The first thing most people think of when they think of videos on the web is YouTube. It’s the de facto service that many digital marketers use, and they use it for a good reason. YouTube has a massive audience, and Google Search returns videos hosted on YouTube more than any other platform or site.
YouTube does have downsides, though. Their videos have ads, and its player and privacy options are limited. To avoid ads and get the most feature-rich players, one should consider using Vimeo or Wistia instead. However, Vimeo and Wistia can be expensive if you only want to add videos to articles.
That’s where Cloudflare Stream comes in. They provide cheap pay-as-you-go video streaming with the following features:
- Support for almost every video format such as H.264, H.265, ProRes, and VP9
- Automatic encoding of videos to create multiple sizes and quality levels for any device
- Feature-rich HTML5 player that supports adaptive bitrate streaming, subtitles and AirPlay
- Utilizes Cloudflare’s global network for high availability in every region
I’ve been using Cloudflare Stream for most of the videos I embed on Coywolf News, Reviews, and Pro. In June 2020, I had a Coywolf News article get on the front page of Reddit, which provided the first real-life load test of my WordPress performance optimizations and Cloudflare Stream videos.
This case study describes how the site performed and how much it costs to serve multiple autoplay videos via Cloudflare Stream for over a hundred thousand visitors within a short period.