How marketing directors can use video SEO to boost their overall digital marketing strategy
And then comes an inevitable argument: “I don’t think my company is a good fit for YouTube.”
Yet, creating and marketing videos goes far beyond just YouTube alone.
Video SEO can make your content better, your product easier to understand and your brand more credible and relatable. Further, videos continue to receive exposure on Page 1 of Google’s search results for an increasing number of queries.
Even beyond that, a well-shaped video strategy can boost your overall SEO efforts. Here’s how.
1. Deeper understanding of your customers’ buying journeys with Video SEO
Video SEO keyword research allows for discovery regarding which queries your target audience is using when searching for videos.
Knowing how your target audience is searching for related videos can give you a better understanding of their buying journey, problems they are struggling to solve and tasks they are trying to complete.
When we turn to video content, we tend to look for informational or entertaining content. We may also be able to uncover content opportunities that naturally solve the customers’ needs best in video format: how-to videos, product demonstrations, comparisons, and so on. A solid marketing strategy should always include both of these parts of buying journeys.
If you compare Google and YouTube auto suggestions, you will notice that YouTube search attracts a specific type of audience. Not all YouTube suggestions have an informational intent, though. Based on YouTube autocomplete, people use the platform to find reviews of products from current customers of the brand, unboxing videos, as well as information on specific models.
And yet, YouTube-driven buying journeys seem to be very different from those that happen in Google. Which makes YouTube suggestions such a powerful addition to any keyword research strategy.
Google Video Search
A similar pattern applies to Google Video search. This often reveals a different angle or buying journey your target audience may take when researching their options.
Like Google’s regular search, the Google video section generates “related search” suggestions underneath organic search results. Video-related searches differ from those you will see when using Google’s main search showing that people use Google videos for different purposes. Google Videos’ related searches allow you to discover keywords you’d miss if you were only relying on Google’s regular search results.
When you start researching video-driven search queries, you get a better understanding of your target market and where your product may fit in. Your overall SEO strategy becomes better informed than that of your competitors.
Talk about a good way to find new “helpful content” opportunities!
2. Better on-SERP visibility through video carousels
Google’s search engine results are much more diverse, visual and interactive than they were a decade ago.
These days Google’s SERPs include related images, instant answers, popular questions, and more.
One of the most visible sections is the one that includes related videos.
Based on Mozcast data, videos show up in at least 30% of Google’s SERPs:
In many cases, video results are “blended,” i.e., they are included in a standalone section that is not an organic listing but is added within SERPs as a standalone element.
This section is called a video carousel.
What is a video carousel?
A video carousel is a separate search element within Google SERPs that contains related videos.
Video carousels are often included on the first page of search results. The location of the section may vary depending on the specific searcher’s intent.
Sometimes video carousels show up right on top of SERPs: Try searching for “how to fix a tire,” for example. The video-only search snippet and the video carousel dominate the whole above-the-fold part of the screen. This is especially true if you search from a mobile device. For other queries, the section may be included lower on a search result page.
In some cases, YouTube videos are not included into a carousel and simply act as organic results. This is different (a video actually counts towards the ten organic links that are allowed on page one) but still rewarding. You are able to see a huge thumbnail of the video, which is hard to miss, likely increasing the click-through rate for that rank position.
In both cases (carousels and organic results), when accessed from a mobile device, this video can be played right within search results.
Well-optimized and hence high-ranking videos that are branded provide additional visibility to a brand. Helping it dominate its target search result pages with more than a single organic listing.
3. More visibility in organic search with video SEO-rich snippets
While YouTube video pages may act as organic listings giving you additional visibility, earning video-rich snippets allows you to get your own page ranked in the same SERPs.
Video rich snippets are enriched organic search results that include a video thumbnail from the page, making the result that much harder to miss.
Unlike video carousels that provide brands with indirect exposure video-rich snippets trigger a direct click to your site. People clicking a video in a carousel normally land on that YouTube page. They’ll watch that video right away from within Google’s search result page.
To earn a video-rich snippet, publishers need to embed a video on that page and use video schema.
Another benefit of earning a video-rich snippet is that it creates an expectation. People seeing a video thumbnail and clicking through to a page expect to find a video on that page. They are more likely to stay on the page and watch the video. This increases the probability that they will continue their journeys through the site, engage with your brand more, and dive deeper into the conversion funnel.
A video marketing strategy is more than making your brand or product findable on YouTube. When you start researching video opportunities, you’ll get to understand your audience better and uncover more video SEO opportunities. You’ll make your brand stand out in search by having your video show up in related carousels.
Google has created a lot of opportunities to make your video SEO strategy better informed and more diverse by including videos into your digital marketing routine.