3 Ways Adding Video to Your Blog Supercharges SEO
July 9, 2021
At Wistia, there’s one thing we know better than most: video works. While this obviously includes video series and video-centric content, video also tends to boost the performance of other types of content, like blogs.
In fact, in a recent audit, we found clear evidence that blog posts with videos outperform ones without them. Here are some key findings from our audit:
- Our content with video had 46.2% more pageviews on average than content without video.
- The average bounce rate for pages without video was 4.1% higher than pages with video.
- The average time on pages with video was 35 seconds higher.
Pageviews, bounce rate, and time on page all play a role in a blog’s search ranking potential. Therefore, based on these results, adding video to your blog will have a positive impact on search engine optimization (SEO).
To illustrate further, we’ll outline three reasons why including video in your blog content will help posts rank higher in searches.
1. More searchers will click on your blog posts
Your click-through rate (CTR) reports the percentage of people who click on a search engine results page (SERP) to visit the attached page on your website. Google and other search engines tend to prioritize posts with high CTRs because the metric is a sign that the content is relevant.
A video in a blog post will help boost the page’s CTR because search engines will often show a thumbnail of the clip in the SERP. This thumbnail will stand out against competing posts with text-only meta descriptions, and it’ll entice searchers to click on your post.
If your post is competing against other video content, be sure to create a compelling thumbnail to attract more clicks. For example, consider these search results for “how to build a marketing funnel.”
Two out of the three results feature thumbnails with a human face, bold text, and colorful images. The third option is simply a white image of a chart (from the actual video) that blends into the white background.
Think about it: Which one would you click?
Research shows you’d probably pick one of the two videos with human faces and other eye-catching imagery. These thumbnails grab your attention and also include text to indicate what the video is about. Someone seeing these search results can quickly determine if the video meets their needs.
A thumbnail might sound like a small detail, but it can play a big role in increasing blog post clicks. More people clicking on the SERP will drive your CTR and ultimately result in a higher rank.
“A thumbnail might sound like a small detail, but it can play a big role in increasing blog post clicks.”
2. Blog visitors will stay longer
How many times have you clicked on a blog post, spent 10 seconds scanning the page, and then hit the back button to find another option? No judgment here — we do it too!
Unfortunately, that click back can have an adverse effect on SEO. Time on page (how much time a user spends on a web page) and bounce rate (the percentage of visitors who enter the site and then leave after viewing only one page) can both negatively impact SEO.
- A high time on page generally indicates how engaged a user is, so search engines will highly rank web pages that people stay on for longer amounts of time.
- A high bounce rate generally indicates people aren’t finding the content helpful, so search engines will deprioritize posts that people abandon quickly.
So how can you drive up your average time on page while keeping your bounce rate low? You guessed it: Add video to your blog posts.
Our research shows that people spent, on average, 2.6x more time on pages with video than without. Simply put, videos encourage more engagement than written content on its own. If someone wants to know what a video is about, they can’t skim through it like a written piece of content. Instead, they have to watch it (at least in part) to really understand what it’s about.
“People spent, on average, 2.6x more time on pages with video than without.”
It’s easy to see how video could increase the amount of time people spend on your blog. If you include an interesting video that runs 5 to 10 minutes, that’s a solid increase in time that a user might stay on your page. Google and other search engines will recognize the bump in time spent on your page and likely reward your blog post with a higher rank.
To increase your time on page, think about high-value opportunities to add longer video content to some of your blog posts. For example, you might share a video tutorial or a webinar. You can also create microblog posts that set up a longer piece of video content, as we did for one of our webinars on remote video production tips.
Just make sure your video content is relevant to your audience. Site visitors won’t watch a long video that doesn’t include helpful information, and adding irrelevant content could cause them to avoid other videos on your site. Create video content that keeps your audience informed and engaged, so they spend more time on your blog post.
3. The backlink potential is higher
Backlinks are an important part of the SEO ecosystem. The more that other sites link back to your piece of content, the higher the search engines will rank that linked page.
Essentially, an extensive backlink profile helps search engines recognize that other sites find your content useful, which can help your blog rank higher. Adding video to your blog post can help you increase your backlink potential because it makes the post a more shareable form of content.
Remember: People find blog posts that include video more engaging than posts that don’t. If the user likes what they see in the video, they may read more and share it across their network for others to see.
“Remember: People find blog posts that include video more engaging than posts that don’t.”
To get more backlinks, try adding video content that helps solve a problem or that serves as a tutorial. We’ve done this for a lot of our video production content. Check out this example on how to color match your video backdrop.
“How-to” or “step-by-step” blog posts are especially engaging when paired with video. In many cases, videos help readers get more value from the text, as they provide a visual counterpart that can be easily followed along with. In addition, readers often find that the video is a simple solution that answers their questions or solves their problems. They may even share it with their networks if they find it valuable enough.
“’How-to’ or ‘step-by-step’ blog posts are especially engaging when paired with video.”
Beyond instructional posts, there are other ways to create complementary video content for your blog. For example, instead of writing out expert opinions, you could incorporate video snippets featuring trusted experts in your industry. If you include an excerpt from a longer interview, consider adding a full video version.
Creating engaging videos isn’t enough, though. To get those backlinks, you also need to offer readers a clear path for sharing your content. Make it as easy as possible for people to click and share. Set up social media buttons on blog post pages so readers can easily pass along your blog posts to their network.
Boost your blog’s SEO performance with video
It’s clear that brand videos don’t just entertain your audience — they also help your site’s content move up in search rankings. With more people clicking your content, spending time on your page, and sharing your content, you’ll be in a prime position to be discovered on the internet.