As videos become more and more a part of everyday marketing, video optimization for search is more important than ever. Now with the news that Google will feature large videos within search results, it shows how significant online videos are to marketers and users alike. By optimizing your videos, you will increase the chances you will be found by interested searchers.
Optimizing your videos can be a simple three step process, if you know what to look for. You must ensure that your videos are implemented within your site content in a SEO-friendly manner, and then give search engines all the information you can about your videos using schema and an XML Sitemap.
1. Embed Videos Properly
It is important to embed videos within your site content, rather than just include links back to YouTube. That way, users will stay on your site while they view videos, rather than leaving to watch on YouTube. If they leave your site, it is highly unlikely they will return. Also, by embedding a video on your page the video results will show up on your domain, not just YouTube’s. Some evidence suggests that Google utilizes embedded videos for indexing purposes, which can also help with rankings.
2. Add Video Schema
Once videos have been properly embedded on your site, it is time to add video schema markup. Adding video schema markup makes it easier for search engines to understand your video content. Video schema can tell search engines the title of the video, embed information, length, and a description of the video, among other things. Here’s an example of marked-up HTML content for a video, from the Webmaster Support page:
If you add video schema, it is much more likely that Google will show your video in a SERP than it would a video without markup. Visit schema.org for more information and code specifics.
3. Submit an XML Sitemap for Videos
By creating and submitting an XML Sitemap for videos, you can provide Google with a list of videos and the location of each video found on your site, which can potentially increase the number of pages with video content to be indexed. Once Google knows where your videos are actually located, they are more likely to be shown in search results.
Video optimization is essential, because if potential viewers can’t find your videos in the first place, there isn’t much of a chance they’re worth however much time, money, and effort you put into them. Follow the three steps above to increase the chances your videos will be found! Questions or comments? Ask me on Twitter @smb1213 or comment below!