Video transcripts and SEO

Video transcripts are a textual and linguistic representation of the content within a video and a simple way of creating captions for your Youtube videos. Search engines have been able to quickly digest this body of text for some time and now video transcripts are now being used as a featured snippet across search results on both desktop and mobile. Video transcripts act as a way to generate more traffic to your Youtube video, and this notion has been particularly prevalent in “how-to” searches.

Using Youtube video transcripts for SEO

To see this feature in action, simply type into the search bar “How to replace wiper blades” or any other kind of  “how-to” prompt. Often, the relevant segment of the video transcript is included underneath the thumbnail of the video or on its own, at the very top of the results. Considering that videos are often much more of a digestible display of instructional information than any other kind – it’s easy to see why Google has introduced this feature.

Video transcripts SEO Melbourne, Melbourne SEO

Google rolled out this feature on and off as test in July 2020, and now it seems a growing number of people have experienced it, indicating a wider implementation. This feature further allows businesses to take advantage of the internet’s second-largest search engine and leading video platform, by ensuring they always provide transcripts behind their videos. 

Video transcripts SEO Melbourne

Why you should use video transcripts

A study conducted by Liveclicker concluded that there was a 16 per cent increase in revenue earned by webpages with video transcripts compared to those without transcripts. After completing an SEO audit with Liveclicker that involved implementing and finessing video transcripts, spanx.com observed a visible rise in their clickthrough rates and video page views.  Liveclicker stated that “the uplift was likely related to increases in traffic through long-tail keyword searches resulting from matches in the transcripts.” The typical Youtube video has a title and a description, which leaves little information to be read by search engines. Transcripts are easily read by search engine bots and increase the chances of the video being indexed and weighted in a search, thus it is essential to provide a transcript behind your video if you want your content to stand out. 

Liveclicker video transcripts SEO Melbourne

Video transcription can also boost SEO through sustained engagement levels. Audiences tend to display sustained levels of engagement when there is an accompanying transcript. In fact, PLYmedia found that transcripts and captions increase online viewing by 40 per cent. This may be because viewers are trying to find a specific quote or piece of text they can use within their own work, speak a different language or they simply enjoy the ability to read the accompanying text as the video plays. The same research found that for videos with transcripts, 80 per cent more people watched the video for its full duration, which can suggest that these viewers were engaged and are likely to return for more content. This longer “dwell time” is valuable as user behaviour can assist in shaping Google algorithms, which in turn impacts SEO. Implementing video transcripts is also extremely beneficial for improved accessibility, you must give everyone the chance of engaging with your content – and video transcripts are one way of ensuring that your content is easily digestible to all. 

Tips for using video transcripts and boosting video SEO

Taking your transcript to the next level can be achieved by utilising common SEO methods such as considering key-words – you can use Youtube’s free video analytics tool to find out which key-words are the most effective for your target audience. Translating your transcripts into multiple languages, is also a sure way to reach a larger audience and a large opportunity for growth, depending on what your content covers and the location of your audience.

Another method of leveraging your video content is ensuring that your webpages are enriched with content so that it can be ranked within the different kinds of verticals on Google. The more frequently your business comes up in organic search, image search or video search – the more likely it is that you will generate traffic. E-commerce retailer eBags added several still images of videos to the bottom of various webpages within their website which resulted in the images being indexed and weighted by Google Images. From this, they experienced a 115 per cent uptick in traffic to their video pages.

eBags video SEO
eBags video from Google Image results

SEO Melbourne has implemented the use of video transcripts within video content on the SEO Melbourne Podcast Youtube channel. This is simply done by adding a complete transcript of the verbal video content into the description section of the uploading or uploaded video.

SEO Melbourne Podcast Youtube video transcript

Inserting your main keyword into the title is also a must-do for video SEO. The keyword should appear naturally within the title, and the title itself must be compelling enough for the viewer to know they will get what they came for, but also succinct enough for them to not get confused and deterred.

SEO Melbourne Podcast Youtube video title

In addition to this, repeating the title of your video within the description may also assist in boosting video SEO.

SEO Melbourne Podcast Youtube video description

Adding transcripts to your videos and ensuring the content itself looks great, is an extremely important feature and an asset to your business. If you create video content, then implementing video transcripts is certainly not something to be overlooked.

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