Video plays a key role in search engine optimization (SEO) nowadays.
A 2020 study of 2.1M desktop searches found that more than 250,000 results included a video carousel on page one.
This means that more and more search results feature videos in them.
When it comes to how important video is — or will be — for SEO, that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
If you want to learn more about the importance of video for SEO and how to incorporate video into your SEO strategy, this guide is for you.
Let’s get started.
In this section, we’re going to answer the why behind the importance of video for SEO.
Let’s look at four reasons that'll help you understand why videos should be a part of your SEO strategy.
The time people spend on your website, e.g. a blog post you’ve published, can be significantly increased when you feature video content on the page.
The reason for that is simple - people will spend more time watching your video as they scroll through the page.
This can give a positive signal to Google, and other search engines for that matter, since people don't spend time on your website if they haven't found what they're looking for
According to a 2019 survey of 1,584 SEO professionals by SparkToro, user engagement signals (such as pogo-sticking) are the 13th most important factor, right below website load speed, when it comes to Google search rankings.
Image Source: SparkToro
Thus, having videos on a page can improve the experience for the user and, at the same time, send a positive signal to Google the longer the user stays on that page.
As an example here we can look to the modern OTT platform, Uscreen, which you can see below has a video featured in its live streaming platforms post.
This creates a great experience for the visitors and makes them stick to the page, instead of going back to the search results to find what they are looking for. That's assuming that they came through organic search to the website in the first place, of course.
Let’s move on to the second reason.
This one is pretty self-explanatory.
Videos can help you get more real estate on the search engine results pages (SERPs).
Remember the study by Moz that we talked about at the beginning of this post?
Google is featuring more and more videos from YouTube on the search results pages — sometimes more than its competitors — and we expect that to only increase.
This means that creating videos and publishing them on YouTube can potentially help you get more real estate on the SERPs.
Let’s see an example of that.
As you can see from the screenshot below, Visme — a tool for making infographics — ranks on the first page of the search engine results for the term “creative presentation ideas”.
Image Source: Google
Not only that, but there are even timestamps for people to watch specific segments of the video that Visme has uploaded to their YouTube channel.
That’s a really great way to get more real estate on the SERPs and to raise awareness for your brand.
Let’s move on to the third reason.
YouTube is the world’s second most visited website.
Rest assured that your audience uses YouTube not only for entertainment, but also to find solutions to their problems and even find help to make buying decisions.
In that context, having visibility on YouTube is essential for raising awareness for your brand.
Let’s move on to the last reason we have for you.
In many cases, videos can work as linkable and shareable assets.
If you’ve been in SEO for a while now, you’ll know that links matter for getting higher rankings.
Let’s see an example of how videos can work as linkable and shareable assets.
This video by Dollar Shave Club was the beginning of a crazy ride for the company, which was ultimately acquired by Unilever back in 2016.
Let me tell you, this video has links from more than 5.3K referring domains.
Not bad for a single piece of content, right?
Imagine how powerful that would be if this video was published on your website?
That by itself could make a significant difference in helping your website perform better.
Having said all that, let’s now move on to the step-by-step process for incorporating video into your SEO strategy.
At this point, let’s see how you can incorporate video into your SEO strategy.
The first step in our process is to create videos based on your best-performing blog posts.
Since we’re talking about SEO, the term “best performing” primarily refers to blog posts that have organic visibility and receive organic traffic.
You can find those posts by taking a look at your Google Search Console or Google Analytics data, rankingCoach users can access this data and more in app.
You’re the one determining what posts/topics are important to you and the criteria you’ll use can be different based on what’s important for your business.
In the second step of the process, we have to optimize the video we’re going to publish for SEO.
This includes things like:
To make sure that your videos are properly optimized for SEO, you can use a Chrome extension like TubeBuddy or an SEO toolset like rankingCoach to see what other creators and channels do with their own videos, as shown below.
This can be very helpful when choosing what keywords to use, what tags to include, and how to structure your content in general.
Next, you have to upload your videos on YouTube and make sure that you embed them to any relevant posts that you've published, as we saw earlier.
Make sure that the videos you want to embed in your posts are indeed relevant to your content.
For example, in our piece about how to get more views on YouTube, we’ve embedded a video that describes how to get more views on YouTube.
As relevant as it can get, right?
Let’s move on to the final step of the process.
Monitoring your performance, seeing what videos work, both on YouTube and on Google search, can help you make decisions about what videos to create next.
In that vein, a Chrome extension like the one we noted earlier - TubeBuddy - can help you get useful performance data for your videos.
However, Google’s analytics products, i.e. Google Search Console and Google Analytics, can also provide you with useful insights on how your video SEO is performing.
All in all, keep a close eye on your performance and make improvements as you go.
Let’s wrap this up and close with some final thoughts.
You now know why video is important for SEO and how to incorporate it into your SEO strategy.
Now we’d like to hear back from you:
Which of these steps have you followed already and which ones do you find to be the most difficult ones to implement?
Let us know by leaving a quick comment below.
Author: Amir Shahzeidi
Amir is the SEO Lead at Uscreen, an all-in-one video monetization and OTT platform provider that empowers video entrepreneurs and creators to monetize their content and build thriving businesses around their videos.