Best Podcast Tools: At-a-glance
- Podcasting has become accessible to folks who consider themselves “non-techy”
- You don't need to become an audio engineer to record pro-sounding content
- Website and hosting-related stuff has never been easier, too
- Our favourite podcast tools will save you time, frustration, headaches, and confusion
- They'll let you spend more time doing the things you're good at, as well as the things you enjoy
- Read on to find out more…
Have you ever noticed those typical stock photographs of podcasters? The ones that always show someone sitting at a mixing desk the size of a small country?
It's true that some folks in the podcast medium love the tech side of it – spending hours cabling together Lovecraftian recording rigs, building websites from scratch, hand-coding RSS feeds, or reading a copy of Psychoacoustics for Dummies whilst staring at a spectral waveform in Pro Tools.
But the vast majority of podcasters these days have little to no interest in tech. We live in an app-centric culture where people like to enjoy the benefits of stuff working, without wanting (or needing) to know how they work.
If you want to start a podcast (or grow your existing one), you don't need to be an audio engineer, a web designer, or a specialised sound editor. You only need to figure out what you'd like to say, and who you'd like to say it to. As for the rest, there are plenty of great podcast tools out there that can help you sound good, look good, and just give off that general aura of “I really know what I'm doing” – even if you absolutely don't.
Best Podcast Tools to Make Your Life Simpler
Here's a list of podcast tools that can improve your workflow and save you time. They make podcasting easier and more sustainable, which, in turn, means you'll stick with it and give yourself a decent chance of having an impact in your topic or niche.
A quick heads up, before we dive in. We use affiliate links for products and services we think might be interesting or useful to you. We may earn a small commission should you choose to sign up via any of them, at no extra cost to yourself!
Buzzsprout – Upload, Publish, & Distribute Your Episodes
I recently showed someone how to create their podcast in Buzzsprout, upload their first episode, and push it out to places like Apple/iTunes and Spotify. The process took less than two minutes. Most people see the publishing aspect of podcasting as a huge barrier, but podcast hosting platforms like Buzzsprout are easier to navigate than your average social media platform.
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Buzzsprout Cost: Limited free plan, or $12 a month.
See Also:Buzzsprout Review
Get a $20 Amazon gift card when you sign up for any paid plan through our Buzzsprout link.
Podpage – Create a First Class Podcast Website in Minutes
Once you've signed up with a hosting platform like Buzzsprout, you can use a service called Podpage to build yourself a great-looking website. The good news is, you don't need to know the slightest thing about web design. Podpage makes it simple to find your podcast on their platform, then preview how your site will look. After signing up, you can start to experiment with their various templates, tools, and other features. You can spend as little or as much time tinkering and tweaking your site as you like, but the end result will always look like you hired a pro web designer to make it for you.
Podpage Cost: Free, or $9 a month.
See Also:Podpage Review
Alitu – The Simplest Way to Edit & Produce Your Podcast
Full disclosure – Alitu is our own ‘podcast maker' web app tool. It was built off the back of thousands of podcasters telling us that editing was the biggest barrier they faced when it came to getting episodes out there. Alitu cleans up your raw recordings, then you can cut out mistakes, add in music, sponsor slots, and any other segments. It'll then mix it all together at a consistent podcast industry standard loudness level and you can upload to a hosting platform like Buzzsprout from inside the Alitu interface.
Alitu Cost: $28 a month.
See Also:How to Make a Podcast With Alitu
Riverside.fm – A Podcast Tool for Recording Online Video & Audio
Most podcast episodes are recorded online these days. Your co-hosts, guests, and interviewees could be on different continents and Riverside.fm can help you make it sound like you're sitting in the same room together. Your guests don't need an account, so it makes things extra easy for them (they just need to click a link to join in). You can record up to 8 people on independent audio AND video tracks. You can allow your audience to tune in live and hear episodes being recorded – you can even let them call in, if you like. On top of that, you can live stream your episodes to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Twitch simultaneously.
Riverside.fm Cost: From $9 a month.
See Also:Riverside.fm Review
Samson Q2U – The Best Quality-to-Value Podcast Mic
One of the most overthought questions aspiring podcasters have, is “what mic should I buy?”. It doesn't help that there are hundreds of options out there. Hundreds of great options at that. With any kind of technology, there's rarely a “best” solution for everyone – but I think the Samson Q2U comes close. It's one of the most affordable mics on the market, can sound decent even in sub-optimal environments, and is a pretty durable piece of gear. One of its biggest selling points is that you can use it either as a USB mic, or as an XLR mic, so whether you want to record solo shows, online interviews, or into a recorder or mixer (see the PodTrak P4, below), the Q2U will be compatible.
Samson Q2U Cost: $80
See Also:Samson Q2U Review
Zoom PodTrak P4 – The Ultimate Podcast Recorder Tool
If there's such a thing as an “all in one podcast recorder” then the Zoom PodTrak P4 is it. It's a multi-purpose little device that lets you plug in 4 mics and record them all on separate tracks. You can connect your phone or laptop to record calls, too. You even have the ability to play music and sound effects during your recording sessions. This can be great if you're running a live show, or even just to save you time having to edit them in later on. Granted, the PodTrak P4 is overkill for most new podcasters, but for others, it's the Holy Grail.
Zoom PodTrak P4 Cost: $200
See Also: Zoom PodTrak P4 Review
EditPoint – A Tool to Turn Podcast Editing Into Exercise
This one's a novel little iOS app you can stick on your iPhone. EditPoint comes in handy if you've recorded lengthy conversations and need to listen back through them for edits and any other anomalies. Rather than sitting at your computer staring at a waveform, you can load the file into EditPoint, head out for a walk, and get some fresh air. Each time you hear something that needs attention, the app makes it easy to quickly add a marker and timecode it. Once you're back sitting at the computer ready to edit, you'll know everything you need to do. It's one of my favourite podcast tools.
EditPoint Cost: $0.99 a month or $3.99 a year
See Also: EditPoint Review
Best Podcast Tools to Make Your Life Simpler
So do you need to buy all of these podcast tools? Absolutely not. There are very few things you need to buy in podcasting. But depending on your own unique needs and wants, this roundup has hopefully solved a problem or two for you.
Remember, the tools and gadgets can improve your sound quality and your workflow. But you still need to know why you're podcasting, as well as who you're podcasting for. We can help you lay these foundations inside The Podcast Host Academy where you'll find all of our courses (including Launch Essentials) as well as our weekly live Q&A sessions where you can get feedback, advice, and guidance.