Search engines can read. They read your website, determine what your content is, who is linking to your site, and how many times you use certain words. However, search engines cannot watch videos, look at pictures, or play your audio files. Here’s the dilemma: If you want customers to find your website, you have to optimize it for search engines to read it, but if you want potential customers to enjoy spending time on your website, you have to include content beyond text. For images, SEO strategists recommend including alt text that describe the image, using your website’s keywords. But what do you do for videos and audio files?
The SEO Friendly Solution: Transcription
If you’ve followed our audio marketing tips, it’s likely that you already have written a script for your audio file or video. When you decide to transcribe audio or video files, start with your script. Then, Take one of these approaches:
- Word for Word: Post your script exactly how it’s written. Without modifying any text. If you have a video or audio program with more than one person speaking, this might be the most efficient way to transcribe. If you have written your keywords into your audio, then you won’t need to worry about adding them into your website.
- Modified Script: Your audio script is written for the ear, not for the eye, so you might need to revise it before posting online. Focus on incorporating useful keywords and making readable for individuals who won’t be hearing the audio.
- Description: Like alt text describes images, you should describe the audio file on your website. While you may not be able to do this through HTML (yet), there are two approaches. First, you can write a description to caption your audio content. Unlike posting your script or a modified form of your script, this isn’t a true transcription. Rather, when you add the description, focus on the main point of the file being described: does it teach listeners how to do something? Introduce members of your team? Explain some difficult industry jargon? Write a few sentences about what your video does so that people who arrive at the page where it’s embedded will want to watch it. Think about it as writing a short blog about your audio. Second, you can give your file a keyword-loaded name. This way, search engines will be able to see the name of the file, even if they can't listen to it.
By transcribing audio, you’re adding SEO friendly content to your website while continuing to provide online visitors with the materials they’re requesting. Some other tips:
- Don’t try to “hide” your transcription by changing the color of the text. If you have a white background on your site, don’t put your transcription in white, also. This is will negatively impact your SEO scoring. It will also frustrate visitors who find your website through a search engine. When they arrive at your site, instead of seeing the content they found through search, they see a video and blank screen.
- Create great page titles. Whatever you mark with H1 Tags on your website is given additional power by search engines. Make sure your video titles contain relevant keywords whenever possible, so people who are searching can easily find your content.
- Make your content interesting, relevant, and always focused on a keyword. You wouldn’t write a blog about something completely unrelated to your business or employees. Why would you create a video in this way? By focusing on creating good content, instead of “going viral,” your videos and other audio might actually help online visitors to become customers. Focus on what your video is about, what need it meets, and how it fits into your website at large.
It is possible to get SEO credit by using audio and video files on your website. The secret to ensure search engines pick up this kind of content is transcribing it using one of the above methods. If you create great video or audio materials, your customers and prospects will take note. Make sure they can find your content using our Audio SEO strategies.