How Many Podcasts Are There in 2024? The Explosive Growth of Podcasting

As a small business owner, I am always looking for new ways to reach potential customers and share my expertise. In recent years, I have turned to podcasting and been amazed at its explosive growth. Just how big has podcasting become? Let‘s dive into the stats.

Podcast Count Skyrockets

In 2023, there are over 5 million podcasts worldwide according to Podcast Insights. That‘s up a staggering 560% from just 750,000 in 2018!

To put this in perspective, if you started listening to podcasts today and listened to one new episode daily, it would take you over 13,000 years to hear them all. The growth is astronomical.

What‘s Driving the Surge in Podcasts?

For creators like myself, podcasts represent an accessible, low-cost way to reach a targeted audience. The barriers to entry are low. All you need is a microphone and internet connection to get started.

For listeners, podcasts provide on-demand, multimedia content. Whether commuting, exercising, or relaxing at home, podcasts are available at your fingertips.

Clearly this combination has fueled incredible growth. But just how big can podcasting get?

Billions of Episodes and Counting

Along with the number of shows, the number of episodes has exploded.

In 2021 alone, over 2 billion podcast episodes were downloaded or streamed globally. That‘s up 15% from 2020, according to Podcast Insights.

Apple Podcasts and Spotify host a massive number of shows. Apple has over 2 million podcasts in over 100 languages. Spotify has over 4 million podcast titles.

Platform Number of Podcasts
Apple Podcasts Over 2 million
Spotify Over 4 million

With more shows comes more episodes. The podcast content library expands exponentially each year.

Which Countries Are Listening the Most?

While the U.S. still dominates podcast listenership, other countries are quickly catching up. According to Vurbl‘s 2022 survey:

  • 37% of Americans listen monthly
  • 29% of Australians
  • 22% of Canadians
  • 21% of British

China and India also have over 100 million monthly listeners each. The global audience is massive and expanding.

Most Popular Podcast Genres

What podcast genres are most popular worldwide?

  • Comedy – 22%
  • News – 21%
  • True crime – 18%
  • Sports – 17%

Comedy and news lead the way, appealing to broad audiences. But niche genres like true crime have gained loyal followings.

Why Podcasting Appeals to Me as an Entrepreneur

As a small business owner, podcasts allow me to:

  • Establish expertise – By sharing my knowledge and stories, I build authority and trust with my audience. Nothing builds credibility like starting your own show.
  • Reach targeted listeners – Those who care about my niche will seek out relevant shows. Podcasts allow me to directly connect with my ideal audience.
  • Enhance website content – My podcast expands the content I offer to visitors. This provides more value and enhances SEO.
  • Develop relationships – Interviewing others is a great way to form connections, promote their work, and grow my network.
  • Monetize – From sponsorships to ads, several monetization options exist once you build an audience. But I focus on value first.

The personal connection and trust built with podcast audiences create enormous value. While not for every business, it‘s a strategy I highly recommend exploring.

The Future Is Bright

Despite already achieving massive popularity, experts believe podcasting remains in its infancy. More captivating shows are being developed daily. And the audience continues to expand worldwide.

The niche hobby stage is clearly in the past. Podcasting has entered the mainstream, with no signs of slowing down.

So whether you want to start a show or just dive into listening, the vast world of podcasts has something for everyone. With over 5 million options and growing, the possibilities are endless.

Just be careful not to get overwhelmed by the ever-expanding podcast ocean! Curate your queue wisely and enjoy expanding your knowledge.