Today, podcasts reach over 100 million Americans every month. Because of the growing popularity of this type of content, Google announced that it would start including podcast episodes in SERPs.
That means that creating and adding podcast episodes to your WordPress website can help improve your chances of ranking on Google and other search engines. The process is easy thanks to WordPress plugins.
With a WordPress podcasting plugin, you can link your website with the hosting service that stores your podcast files. This allows you to embed a podcast player on your website, and many plugins also make it easy to create RSS feeds of your podcast content and submit episodes to leading podcast distributors. Other perks from these types of plugins include sharing and lead capture options.
Simply put, WordPress podcasting plugins help get your content in front of more people and grow your subscriber base. So, let's check out the best free and paid options below.
Best Podcasting Plugins for WordPress
- Seriously Simple Podcasting
- PowerPress Podcasting Plugin by Blubrry
- Podlove Podcast Publisher
- Simple Podcast Press
- Podcast Player
- Cincopa WordPress Podcast Plugin
The best plugins will help you set up your podcast quickly, display it on your website, and convert visitors into podcast subscribers. Let's check out a selection of free and premium plugins that will help you achieve these goals.
As the name implies, the Seriously Simple Podcasting plugin makes it easy to publish and manage podcasts on your WordPress site.
Seriously Simple Podcasting allows you to run one or more podcasts (both audio and video) from a single site and have a unique RSS feed for each. Since an RSS feed provides important metadata to Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify, and other directories, you must be able to update and configure this feed. While Seriously Simple Podcasting was specifically designed to sync with the podcasting provider Castos, this plugin also supports a highly configurable RSS feed that adapts to all major podcast subscription software so you can use the provider you want.
Seriously Simple Podcasting also makes it easy for new podcasters to get started syndicating their shows. It provides shortcodes and widgets so you can display your episodes or a playlist of episodes anywhere on your site. Once you've placed the embedded media player, you can customize it by adding cover images, changing the color of the background and player progress bar, and displaying subscribe links to Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Play, Stitcher, Overcast, and Pocketcasts.
While the main plugin doesn’t have analytics, you can install the free add-on Seriously Simple Stats — this gives access to useful metrics around your episodes, which you can view inside your dashboard.
Seriously Simple Podcasting is free. The Castos podcast hosting service is available on three plans: Starter ($19 per month, Growth ($49 per month, and Pro ($99 per month). With it, you’ll get unlimited podcast uploads and episode transcriptions, and in-depth analytics.
The PowerPress Podcasting Plugin is a leading WordPress podcasting tool for managing your podcasts and distribution from right inside WordPress. It lets podcasters submit their shows to podcast distributors, and embed podcast and video players on their website.
PowerPress offers two modes: simple and advanced. The simple mode is free and designed for beginners to start publishing as quickly as possible. You can set up your podcast by configuring only the essential settings, create your first episode, and submit it to Apple Podcasts in no time.
Even the plugin's "simple mode" isn’t short on powerful features. It has full iTunes and Google Play support and is integrated with HTML5 media players that you can put anywhere that allows shortcode. It supports multiple podcasts so you can create episodes by category or media format.
PowerPress is an SEO-friendly plugin as well, so you can make your podcast visible on search engines and in the iTunes podcast directory. It even allows you to import your podcast from other podcast RSS feeds like SoundCloud, LibSyn, PodBean, and Squarespace. There's also a subscription tool, which can help you convert website visitors into podcast subscribers.
The PowerPress Podcasting Plugin is free to download and can be used with any podcast host. However, some plugin features are only available to those using Blubrry’s hosting or analytics tools. Blubrry hosting is available on four tiers: Small ($12 per month), Medium ($20 per month), Large ($40 per month), and Extra Large ($80 per month). Blubrry podcast statistics offers a basic free plan and a paid plan for $5 per month.
Developed by podcasters for podcasters, the Podlove Podcast Publisher plugin was created as a free and powerful option without the limitations of other free and even paid alternatives. It helps users create podcast feeds to send to listening services and also includes a player for your website. Plus, Podlove works with any podcast host.
With this plugin, you can create multiple RSS feeds customized to different audiences and formats. You can divide your episodes into chapters, and provide descriptions and links to those chapters for listeners with less time or shorter attention spans.
This plugin also comes bundled with the Podlove Web Player, which supports multiple audio and video podcast formats. You can view which of these formats is most popular, among other metrics, in the analytics dashboard.
It should be noted that Podlove is a more DIY solution than other options in this list. It’s free, but much of the customization you can apply to the player requires at least some coding knowledge. If you need help, you can refer to the rich Podlove podcaster community for support, or pay for premium support from the Podlove team.
Podlove Podcast Publisher is free. There’s also the option for paid support, though this offering was unavailable at the time of publishing this article.
Since its founding in 2009, the Buzzsprout podcasting service has helped over 100,000 people host, manage, and distribute their podcasts. With the premium Buzzsprout plugin, all you need to do is upload your audio file, and Buzzsprout will take care of the rest. It’s a hands-off solution for those who want to focus more energy on creating their podcasts.
