YouTube vs Vimeo Difference. Which Video Platform Is Better

Vimeo to YouTube migration

YouTube vs Vimeo Difference. Which Video Platform Is Better

YouTube and Vimeo are two of the most popular video platforms on the Internet. YouTube is owned by Google and Vimeo is owned by Vimeo. Both platforms offer great benefits and each has its pros and cons. If you’re not sure which video platform is right for you, then read this article and we’ll help to break down the differences between the two platforms and help you decide which one is “right” for your personal or business needs.

YouTube Video Platform

YouTube is a video-sharing platform that offers many of its features for free. It was initially created in 2005 for the purpose of allowing users to upload and share original content. YouTube is now used for a wide variety of purposes by millions of users worldwide. For example, YouTube allows users to archive and store their favorite songs, jokes, and clips, and marketing sites can upload and share video content that promotes their services and products. 

Vimeo Video Platform

Vimeo is a US-based provider of video services, offering a variety of capabilities such as video sharing and hosting. Vimeo provides these features through a software as a service (SaaS) model, which allows users to choose a subscription plan that suits their needs. Notable features include solutions for video editing, broadcasting, and creation, as well as enterprise solutions that enable video specialists to connect with their colleagues and clients. The main advantage of Vimeo is that it enables users to deliver high-definition video content across a variety of devices, and has private video sharing features.

Vimeo is a great platform, but YouTube might be better suited for you. If you are currently using Vimeo, but want to switch to YouTube, there are several reasons to migrate your content to YouTube:

  • If you are working on a limited budget, YouTube is the obvious choice as all of its features are free. 
  • If all you need is basic video hosting, editing, and analytics, YouTube is a good fit. 
  • If your main concern for video hosting is attracting the largest possible audience, YouTube is a better choice, as it attracts a much wider audience than Vimeo.

VIDEO: Vimeo vs YouTube – What’s The Difference?

YouTube vs Vimeo

To help you evaluate which video platform is better, take a look at how YouTube compares to Vimeo.

Audience Size

Each platform has different advantages in terms of audience size. While YouTube has more users (over two billion, or 79% of all internet users), Vimeo is ad-free and better suited to niche audiences (with 240 million users). This means videos are more likely to be discovered on Vimeo. 


Each platform has a different approach to generating revenue. YouTube relies heavily on advertising, allowing content creators to monetize their videos (55% of ad revenue goes to the uploader). However, videos need to get hundreds of thousands (or millions) of views to make any significant revenue. 

Vimeo, in contrast, is ad-free so all its revenue comes from subscriptions. There are four paid subscription options (with monthly fees of between $7 and $75), each providing a different level of storage, tooling, privacy and personalization. The free subscription is relatively limited and isn’t suitable for business-related uses. 

Upload Limits

YouTube allows users to upload videos up to 15 minutes long (by default), but this can be extended with a verified Google account—in this case the upload limit is 12 hours (or 128GB, if you reach that first).  (whichever you hit first).

Vimeo has time-based upload limits—basic subscription holders are given a 500MB weekly limit, 10 video daily limits, and an overall 5GB limit. Plus and Pro subscription holders have weekly limits of 5GB  and 20GB, respectively, with no overall limit. Higher subscriptions have no weekly limit.

Search Optimization

YouTube is the second biggest search engine after Google (its parent company), so videos are easily searchable with specific queries. YouTube videos are also more likely to show up in a Google search compared to Vimeo videos.


Both YouTube and Vimeo have analytics dashboards, but YouTube offers more advanced options (including viewer gender, age and audience retention, as well as traffic and revenue sources). Vimeo’s premium offerings provide more basic overviews (including views, likes, skipped sections, and viewer location). Both platforms provide custom reports that can be exported.

Technical Advantages and Disadvantages

Vimeo offers more technical features compared to YouTube, especially in terms of ensuring privacy (content can be restricted to specific accounts or accessed via passwords). Vimeo can host and embed high-quality (uncompressed) content, allowing users to customize the appearance of their page.

YouTube only offers three privacy settings—public, private, and unlisted. Private videos are accessed via shareable links. YouTube offers less customizable embedding and often compresses the video to save space.

How To Migrate from Vimeo To YouTube

Unfortunately, there is no direct way to transfer videos from Vimeo to Youtube. You’ll need to manually download your video content from Vimeo (if you don’t already have it stored locally). There are three ways to upload your videos to YouTube:

  • Manually— one by one via the YouTube user interface.
  • In bulk— via the YouTube Legacy Uploader. Previously, this option was hidden but still available. Recently, it has been discontinued for the majority of users and is not accessible at all, so we won’t cover it here.
  • Using API —

Using API — if you are a developer or have access to one, you can upload videos automatically using the YouTube API. There are additional video APIs that can help automate video uploads and create multiple versions of your videos for different players or devices.

How To Download Vimeo Videos

To download a video from Vimeo, use the following process:

  • Select the download button beneath the video player 
  • A menu will appear with downloading options (including the original version, SD 240p, SD 360p, SD 540p, HD 720p and HD 1080, provided the video creator has enables these versions)—select the version you want to download
  • When you have chosen your video format, the file is downloaded to your computer

On some browsers, the download might not work immediately—the video opens in a new tab and starts playing. If you are using Windows when this happens, you can right-click on the link to select save as. If you are using Mac, press down the control key while selecting the link, then select save link as

How To Upload Videos to YouTube Manually

To upload a video to YouTube:

  • Log in to YouTube Studio
  • Click the create button at the top right corner
  • Click upload videos
  • Select the file (or files) you want to upload (up to 15 videos)

On the details page, you can add settings such as video title, description, thumbnail and playlist (you can create a new playlist or add the video to an existing one). You can also specify the age of the intended audience, which may be required for COPPA (children’s privacy) compliance, and apply age restrictions to regulated content. 

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You can also select show more to reveal advanced settings on the details page. These include language and captions, recording date and location, license and distribution (including notifications to subscribers), shorts permissions (to enable users to extract shorts from your content), category (genre), enabling or disabling comments and ratings, and paid promotions.  You can also add video chapters (with titles and timestamps to help break down your video)—enable automated chapters or create your own.

The YouTube Partner Program allows you to monetize (or disable monetization for) your videos, select the advertising format, and manage ad breaks. Want to learn how to monetize a YouTube channel, this article might help.


There are two primary video-sharing platforms that are widely used today. As a content creator, you need to know the pros and cons of each of these services to decide which is best for you. So, which is better? YouTube or Vimeo? As always, it depends. Each platform offers a significant amount of features that users may or may not need. Depending on your budget, your needs, and what type of goals you have, each platform might be suitable for your needs.

Image Source: Pixabay

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