How to do SEO on YouTube and web videos

And as we get, help our SEO and SEM strategies

The first website in the world where searches are carried out is Google, the second is YouTube. This social network has become a giant channel that can become the ideal speaker for almost any project.

More and more users are using YouTube. According to the 2019 IAB Spain study , YouTube is the second highest rated social network by users in Spain after WhatsApp. In addition, it is the 3rd social network in use after WhatsApp and Facebook.

In addition, it should be noted that YouTube is owned by Google and this brings many advantages when using this network as a digital marketing technique : we can use it as a social network, yes, but we can also take advantage of it both for SEO and SEM.

We have to bear in mind that we will surely not be right at the beginning. Remember that all Digital Marketing techniques have to be tested, tested and optimized in order to scale. This is why we always recommend keeping an open mind and not giving up when trying strategies. They may not come out correctly on the first try, but in the long run we will surely get good results, as long as we pay attention to the metrics and analytics!

Find the right keyword

As in every SEO project, finding the right keyword will be perfect to get more visits, followers and the long-awaited conversions. To do this, we can pull the Google Ads keyword tool, as is done in SEO projects on web pages. We explain it to you with hairs and signals in the following class:

But YouTube provides us with a couple of extra places to get ideas from searches carried out within the social network itself.

YouTube search ideas:

When searching for a term on YouTube we can verify that the same search engine gives us a series of ideas that normally correspond to popular search terms at that time. We can select as a keyword the one that best suits the general idea of ​​our video.

Keywords in the Youtube Analytics report

You can find this report at https://www.youtube.com/analytics , in the >>> coverage >>> traffic sources >>> Youtube search section. There will appear the words by which other users have found your videos.

This information is especially interesting, since it is giving you an idea of ​​what keywords activate your videos and how users behave in front of them. We will talk a little later about how to also use this information to optimize already published videos.

Using these 3 places we can already select the appropriate keyword. Remember that we want to appear in both YouTube and Google search results, so that the video receives as many visits as possible.

Make a correct video for SEO on YouTube

As always, we will recommend having the contents prepared before doing anything. And for a video marketing strategy it is important to have a good video. If we also want to use this video for SEM campaigns and to support the urls that we want to position on our website, this video must have a series of characteristics:

Script Tips

The mark must appear within the first 5 seconds of the video.

Why? Well, because this is going to be great for us if we want to do the kind of campaigns that YouTube forces you to watch for 5 seconds. In this way we will make sure that the user perceives our brand, not even for a moment.

If the videos are not going to be used for SEM, it is not necessary that the mark appears at the beginning of the video, it can leave later.

To achieve this we need:

  1. Make the general idea of ​​the video clear from the beginning and match the selected keyword .
  2. That immediately afterwards begin to talk about the main content without taking unnecessary detours.
  3. If the video is long, the content that will come out later is mentioned at the beginning.

Of course, these rules do not have to apply to all videos or to all channels: remember that each project is a world and that ideas that work in some projects do not work in others.

That the video is really useful, funny, or of interest to our audience.

Once the video is finished we want the user to interact within its website. We can add a call to action for users to “like” if they liked it or subscribe. Interaction is another key element, so we shouldn’t miss out on this opportunity.

It is true that better recorded and edited videos can greatly improve metrics, but it is possible that at the beginning of our strategy we should have more humble videos, since we surely do not have a high budget. Although the videos are not of the best quality, we can test the strategy and improve it in the future.

If the video is long, the better.

YouTube wants users to stay on its platform as long as possible. This is why if we make longer videos we may be rewarded by the almighty algorithm.

There are many students who think that YouTube is only popular with short videos, but this is not true. Long videos can give you very good results. However, do not fill the video with unnecessary content and try to ensure that the user stays in the video for as long as possible, constantly offering valuable information.

Necessary material

The issue is to seek “cost-result” efficiency, so that although having the most cutting-edge material would allow us to have more possibilities, the truth is that it is not necessary to kill flies with cannon shots to achieve the minimum desired quality. Surely the vast majority of necessary material you already have in your homes.

But you don’t have to lie either, we recommend a minimum investment in certain things, since you will see that it is not that expensive either, and it shows a lot in the result.

