So, you’ve come up with the perfect high-quality video for your brand. You’ve spent a fair amount of time analyzing your options, putting together the best marketing strategy to fit your business goals, and producing it, and had a specialized video company tailor it to your marketing needs.  

But why is it not ranking higher on SERPs? Poor optimization is probably to blame.

You need video-specific SEO strategies! For video content, regular search engine optimization totally helps, but it is often not enough for your video to stand out.  

In this piece, we’ll go a bit more in-depth on how to go about doing precisely that! We’ve listed 9 SEO areas to focus on that will optimize your video and radically improve its performance and reception. 

Let’s get started!

1) Choosing the Right Hosting Platform

The thing with video files is they are essentially large when compared with other types of media. So, if you host it directly on your site, it will consume loads of storage space and decrease your page speed —which is a major ranking factor.

So, at first hand it seems quite obvious where you should upload your video, right? YouTube is the king of video content and one of the biggest search engines right now (the second, actually; it comes right after Google!)

Furthermore, if you upload your video on YouTube, it can also be ranked in the Google search results. Because, depending on the topic, to Google, it makes sense that the best answer to some questions is given with audiovisual content.

So, yes: YouTube is a must-do when it comes to great hosting to enhance your video’s performance.

But before jumping to conclusions, you should ask yourself what do you want to achieve with your video. Do you want to create brand awareness? Do you want to gain traffic to your website? Is your ultimate goal to generate new leads? 

There are other online video platforms that are worth checking and considering, like Vimeo, Wistia, Vzaar, and DailyMotion.

For example, Vimeo is well known for having curated video content. It has less traffic than YouTube, but it has “high-quality” type of viewers, which can be good to generate qualified leads. And you can always embed your Vimeo video on your site!

On the other hand, Wistia, for example, doesn’t display your videos to the public (because it’s business-oriented). But it has advanced analytics dashboards that show super useful video performance insights, like play rate, heatmap view, and more. 

So, according to your specific needs and goals, you should start by analyzing which platforms are more suitable for you. 

2) Mind Titles and Descriptions

Just like for blog posts, titles, and descriptions play a key role in ranking improvement.

People still search for things online through keywords, which is why it’s so important to include them in titles and video descriptions. So, make sure to conduct effective research to ensure you are using the correct keywords for your target audience.  

But, besides keywords, it’s also very important to be creative. Don’t just type in a few keywords and turn them into a title. Like everything in marketing, it has to spark your audience’s curiosity. It has to be interesting and clear. 

Take these videos for example:

Instead of just using “Vegan Meals” or “Best Vegan Meals”, these three videos’ titles not only use the keywords but also use very appealing phrasing. You can go with a simple and straightforward one, like the third video (“5 Minutes Vegan Meals”), or be bold and craft something more fun, like the second one (“Damn Good Vegan Meals in Under 15 Minutes”.) 

And the same rule applies for descriptions! Don’t make them too wordy and complicated. Include relevant information, such as your business contact, social media, and a CTA.

3) Customized Thumbnails —The First Impression Matters

How many times, while looking for a video, have you seen a blurry and irrelevant video thumbnail and immediately dismissed the video? 

Thumbnails play a key factor in whether people click on the video or not. Because the thumbnail is what the person sees when they are browsing, it’s the first impression that actually matters! 

The image you select for your video has to be striking and also representative of what the video is about. Many people let the platform auto-select the thumbnail, and that’s a mistake. It has to be thoroughly customized, so it makes your video shine. 

Look at the following video thumbnails:

These three examples of DIY homemade dessert recipes illustrate how to accomplish simple yet beautiful video thumbnails. If anything, the thumbnails of video recipes have to be eye-catching and, above all, look tasty! And that’s the idea you get when looking at them. One of the thumbnails even includes text (“3-Ingredient”), which makes the viewer understand something very important when it comes to DIY recipes: It’s easy! 

4) The Power of Using Transcripts

The video transcript is the text version of every single word said or spoken in your video. So, what makes it such a powerful tool for optimizing your video? 

Unfortunately, search engines can’t track what the video is about by itself. By adding the transcription of the audio, you increase your video’s discoverability. Furthermore, your script is probably full of keywords or valuable text that will make your video even more searchable and help with its ranking. 

In addition, using a transcript also leads to better user experience because it makes your video more accessible – For example, for viewers in a sound-prohibited environment. 

