SEO 101: What is video search?

When we think of SEO we think of the words on our website that help the search engines rank our site. But did you know that video and SEO also work extremely well together? Read on to find out why video should be an important part of your SEO strategy in 2019.

What is video SEO?

Video Search Engine Optimization (video SEO) is the process of optimising your video to be indexed and ranked on the search engine results pages for relevant keyword searches. Video SEO is a component of SEO that is used to deliver information to drive traffic to a website, promote conversions and retain audiences.

According to Techopedia, an average user spends 4 seconds browsing a website but stays to watch a video for an average of 2.7 minutes. With demand for video rising, it is important that users are able to easily find and access your content. The goal is to ensure search engine bots can crawl your content, understand it and index the data to match the appropriate search queries.

Why video SEO?

Well-produced and carefully planned video content can help build your brand and business reputation by efficiently communicating your core message and values in a compelling and engaging way.

From an SEO perspective, the length of time that visitors spend engaging with your website sends a signal to Google’s algorithm, and in turn, affects your search ranking. The longer people stay on your site, the more trust Google has in you (and the higher you rank).

Whilst Google remains the number 1 search engine, it may come as a surprise that YouTube has claimed the number 2 spot. YouTube has more than 1 billion unique users who are watching an incredible 6 billion hours of video each month. YouTube is owned by Google, so this means that your videos will be ranked and shown on Google search results.

An image search on Google will only show images, but a universal search will answer user needs or questions with blog posts, images, videos and comments. Bottom line, videos will always show up first and are therefore unmissable and extremely significant.

Video SEO best practices

It is important to implement an optimisation strategy to give your video a higher chance of ranking, and we’ve outlined these strategies below:

1. Add a video transcript

Video transcripts are a complete textual representation of the content spoken in the video.  Metadata and video tags do not offer as much detail of your video’s context as transcripts do, so this allows search engines to better understand your video’s content and improve its ranking.

Adding a transcript to the audio portion of your video or in the description box can assist search engines to discover your content and delivers an overview of your video to your viewers. We believe that this delivers more value to your viewership and improves overall user experience.

2. Focus on the thumbnail

The thumbnail of your video is the first thing that viewers see. The still image that you choose to represent your video must be clear and relevant to give your viewers an understanding of the content. Video SEO Expert Phil Nottingham, suggests that your video thumbnail is more important than your title because it determines whether or not people will click.

3. Upload your video across multiple platforms

When uploading a video, ensure it is added to both your website and YouTube. Releasing your content across multiple platforms will make your SEO much stronger and more efficient.

That being said, if your goal is to increase traffic and improve the ranking of your site, it is best to host the video in your own domain. We recommend adding your video to the homepage of your website, or alternatively, creating a new page to host your video to allow traffic to flow and make your video the focus of the page.

4. Optimise with keywords

Get creative and experiment with your keywords. Is there a particular keyword or phrase that could lead to better results? We suggest creating descriptive and legible content, helping both your audience and search engines get the most from your video.

5. Create a video sitemap

Video sitemaps provide search engines with metadata about video content on a website and are an extension to your website’s existing sitemap. This sitemap allows you to notify search engines of the category, title, description, length and target audience of each video that you embed on your website. This step can often be overlooked in video SEO, but it still remains to be an important element in helping your video’s ranking.

Keen to know why video and search are a match made in heaven? Chat to us today to find out more about why you need to include video SEO in your content strategy in 2019!