Remember how at school watching a video was somehow more exciting than normal lessons?
Seeing someone light the Bunsen burner on a screen was far more enthralling than watching your teacher do it, although I have never been quite sure why. Whatever the reason, it is also true for adults, particularly for subjects people consider complicated.
Many of our prospective clients want to research the usefulness of search engine optimisation (SEO) but prefer to view a few videos rather than read relevant articles and visit forums.
So, here are my favourite few search engine optimisation videos – not necessarily the most complex or groundbreaking, but the ones I consider most accessible for those discovering the sector.
Stephanie Leffler, senior vice-president at Network Solutions, to MSNBC
In this video, Ms Leffler chats to MSNBC’s Consultant’s Corner, explaining the value of search engine optimisation for a variety of products.
“When you look at what people are doing out on the web, they are searching, that’s how they find websites.
“Coming up in those top slots, no matter whether you’re an ecommerce company or a local business providing services is very important. It is often the difference between success and failure.”
How does the Ms Leffler recommend a firm reach those top slots? Her top three criteria are good content, inbound links through relevant keywords, title-tags and meta-tags.
She also offers really explanatory descriptions and suggestions as to how these can be made to work.
Google’s Matt Cutts discussing snippets
Mr Cutts is one of the most active Googlites around and when he does offer advice, it is almost always worth watching.
“There’s a couple of important things you should know about site links. First off, there’s no money involved. Somebody always asks: ‘So did Starbucks pay money to get that?’ No, it is completely algorithmic.”
While this lengthy video is far from the most sophisticated example you’ll find, comprising as it does of a whiteboard, a Matt Cutts and a camera, it does present you with the facts from the horse’s mouth.
Although Google is understandably stingy with information on its algorithm, employees will often offer detailed explanations and advice to webmasters and search engine users.
Neutralize on the importance of SEO
Embedding disabled, so please go here
This is a well put together discussion of the importance of SEO to a firm, including some useful eye-tracking study information.
“Over the long term, search engine optimisation is going to deliver the bulk of traffic to your website. It works really well with paid search; paid search is great for tactical, flexible search engine presence.
“But in the long term, the bulk of your traffic should be delivered by search engine optimisation and natural search.”
One of the reasons I like this video is that it does not have a frantically enthusiastic host trying to sell the value of SEO, it is just a good explanation.
How to use Google video (great for grandparents!)
Okay, this video is badly produced; no sound, no commentary and a misleading title (‘How to use Google like a professional user’ is a little misleading. ‘Google tips for beginners’ may have been more appropriate).
However, it covers lots of little tricks that are not necessarily intuitive. Discovering local time in any city, converting sums, discovering current currency values, a host of useful tips a new user may not have discovered.
This is a good video to show to older family members who want to get the most out of search engines but have not spent much time online. It can also be good for potential clients who have never really ventured online themselves and do not realise just how much information people rely on the web to provide.
Having said that, as soon as I discover a video which is a bit more user-friendly and offers a commentary or music I shall probably start recommending that instead of this one.
Econsultancy’s Dr Dave Chaffey on site design mistakes
Dr Chaffey is the author of Econsultancy’s Web Design Best Practice Report and in this unprepossessing but hugely informative video he discusses a wide variety of errors a site can unwittingly commit.
“Often web design agencies are very skilled at doing the visual design and the technical design of the coding… But I think there are some basic rules of SEO that [if web design agencies know], they can do a better job for their clients.”
This video covers many different points and just touches on SEO but it is still an excellent overview of many of the main design pitfalls.
He also warns against giving too much weight to any one design element, ensuring visitors can see your trustworthiness and making sure every page has a clear goal which it achieves.
What do you think?
I am surprised actually at how little good quality video content YouTube offers on search engine optimisation, search marketing and all online promotional activity. Given the amount of written advice, you’d think there would be more.
What have I missed? Do you have any favourite search engine sector videos?