YouTube is the Second Largest Search Engine.
People go straight to YouTube, looking for content. In addition, content on YouTube filters into Google Video Search and Google Video Results on the “All” results page, but YouTube searches themselves are increasingly valuable.
Is your Brand Utilizing YouTube Properly?
YouTube Channels Matter
You definitely need a YouTube Channel, and that Channel should be optimized on your name. When you are uploading videos, you want to make certain that people looking for you find your official page. (Yes you can create multiple YouTube Channels, but how and why you’d do that is a more advanced topic).
Your Name, images, description, all these things matter. Setting up your Brand Account is critical if you want to share access with others, or separate your professional and business life, and you can learn about Brand Accounts from Google, Manage your Brand Account.
YouTube Video Optimization Matters
If you are competing on a competitive generic phrase, you can spend endless hours working on learning SEO both on your website and on YouTube as a platform. For Basics, you want to focus on the core areas of ranking:
- Use the Brand Keyword in the Title
- Compelling Thumbnail and Title that encourages people to click on your video
- Say Your Target Keyword (so it gets transcribed)
- Invite people to comment and subscribe in the video
- Ask People to Subscribe to the channel
- Promote Your Video to get Views (on your Blog, on Twitter, in your Email Signature, everywhere)
YouTube Can and Will Drive Quality Traffic
YouTube gets people looking for entertainment and information. If your video offers either, it’s a great way to promote your brand, and a great way to engage with your customers, clients, and prospects.
When I started in SEO, everyone wanted a silver bullet. As the years passed, people still want a silver bullet, but more and more clients and companies realize that SEO is part of the web site design process, not a bolt on service. Sure you can do bolt-on SEO spamming, but it’s really expensive, time consuming, and only worthwhile for very wealthy companies in hyper competitive areas.
I saw another business blogger talking about Promoting Your Business For Free, and there is a discussion of business tools like blogs and press releases, and using social media to get word out, but not a word about SEO. What’s a shame is every piece of advice he has on that article is good for someone doing SEO. Add a little bit of ideas on keyword research, focusing on the topics your potential customers are searching for, and you’d have the basics for writing SEO-friendly copy without getting into the details of keyword density and emphasis.
A press release and a spider-friendly “landing page” aren’t so dissimilar, and it amazes me that to this day there isn’t anyone really offering the combined SEO/PR service (hint, hint, keep an eye on my site, I’m working with a PR firm to put an offering together). Twitter is a great way to reach like minded individuals, but not necessarily a great way to build sustainable traffic.
So, anyone who is curious what it means when they read/hear about a website being spiderable. When a search engine crawls your site, it grabs the HTML and starts to make sense of it. Presumably the modern search engine could grab your CSS and render it internally to figure out what goes where to the user, but that’s a lot of work. Grabbing CSS files and rendering them are probably just looking for hidden links (where the link isn’t visible because of CSS code) and other spam-detection, probably not a lot of making sense out of your site structure.
If you aren’t using Lynx, the text based browser to review, you can do it online with the SEO Browser. With modern CSS based layouts, there is no reason to have your content buried, since you can position things where you want. In the old days of tables, many designers put most of the structure of the site in the header, so the content instead was down at the bottom. Early spiders had download caps of each page, so if your content was pushed down, it never got read.
Generally, if your site is big and important, the spiders/engines spend time figuring you out. If you are a small time website operator, why make it difficult? Structure your website so it would make sense in a 1997 Era Browser, with Titles, H1/H2/H3s, and Paragraphs, and the spiders will understand your site. You can always move your pretty little design above it with CSS.