Video + SEO - Best Practices for Online Video Publishing & E-Commerce


Published on This is my presentation from the LiveClicker Video Commerce Summit. I was asked to present my view of video search engine optimization (video SEO), as well as to help educate the audience on some best practices for publishing online video in a search-friendly manner. More -

  • love how these tips seem to be standing the test of time.
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  • Affiliate Network
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  • ReelSEO does a great job. Videasa is a big fan and we appreciate contributions like this presentation to the industry.
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  • Great presentation outlining the major points in the field. Video is very much still unchartered waters in terms of its utilization for ecommerce even though we've seen client's more than double conversion rates when enhancing their product pages with video. Specifically, '', an online vendor of luxury fashion accessories experienced a 100%-300% increase in sales on products that featured video representation of the product.

    People feel that producing videos for an entire catalog of inventory is no small task. Retailers find themselves in the position of requiring script writers, camera men, producers, an acting cast and all the supporting personnel. Location scouting is an issue in itself. It's easy to begin understanding why creating custom video from scratch has such a high barrier to entry.

    In an effort to remove this barrier to entry we've developed a second option for producing video that is less costly and complicated and is, in our experience, beginning to gain traction with retailers seeking a swift entry into the world of video enhanced product pages: Automated Video Platforms.

    Automated video solutions transform XMLs of a vendors inventory into automated video presentations that can be left as is or enhanced further with narration. Our platform enables us to offer clients their entire inventory enhanced with videos like the one above, within 24 hours from contact. All our clients do is supply us with their product's images and data, and we take care of the rest.

    Contact us for details at or via @treepodia on Twitter.

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Video + SEO - Best Practices for Online Video Publishing & E-Commerce

