Marketing is a complicated beast, and although there are countless ways to harness its power, all methods ultimately lead to the same end: capturing your attention.
So how do you go about getting that attention? In the past, companies would pay to get their commercials placed during certain TV spots to try and get seen by the right people—they still do this to great effect.
But a young upstart has threatened the dominance of the TV goliath, and its name is YouTube.
Like with TV, businesses can pay YouTube for ad spots, and while this is absolutely a valid marketing approach, there exists a more organic yet still effective path to getting people’s attention: SEO.
Not Another “YouTube SEO” Article
I’m not talking about YouTube SEO.
There are hundreds upon hundreds of articles on the internet that go into great detail regarding how to properly optimize the SEO of your YouTube channel, going into detail about using keywords in your script, optimizing your video thumbnails, etc.
Rather, what we’re exploring in this article is how you can level up your current SEO strategy with the power of YouTube videos.
There are similarities between these adjacent disciplines, of course. Just like traditional SEO, it’s pivotal that you develop a well-thought-out strategy that’s buttressed by content that speaks to your audience’s interests and pain points.
I’m not suggesting that you use this idea instead of YouTube SEO, on the contrary, it should be used in tandem as another tool that gives you an edge over competitors.
The Value of YouTube and SEO
SEO is valuable because of Google—specifically, Google’s massive user base. We’re talking about a daily active user count of over 1.5 billion, each and every one of them contributing to its 3.5 billion daily searches.
That’s a lot of attention, and SEO gives you one of the keys to directing it in your business’s direction.
The thing is, SEO has had what you might call a “troubled past.”
Keyword stuffing, duplicate content, paid links, URL cloaking, the list goes on.
Google has made an effort to distance itself from blackhat SEOs abusing its algorithm by constantly updating how it works, and for the most part, this effort has been successful.
Gone are the days when you could rank #1 on search engines just by stuffing your articles and meta-data with keywords. Nowadays, the name of the game values, and this value is often measured in the quality of experience your user has when they visit your website pages.
There are plenty of ways to tinker around and measure how much people enjoy being on your website, but an often-ignored piece of low-hanging fruit is using YouTube.
It doesn’t matter if your website is old or new, built with WordPress or Wix, you can absolutely take advantage of YouTube to improve your site’s user experience.
For example, if you have a backlog of hundreds of articles on your website, you have hundreds of potential YouTube videos just waiting to be created.
YouTube Can Level Up Your Keyword Research
[Source: Pexels ]
Do you know how Google gives you search suggestions whenever you type keywords into the search bar? When you do that, you’re technically participating in keyword research.
Now think about what happens whenever you type keywords into YouTube’s search bar…see where this is going?
YouTube’s auto-suggest feature is a simple way to learn what people are interested in, and this can inform your current SEO strategy.
Keep in mind that the keywords people search for on YouTube are not the same as on Google—this is why Ahrefs has a separate KW tool for YouTube.
Is YouTube the most robust keyword research tool? Certainly not! But when it comes to SEO, you can never have too many tools in your box.
In case you’re wondering what other good tools available (for free), check out the following:
- This is a tool developed by Niel Patel, one of the most influential SEO and digital marketing experts around. The tool has free and paid features, but it’s mostly used for gaining insight into keyword ideas, backlinks, domain scores, and other useful types of data.
- Keywords Everywhere
- This keyword tool used to be free, but compared to others, the starting price is still relatively cheap ($10). It allows you to see the keyword data related to search queries you enter into Google, eBay, Amazon, and others. One of the more interesting things about this too is that you can gain insights into what keywords show up for your customers even when they aren’t searching for what you sell.
- Google Keyword Planner
- That last suggestion might be a bit tricky to find for those uninitiated into the Google Ads Platform. Basically, you have to create an ad account with them, and then use their search console to utilize their keyword tool. Once you get into it, however, you’ll be able to use it to discover new keywords related to your business, determine the average cost-per-click, see their monthly search volume, and other useful features.
Another way to use YouTube for keyword research is to find the videos that rank for specific keywords and analyze what the content covers, as well as how viewers respond to the content in the comments section.
Doing this will help you understand what the search intent is behind certain keywords on YouTube.
For instance, if the keyword you entered was “Custom Tailored Suits” and the top video goes into great detail about how, when, and where to wear custom tailored suits, you suddenly have an idea for an article on that keyword!
Going through the comments section can help you determine whether or not the content covered in the video sufficiently addressed the viewer’s wants/needs.
If you find lots of questions or requests for more details in the comments, you’ll be able to take this information into account when you go to create your own content on the subject.
Improve Your Key Performance Indicators with YouTube Videos
We’ve already explored how YouTube videos can help improve your website’s user experience. Now we’re going to go into how that works.
Video content is easier to consume than written content
A single video can contain thousands upon thousands of words, and it may take less than 15 minutes for a user to consume it.