Basically, there are 3 elements that are essential for these videos to turn out well and your work to be comfortable:

  • A manually controllable FullHD camera.
  • A decent sound.
  • Correct lighting.

First, let’s talk about the camera

Currently we all have a minimally decent camera at home; be it a WebCam or a mobile phone. And many of you even have a camera, be it compact, DSLR or Mirrorless, capable of making video. Since the HD standard arrived years ago, the vast majority of these devices will have this option available, so do not suffer. As long as it’s FullHD , we’re doing fine.

What is important is to ensure that your device can be operated in “manual” or “Pro mode”, and by this we mean that you can deactivate automation options such as auto-focus, auto-white balance and self-exposure. This will prevent the camera from making strange movements or unwanted changes in light and color.

If you’re using a webcam, they generally tend to automate focus, balance, and exposure. Also, not all of them are FullHD. There are free webcam control programs or even some already incorporate their own software that allows them to do so, but honestly, we believe that it is the least recommended option. On the other hand, the smartphones that we have today usually come with very competent cameras as standard, some even incorporate the so-called “Pro Mode” in which they allow you to control all the parameters. And if this is not the case, with the help of certain Applications, ideal results can be achieved.

We recommend the app. free “Open Camera” on Android and “VSCO” on iPhone, in which you can control the balance, focus, exposure, ISO … and even the recording quality.

In the case of compact, DLSR or mirrorless cameras, these already usually come with a manual mode, try to learn the basic options of your model and use them, it is very worth it. Oh yeah! It is also important to have a tripod or mounting method for the camera you use, so that you can easily and comfortably place it in the desired position.
But do you know what differentiates a good video from a really bad one?

Sound

There are several things that affect sound quality, and just like cameras, you shouldn’t be afraid to figure out how to improve it.

First, where it is recorded has a lot to do with it . Echoes can be very annoying; In real life we ​​do not notice them since our brain counteracts them, but in a video they become very evident. The ideal would be to record in a not very spacious place to avoid very exaggerated echoes, but not in a hovel, where the reverberation will be very beast. And try to have decorative elements such as paintings, books, cushions … all that will help to dampen these echoes and reverberations. There are also foam panels that are glued to the walls to deaden the sound, they are not expensive, but they are not essential either.

Actually, the key is to use an external microphone. We recommend that you invest in a microphone, since it is not expensive and can give you very good results.

For example, for our videos we use a lavalier microphone that works with a direct mini-jack to the camera, but which would also be compatible with a smartphone that has a headphone jack and can also be plugged into a computer or tablet. Keep in mind that there are microphones of various types; some require batteries, some are wireless or bluetooth, or some must be connected to independent audio devices, which you will then have to synchronize during editing. Do some research on the options and make sure it’s compatible with your recording system, but do yourself a favor and invest in a microphone. You are really going to appreciate it and your viewers too.

And last but not least, to consider before recording is the lighting.

And it is that lighting is not only to make the plane look beautiful, but to make that camera that we mentioned before, can be used to its full potential. If we have a well-lit scene, that smartphone that suffers in low light, or that webcam that does not know how to focus, they will have it easier.

Obviously, the cheapest thing would be to opt for natural light in the room, but the big drawback is the lack of control: cloudy days, changes in the intensity of the sun and … it will seem silly, but sometimes you will have to record at night … And that’s when the problems come. So better find a place where you can control the light and prepare to use artificial lights for videos. The fluorescent lamps on the ceiling or the lamps that you have already placed at home seem to give enough light, but in general they will not work for you either by direction, nor by quality, nor by quantity of light. That is why I recommend that you get a couple of points of light that you can place and move freely.

It is important that the light is soft and filtered, to be able to easily modify the position of the light points, and although it seems silly, you must also take into account the heat they can generate.

Although you can try to use adjustable lamps or lamps that you have at home, our recommendation is that you do not be afraid to invest in some lights specifically for videos. For example, a couple of simple tripod LED panels are not that expensive and will pay off in the long run.

And now that we are clear about the materials we need, let’s see how to use them optimally.

