Video is ideal when explaining a topic in a couple of minutes, and nowadays, businesses use video SEO as part of an effective content marketing plan. With video content gaining popularity online, video SEO is a golden opportunity for individuals who want to become creative. Like with other content types, quality is important for video formats.
Video SEO is often overlooked as part of the video marketing process, which usually results in the video not reaching your target audience. So, if you are looking for the perfect place to take advantage of video SEO to improve your rankings, this is it. Dive in!
What Is Video SEO?
Video SEO entails improving the visibility or ranking of videos in video search engines, allowing your video to appear on the first page of search results to reach a wide audience. Additionally, it has different channels that it can get optimized, including traditional Google searches where an increasing number of video results are returned in organic search results.
Generally, video SEO is all about optimizing videos for different search engines such as Youtube, Google Video Search, and Google Searches.
Is Video SEO the Same as Traditional SEO?
Video and traditional SEO are similar in their goals, specifically having the optimized video or page become more visible in search results. The difference between the two is that video SEO needs you to optimize several facets of the video instead of aspects of a page. Some of these facets include tags, descriptions, and titles.
On the other hand, YouTube SEO is the process of making your videos more search engine friendly so that they appear in YouTube results when people look up the topics that your videos cover. Although video SEO and Youtube SEO have similarities, they are different practices. Video SEO focuses on ranking videos on search engines, while Youtube SEO aims to rank videos on Youtube.
Why Has Video Been One of the Less Popular Content Marketing Mediums?
Although video SEO changed after a while, there are some reasons it wasn’t given much attention. They include:
- Search engine crawlers mainly focus on the text, which makes word-rich article writing the more traditional and higher value proposition for SEO.
- Videos are considered budget and time intensive, making them more difficult and expensive to create than other modern mediums.
- Videos have not been easily accessible in the past as written material online.
- Returns on written content are enough to sustain most campaigns.
How Is Video SEO Today?
Over the last few years, Google has been ranking videos more and more on SERPs. This is because it’s the largest search engine in the world and owns the second largest search engine; Google owns Youtube.
With many people telling search engines that they like video content, they have started showing more videos. You may have noticed how you can’t browse the internet and not see a video.
The videos at the top of the page will attract more organic traffic, get more views and engagement and have better chances of converting viewers into customers. This will also apply to videos alongside written content on a website as they can increase engagement and keep users on your site longer, making video SEO necessary.
Benefits of Video SEO
Written content is valuable for SEO since it gives a lot of indexable material to Google, which informs search engines about your area of expertise. However, video search engine optimization doesn’t function the same. Still, it has a lot of benefits:
1. Appear Higher in Organic Search Results
Search engines consider other factors besides a website’s text when ranking it. For example, they also take into account various kinds of content. Therefore, including video content in the mix will demonstrate that you have a variety of content kinds on your website and give users useful stuff.
2. Generate Traffic from Youtube
One of the widely used platforms for video material is YouTube. Similar to Google, the platform is a search engine in and of itself. Therefore, it is excellent if you want to increase the number of visitors to your website.
You can rank videos in YouTube search results and gain thousands of views when you follow best practices for video search engine optimization. After that, you can point these viewers toward your website. Including links in the video and descriptions can lead to more conversions.
3. Attract Links to your Website
Videos are very engaging and shareable. By referencing or sharing your videos on other websites, you can boost the chances that those websites will link to yours.
Therefore, if your videos are interesting and original, websites will want to link to you. Similarly, links that you provide to your YouTube bio or video descriptions can help you generate referral traffic.
Image Credit: biteable.com
4. Maximize your Website Content
Like you optimize blog posts using certain keywords, you can also optimize videos using a similar strategy. So, if you succeed in ranking your videos on Google or YouTube, you can easily direct traffic to your own website.
Another trick is to repurpose your existing blog content as videos and then go ahead and embed these videos in your articles.
5. Boost your Brand’s Social Media Presence
Image Credit: hippovideo.io
You can demonstrate your brand’s authority with video content while providing your audience useful information. As a result, you can give your brand a face and forge closer connections with your clients.
When you use video content, it’s simple to mention the brand and lead people toward your website. Thus, even if customers discover your brand through organic means, you can increase brand visibility and push them toward the website.
6. Reach Users on Multiple Channels
Your videos can be found on YouTube and Google for certain keywords, typically used by your target audience to search through using video SEO strategies.
Then, these videos can be shared via many channels, including Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, email, and Pinterest. Therefore, promoting your films across various platforms and video SEO is crucial to maximizing visibility.
How to Optimize Your Video for Search
1. Choose the Right Video Hosting Platform
The first step is choosing the best video hosting site for you. Next, consider your video objectives and why you want them to rank.
If your focus is creating more brand awareness and you are not too concerned about driving more traffic to your website, then video hosting platforms such as Youtube or Vimeo might be perfect for you. However, these platforms drive traffic to their sites instead of your website. Consequently, your audience will be overwhelmed by the content volume on those platforms, such as the recommended videos that appear after yours on YouTube.
