#seo411 Recap: SEO for Videos

By Amanda Sides | May 20, 2010
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Our most recent #seo411 Twitter chat session covered SEO for Videos. Here’s a review of what we talked about in case you couldn’t make it. If you’re experimenting with or want to get started with optimizing your videos for SEO, maybe this #seo411 session will motivate you to get started.

Q1: How important is tagging and order of tags in Video SEO optimization?

Tags tell the search engine what the video is about, so they are very important.  Google also encourages you to put the tags in the XML sitemap.  One thing to keep in mind, don’t “stuff” too many keywords into the tags… prioritize.

Q2: Do you have a YouTube channel for your company/clients?

Most people have a YouTube channel and are still getting their bearings straight.  YouTube helps you rank for brand searches on Google, and you can maximize video views by hosting them on the same channel.

Q3: Have you tried captioning and transcript options for video? Do they help your SEO?

Most are just starting to test whether captions and transcript options have an effect on your Google Video rankings.  Some say they do, while others aren’t sure because they are so new to the game.  Our findings show that captioning and transcripting have some impact on rankings within YouTube and Google.   Have you done any testing and found any definitive results on this topic? Share at @SearchMojo.

Q4: What other techniques have you tried to optimize your videos for SEO?

Insert the keyword into the title and description if at all possible.  @janetdmiller referenced this post recently published on Video SEO.  She also shared some of things she has learned for hosting the videos on your own domain:

  1. Include “video” in the keyword you are targeting… “polar bear video”
  2. Put keyword in the file name of the video.
  3. Include keyword in any meta data that you can.
  4. Include keyword in any anchor text pointing to the video.
  5. Use a video sitemap or mRSS and register with Google Webmaster Tools.

Q5: Should you put PPC advertisements at the end of your YouTube videos?

Ads are a great way at the end of any video to capture the audience and direct them back to your own site… if you have the budget to do so.  Make sure you test this though, evaluate how/if you are benefitting from it.

Q6: Have you used a syndication service like TubeMogul or blip.tv?

Not many participants have used either, but say it makes sense to distribute to multiple sources. As @ReneeRevetta put it… “more eyeballs > more sharing > more links.” She also provided some insight into blip.tv saying that it sends video to iTunes, YouTube, Vimeo, etc.  The only drawback to syndication services is that not every site has the same required information.  Search Engine Land provides a great collection of video syndication tools.

Q7: How do you track your video SEO success? Analytics? YouTube Insights?

Not many people are diving into this yet, so there weren’t many recommendations, but Advanced Web Rankings may be one that you try out because it allows you to track your rankings for videos in Google Video as well as YouTube.

Q8: What metrics do you find most valuable for determining SEO success with videos?

This definitely depends on site goals and video content.  You can track whether the video was finished, or if it was stopped midway through, and use this to measure quality.  Also track site traffic, leads… tangible ROI.

Q9: Are tactics to get your video showing in universal search results different than ranking in video search?

Universal Video results appear to some to be heavily based on external link volume and quality.  Most are still experimenting… so also share with @SearchMojo if you have come across any insights on this topic.

Q10: If you don’t optimize video for SEO, or use advertisements following videos, what’s holding you back?

The most common excuse is that you or the client just isn’t equipped with the resources to do so.  Some of you would rather host the video on your site, and get it ranked, than have it rank for YouTube.  Some feel overwhelmed, not sure where to start, and assume it takes too much time and effort and just avoid the undertaking altogether.


Hope this recap filled you in, and that you’ll join us next Tuesday (5/25/2010) at 2pm ET for #seo411: SEO Tactics for Blogs. See the updated full #seo411 Twitter chat schedule.

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