It’s no secret that when it comes to online content, video is one of the most powerful formats out there. From the early days of YouTube content creators becoming household names, to how TikTok influences everything from fashion to music trends, video is one of the best examples of how online content shapes the world offline. It not only affects how we consume content, but also how we search for it.
And if video impacts search, then that leaves us with a very important question; “are videos good for ecommerce SEO?”.
Our answer? Absolutely. Let’s dive in.
Video content has changed how people search
There’s a very simple reason why video has become so popular and such an important part of content marketing - users like and sometimes prefer videos. They’re easier to consume, and they often do a better job at illustrating a given topic. In 2018, your average consumer watched around 10 hours of online video per week; in 2022, that’s now 19 hours per week.
Consider a user searching for a how-to guide on a swimming technique, or for a recipe. It’s one thing to read that guide step-by-step, but another thing entirely to actually see it being done by a professional athlete or a well-known food blogger. In ecommerce, users may look for video reviews of a product to see what the product looks like hands-on, or a product care guide so they can better understand exactly what they should do.
The growth in popularity can also be attributed to just how much more video content we now consume online. Between streaming services like Netflix and Hulu, to video-first social platforms like TikTok, so much of the content we now consume online revolves around video. Technology from smartphones to televisions are focussed on making it easy to view video.
How video improves your SEO
So, how does all this impact your store as an ecommerce merchant? It’s quite simple - add video content to your store and strategy, and you’ll see the reward in CX, UX, and SEO.
These days, video is the number one form of media used in content strategy, overtaking even blogs. Marketers are increasingly moving over to video over written content, even with the challenges and additional resources it requires. The reason being that video is better for experience, and it’s what customers want to see. 72% of customers said they would prefer to learn about a product through video, and 84% have been convinced to buy something after watching a brand’s video.
You can use video to enrich the customer experience, by including relevant content on product pages, in blogs, and as part of your resources. By doing so, you’re adding to the user experience in a very positive way, and a better UX is going to be better for your store’s SEO. Moreover, if a user is searching with the intent to find video content without explicitly stating so in their search query, then your page will rank higher than those without. For certain topics, video is going to be the better format so adding more video to your store will benefit your SEO.
How to create good video content for SEO
Identify relevant topics and keywords
Every good SEO content strategy starts with looking for topics and keywords. Video content takes a lot more effort and time to produce and get right, therefore you want to ensure you’re creating it for some valuable topics and keywords.
Start by considering the kind of video content you could create around your products, and how your existing keywords may adapt to suit someone searching for a video. If you sell candles, then it may be “how to reuse candle jars” or “ideas for empty candle jars”. It may also focus on branded keywords, for example “[Product name] demo” or “how to use [product name]”.
Look at what videos already rank
When you want to know the best type of content to create to rank in search, it’s best to start by simply looking at what’s currently high ranking for a given keyword. This ties back into the effort that video creation can take, and focusing that effort where it’s going to produce the best results. After all, if you want to rank for “using an aeropress” but the majority of results are blog articles or forum posts then you probably wouldn’t create a video.
Look at the videos which do rank for keywords you’re considering. Note what they include in the video - the script, topics, demonstrations, etc. This will give a good indication of the videos users expect to see for that keyword, and then you can start to think about how you’d build on that content to make it even more useful.
Answer questions like you would with blogs
The best SEO-led blogs will answer some kind of question, and the same should apply to your video content. Think about the questions your target audience may have, and the kind of information and content that would be most relevant and useful to them.
Video created for the sake of trying to add video content to your store won’t be of much use. For it to rank, it needs to engage users and the best way to do that is to offer them some kind of solution to a question. That’s why we focus on how-to’s, product guides, reviews, demonstrations and so on - these are all useful to users.
Consider how videos may enhance user experience
Search engines focus on providing a great user experience. It’s how sites like Google maintain their user base, and continue to grow their market share. When a page loads quickly, has great content, and gives the user a satisfying answer to their query, that’s a great user experience and the pages that provide that will rank higher.
The best way to add video to your store is by adding it into key areas throughout your site that target user experience:
- How-to content to accompany written blogs
- Demonstration videos as part of product resources
- Product care or use instructions
- Product walkthrough videos on product pages
These are videos which will enhance your experience, by providing search users with useful, engaging content. That experience will in turn boost your SEO.
Implement SEO best practices
As with any kind of content, in order to make the most of its SEO potential you need to follow some best practices as you would with written or image content. Videos should be optimized similarly to the rest of your store’s content, paying special attention to:
- Add keywords into the video’s title and description to encourage engagement
- Optimize your meta description and title
- Add structured markup to make it easy for search engines to find your video content
- Ensure the rest of the page content is related to the video e.g. a product demo video on a product page.
Google themselves provide useful tips and advice on optimizing your video content for search, which can be found here.
Include transcripts and subtitles
Ever scrolled past a video and seen subtitles pop up, or wanted to have a transcript to reference later on? Adding these to your videos achieves a few very important things for your content. The first is by making your content more accessible, which can impact your store’s SEO and user experience. The more accessible your video is, the more people can view and engage with it. Transcripts have the added benefit of being more indexable by search engines as it’s text on the page - this can be hidden in an accordion menu if you want to minimize having big blocks of text on a given page.
The way we engage with video online has changed and shaped how we interact with the internet. By creating and adding videos to your store, you can enhance your customer experience with more engaging content. You can also start to rank for unique keywords and reach more potential customers who are looking for video content, giving you the edge over your competitors in SERPs.