In contrast, if your aim is increasing traffic to your website and boosting conversions, then you should opt for video platforms that support this, such as Wistia. This platform inserts SEO metadata by default which can help to increase the chances of your videos getting indexed.
2. Insert a Video Transcript
A video transcript is a text accompaniment to your video, allowing you to watch videos while reading captions without listening to the audio. It will not only give your videos better accessibility but will make them more scrapable by search bots, thanks to the increased amount of text on the website.
3. Improve Your Video SEO with a Video Sitemap
A sitemap is a page that gives information about the files and pages on your website. When developing a video marketing strategy, you should try adding a video sitemap to yours.
The video sitemap will offer additional information about the videos hosted on your website. This is a perfect way to help search engines locate and understand your content, especially since the bots can’t crawl video content.
Once you enable the video sitemap, create and configure your video sitemaps without coding and then submit it to Google like you would with a normal sitemap.
4. Make Your Video Thumbnail Image Engaging
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Video thumbnails are among the most important aspects of video SEO, as they are the first things any searcher sees. Therefore, a video thumbnail image should create an impact that prompts a searcher to click on your video.
Ensure you put plenty of effort into your thumbnails as you do when creating video content and also add a human element to them. Most people will click on a video with a clear and unambiguous thumbnail that shows you exactly what you are looking for.
5. Pay Attention to Descriptions and Video Titles
As you put a lot of effort into crafting catchy titles for your blog post, you should also apply the same energy to your videos. Do this for your video’s title and description.
To come up with the best video title, you will need to perform keyword research, and many keyword research tools are available. Plus, ensure you use the target keyword in the video title and description.
However, don’t stuff your video description and title with keywords; it can make them look spammy but ensure they are interesting. Instead, the meta description should explain your video’s content in detail to help viewers understand your video better.
Ideally, the title should be short so it doesn’t get cut off in the search results. For instance, Google shows about 50-60 characters of your title in the search results, while titles of Youtube videos have a character limit of 100, where only 70 characters will be in the search results.
6. Optimize other Parts of Your Page Using SEO & Make Them Relevant to the Video
Except for a SERP placement, you cannot depend entirely on video search engine optimization. The page must also be optimized for SEO; otherwise, search engines won’t even crawl it.
Therefore, if your video is not ranking, it’s probable that your page is either irrelevant or just downright bad. To ensure that your pages are ranked in search, ensure the ones that include your videos are highly optimized and relevant.
While getting your website to rank organically can be difficult, you can climb up the ranks by producing excellent content and ensuring that all the technical SEO requirements are met.
7. Embed the Video You Want to Rank
Since Google usually indexes only one video per page, if you have multiple videos, ensure you embed the one you want to rank. Again, focus on the highest-performing one since search engine crawlers will stop crawling after the first video.
Therefore, having several videos on a page may not be the best idea, especially if you are only interested in optimizing one video. Moreover, ensuring your page focuses on one video to get the traction it needs is important.
8. Make Your Video the Focus of a Page
Sometimes, a video may be located below the fold or hidden, meaning users must scroll down until they get to it. This will lead to poor play rates as most people lack the patience to scroll or hunt for your video.
Also, search engine crawlers won’t go out of their way to index the hidden videos meaning the chances of your video ranking high in the Google search results will drop.
9. Avoid Embedding One Video in Multiple Places
You should avoid embedding the same videos in many places, even if the video and those pages are relevant to each other. For example, if you want to ensure your video and page are highly ranked, it doesn’t make sense to embed videos elsewhere on a public website. This strategy is unnecessary because you will compete against yourself, which doesn’t make sense.
10. Promote Your Video
Lastly, you should not rely solely on video SEO since Google algorithms are constantly changing. Also, since video appears to be fast evolving, depending on search bots for video ranking isn’t a consistent way to ensure people see your videos.
Another way of navigating a video strategy is to invest in paid video advertising, where you can use many different platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to promote your videos. Alternatively, you can use non-paid video SEO strategies like getting partners to promote your videos.
Ensure you put out engaging and high-quality media which will help to boost your video search engine optimization. Additionally, try different keyword variations for each video to ensure you reach a broad audience.
Nevertheless, keep the primary keywords consistent in your other videos to ensure your viewers will easily find them. Still, video SEO strategies may differ from one business to another, and there is no one size fits all technique. So, you should try different options to figure out what will work best.
What Are the Similarities and Differences Between Optimizing Videos for Youtube vs. for Google?
Although Youtube and Google use different algorithms, they have similarities and differences in optimizing videos for results.
1. The Title and Description Should Have the Target Query
Using your major target keyword(s) in the title and description of your video is crucial, which is one of the most significant similarities between YouTube and Google.
The target query should be present in both the title and description of the video for Google and YouTube to understand what the media is about. If those two search terms are absent, Google and YouTube will have difficulty understanding the scope of the content.
