Big reasons why you should do Video SEO. Did you know that Google Search results are showing more and more videos on the first page? People are spending more and more time watching video.
There are many components to YouTube SEO. Some of these main components are the title, description and tags and a few more we talk about below.
Titles are very important as this is what the user sees. Titles need to be descriptive to catch the user’s attention and get them to click on your video. The title also needs to have the keywords that you are trying to get the video to be found for. So if someone is searching for “YouTube SEO” having those two keywords in your title will help you to get your video to be found for this.
The description character limit is 5000 characters. Now while only the first 100-150 characters will be shown initially the rest of the description can help the search engines understand exactly what the video is about and how the video would tie into the keywords that a user searched for. And while we encourage you to use all of that space, remember that viewers most likely came here to watch a video, and not to read a story. If you do choose to write a longer description, keep in mind that YouTube only displays the first two or three lines of text. After that point, viewers have to click “show more” to see the full description. That's why we suggest front-loading the description with the most important information, like CTAs or crucial links. Be careful to not lead the description with a link as the link takes up a lot of characters but also gives search engines the wrong impression of what your video is about.
Tags let the viewers know what your video is about, but tags also tell the search engines what the video is about. Tags also help tell the search engines how to associate your video with other similar videos.
Your thumbnail image is not a ranking factor but more of an appealing factor to try and get users to click on your video. We see a lot of companies create custom thumbnails with an image and text that talks about what the video is and the text typically has the keywords that a company is trying to go after.
By providing a transcript of the contents in the video, your transcript tells the search engines the full nature of your video. This gives YouTube and Google’s search algorithm more information as to what your video is about and how it relates to a user’s query. Most people only upload a title, description and maybe a couple of tags. When you upload a transcript of your video and allow YouTube to create closed captioning for the video, the search algorithm no longer has to rely on your description of the video which can help make a difference in ranking your videos higher in search results. Did you know that YouTube can give you an automatic closed captioning of any words spoken within the video? For the most part it is correct but it still needs help getting some of the words correct.
Another benefit of optimizing your videos is the potential for backlinking. Each of your videos should have a link back to your website somewhere in the description or to some more videos to keep users engaged with your content. The reason you want to put a link in the description is lets say you have a video that talks about a sale or specific product. You should include a link to that specific sale or product so people can go check out more information.You are making it easier for a user to take actions that you want them to take. Another reason to include a link in the description is when a user embeds a video on their website is now that video links back to you because they shared your video. Google likes to see that other quality sites are linking to your website. Now this is where you have to be careful and monitor who is all linking to you site. You also need to make sure to watch out for potential toxic backlinks. Creating and adding a disavow list can help with the toxic websites that link to your website.
Schema Markup and Site Maps
YouTube is primarily the only video service that shows up in the Google SERPS however it is possible for other video platforms to have videos. The key to having other videos show up in the Google SERPS is to optimize on page video content but using schema markup as well as by submitting a video sitemap of all the videos on your site. By doing the schema markup for a video on a webpage you are providing search engines more details about the video on a page. If you don’t mark up the video major search engines only know that there is a video on the page, but the mark-up provides additional information such as, title, category, descriptions, run time and much more so the search engines know the video relates to the webpage it is displayed on and how it might be of value to the user. By providing a sitemap of the videos to search engines you are telling them that a website has lots of valuable video content for it to consider. This sitemap should include; titles, descriptions, run time, category, thumbnail image. Submitting this information might seem a bit redundant if you do schema markup on a page but if the search engine crawlers are not able to scan a page with a video, they will not know the valuable content is there. We do recommend doing both as this helps to get your videos indexed and showing in the SERPS.
This is just a short summary of things you can do to try and help your SEO efforts. If you are looking for more information or looking for help doing any of these, please feel free to contact us as we would love to hear from you
More About YouTube and Video Content:
Optimize Your YouTube Channel
How Using Video Can Hook More Customers
Using Online Videos Successfully