12 November 2012

Social Media

Good Practice Video Optimisation

Target your Terms

Certain keywords and phrases in your title will inevitably rank your video higher in Google - an important objective for any business model. Focus on long tail titles and target your videos further by adding a location, as competitive commercial terms alone will be much more difficult to achieve rankings for.

For instance, titles containing the following words will bring vast results:

  • tutorial
  • review
  • test
  • what is
  • how to
  • demonstration
  • explanation

Secure your Content

Self-hosting is the recommended approach when publishing videos online. Alternatively, a third party hosting platform is a viable solution. There are many platforms available, including:

  • Wistia
  • Vimeo Pro
  • Vzaar
  • Viddler
  • Brightcove

Self-hosting solutions include cloud platforms such as Amazon S3 which will provide you with all necessary functionality.

For proper SEO, DO NOT use YouTube or a standard Vimeo account for hosting! Something which is not of common knowledge is the fact that the youtube.com or vimeo.com domains will actually rank your videos instead of awarding the link juice to your domain…

Embed your Video into a Crawlable Player

Be sure to embed all videos into an HTML5 player incorporating the use of Flash Fallback or alternatively a pure Flash player. This functionality is available from all providers mentioned above. However, steer clear of iFrames.

For those who choose to self-host, use a player out of the following:

  • JW Player
  • Video JS 
  • Kaltura HTML5 

Ensure that you only embed a single video on a page for which you intend to retrieve high rankings for. Numerous videos on a page may mean that Google will find it difficult to select an appropriate video to crawl to retrieve the rich content shown in the results pages. All videos should be unique!

Surround your Video with Supporting Data

Include the transcript of the video as body text on the page in which you have embedded the video. Links, supporting text and images will accompany the rest of your optimisation techniques in indicating a quality page to the search engines, one which is certainly worth indexing. Otherwise, your page will look extremely ‘thin’ to a judging algorithm.

Submit a Video XML Sitemap

A promising approach to provide search engines with vital meta-data, a video XML sitemap will ensure that crawling access is granted to the thumbnail, raw file and also descriptions of the content.

After the XML sitemap has been generated, be sure to add it to the robots.txt file then submit it to Webmaster Tools from Google.

Constructing your Video XML Sitemap

One of two elements are required to be provided; the location of the video file (i.e. .mp4 or .flv) and also the location of the HTML5/Flash player. Hosting solution permitting, sometimes it is possible to include both elements, but if not, one will do.

Set all links to the image file in 16:9 up to a full resolution of 1920×1080px, link your element/s to a blog profile page on your website and ensure that the element links to a blog profile page, idyllically one incorporating the use of the rel=author attribute.

By Sam Hurley


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