Filming set

First recommendation, try to make your filming set fixed . This will save you having to assemble and recalibrate everything every time. But knowing that that is often complicated, if not nearly impossible, let’s try to design a set that is quick to replicate every time.

First choose the space carefully. The important thing here is to think about the space to place the camera, character and lights; that it works comfortably. And obviously that it represents your concept well.

Do you have a recipe channel? Maybe a kitchen … Do you dedicate yourself to company videos? An office could work.
The decoration is already your thing, you may be interested in placing decoration and elements of your brand visible in the background, or having the minimum elements in the image, but being meticulous is very important. You do not want to be that channel that put dirty clothes in the background or disorder in their videos, so review well before recording that everything is in its place. And also try not to overload with too much visual information, the important thing is the message.

Now it’s time to place the camera. Here the tripod is your best friend.

First, always be very clear about what your main shot is going to be, let’s call it a general shot . This should be as centered as possible, not tight to the margins and giving the subject enough air. We do this to have a versatile shot in editing, as we will see later.

We must avoid strange angles, always look for the vertical ones and that they are well leveled, and choose wisely what is seen in the plane. Try to keep, if possible, a minimum distance of 1m / 2m between the camera and the subject to avoid lens distortion and also that the subject is somewhat separated from the background so that the focus can be more precise and interesting.

And a tip, which will help you like how you look on camera more: Place the camera slightly above the subject’s eye line, even tilting it down a bit. With this we avoid the dreaded double chin and fattening effect of 5 kg that we always say we see when we see ourselves recorded.

And finally, it’s time to illuminate.

Here it will depend a lot on the space and the style of the video, but in general, we want to highlight the subject by illuminating it correctly and that the background is neither a dark nor super bright spot.

A good strategy if we use the 2 points of light that we have commented at the beginning, is to place a main light pointing at the subject at about 20-40º, at a distance similar to that of the camera, at a higher height than the camera and with some kind of diffusion. This will be the main light. And the other a little further away from the subject or if it is adjustable, with less intensity, to the opposite side, at about 45-60º, and pointing more towards the scene than at him directly. That is the fill light.

With the main light, more intense but diffused, not so lopsided and elevated, we managed to make the subject stand out from the background and avoid harsh and too directional shadows, but still maintain volume. And with the fill light, we managed to illuminate the background enough and also remove the possible shadow area that the main light could generate on the subject. It is about playing with the angulation, distance, power and diffusion of both lights until you find the style that you like. The important thing is to avoid harsh or very lopsided shadows and burned or underexposed areas.

It can also be illuminated with a single point of light, if your space is limited, taking advantage of the rebound from the walls if they are white or light in color. In this case it is better to focus the light as far as possible with the camera and raise it to the maximum intensity and height so that the bounce is very intense with the ceiling or wall. Also, keep in mind that you have to configure the camera to work with less light, and that will make you have to force the image more.

Tips during recording

Try to memorize your text! If you put a piece of paper next to you to read, you will notice that your gaze goes away. In addition, you will not be natural and you will lose contact with the user who is watching you. The only option to have a text read is the famous teleprompter used in television, which is a transparent glass that reflects the text from a screen right in front of the camera lens. And that option, although you can get by at home with mirrors and iPads, it is neither cheap nor simple.

But don’t worry, there is a very simple trick … and you can see it in any video on our YouTube channel . Divide your text into parts, record each part separately until you like how it turned out and then continue with the next one.Does that mean that every time I make a change of shot, I stop recording and change the position of the camera or the lens? ? Let’s see, it depends … If you have that option, either because it is an optics with variable zoom, or there is someone who is helping you in the recording and can move the camera, it is recommended. But what we recommend is a reframing in post-production. It is faster to shoot and less manipulation of the camera and light, thus avoiding variations in framing and lighting.

That is why it is important that the camera is at least FullHD, since the 1920x1080px they offer allows us to reframe a general shot to a medium shot without losing excessive quality. And of course, that the shot is perfectly focused. If you enlarge a wrongly focused plane, the error will be magnified. It is a very common practice among Youtubers and accepted for simple and fast productions.

If you plan to post the video on social networks that use vertical format, keep that in mind. Your tripod may allow you to shoot from the side, but if not, count on framing well centered and with enough space for the subject so that the reframing is good.

