Originally published in The Huffington Post
Four simple rules that can do magic
For those interested in investing in video marketing and creating such content, an obvious goal is to have their video ranked as high as possible on Google’s first page. This is a major objective in the overall business or sales strategy every one of us have probably set for our businesses. We have come to learn that not being on Google’s first page means you are yet another unknown in the long and endless slate of websites. This is definitely true. Honestly speaking, none of us have the time, or even the patience, to take into consideration any 2nd page search results.
For those serious about having their video ranked top, YouTube is obviously the platform where your content needs to be. Marketing videos don’t have a chance anywhere else. This is a medium receiving over one billion unique visitors each month. That is an unbelievably huge audience and posing a huge potential for literally free marketing. Yes, Facebook, Vimeo and DailyMotion do provide similar means. Yet nothing matches the potential presented by YouTube.
Even if your video is not on YouTube, it is highly suggested to consider optimising the page or website your video is embedded in. This is vital in the ultimate objective of top tier Google ranking.
Rule #1: Produce great videos
Focusing on content is the best advice you will find in the goal of having your video found on Google’s first page. Videos not worth a viewer’s time will never rank high as watchers will simply click away, and this is bad in SEO terms. There will be no comments, no likes, no sharing, no subscription, no nothing.
Moreover, user experience is considered vital for Google in ranking content. The more views and shares is considered as key indexes by Google for high quality content. Google will rank your video higher in search results only if it generates social signals and high traffic.
Rule #2: The art of good titles and tags
Text-based variables are the primary index used in search engine rankings. It is key to improvise in creating video titles, spend time doing the necessary research, use correct keywords to tag your video to and end your masterpiece by adding a description viewers can find compelling. Google is fond of reading and comprehending your videos’ associated text, as video content cannot be traditionally “read.” Failing to tag your video on YouTube will render only a failed video ranking. In the SEO world, there are suggestions out there describing tags as more important than the video itself.
Rule #3: Creative captions
Continuing on the thought that Google cannot “read” any video content, it is worth saying that this is only partially true. If your video contains any kind of dialogue, any, it is a must to equip it with a closed caption file. This is for those who are truly serious about having their videos ranked top in Google and other search engine results. It is worth knowing that search engines are able to and actually index the closed caption files we embed and upload with our video on YouTube. Video equipped with captioning are ranked much higher as they engage and make contact with a much larger audience, including those of different languages and the hearing impaired.
Rule #4: Hits & view time
It is common knowledge now that the number of hits anything on the internet receives is a major index defining its popularity and quality. However, what many may not know is the variable utilized by YouTube in prioritising different videos that render viewing sessions of longer periods. In the mentality of YouTube this is actually considered more important than simple clicks. A viewer staying longer on your video proves its attractive quality, and this is what YouTube considers more imperative.
Viewers watching your videos to the very end is the fruit of your efforts in abiding by the first three rules. Relevant content; a proper title, good tagging, an informative video description; and taking advantage of captioning. You also enjoy the option of including video annotations and calls encouraging viewers to remain on YouTube. This includes linking your current video to another that is part of your previously posted series.
The methods of enhancing your video’s ranking in search engines and YouTube are quite simple, few and yet extremely crucial. While producing high quality videos are the most important element, you must recognise the fact the library of text you post online enjoys the potential of being captured and indexed by Google, or “spidered” as described by some experts. Aside from how or where you have your videos hosted, you must place in the necessary time and effort to have search engines pay the attention necessary for your video to succeed in reaching a broad audience. And don’t forget, the very words you associate with your video content are as equally vital.