Use of videos on webpages has been rapidly increasing, and it’s time to look at how to use it to for your SEO rankings.
Video content has increasingly become the norm across the Web and using it properly is important if you want to reach the top of search engine results. These SEO video tips can help get you on the top of the page ahead of everyone else.
1. Worthwhile Content
It seems obvious, but yes, content needs relevance for the audience targeted. The video content shouldn’t be an afterthought that was just thrown in. The content needs to compel them to want to watch the video. Quality videos will establish you as the go-to for your audience as you build trust and increase the sought-after conversations that attract more audience members.
2. Make the Content Interactive
Use some of the many ways to make your videos interactive to get your viewers engaged. Grab their attention by adding interactive content to the annotation, caption or video itself. A successful strategy used by many has been to divide the video into shorter segments and let the audience choose which ones they want to watch. Three two-minute videos may be a much better choice than one longer six-minute video for your viewers.
3. Your Domain Needs to Host the Video
It may seem easier to upload a video you create to YouTube, but the video needs to be on your domain. YouTube may expand your reach, but for SEO purposes, YouTube will be searched first, not your site.
Furthermore, any video that is not hosted on your domain runs the real risk that search engines will direct traffic to another site, which doesn’t help improve your rankings. Each video should be on its own page to make it simpler for Google to index.
4. Enable Embedding for Your Video
If your audience likes your video, let them embed it. Embedding it on their page can increase your SERP page rankings. Make it easy for them to embed it and increase your inbound links and visits to your site.
5. The Metadata is a Key
Google says the important information for search engine indexing are the title, thumbnail and description. The title should be brief and to the point and the description can provide a little more detail and use key words for rankings.
But even more details are contained in the metadata and it’s not the place to skimp on effort. It contains the title, video length and description and the file name. That file name is another way to label the video content for search engines, so make it useful, not the random file name assigned by your device like ‘video_3345.’
6. Clear Thumbnails
Just like the importance of the metadata, the thumbnail is a critical place of focus. It’s what the user will see when they make the final decision to click on the video. Use a thumbnail that clearly shows the content and is a good representation of it.
7. Keyword Optimization
Video SEO also has keyword research and should be used to find content to target your viewers. Experiment with creating legible descriptions of your content to help your audience and the all-important search engines for reaching your audience. Find keywords that best describe your video and discover ones that lead to better search results.
8. Shareable Video Content
The video content needs to go beyond just being interactive; your audience needs to find value and appreciate it. Shareable content has several qualities. First, grainy videos aren’t shareable, and videos need to be unique and creative. Quality content will stand out and generate mentions and links that will increase your sites authority.
9. Include a Transcript of the Video
Posting videos increases the ways you can engage viewers and generate search engine results. Including a written transcript of the video can be useful for viewers who may want to see an overview first. And if it includes keywords, this will help get the right results from search engines if it is put in the description box and page HTML.
10. Make a Video Sitemap
This can be overlooked in video SEO, but it serves as an extension of your overall sitemap and includes details to help the search engines obtain a good picture of your video content. It’s another way to show the title, subject, description etc.… and more specific details such as expiration dates, platform restrictions, country restrictions, or live streams.
11. Maximize Ways to Use Your Video
Use the video in more than one way to spread it around. A preview of the video could be placed on your Facebook page to lead the audience back to your webpage for more. Or, create a slideshow, shorter video or infographic to catch interest and lead back to your site and increase its page rankings.
12. Use Social Media to Share it
Do not overlook the power of social media to boost your SEO efforts. Push your content as much as possible on relevant channels to spread the word about it and reach a wider audience.
More viewers means bigger traffic, new links and better positioning on SERPs.
Paid promotion is appropriate if it can help get your video in front of the right audience. Use your network as much as possible to promote it too.
Video content is becoming the norm across the Web and should be used to increase your SEO rankings. Quality is the starting point, but there are many ways to apply search optimization for your videos.
Use the 12 tips discussed to take your quality video content to the next level and have your message noticed by search engines and viewers.
By Charlie Luck
“The play button is the most compelling call to action on the web.”
– Michael Litt, co-founder and CEO of Vinyard
Content isn’t king of the web anymore; unless it’s video.
Even advertisements can’t escape the demand for video; Business Insider predicts that online video, “. . . will account for 41 percent of total desktop display-related spending in 2020.”
Social media powerhouses, Facebook and YouTube, are looking to cash in on the impending supremacy of video content.
For over a year, the two social juggernauts have been going toe-to-toe in the video realm.
Back in January 2016, Facebook, which had already been pushing video content heavily, announced users were consuming more than 100 million hours of video every day.
As a measure to push video to even greater heights on its platform, Facebook began prioritizing live video in its algorithms.
Then, in an effort to bring influential figures to Facebook Live, the company began paying celebrities and media companies to stream content.