  1. 1. VIDEO + SEO Not Smoke and Mirrors, Just Best Practices for E-Commerce Video Publishing
  2. 2. Who is this Guy and Why is he Here? Mark Robertson - ME • Founder, Webmaster, Customer Service Author, etc… • Expertise – Search engine optimization – Online video publishing – Search, search, & more search – SMBs & media companies – Musician/drummer • Not so much – Video production - dabbling – Ecommerce – Conference speaking ;-) Internet Retailer Survey – January 2009
  3. 3. What is Focused on Video Visibility News, tips, reviews, and observations about online video • Video marketing • Video advertising • Video search & sharing • Video optimization (Video SEO) • Online video technology • Online video publishing • Online video market research • Video industry news
  4. 4. Video Discovery – BACKGROUND Does search matter for video?
  5. 5. How do Consumers Discover Video Content? Where do viewers discover video online? 44% - discover randomly 43% - via sharing 43% - via video websites 39% - via search engines 27% - via marketing email 4% - via RSS & MRSS feeds
  6. 6. Video Search Traffic Trends Video discovery via search is on the rise • 29% of video discovered on social video sharing sites in 2008 – vs. 36% in 2007 • 29% of videos discovered via search engines in 2008 – vs. 22% in 2007
  7. 7. Why the Shift to Search? 1. People are used to using search engines to locate online content 2. Consumers append the word “video” to their search queries. 3. Universal/Blended/Federated Search proliferation
  8. 8. Google Universal Search May 2007 – Google Launches Universal Search initiative to integrate listings from its news, video, images, local and book search engines into Google SERPS
  9. 9. Videos Dominate Universal Search Videos Dominate Universal Search 38% of users who searched Google were served video in Universal search engine results pages Source – “Google Universal Search Results Searcher Penetration by Result Type” – ComScore – Jan 2008
  10. 10. Why is this important – Thumbnail Power! Regular SERPS Universal SERPS
  11. 11. YOUTUBE – Video Sharing + Video Search YouTube is more than just a place to upload & share videos Did you know? • December 2008 - YouTube became the 2nd largest search engine & 4th largest web property overall • How much video is uploaded to YouTube every minute? • 15 hours worth of video - equivalent to 86,000 new full length movies/week • More content is uploaded to YouTube in 60 days than all 3 major U.S. networks generated in the last 60 years
  12. 12. Video + SEO – Overview & Strategy
  13. 13. What is Video SEO? Simply put, video SEO is the application of SEO best practices to ensure that your video content achieves maximum visibility among your target audience Video SEO IS •About best practices for online video publishing •To be used in conjunction with overall best practices for general SEO •Something that plays an important role in an overall video strategy Video SEO IS NOT •Only about syndicating your videos to multiple sites •Smoke and mirrors •An end in-and-of itself
  14. 14. Types of Video SEO 2 Main Strategies for Video Search Optimization 1) Hosted - Website video + SEO – Optimization of video content that is on your website 2) Posted - Video syndication + SEO – Optimization of video content uploaded or syndicated to video sharing sites, social media websites, etc… My Recommendation – Take advantage of both
  15. 15. Benefits of Website Video SEO (hosted) When your goal is to generate traffic to your website & your video content Benefits: • Control: – on-page text – user-experience, etc... – action/conversions – brand experience • Better measurement capabilities • Generate traffic directly • Exposure to related content • Can strengthen overall website SEO
  16. 16. Benefits of Posted Video SEO When your goal is to generate video views, brand recognition, and social interaction/buzz Benefits: • Take advantage of a large audience and viral social nature • Take advantage of pre-established authority and rankings • Easy way to get into organic & universal search - thumbnails • Show up multiple times in SERPS • Works with or w/o a strong website presence
  17. 17. SEO TIPS & RECOMMENDATIONS Hosted – Website Video + SEO
  18. 18. How Does Video Affect Overall Site SEO? + On the positive side… • Videos generate interest, buzz, inbound links, and website traffic • Videos can help a site achieve better rankings overall • Universal search – extra opportunity to drive traffic - On the negative side… • Search engines are not YET able to “read” actual video content • Search engines need to be told what a video is about • Optimization is crucial to discovery = extra work for videophiles
  19. 19. Benchmarking - Before you Begin Benchmarking - Measure Current State Check Video Referrals - Analytics • Where do visitors to your video pages arrive from? • What % of video traffic comes from search engines? Test Searches • Do your products appear in the search engines? • How about your videos? Monitor Behavior • What % of visitors are linking to your videos or sharing?
  20. 20. Tips for Hosted / Website Video SEO Site Structure • 1 video per URL & use unique URLS • Place your videos in a central root folder/directory – • What about domains/micro-sites? • Create navigation links to your video content Page Structure • Use embedded players – not pop-ups • Follow general SEO principles for titles, URLs, meta tags, H1, etc… • Include contextually related links to product pages & videos • Provide related on-page text (tags, captions, comments)
  21. 21. Tips for Hosted / Website Video SEO Enable Interaction & Sharing 1. Helps to generate inbound links & buzz 2. In turn - helps search engines more easily discover & rank your content • Allow visitors to grab & share your videos • Create easy links for users - Permalinks • Enable commenting and rating – Creates relevant text & promotes buzz • Allow users to subscribe to your videos via RSS/MRSS • Include social bookmarking tools
  22. 22. Optimized Video Landing Page Anatomy
  23. 23. How Do You Get Into Search Engines? Search engines currently do their best to crawl the web and index video content. BUT, don’t wait for them to find you. Help them by telling them about your video content. MRSS Feed Syndication MRSS = RSS feed w/media enclosures 1.Submit RSS/MRSS feeds directly 2.Create active MRSS or link to MRSS 3.Submit MRSS or XML to Google Sitemaps And/or – Leverage Posted Video SEO
  24. 24. SEO TIPS & RECOMMENDATIONS Posted - Video syndication + SEO
  25. 25. Posted Video SEO - Syndication Consider submitting videos, especially those of a viral appeal to video sharing sites Tips •Use services like Tubemogul to upload your videos to multiple sites. •Titles are extremely important •Try slight variations in titles across sites •Descriptive text around video (e.g. more info section in YouTube) •Leverage tags – use tags liberally – optimize & de- optimize •Put your URL at the start of the description
  26. 26. Some YouTube Specific Tips Drive Interaction & Conversion • Add URLs to your descriptions • Create a branded channels • Leverage annotations to drive viewers to your other videos • Use watermarks, include website URL • Include measurable calls to action (coupons, promo codes) • Allow commenting & rating • Find related videos & comment with your video, only if relevant & useful
  27. 27. SEO TIPS & RECOMMENDATIONS More Thoughts & Tips
  28. 28. Measuring SEO – Is it Working? Measuring Success • Check Analytics Referrers • Check SERP rankings • Check YouTube Rankings Remember • Be patient • Have reasonable expectations • SEO is a balance • SEO is a continuous effort
  29. 29. Future of Video Search – Production Quality Keep in Mind the Future of Video Search 1. Speech recognition – Blinkx, Google Audio, Goog411 2. Image recognition – Google, DigitalSmiths 3. Facial recognition – VideoSurf, Google Why is this important? • Video Production quality • Audio quality • Scripts – keywords • Perhaps dup content is not an issue now, but… • Etc…
  30. 30. Focus on Quality and Engagement Lean Back vs. Lean Forward • quot;It's got to be 30 secquot; • My answer is always, quot;Let's tell the story first.“ • You don’t have to shout at the audience, their already watching Telling a story: • Engage customers • Educate customers (sit & fit experience) • Prominent branding • Point of differentiation • Entertain customers Sales increased 5X the company's old record
  31. 31. Other Tips for E-Commerce SEO
  32. 32. Keywords Research is Crucial to Success Think about the words users would type to find your pages, and make sure that your site actually includes those words within it.quot; (Google Guidelines) Do your research •Not everyone searches the same way •Tools – Google Search Insight – – “Related Searches” •Good keywords to append for products – Review – Demonstration – Test – Buy
  33. 33. Keyword Research – Google Search Insight
  34. 34. Long Tail Keyword Searches Longer search queries are becoming more popular YOY Facts: • The majority of searches are 1-3 keywords • But, queries with 4-8 keywords grew YOY - 3% to 20%. • Long tail keywords are: – Easier to rank for in organic search – Cheaper to buy for PPC – Typically result in higher conversion %
  35. 35. Other – SEO tips for E-Commerce Avoid Manufacturer Product Descriptions: • Resist the urge. Re-write descriptions - make unique. Allow your customers to comment and tag products with their own keywords. • Start ranking for slang keywords that you would have never thought of.. Don’t Use “View” or “Watch” • On your product category pages, link to the individual product videos with good anchor text – No - “View” or “watch video” – Yes – “Canon HF-10 Review Video” Links in Product Descriptions: • Create keyword rich links in product descriptions of one product to another
  36. 36. Questions? Mark R. Robertson Twitter: reelseo