You can choose to publish your episodes immediately or schedule them for a day and time that’s best for your listeners, and place your episodes on your site’s front-end with shortcode. You can also better understand your listeners with Buzzsprout’s statistics, which include total downloads over time, what apps people are using to listen to your podcast, and where people are listening to your podcast.
Buzzsprout can also help you reach more listeners — since its feeds are compatible with all the top directories, you can list your podcast in Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, and other popular platforms.
Buzzsprout offers four plans, including a free plan. The free plan hosts up to two hours of content a month, keeps episodes for only 90 days, and places ads on your podcast website. Paid plans (priced at $12 per month, $18 per month, and $24 per month) let you upload more audio content to the service and will host your episodes indefinitely.
Fusebox is a premium front-end podcast player plugin that gives you all you need to publish podcasts on your WordPress site. The Fusebox player is beautifully designed and highly customizable — take your pick of color display options and buttons for downloads, sharing, and email capture. Players are also fully responsive for mobile listeners.
Fusebox is actually two plugins in one. There's the full Podcast Player, which allows you to create mobile-friendly, customizable, and shareable podcasts. You can offer multiple speeds for listeners to choose from, display your newest or oldest episodes first, and add newsletter subscription and share buttons.
Then, there's also the Transcript plugin for generating and displaying transcripts of your episodes on your website. Transcripts help make your content more accessible and SEO-friendly, since search engines can now index all your audio content.
If you already have a hosting service and want to level up your website with a high-end player, consider trying our Fusebox. Still, know that Fusebox isn’t for managing or hosting your podcast content.
Fusebox offers a limited free version and a paid version for $19 per month (or $15.83 per month if billed annually).
Simple Podcast Press is a premium plugin to automate the process of publishing podcasts on your WordPress site. With this plugin, all you need to do is install it and enter your iTunes URL. Within seconds, this plugin will create a unique page for each of your podcast episodes. These pages will include a mobile-friendly player as well as a full description and image for each episode (taken from your RSS feed). The plugin will also display customizable call-to-action buttons and an email opt-in box to grow your audience.
Once the plugin has been installed and linked to your iTunes account, a new page will be automatically created every time you publish a new podcast. Simple Podcast Press won’t help with hosting or management, so it’s best for those who already have published episodes that they want to embed on their WordPress site.
Simple Podcast Press is priced on three levels: $67 for use on one site, $97 for use on up to three sites, or $147 for use on up to 10 sites.
Podcast Player is a free plugin that makes it easy to integrate your podcast library and WordPress site. Since you only need a WordPress website and an RSS feed URL to use this plugin, you can host your podcast with any provider.
You can display your podcast anywhere on your site using the Podcast Player shortcode, widget, or Gutenberg block. Once you choose one of the plugin’s pre-designed templates — a unified player, bottom sticky player, episode list, or episode grid layout — you can then customize this display by hiding specific player elements, customizing the accent color, or adding a Google Font.
Podcast Player is meant for displaying a player of your podcast catalog on your site. If you’re looking for podcast hosting or a player for individual episodes, we recommend trying a different plugin. However, the player itself is elegant and customizable There's also a pro version of the plugin that gives access to support and updates.
Podcast Player is available as a free version, an annual subscription ($39.99 for use on up to three websites), and a one-time lifetime purchase ($59.95 for use on up to 25 websites).
If your business requires you to add multiple media files to your website, Cincopa might be an ideal addition to your WordPress backend. Cincopa is a multimedia cloud storage platform for images, video, and audio — it streamlines your podcasting process and makes it incredibly easy to post and play your files on your site.
On the front-end, Cincopa offers several mobile-friendly, pre-designed podcast player skins to choose from. You just need to upload your files to their servers and use their generated code to embed them onto your WordPress site. You can also assemble your audio tracks into a playlist for a content series.
The Cincopa WordPress Podcast Plugin is free. Cincopa offers four plans: Startup ($9 per month), Plus ($30 per month), Corporate ($119 per month), and Agency/Enterprise $420 per month).
Podcasting on WordPress
Podcasting is an increasingly popular way to inform, engage, and delight an audience. In the US alone, 39% of men and 36% of women over the age of 12 are monthly podcast listeners.
For brands, this means podcasts present a valuable opportunity to grow your business. But, marketing a podcast can be a challenge all its own.
Jason Brandt, Director of Customer Success at Podopolo, says,
"By taking advantage of SEO, your website can generate more leads to your podcast, whereas it’s a little more difficult to be found just through podcast directories alone. It also acts as a great archive for newer listeners to find your old episodes. Most podcast directories don’t have the best search functions, so it can be difficult for new listeners to find episodes on specific topics."
Since more and more people are consuming podcasts every month, it's become a valuable content type for humans and bots. That means that using any of the plugins mentioned above to add podcast episodes to your site can not only improve the visitor experience — it can also boost your rankings.
This post was originally published in September 2020 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.
Originally published May 12, 2021 7:00:00 AM, updated August 16 2021