Following this move, in April 2016, Mark Zuckerberg announced via his Facebook page that live video was available for all of its users; furthering the network’s attempt to capitalize on the growing video trend.
Not to be outdone, YouTube revealed in June of 2016 that it too would be rolling out live streaming mobile features.
In September of that year, YouTube took a page out of Facebook’s…. well, book, by implementing social features via YouTube Community.
While a little late to the game, YouTube’s live feature is now rolling out to creators with more than 10,000 followers, with wider access coming in the following weeks.
This, however, is just the beginning to what is sure to be a long and hard-fought battle.
Objectively speaking, for either platform to win this war, content creators are going to be the keys to the kingdom. And these social authorities are likely to go with whichever network is willing to tout the biggest financial benefits.
As YouTube boasts a tremendous amount of creators, this seemingly bodes well for the company; but not so much for those looking to build an audience.
YouTube’s network is so competitive that the platform has become saturated with folks looking to grab a fist full of YouTube money, meaning that many videos never see the light of day.
This also means that creators are more likely to venture to other platforms (Facebook) where their content can be better seen and they are more likely to rake in larger revenues from ads.
As it currently stands, YouTube influencers gain the bulk of their earnings from advertisements displayed before the video plays via its partner program. Even in that respect, however, YouTube has faced some recent hurdles with creators threatening to leave due to its “ad-friendly” content policy.
Moving in to capitalize on this backlash, as well as pushing to gain more influencers on its platform, Facebook recently began testing mid-roll ads for its live and non-live videos.
This ad placement is arguably better than YouTube’s pre-roll option because viewers become invested in the video they are watching and are more likely to stick around until after the ad is over.
YouTube has also found its own way to monetize its live streaming efforts with Super Chat. The feature, which allows YouTube viewers to pay money to have their comment appear at the top of a live chat box for up to five hours, allows creators to earn additional revenue during live streams. As for how much of a profit creators earn from this feature, Barbara Macdonald, a YouTube Live product manager, stated that, “…the creators are the vast majority share.”
This feature is currently available to select channels, but there is a good chance it will become more widespread as its live video element moves into full swing.
This form of monetization, however, does not benefit creators in significant ways — users only pay $5-$10 to have their comment featured.
Additionally, Facebook still touts more video advertising options. The social network also enabled video ads to appear inside articles through its Audience Network last year. That does not take into account the vast array of ad experiences the website flaunts which can be used to push video content to new heights.
And with Facebook’s recently introduced video search feature, it seems that YouTube is losing the number of unique features that it has over Facebook’s platform.
On the other hand, while Facebook has enabled its videos to be embedded on other websites, such content does not appear in the search engines.
Since YouTube is owned by Google, much of its content appears in the SERPs, giving it a massive advantage in discoverability because the search engine is responsible for driving millions of views for its video network.
Outside of that, and its sheer number of creators (which Facebook is attempting to sway onto its platform), it would seem that YouTube is currently losing a lot of ground to Facebook.
All of this trouble, added to the YouTube’s late arrival to the live arena, could result in major problems for the video giant.
Facebook has been continually ramping up its video content and repeatedly updating its Facebook Live features to keep people engaged and producing more videos.
And engagement is where Facebook is taking a massive lead. A number of amateur studies, as well as one from Moz, points to the fact that video creators receive significantly more shares and views than through YouTube. This means that for people who are still in the process of building their brand, Facebook will help their content spread further, faster.
So that brings us to answer the ultimate question: Who wins?
The answer, for now, is: Everybody wins. Content creators and video consumers alike can reap the benefits of this epic social battle.
As of now, digital video is a raging phenomenon and people just can’t get enough of it. With Facebook and YouTube’s struggle for supremacy, it is only fueling greater benefits for content creators as each platform vies for their loyalty.
When it comes to businesses and creators, both platforms have their advantages, but Facebook does possess a slight edge. Between the YouTube video vacuum and Facebook’s higher engagement rates, diverse ad experiences and mid-roll ads, influencer acquisition, new video-focused features, and extreme investment into video content, YouTube’s power will likely begin to wain in the years ahead.
That said, Facebook and YouTube won’t oust each other any time soon; with video the mainstay diet for digital consumers, there’s plenty of market share for both to enjoy. Right now, there will be no crowned king. But it sure is fun watching them duke it out.
Facebook’s “like” and “share” buttons are seen 22 billion times a day, making them some of the most-viewed design elements ever created. Margaret Gould Stewart, Facebook’s director of product design, outlines three rules for design at such a massive scale—one so big that the tiniest of tweaks can cause global outrage, but also so large that the subtlest of improvements can positively impact the lives of many.
At Facebook (and previously at YouTube), Margaret Gould Stewart designs experiences that touch the lives of a large percentage of the world’s population.