In contrast, an article with several thousand words can be difficult to get through, especially if the user is more of a visual learner.
If you design your videos well, you’ll be able to engage your users for a long time to come, and this increased screen time will directly contribute to your dwell time, which is a key performance metric for your pages.
Videos are also much more likely to be consumed in full compared to articles because users can passively watch them, so even if the viewer isn’t actively paying attention to the video, they are watching it will still contribute to your page’s dwell time.
If you have engaging videos on almost all of your website’s pages, your site is going to be seen as useful and engaging to Google.
Redirecting Users to Other Pages with YouTube Videos
While blog posts are great for internal linking opportunities, they’re limited to your own website unless you get backlinks from other people. However, with YouTube, you can include links in your video descriptions that take people from that platform to your website.
You can also add links to the video itself, which creates even more opportunities for you to creatively drive traffic to your site.
Videos Drive More Traffic Than Blog Posts
According to a recent study, videos, on average, attract nearly two to three times more monthly visitors to websites compared to blog posts.
This isn’t to suggest that you shouldn’t create blog posts, but if you’re ignoring videos, you’re leaving money on the table!
One reason videos are more likely to attract more visitors is that videos have their own section on Google’s SERPs, just like it has sections for Images, News, etc. So when you create videos that pair with your blog content, you hit two sections at once!
Make Sure Your Videos Deliver a Great Experience
Google’s algorithm updates have almost been moving towards one thing: value.
They want to deliver as much value to their users as possible so that their users continue to use their platform. To achieve this, they have to make sure they’re suggesting the most relevant pages in search queries.
So when trying to rank highly on SERPs, you should consider the value your pages deliver before anything else, and the same thing goes for YouTube.
Before you start creating content for YouTube, strategize about how to make your videos as relevant and valuable to your target audience as possible. Here are some tips to help you accomplish this:
Make Your Recording Studio Look Amazing
Looks aren’t everything, but when it comes to making videos, looks actually matter quite a bit. Your recording studio should properly represent your brand style, both in its lighting and staging.
A lot of thought should go into this. For instance, if you need to soundproof your recording studio, think about how the soundproofing materials could contribute to the aesthetic of the area, rather than just being a functional object in the room.
When you put this much energy and time into the look of your recording studio, viewers will take you more seriously than someone who just hits record with their webcam in their untidy bedroom.
You’ll also want to make sure that you get the lighting of your space just right as the wrong lighting can make even a great studio look off.
While it’s important to have a recording studio, it can also be useful to film your videos in different locations to spice things up. When you’re doing this, you consider each recording spot with the seriousness you bring to your own studio.
Create Eye-Catching Thumbnails
If you don’t have thumbnails that stop YouTube browsers in their tracks, your content is going to be ignored. Don’t take it personally—viewers are subject to all kinds of content that are vying for their attention almost 24/7, whether it be ads, articles, and especially other YouTube videos.
To make your YouTube thumbnails good enough to hook a potential viewer, make it a point to use images that are going to get the most reactions from people.
Some people achieve this by sticking red arrows that point at specific things in the image, making it as though the video is telling the user to “look here!” While this tactic does work, you’ll risk coming off as click-bait, which isn’t good for your brand.
A good way to grab attention is to use human faces in your images. This is especially important if your brand releases any sort of educational content because people want to know that they’re learning from a real person.
YouTube Video Timestamps
Timestamps are basically like table contents for YouTube videos. YouTubers add them to their videos to make it easier for their viewers to find specific sections in the video so that they can skip to whichever part is most relevant to their immediate interests.
For example, if your brand creates food recipes and instructs people on how to cook fabulous meals, you might create timestamps for each step in the cooking process.
If you create videos like “Top 10 Reasons to Live in New Zealand” you might create timestamps for each reason.
The whole idea behind timestamps is to make it as convenient as possible for viewers to locate and view the information they’re interested in, which ultimately creates a better user experience.
If you begin to take advantage of YouTube and all the ways it can contribute to your SEO strategy, you’ll be well on your way to ranking higher than your competitors and increasing your traffic accordingly.
You might be thinking, “But wait, how am I supposed to take advantage of this information when I have no idea how to make videos?”
Easy. Learn how to do it. For most, this may be a tall order, but the alternative is to miss out on a great opportunity to improve your SEO strategy. Will it take time? Yes. Will you create amazing videos right out the gate? Possibly. The bottom line, however, is that it’s worth it.
A lot of people stop themselves from breaking into video because they feel like they shouldn’t do it unless they do it well from the start. I’m telling you now that it’s better to start out doing it worse than to wait to do it at all.
The more videos you make, the better you’ll get. But you have to start sometime, so it might as well be now.
Hey, I’m Dale! I’ve helped hundreds of thousands of people just like you around the world learn how to create a website over at CreateAProWebsite.com. Whether you want to make a beautiful blog, portfolio, or business website, we’ve got you covered with our easy-to-follow guides and tutorials!