3 Tips to Improve Your Video SEO

video-seo-logosI’m sure you’ve heard of S.E.O. (Search Engine Optimization). It’s when you increase your search engine rankings organically via smart and strategic use of linking, social media and content distribution.

Video SEO is the process of using video to help boost your organic search engine rankings, as well as have your videos rank higher on search engine results.

There are lots of misconceptions about what video SEO is and how to best achieve it. Here are three tips to keep in mind that will help improve your overall video marketing and SEO.

  1. YouTube is Not Equivalent To Good SEO. Many people think that since YouTube is the #2 “search engine” (behind Google.com itself), that dumping all your videos on YouTube is the best way to improve video SEO. WRONG! You absolutely should have YouTube as part of your video marketing strategy, but you’re doing your organization a grave disservice if all you use is YouTube. In fact, some videos are best NOT put on YouTube. (Most notably, promo videos). YouTube is best suited for educational or entertainment videos. That is why people go to YouTube. To learn something (including how to do something), or to be entertained. Why send your potential customers to the greatest time-suck in the history of mankind. Send them to YOUR website. Which leads me to tip #2.
  2. Use Self-Hosting Video Services. One of the key ways to boost your video SEO is to establish YOUR website as the “owner” of that video. In the social media biz it’s known as making your site the “canonical site” for your video. When your website is established as the canonical owner or location of a video, Google and other search engines will link to your site when that video is shared or shows up on search engine result pages (SERPs). The only way to make your website the canonical owner is to use business video hosting sites like Wistia, Vimeo Pro/Business or Brightcove (also known as self-hosting sites). When you use these services, it’s YOUR website that gets SEO credit when the video is shared and it’s YOUR site that the video will link back to when it’s shared. That is unlike YouTube where YouTube gets the traffic and the SEO credit when a YouTube video is shared.
  3. Use a Hybrid Distribution Strategy. By far the best way to both increase your website’s video SEO, while at the same time take advantage of the benefits social media sites like YouTube have to offer, is to use a hybrid approach. I recommend that clients use a self-hosted video service for the first month to establish their site as the canonical owner of the video. Then after that, release the video on YouTube and Vimeo. If the video you’re producing has high entertainment value and you believe there’s a good possibility of it becoming wildly distributed, then and only then would I suggest releasing on YouTube or Vimeo Basic before, or simultaneously with, a self-hosted release.

Obviously there’s a lot more to good video SEO, but if you keep these three tips in mind and actually implement them, you’ll be way ahead of the curve. Feel free to shoot me an email or give us a ring if you’d like to learn more about how we can not only produce an amazing video for you, but get it seen using effective video SEO.