There’s no denying the increased popularity of YouTube over the past several years. Despite the continued efforts of Yahoo and the increased advertising campaigns for Microsoft’s Bing, many claim that YouTube has actually positioned itself as the #2 most used search engine in the world. But regardless of where YouTube ranks in terms of search engine popularity, videos are quickly becoming one of the strongest mediums to work with online and something every real estate agent across the country should start taking seriously.
Promoting your real estate business through video isn’t just something tech-savvy real estate agents participate in anymore. Believe it or not, filming a video for creative listing presentations, property showings, and neighborhood documentaries has almost become mandatory in the real estate business, as the increased brand exposure from YouTube and Vimeo channels is paying dividends for agents and brokers following suit.
So now that you understand the importance of real estate videos and you’ve taken that next step of filming yourself or your agents out in the field, what’s next? The logical and easy answer is to immediately upload them onto YouTube and simply hope for the best. But as with any form of web marketing, making sure each of your YouTube videos is adequately search engine optimized is critical for getting the most value out of each real estate video you post.
To help better understand how to SEO each of your YouTube videos, we’ve compiled a list of 5 simple must-follow steps of the YouTube optimization process:
1) Choose the right filename for your video. More often than not, people will use a generic name or use the date the video was shot for the filename of their video--which of course has no search engine optimization benefit whatsoever. Before you even upload your real estate video to YouTube, rename the video using keywords specific to real estate or what the video entails. The filename, or “Raw File”, of a YouTube video is not visible to users on the site; however, any video with keywords within the filename will be given search preference by YouTube.
2) Add a Keyword-Driven Title & Description. If you have a real estate blog or are at all familiar with search engine optimization basics, you likely know that adding a page title and Meta description with keywords to your blog page or website is a critical optimization concept. YouTube videos are certainly no different when it comes to titles and descriptions. Once your real estate video is uploaded, go to “Info and Settings” to input a “Title” and “Description” for your video and make sure to include relevant, real estate-related keywords!
3) Incorporate Keywords as Tags. Although YouTube has removed tags from showing up on the video watch page, it’s still best practice to include 4-6 relevant keyword tags for each video you post. Using video tags will help associate your real estate video with other similarly tagged videos, which can help show your video as a “Related Video” to other users.
4) Build a Strong YouTube Channel. If you’ve gone through the process of starting a brand new website, you’re well aware that it takes time and effort for your real estate website to achieve a high-level of authority and search ranking. YouTube channels are similar in that if you just started a YouTube channel, your videos may not automatically have a high ranking. However, as you upload more real estate videos and gain more subscribers, each of your videos will begin to rank higher in the YouTube search results, ultimately getting you more views and more exposure.
5) YouTube Video Link-Building. Link-building is one of the most important factors in achieving a high search ranking for a website. And just like with your real estate website, building quality links to your YouTube video is just as important when it comes to YouTube SEO. If you have a real estate web- or blog-site, write up a quick piece on your video while including a link back to YouTube. Also be sure to share your real estate video on all your social media accounts as well. Whatever you can do to get quality inbound links to your real estate video on YouTube, do it.
Joe Heath is a graduate of Indiana University and also holds a Graduate Certificate in Real Estate Development from Drexel University. After working as a Market Research Associate and writing published Market Snapshots for Hanley Wood Market Intelligence in Chicago, Joe now works as a Web Marketing Specialist and is a managing partner at Real Estate Web Creation, LLC.