent brands might want to use Vimeo. It will be easier to find a niche community there. There are other factors to consider, such as price and marketing tools. Both are hotspots for making connections. However, it’s more common to see the former platform lumped with social networks like Facebook.

Each client is different, so which option do you rely on for your business? Let us know about your unique experience in the comments below.

Published: June 04, 2019Updated: December 28, 2023

Linda Andress

Linda Andress

Linda’s passion is turning ideas into a successful copy. She has worked for more than eight years in the publishing industry, providing unique and varied writings. She has experience in successfully implementing PR strategies and organization, including events and meetings (congresses, industry symposiums, and training workshops). When she’s not working, she’s reading (probably 3-4 books at a time), shopping for hours in bookstores and comic book stores, playing video games or volleyball, or spending time with her family, including her two dogs, Mickey and Pete.


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