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Google takes video SEO seriously, and so should you

Spoken word content is finding its way to the top of the SERP

Ever searched for something and found the answer without having to click? Whether it’s an excerpt from Wikipedia, a YouTube clip or an info card, Google’s Featured Snippets help users find what they’re looking for - and they’re great news for your brand content, too.

Because Google’s Featured Snippets always appear at the top of the search results page, they represent an opportunity to “jump the line” in SEO, with visual and engaging video content.

What is Google video SEO?

Video SEO is optimizing web traffic for your video content on search engines like Google, Bing, and Yandex. Video SEO is optimizing and maximizing your presence on the search and related videos within video platforms, for example, Brightcove

While video content platforms like YouTube are search engines in one sense, they are also social networks. Optimizing distribution on YouTube is not identical to optimizing rankings on Bing and Google. 

It's why video SEO content is critical to get it right. Leaving the content public on YouTube, whether the content on YouTube or your website will rank is primarily related to the authority of each page and user preference.

Why does Google video SEO matter so much?

Search engine users worldwide make 93,939 Google searches every second, meaning that website owners compete for traffic from over 1.8 billion other websites. 

Thus, with his much traffic competition, how can content creators, marketers, and business owners outrank others in search engine results? 

You could try many tried-and-true SEO strategies, but video SEO will be king in the content marketing stakes with more consuming visual content. Visual content is a much easier way to stand out; if you have transcripts, you can also rank for both text and video SEO content. This is why Google video SEO matters so much.

How SEO video marketing can get your brand noticed

Google's algorithm has hundreds of ranking factors that not even Google knows them all. But what SEO experts have calculated is that Google's algorithm favors video content because videos primarily answer what visitors are searching for. For instance, 96% of consumers have watched an explainer video specifically to learn about a product or service.  

It's why 86% of consumers want brands to create more video content. 

These numbers demonstrate that Google video SEO is not only needed for website searchers but has forced Google to promote video content in its search results.  

This makes the benefits of videos explicit for businesses, marketers, and content creators: produce videos and get ranked. 

Furthermore, adding more video content won't just benefit your website's rankings; it will provide more online presence to your branded content. 

When brands produce video content, they provide their audiences with a direct link to their YouTube account, webinar content, or social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and even Twitter. As more visitors land on those pages, search engines recognize that they are popular and boost their rankings compared to competitors. Thus, video SEO will bring brands more customers from all their social media platforms, and not only from rankings. 

SEO experts consider backlinks a 'significant ranking' factor for websites - attracting topical backlinks (relevant websites linking to your website) boosts your credibility in search engine search results. 

Creating videos is optimal for attracting more backlinks, as they are a form of top-of-the-funnel content. Top-of-the-funnel content is primarily educational to guide buyers down the buying journey to the final purchase stage.

How to rank with video SEO

Now that you know why it's critical to use Google video SEO in your SEO strategy, you're ready to begin planning on producing Google video SEO content. However, keep a few pointers in mind when you start the process.

Use different types of Featured Snippets

Google offers two main formats for video Featured Snippets.

Key Moments offers a full preview of your video’s content by displaying its chapter breaks as a horizontal timeline. This is a huge opportunity for your video content: it takes up almost half the screen on a mobile device, and gives users a preview of the entire piece so they can jump in wherever they want.

In This Video works a bit differently. Here, Google analyzes the entire video transcript and highlights the most relevant clip. This format is especially useful for answers to specific questions that can be isolated from a longer video.

Maximize everywhere to get your content featured

To maximize your chances of appearing as a Featured Snippet, you’ll need to do three things:

  1. Host your video on Youtube
  2. Add chapter breaks with timestamps
  3. Upload a full transcript

This may seem like a considerable amount of admin, but Snackable automates the entire process. Our AI generates a quality transcript in no time and detects natural chapter breaks that you can easily adjust. Once you’re ready, you can publish directly to your Youtube channel with all the necessary metadata in place.

Of course, there’s no substitute for high-quality, relevant content – just as in text-based SEO. But many producers are already sitting on enviable content libraries that are largely invisible to search engines. Snackable helps expose it all to Google’s powerful, high-profile Featured Snippets format.

Integrate videos on websites

Sadly, you can't just integrate a video to a webpage and expect results. If you want a Google video SEO strategy to work, videos must fulfill three criteria:

Be relevant. Google video SEO is about relevancy. Videos must be relevant to the web page's topic, or the video and on-page content will not rank in relevant searches and search terms.

Be exclusive. Videos need to provide information searchers cannot locate elsewhere (like product information, how-to videos, and exclusive tips).

Be professional. Videos must be professionally produced and edited, or they will not even attract an audience, nor will those who begin to watch remain watching.

Contextualize your videos

Contextualization is about adding more to a webpage than the video itself. Meaning that SEO-optimized features are added to all videos. These are:  

  • A compelling H1 title to attract people to the webpage
  • A video description
  • Timestamps to help viewers navigate the video (even better, use 'snacks' created by Snackable AI
  • A 'further viewing' section to link related videos
  • Ensure captions are correct and make sense (some auto-generated captions do not always work!)

Adding these elements has numerous advantages. Audiences receive additional information and provide a convenient space to link readers to other web pages and products. Even more crucially, video content creators are creating easily indexable content for search engines – which will help the web page rank higher. 

Include video transcripts and closed captions

83% of consumers watch muted videos, and 80% of watchers are likelier to watch the video in full if it is captioned or split into chapters.  

Adding video transcriptions, chapters, and captions to videos help web page rank higher. Google's crawlers scan the copy for relatable keywords and rank pages accordingly. Another bonus is that AI-created transcriptions and chapters attract more voice search traffic and make content more accessible to those unable to listen to video content.  

To add transcripts, chapters, and closed captions, use a transcription tool like Snackable AI, where machine learning finds the most powerful moments in your videos that web visitors wish to watch.  

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