2. Both Have a Description that Offers Value to the Viewer
Having text in the video description that is the right size can aid both search engines in ranking your video. For instance, the more information in your description, the better Google and YouTube will be able to understand the subject matter of your video and the more favorable your ranking performance may be.
The description should not be crowded with keywords and should offer the reader something of value. For example, YouTube-hosted videos are restricted to 5,000 characters, but if the video is uploaded on your website, there is no restriction.
3. Both Answer the Target Query Effectively
The third similarity between YouTube-hosted and Google videos is that both are interested in how well a video responds to a query. When choosing which keywords to optimize, it’s critical to comprehend the user’s search intent. For instance, if two or more searches are related, you can optimize for them in the same video.
You should keep a few differences in mind when attempting to improve your search rankings for Youtube and Google.
1. Google Suggests the Use of a Video Sitemap, but Youtube Doesn’t
Suppose you want to maximize the possibility that Google indexes your videos. Then, even if you already have a sitemap built for your website, you’ll need a second sitemap for your videos.
The video sitemap provides key details like the title, description, and length of the video and lets Google find every video on your website quickly. Additionally, the video sitemap can be added to your current sitemap, or a separate one can be made especially for videos.
2. Youtube Puts More Emphasis on Video Duration than Google Does
In 2012, YouTube changed its algorithm to emphasize how long a viewer spends watching a video. As a result, the likelihood that someone would watch more of a video increased as it got longer, helping it rise in the rankings. Longer videos consequently frequently rank higher in YouTube search results. On the other hand, Google doesn’t appear to give the length as much consideration.
3. Optimization Process is Different
YouTube’s optimization procedure is a little different from Google’s. Yes, having the appropriate video title and description is crucial, but YouTube also emphasizes video tags and end screens.
Each tag has a number next to it, showing the video position when you search the query on Youtube. Therefore using the maximum number of tags will give you the best chance to rank for the queries.
However, the number of tags on Google’s top video will not be maxed out, showing that you won’t need to use all allotted tags to rank.
Video Search Engine Checklist
A good video SEO strategy will also need you to optimize your videos so they can be easily found in Google Search engines.
Below are SEO tips to improve rankings of video content:
1. Check your SEO Titles
Every video should include a title relevant to your content, which will grab people’s attention and is SEO optimized. After someone checks the thumbnail image, the next thing they do is read the title.
Therefore, you will need to develop a video title that motivates viewers to click it. Also, you should optimize your title using the keywords so that the video ranks in Google’s search results.
Tips for coming up with a good video SEO title include:
- Keep your title short(a maximum of 70 characters) and precise
- Ensure your title is relevant to your video’s content
- Add a number to your title
- Add a shocking or incredible element to your title
- Include a question in your title
- If they can fit, insert the primary and secondary keywords
2. Check Your Video Descriptions
Most people don’t read the video description, although they are necessary to improve your SEO ranking in search engines. These texts may not add value to the viewer experience, but they help search engines understand your content better, ensuring it can be indexed and ranked for the necessary keywords.
To come up with good video SEO descriptions, there are a few things you can do:
- Maximize the benefits of the long-tail keywords
- Add links in your video descriptions to divert your viewers to other related videos
- The first two lines should be engaging and hence encourage the viewer to continue reading the description
- Add a timestamp to lengthy videos to improve the user experience and increase the total watch time
- Your description should accurately describe your video
3. Optimize Subtitles
Some viewers watch videos on mute, and any videos with subtitles will make it easy for these individuals to watch them. Subtitles will help you get more viewers, but also adding text helps search engine crawlers easily understand the content.
In addition, you can utilize your primary and secondary keywords in your subtitle file to help boost your ranking for phrases on search engines, plus the video hosting platform.
4. Check Your Customized Video Thumbnails
A video hosting platform like Youtube provides a default thumbnail image for each video, and it’s usually a random video thumbnail that is not appealing enough for viewers. However, you can customize it to gain more views and opt for a good, catchy thumbnail that will capture people’s attention.
5. Embed Your Videos for Better Indexing
Another great strategy to optimize your video is to embed them on a web page to boost your indexing and visibility of the content. Since Google will only index one video per page, ensure you tell the web crawler the exact video you want to be indexed.
6. Cross-Promote on Multiple Platforms
Don’t only post your video on a single web page or platform; instead, you should post it on other social media platforms. This will increase your content’s visibility and generate other user embeds and natural links. You can also use influencers to promote your videos further.
Conclusion on Video SEO
To successfully practice video SEO, you will need to create videos that offer useful information to your target audience, which will attract more people and make your videos rank. It is also necessary to use the best practices to boost traffic by making the most interesting videos.
Videos make your content better visually, makes your products easy to understand, and make your brand more reputable and relatable. Combining these with your sales strategy will most likely lead to revenue increase, brand recognition, and growth opportunities.
Featured Image Credit: pinterest.com