Editing tips

As there are a thousand types of editing programs, we will not go into details, but I do want to give a couple of tips to make your videos more enjoyable.

First, you should have already tried to get the right color and lighting out of the camera, but it never hurts to give the brightness, contrast, and levels a little tweak when editing. Above all, do not contrast too much or try to exaggerate the levels if the video has been dark. You will be destroying the image and when you upload the video to your YouTube channel it will be compressed and it will look even worse.

What you should check is that the whites look white, come on, that the color balance is well done. Depending on the program, there are different ways to achieve this, but almost all of them have a color temperature modification option that will be very useful.

First mount, then edit.

The main reason is that not all of us have the most powerful computers at home, and editing plans without retouching or color effects will make our computer work better. Edit first, it will be more agile and, in addition, if you have used the same lighting and camera parameters in all the planes, you will only have to retouch one plane and copy and paste (Ctrl + C and Ctrl + V) for the rest …

It can be edited without changing the plane value or scale.

That’s called a “jump-cut” and it’s something you see on YouTube constantly. It is about emptying the moments of breathing between paragraphs, or mistakes when reviewing the text, so that the speech is fluid but that the image remains the same, making a characteristic jump. It does not always work and in fact it often highlights the editing more than a change of plane, but it is a style that was born on YouTube and is widely accepted. However, it tends to make the speech quite frantic and is not ideal for all projects.

Use graphics.

They give a lot of value to the video and reinforce your message. They do not have to be animations made with After Effects, they can be simple screenshots of a floating graphic or text, but they help to:

  • Sort the content.
  • Highlight keywords.
  • Emphasize information.

Be very orderly.

Create folders to easily find the files, for example, a VIDEO folder with subfolders for each video you make, or a GENERIC GRAPHICS folder for those graphics that you will use in almost all videos, such as logos, graphic backgrounds, etc. … Keep in mind that order is part of an efficient workflow, and at the end of the day, this is what we are looking for on YouTube: efficiency.

Post the video correctly: Optimize for SEO

In addition to the video in question (which we will have prepared with the recommendations that we have noted above) we have to prepare a title, a description and some tags. These 3 elements must have the selected keyword. In addition, we will add other keywords related to the video in the tags.

We also recommend including the entry or page of our website that we want to enhance in the description, as well as other social networks or channels where users can follow us.

Improve the YouTube channel to create a good context.

You can both create a playlist with keywords on YouTube and improve the design and description of the channel. Both will give you a better context when it comes to enhancing the SEO of each video.

Add the video to your website.

A perfect idea, which will also improve the positioning of your websites, is to embed the video in the entry or page that you want to position with that keyword. This will improve both the SEO of your video and that of your landing page.

Link building on industry pages

But, in addition, you may want your video to appear in forums, communities, influencer websites or other types of websites in your sector. If you get this type of links, the positioning of your video will also improve.

Promote in newsletters and on other social networks

If you already have loyal users, you can include videos in your emails. For example, Mailchimp allows you to send YouTube videos and Gmail plays them within the same email.

In the case of other social networks, you have two options: Add the YouTube link or upload the video directly.

If you add the YouTube link, you will receive visits to the video and you may increase subscribers to the channel, but the video will not be played within the social network (as happens for example on Facebook).

You can then upload the video directly, to get more interaction within the social network. The selection of the strategy will depend on whether you want to promote the use of the YouTube channel or the social network in question.

If you do not have an information channel, but it is purely business, and you want to make video campaigns to sell your products and services, you may want to use this video to carry out Adwords campaigns.

Videos can be used in adwords video campaigns, such as TrueView in-stream, TrueView video Discovery, and bumper ads, as well as on the Display network.

A possible strategy:

You can select the video that we explained to you in step 1 for “in-stream” campaigns. If you have made the video correctly, as we have indicated, the user will be able to have a first contact with the brand in the first 5 seconds of the video.

These types of actions work especially well in re-marketing campaigns, where we show these videos to users who have previously visited our website.

We can get a lot of views in those first 5 seconds and best of all, we won’t have to pay unless the user clicks on the ad! This strategy can help us to generate brand image very economically.