Have you noticed that your podcast episodes are showing in an unexpected order on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, etc?

The reason for this is that different platforms use different information to order your episodes. Some platforms favor ordering based on the episode number, while others ignore episode numbers and go off the publication date/time.

To solve this, you should re-order your episodes where possible to make the publishing date order and episode number order the same as one another:

It may take a short while for each platform to pick up on the changes to your RSS feed, but once they do, if the episode numbers and publication dates/times are in the same order, they should display consistently across all platforms. 

The episode numbering style for your show will also affect the order the episodes are showing in:

  • Episodic
    Your show has standalone episodes, or you want its episodes to be shown last to first, without a numbering system. The listener will be served the most recently published episode first.
  • Episodic with numbered episodes>Each episode has an episode number (and an optional season). Episodes are ordered from last to first. The listener will be served the most recently published episode first.
  • Serial
    Where supported, episodes are recommended first to last. This option is best for narratives, storytelling, thematic, and shows with multiple seasons. The listener will be served the earliest episode first, guiding them through the story from the start.

Keep in mind that although this setting will be changed on ZenCast and in your show's RSS feed, it's up to the listening platform if they take note of this. Some platforms will override this setting and apply their own episode order, so you should think of this setting as a 'recommendation' that you make, rather than an absolute setting, as it's not possible to enforce it everywhere people might listen to your show.

If you get stuck with any of this or have more questions, use the chat bubble to get in touch and we'll be happy to help.