How to Optimize Your Videos using Transcripts, Captions and Subtitles

Initially, the Internet was text-based but it is no longer the world of text and images. It now includes videos too. Online video is becoming one of the most popular forms of content on the internet. With the impressive growth rate of video, it is important to consider generating excellent video content for your business. According to a Cisco study, user-generated video usage will account for around 80-90% of internet traffic by 2019. If you want your video to be ideally optimized for the search engines, you need to adopt certain useful video marketing and SEO strategies.

Video Marketing

Why You Need Good Written Content for Your Video

As important as your videos is the written content under them in the form of transcript, captions or subtitles used to describe the video. There are three important reasons for creating unique video content.

  • It helps hearing impaired people enjoy the video.
  • Video transcripts are appealing and helpful to students and learners.
  • Most importantly, it is valuable from the point of view of video optimization, enabling the search engines to crawl the information provided in the content via tags, keywords and descriptions.

Using video transcripts increases the keyword diversity of your media content and helps it to appear on SERPs for multiple terms. Although the fundamentals of SEO and Video SEO are the same, the strategies used are different. Let us examine some of the best strategies.

Best Video SEO Strategies

  • Titles should be less than 66 characters, meta-descriptions under 166 characters and tags under 120 characters. The video title or the Meta description should match the long-tail key words.Use long-tail keywords relevant for a specific industry/topic to appeal to search engine crawlers. Remember that users who are looking for something specific usually search with long tail keywords rather than short tail ones. Creating a page which answers their specific problem is a good strategy.
  • Users, especially students prefer interactive videos which helps them stay focused and learn at their own pace. User engagement is a very important factor to assess the quality of your video. Google rewards videos that engage users for longer time periods. User engagement can be optimized by using apt captions and providing accurate transcripts. For every video, transcripts should be correct and complete to increase user engagement and visibility in SERPs.
  • Using multi-lingual subtitles attracts many non-English speakers and translated content is never considered duplicate by search engines. It improves the experience of users and also helps to rank your video on non-English search pages.
  • Avoid using YouTube’s auto caption function because it is erratic due to its speech recognition tool being influenced by accents, vocabulary and background noises. Create personalized captions and upload them yourself in your videos because it would appear more reliable and relevant to search engines.
  • Paste your transcripts in the description box available on YouTube and Vimeo. Descriptions are limited to 5000 characters, so pasting transcripts is possible only for shorter videos. For longer videos, transcriptions should be broken up into key phrases that contain your long-tail keywords.You can embed videos in a blog- post with the complete transcript.
  • Transcripts can be published using different ways such as through a video schema-mark up or enhanced with interactive properties. Interactive transcripts are useful and one of the popular forms of media consumption. The two important categories of interactive transcripts are– one which highlights specific words and the other which highlights entire paragraphs.Longer transcripts should be posted on a separate page and included in your video sitemap.
  • Using captions for deep linking is useful. Captions are a solution for hearing impaired people, but they will have to watch two streams of video at the same time- the rolling caption and the video. Deep linking of captions will increase the watch time of your video and also boost traffic to your website.
  • Longer videos will have longer transcripts. These transcripts can be successfully used to develop content for guides, blog posts, infographics, white papers and how to articles. Make sure that you add the embedded code for your YouTube at the beginning of the content. Each time you include something new, update your video sitemap.
  • When posting in YouTube, make sure that you select the video category carefully. This is to facilitate your video to be listed in category-specific search results.

Good video content will surely attract more users. Choosing a reliable search engine optimization company can help you improve your video content and also save considerable amount of time and expenses. Expert search engine optimizers will know how to optimize your video and transcripts for best performance on Google and other search engines.