Video content is sought after online. And while we recommend YouTube, if you create and host your video there it will help to know how to optimize it for search!
YouTube offers free hosting, albeit ‘free’ is justified by allowing Google to run advertising when people look at your video. YouTube offers an embed code, per video hosted, so that you can take your video anywhere online… and still, have them hosted free. YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine on the web, maximizing your video traffic opportunity. Google is the largest search engine, it places emphasis on video in its general search results and it owns YouTube ;-) And finally, YouTube offers a number of incredible video optimization tools that go the extra mile toward ‘Better Content Optimization‘ for search.
SEMOZ.org did a nice video on what helps to optimize video in YouTube and we’ll embed that video below, but let’s list important takeaways here for your convenience.
Top 10 YouTube Video Optimization Techniques
- Keyword Rich Titles – Search engines can’t make sense of video content on their own, at least not well enough yet. You’ve got to use targeted keywords you’d like the video to be visible for. Your titles should be succinct, but impacting enough to draw attention as it’s your title most people see when searching and then deciding what to view.
- Keyword Rich Descriptions – Very much like with your titles, you’ve got to use targeted keywords in your descriptions. Consider descriptions as an opportunity to add more detail and more targeted keywords.
- Tags – Use keywords that best represent your video, but those that appear in your title and description are good to use too.
- Transcription In Description – Admittedly, we don’t do it but writing out the entire video transcript in text is encouraged. Like we mentioned, search engines can’t make sense of video content well enough yet.
- Activity – Search engines need more relevant & timely content every day to satisfy those searching for it, so if you’re an active producer of video the algorithm is going to notice and you’re going to be seen as an opportunity!
- View Count – Get them any way you can, add your videos to your sites, social network accounts and anywhere possible. High view count means your relevant!
- Inbound Links – Not all links count anymore, but what search engines see as good links do! So anything you can do to get them coming in from reputable sites… do it! If you can make it happen via highly descriptive anchor text, a big bonus!
- Social Shares, Likes & Favorites – They’re like votes and search engines pay close attention to social activity like this!
- Embeds – When folks do exactly what I have with the SEOmoz video below [when they do same, with your video], it’s a highly weighted signal!
- Comment Activity – Again, if people are reacting to your videos it’s a signal the video is relevant. Comments signal interest… just be sure to moderate those comments in order to prevent any bad links or behavior.