February 2021
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Videos have become a huge part of many major websites. This is due to the fact that the user experience provided by a video is much more immersive than text, images or just audio. Also, video can be a better medium for some kinds of content, for example software or development tutorials.

If you have been planning on adding videos to your own website but could not find the right plugins, this article will help you out. We will provide you a brief overview of five popular and free WordPress video player plugins.

Before proceeding further, I should mention that free plugins might not offer all the features that you need for your website. You might also take a look at these premium WordPress video player plugins on CodeCanyon which offer more features and a polished UI for your users. Additionally, if you purchase from CodeCanyon, you’ll get free updates for life and support for six months.

The HTML5 Video Player plugin can play various kinds of video files. You can embed the video player in WordPress pages, posts, widgets or even template files. The plugin is very easy to use, has a simple UI and comes with a lot of customization options.

HTML5 Video Player

You can create a new video player instance by providing all the required options for a player once you click on the HTML5 Video Player link in the sidebar. The page allows you to set options like autoplay, loop, player width and so on. After that, you will get a shortcode that can be added to any post or page where you want the video to appear.

The plugin creates a responsive HTML5 based video player so it will adjust its size according to the device. The player works in all major browser starting from IE7.

If you want to use HTML5 Video Player in your website, get started quickly by reading this tutorial which provides a step-by-step guide to help you embed videos using the HTML5 Video Player in no time.

Spider Video Player is a feature rich WordPress plugin to embed all sorts of videos in your WordPress pages and posts. You can organize your videos into playlists and specify a layout of your choice for the video player.

Spider Video Player

The embedded video player offers a lot of features like the ability to select video quality, sharing buttons, full screen mode and shuffling of videos. You can also easily edit the appearance of the video player so that its design and color scheme is in line with the overall theme of your website. This way the plugin does not seem out of place.

The settings are actually divided in five broad groups to give you full control of the player. You can individually change some general settings, different styling and playback options as well as the controls that appear on each video.

As you can see, this plugin offers a lot more features and customization options compared to HTMl5 Video player. However, it also adds a watermark over the video player. If the watermark is a deal breaker, there are a couple more plugins that you can consider using.

The Videojs HTML5 Player is a user-friendly plugin that allows you to easily add videos to your WordPress pages and posts. These videos can be played on both desktops and mobile devices. The plugin is created using the Video.js JavaScript library. You can use it to add both self-hosted and externally hosted videos on your website.

Videojs HTML5 Player

The player is responsive so it adjusts its dimension according to the size of the device. It is also compatible with all major browsers and offers a smooth playback experience on mobile devices.

The player offers a very clean a minimalist layout without adding any watermark. The values of different parameters can be specified using shortcodes. By default, the plugin will play MP4 files located at the path specified as a value of the url parameter. However, you can also play other kinds of videos by using the webm and ogv parameters.

You can also specify a value for the width of the player, if you want to restrict the width to a certain maximum value. The height of the player is then calculated automatically.

Besides giving you the usual options of autoplay, mute and loop. The player also lets you specify an image that can act as a poster before the video starts playing. This can be very helpful when you want to add your own custom thumbnail for each video.

The Easy Video Player plugin offers a lot of nice features and a user-friendly layout. Just like the Videojs HTML5 Player, you can also use it to embed self-hosted as well as externally hosted videos with direct links.

Easy Video Player

The video player is responsive so it provides a great user experience on mobile devices. It is also compatible with majority of browsers so you don’t have to worry that viewers might not be able to play your videos.

Like most other plugins, it offers all the common features like embedding videos with loop, autoplay or muted audio. Additionally, it allows you to choose from three different skins when playing a video and add a custom poster image to the embedded video.

It is also possible to customize the audio player using modifier classes. This will help you set a color scheme for the player that goes well with the overall design of the website. You can also directly specify the aspect ratio of the video player or the controls by simply using the shortcode parameters.

The FV Flowplayer Video Player plugin offers the most number of features among all the plugins in this list. It is also free and very easy-to-use. You can use it to embed FLV and MP4 videos in your WordPress posts and pages. The plugin relies on HTML5 to embed videos but comes with Flash fallback to support legacy browsers.

FV Flowplayer Video Player

Whenever a user plays a video and leaves midway, the player remembers their location to give them the option to start playing the video from same point. The embedded player is responsive and provides smooth playback on mobile devices. You can embed multiple players on a single page without facing any issues.

The player even offers custom start and end screens that are shown before and after playing the video. It is easy to customize and comes with support for Amazon S3, Cloudfront and other CDNs.

All these features are free to use but the plugin will add its own watermark over the player unless you buy a pro license.

Final Thoughts

This article provided a brief feature summary for some popular and highly rated free WordPress video player plugins that are available in the WordPress plugin directory. We are hopeful that one of these plugins will be good enough for you to use on your website. If you still can’t decide which plugin to use, the following paragraph should answer some of your questions.

Do you want a plugin that is very easy to use and offers just the basic functionality? Go with the HTML5 Video Player plugin.

Do you want a few more features in the plugin even if it takes a little time to learn how to use them? The Videojs HTML5 Player and the Easy Video Player plugins will serve you well.

Do you want all the features that you can get and don’t care about watermarks? Just go with the FV Flowplayer Video player and you won’t be disappointed.

Do you want all these features and want use your own branding at the same time? Buying a premium WordPress video player plugin from Code Canyon might be an economical choice for you. The plugins are priced reasonably and offer six months of free support.

Also, if you want to use custom plugins but you’re not comfortable tinkering with servers and prefer to have someone do it all for you, consider managed WordPress hosting. Thanks to Envato’s partnership with SiteGround, you can get up to 60% off managed WordPress hosting.

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