Videos are a realistic and efficient way of telling people a story and presenting them with your point of view. If you’ve already made an effort and expense trying to create a video, living it idle isn’t only a waste of money, but a waste of time too.
When creating videos, you need to think about captions as well. Captions allow your videos to have searchable keywords that search engines can use for ranking you. It’s the keywords that create traffic and allow you to rank higher on search engines. Without them, your rankings will easily plunge.
Therefore, let’s dive deeper into this article to learn more about how captions help improve your SEO rankings.
8 Ways Captions Improve SEO Rankings
1. Captions increase your search traffic
Video subtitles and captions are a textual representation of the content your video contains. As a general rule, search engines can’t watch videos or listen to them, but they can read the subtitles from them. Video subtitles allow search engines to integrate multimedia content and rank it accordingly.
For instance, if you look at a high-quality article, you’ll see that it’s ranked by the title and body content. This is how Google and other search engines will rank them. Videos, on the other hand, will not be visible to the search engine because they lack body content.
Statistics show surprising results by claiming that videos with subtitles have an increased watch duration by up to 38%. One of the most simple ways for fixing this is by including subtitles in your content.
After all, the rule of video duration is what increases search traffic. The longer someone watches your video, the more it’ll automatically be recommended to other people by Google and thus, increase your SEO ranking. Therefore, include captions and subtitles because they make a huge difference in how your video is being watched.
2. Closed captions allow Google to read your content
Whenever Google is going through your videos, it scans through external information, such as the video’s length, engagement rate, duration of the video viewed and more. Whenever videos don’t contain subtitles, this may be a loss for creators because their video content isn’t getting read.
Google can only read your content once you add subtitles. Otherwise, it’s going to be difficult to rank on Google. These subtitles send Google information based on the keywords given. After, you’ll be able to generate more traffic and your SEO ranking will go up.
3. Translating your videos
The huge advantage you receive from adding subtitles to your videos is the translation capabilities you can use. Think about one thing, the world doesn’t only speak English, but many languages that you’ve heard of. Statistics show that there are around 7,000 languages in the world.
If your videos are in English, you can make your subtitles in another language. In this case, the viewer doesn’t need to know English, but will still be able to understand the content in the video. In other words, your subtitles need to be used as a video translator. After all, if you are localizing content, it’ll automatically increase views.
Take yourself as an example, if you watch a video in a language you don’t know, the chances of you watching another video are low, so see it in the same way for your content.
4. Closed captions will rank your content higher
Closed captions are an excellent way for making your content easily searchable on search engines. Closed captions come from a text file that your video references play. The text files are easily readable by search engines and this way, they have more potential of ranking higher.
Comparing videos with subtitles versus those without, statistics show that engagement rates are much higher since more than 70% of videos are watched without sound. People are not always free, so they might be in public areas where it’s not allowed to watch videos with sound.
Therefore, the benefits of adding subtitles not only increase engagement rates, but make it possible to watch a video from anywhere.
5. Improves engagement levels and the user experience (UX)
On top of ranking higher on search engines, videos with captions allow you to improve the user experience and improve engagement levels. In short, Google will rank videos according to their performance and based on how engaging the video is. Engagement can be measured through likes, comments, shares and the duration they are viewed.
LinkedIn conducted a study and concluded that video engagement increases by 80% by adding subtitles. Additionally, it also contributes to your website’s UX. The user experience is measured through the following metrics:
- Session time
- The number of pages visited
- Bounce rates and more
By adding subtitles on your page, you can keep your audience hooked for a longer time and this is better for your SEO ranking.
6. Link building capabilities
Captions and subtitles are also useful for building links and providing space for your keywords. You can link words together on your site or from other sources. Additionally, transcripts can be made available on different types of landing pages that you can link to. This might either be a page on your site or from another source.
Moreover, when you increase links on your content, it’s better for you because it’ll increase your SEO ranking. You may ask how? Well, building up your links will not only allow Google to know more about your site’s structure, but to make it more simple for users to scroll through topics.
7. Improve off-page SEO rankings
Longer videos will increase the amount of captions and subtitles required in your video. Therefore, you can use the amount of text to break them up through your site’s pages. By incorporating long-form transcriptions, you are giving Google the chance to target additional keywords.
Each page that is transcribed should have separate SEO keyword strategies based on the topics that are discussed in the video. Transcriptions will add to your site’s size and even give you more internal cross-linking chances. All of these factors contribute to your SEO ranking and site in general.
8. Creates a sort of consistency and semantic density for your website pages
Subtitles and captions easily strengthen your SEO rankings based on generic and competitive keywords. Since subtitles create higher engagement rates, there might even be websites that’ll be interested in sharing your videos that they can either turn into emails or articles.
If one site does this, you have a free external link from there and this not only increases your website’s authority, but also increases your site’s SEO ranking
A Few Small Steps To Follow For Correctly Optimizing Your Video Subtitles And Captions For Higher SEO Rankings
Yes, we said it, if you want to correctly optimize your subtitles and captions, follow these recommendations from our side:
- Add your subtitles as a file, not burned-in the code: Google won’t ever be able to read your subtitles if they aren’t attached to your video as a file. You can add these files by uploading your subtitle file on WordPress or changing your HTML5 code.
- Choose the right platform: Videos and images are not the same because videos tend to consume more bandwidth compared to images. This not only affects your SEO ranking, but your loading times too. To reduce loading times, it’s best to use YouTube, Dailymotion, or any other video hosting platform you can think of.
- Optimize your video description and title: Regardless of where you upload your video, they need video descriptions and titles that adapt to your target keywords.
- Include an engaging thumbnail: 90% of the best videos have a high-engaging thumbnail. A thumbnail serves as a first impression and the more attractive it looks, the better it’ll be for your viewers. This is a type of strategy that many YouTubers will use for making people click on their videos. Therefore, release your creativity and try to create the most eye-appealing thumbnail you can.
The Importance Of Captions And Subtitles
Every time you create a video, you should add subtitles. Subtitles not only make your content more engaging, but also help make it more understandable for everyone across the world. Not everyone might speak the same language in the video, so it’s highly important every viewer understands what you are trying to say.
Also, subtitles are what can allow you to create articles from your video content. These articles can be optimized and it’ll help your site rank even higher, so it’s a win-win situation for you.