Also, in the case that your video is long (attention span tends to decrease after 2 minutes), the viewer can read in advance, the transcript to understand what the video is about. 

5) Prioritize Your Best Video  

Because you know how relevant videos are these days, you probably have a nice catalog. From explainer videos to how-tos and testimonials, you’ve got all that covered!  

And you might feel tempted to use them all in one place, so your audience sees every single one of your great videos in one shot. But using multiple videos in one spot isn’t a good idea. Google itself explained that it’s easier for them to index your video if you pick one per page. 

So, you have to see which video is your best one. Which video is the most relevant to your target audience, and meet all the requirements needed for your specific marketing goals?

After you’ve chosen that video, the one you want to optimize its performance, keep the page focused around it. And on that note… 

6) Turn Your Video the Star of Your Page

 With every passing year, videos continue to evolve into the preferred type of content, by brands and marketers alike. They are engaging, fun to watch, and they increase conversions. So you better treat your video like the top priority of your marketing strategy that it actually is, right? 

And, for that matter, audiences love videos. People tend to stay longer on websites if there’s a video in it. And Google loves this too, since time on site is another major ranking factor because it improves your domain authority. 

You want your prospects to understand what great solution you are bringing to your target audience, correct? So put the video in the top of your fold and have them mesmerized by your awesome video the second they get to your website. 

Take the Video Window page below as an example. Their explainer video is the first thing that you come up with. It sparks interest in the visitors with attractive animations, and the play button is right there, literally in the center of the page. 

7) Video Landing Page Optimization

As essential as video content is today, you can’t just rely on optimizing your videos to rank higher on SERPs. The page that contains your video has to be optimized too. 

It’s important that the content of your page is not only high-quality and rich but revolves around your video’s concept. Make sure that it makes sense with it, and that you are using your target keywords in your content and meta elements such as your body content, title, URL, and meta descriptions.

Take a look at this example:

We are an animated explainer video company. And that’s exactly what you get when you input Yum Yum Videos in a search engine: animated, explainer, video. 

And the same goes for the landing page. Not only does it have an animated explainer video on the top of the fold, but it reinforces that concept with fun body text and title. 

8) Don’t Use the Same Video On Multiple Pages

Now that you have made your video the star of your super-optimized landing page, it’s time to say this: Don’t repeat yourself.

What we mean is that you shouldn’t embed the same video on multiple pages if you want to ensure that your video gets ranked. Because by doing this you will divide your traffic into every page that you’ve embedded it. 

To sum up, it’s always better to stand with the “one video per page” rule, so you give Google only one option regarding which page should rank. 

9) Extra-Promote Your Video

It may sound obvious, but it’s worth it to mention that you also have to promote your video to boost its performance. Without question, you have to!

SEO is dynamic because of the nature of new technologies and online consumer habits. Every day it’s evolving and changing, alongside video content trends. That’s why relying only on video SEO to improve your video’s rank alone it’s not enough.

We’ve listed a couple of easy-to-do ways to promote your video:

  • Share your video via e-mail and newsletters. By running a video e-mail campaign, you make your e-mail way more interesting and increase your click-through rates. 
  • An oldie but a goodie: Create a blog post to include your video, targeting your keywords. This will add more context to it, and help to index it. 
  • Another very effective way is to have customers, clients, experts, and social media fans share your video content. Don’t be shy and try.
  • Run a paid campaign. If you want to get the real-deal traction, you’ll need to promote your video in places like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. This will lead to increasing views and click rates.

Wrapping Up

As we’ve just learned, to boost your video’s performance, video SEO strategies are just as necessary as traditional SEO techniques. And there are many other issues that have to be taken into account, such as technical details, mobile optimization, and choosing the right format for your video content. 

Following these tips, you’ll be on the way to improving your video’s performance. 

But, besides that, maybe the most important part is to create content that resonates with your target audience. The more you know your audience, the more and better you’ll engage and connect with them. And engaging is vital to convey your brand message in a compelling way and boost your online ranking.

About the Author: Victor Blasco’s an audiovisual designer, video marketing expert, and founder/CEO of the explainer video company Yum Yum Videos. Besides running the business, he’s a lifelong student of Chinese philosophy and a passionate geek for all things sci-fi.



About the Author: Victor Blasco’s an audiovisual designer, video marketing expert, and founder/CEO of the explainer video company Yum Yum Videos. Besides running the business, he’s a lifelong student of Chinese philosophy and a passionate geek for all things sci-fi.