More and more webmasters are embedding video on their websites. It may be to provide a useful tutorial or product demonstration, or simply to amuse or entertain the website’s regular visitors. Whatever the purpose, video posts are becoming commonplace for websites all over the internet. With this rise in the popularity of embedded video content, it has become necessary to consider how we can optimize that content so it will be indexed by the search engine filters and successfully presented to the online user, this is something that Cube do for their clients. It’s a new challenge for webmasters and SEOs, and like all challenges it offers new opportunities. A new video revolution is here, so fire up that web-cam.
The Importance of Optimization for Video Content
People love videos. Search engines, not so much. When a search engine’s bots crawl a website, indexing its content and assessing its value to the online community, they are not equipped to decipher and decode video content. As sophisticated as search engines have become, when they are presented with a piece of embedded video they are stymied. To get around this, webmasters need to learn how to tag their videos so that the search engine bots recognize the embedded video, and understand its underlying content. This is easier to do than you might think, and begins with writing a title, tag and description for your video content.
Titles and Tags
The first step in optimizing video content is to consider your audience. Who do you think will be searching for the type of content you are offering, and what search terms do you think they will use. Understanding this will help you to write a successful tag and title for your video. For example, let’s suppose that you have created a video tutorial that explains the right way to set up a 3D television set. Your title might be something like, “How to Set Up a 3D TV”. It is short and to the point, and reflects a common user search term structure – i.e. a question. You might then go even further, and include the model of the 3D television set in your metadata tag. Providing this type of data makes it easier for search engines, and online users, to find your content.
If you are embedding video on your website, you should also consider adding a text transcription in addition to the simple title and tags. This will give the search engine bots even more information about your post, making it easier for them to index its content and value. It also makes it easier for viewers to quickly determine if your content is what they were searching for. There are a variety of transcription services available, including SpeakerText and Searchpad. These services will transcribe your video automatically. However, be sure to always review and edit the final transcription to ensure that there are no mistakes that may interfere with your content’s search-ability.
Choosing a Hosting Service
Once your video is completed, and your title, tag, and transcription is ready, it’s time to choose a hosting service. By far, the most popular video hosting service is YouTube. However, there are other hosting services on the horizon, such as Vimeo and Metacafe. While it is possible to host your video content yourself, using a third party is usually the best option. A third party hosting service like YouTube will get more action in the SERPs, and will greatly increase the online visibility of your content. Using a third party video hosting service also makes it easier for people to share your content over social media sites, allowing you to garner more links and some added SEO juice.
Once your video is completed, and you have embedded into your website, make a point to share it with your social networking contacts. It is your responsibility as a webmaster to get the SEO ball rolling, and to get your video content in front of as many eyes as possible.
Video is becoming more and more popular with content marketers, and it offers a fresh and exciting way to offer useful information to the public. But for embedded video to be truly successful, it needs to be properly optimized. The few steps outlined here should help webmasters and SEOs to properly prepare their embedded video content so that they, too, can join the latest video revolution.
Leslie writes about SEO and online marketing at the Cube blog a company he setup in 2007.