I came across a recent article on Search Engine Land titled, "Video Is Now A Must-Have Feature For Competitive SEO," and wanted to share a few thoughts regarding the post. Its main argument is stated in the first sentence:
"This is the year in which we will see video grow from a 'frill' some businesses occasionally include on their websites, to an essential, competitive differentiator that drives SEO and increases brand identification."
Since it's already August, the author clearly sees this change happening in the very near future. However, I think this "change" is largely imagined. Since videos were integrated into Google search results pages three years ago, videos have been a weapon in the SEO professional's arsenal. Along with images, local search results, news stories, and other types of content that are blended into Google search results pages today, video represents another opportunity to get your business on the first page of results. As more and more people leverage video content, there is less and less opportunity as competition increases.
Does this mean you should give up on video? Not at all. Video is an engaging media format that can be an effective conversion method on your site. But video is far from a "must-have" for SEO success; as I said above, it is just another tool in a (long) list of SEO methods.
The article does offer some helpful advice for optimizing your video for search engines, however, so if you do choose to leverage video content, the article is definitely worth a read. Most importantly, the article highlights the three factors that impact video SEO:
- Video markup - The words and tags associated with the video.
- Video sitemaps - Video-specific sitemaps that instruct search engines on how to crawl your video content.
- Syndication - Posting your videos on other sites (e.g. YouTube, Facebook) to increase their influence and reach.
If you want your site to rule the video search results, keep the above elements in mind, as they are well accepted as key factors of video SEO. But don't let your videos (or lack thereof) keep you up at night.