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Using Video Backlinks For Websites to Improve SEO and SERPS ratings

Inbound links (backlinks) to your videos are important for optimisation within Google universal SERPS. Here are some ideas and tips on how to develop backlinks to your videos. For the most part, these techniques can be used to develop backlinks to any site. Most of the techniques that work for linking strategy in general will work well for video search optimization as well. We’re not web gurus – though we know some people who are of course – but we do know how to make business video production work for business growth.

Video on YouTube

So, you’ve done the basics; you have your videos online, on YouTube or Vimeo perhaps so you’re and all ready to go. You wait, and wait…and wait. You check your search engine rankings and find there’s not really been a big change, not considering the way that everyone keeps saying that video gives you so much more SEO impact. Perhaps you’re missing a bit of jigsaw? Having video on your homepage will give you a 53 times better chance of being found by Google when someone knows they want your product or service, but doesn’t yet know you.

Backlinks to Your Video

There are other ways of improving your ranking and backlinks are worth considering. By getting links to your site and your videos, search engines will see the links and add them into your total score. There is never one simple fix for these things – in fact Google rates will be a bit of a black art for ever and a day to our way of thinking!

How do Backlinks to Your Video Work?

Google for instance takes a look at the page rank of the site that is linking to you to determine how important that link is, the higher their page rank, the more important the link.

How do you go about Getting Backlinks?

Firstly, there are a few important things to mention. Firstly, focus on white-hat and gray-hat SEO; you want to avoid spamming with your link strategy. With that in mind, make sure that you link directly to your video page, and be careful not to over submit developing links too fast. Patience really is a virtue because doing things too fast will make Google consider your actions to be unnatural, and you may get penalized. Also, try to get links from relevant website and webpages – the important thing here is relevance. If you are linking to a video about “how to dance the cha-cha-cha,” it would be best to link to your video from other dance and teaching related webpages.

Ideas for Getting Backlinks

Tell people about your videos.

Put out a small press release or email bloggers that might be interested in the video, someone is bound to link back to the video. Online forums are another place where you can spread the word, or LinkedIn can also be a great platform. Mention your video in Tweets and on Facebook wih a link back to the video off of a relevant keyword, and you should get some interest.
Press releases can alert others to new video content available on your site; but you do need to ensure the content in question is big enough a Press release, otherwise people will feel cheated. Have a look at some of the sites that allow free distribution of press releases like PRLeap, 1888PressReleases, 24-7PressRelease, and ClickPress. Be sure to include a link to the content in the press release as some bloggers and reporters will simply lift the press release and repost it somewhere else. It’s much the same principle as trying to get a Press release into print, provide all the information the reader needs to be able to use the material – the more complete the article the more likely it is to be used. Some of the sites will require a small fee for working links in the press releases, it could be worth the cost and is almost always a lot cheaper than standard advertising. If you can some repost activity, you will see some real benefit.

Do some legwork

Sometimes you are really the best person to get things done, afterall you know your produce or service best. So rather than outsourcing, try submitting your link to online directories, social bookmarking websites (I like to use onlywire.com), etc…yourself. Whether you do it by hand of find a piece of software that will help, such as Hootsuite or Tweetdeck, this is a crucial step in getting backlinks. There are both free and paid directories you can submit to. Since they all have some amount of page rank they will be links that are worth something and since the directories have a good amount of traffic you should get some of it as well.

Networking

Forums and blogs are great, but other sites that pertain specifically to the content of the video are even better. Generally these types of sites will have a higher page rank and will provide you with ‘heavier’ backlinks. The easiest way to get them is to email the webmaster of the site and introduce yourself, your site and your video content. Then ask if they would be willing to perhaps post about your video or a part of your article with a ‘Read more’ link that leads to your site. Often people are only too happy to have good quality and relevant content provided to them.
Link exchanges and reciprocal linking has had some bad press in the past so be sure to be selective of the sites you exchange links with make sure they have an equal or higher page rank than your page so that the links are weighed well. Also make sure that the site you are considering linking with is somehow relevant to your content.
Speaking of networking, by now I’m sure you’ve heard of social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace, etc. Well these are also places that you should link to your content from, whether from a profile for yourself, your company or on someone else’s it’s a way to get a backlink and possibly some traffic at the same time. Of course nowadays these are probably not very heavy backlinks any longer but will still count for something. And of course don’t forget real people networking; tell people face to face about your video and your articles, ask them to like them on your social media pages and to share your blogs.

Give Something Away to Get Something Back

Many places tell you to give something away or have something useful for the users. That’s actually a pretty good idea. If you already have a video about something you can probably turn it into an ebook as well. You can then take that ebook and offer it for free download from your site. If the information in the ebook is good it will generate some backlinks and traffic. Of course this is another way that requires you to do some work and then let others know about the ebook being available but the payout is well worth the work in the end if done properly. I am in two minds about this aspect, because often I feel cheated when I get the ‘free’ item since it doesn’t tell me anything really new, so be careful that you are sharing something of value.

Talk About What You’ve Got

If you allow for discussions and comments on your videos it can sometimes cause a very interesting discussion that will get picked up by other sites. Allowing others to comment on your videos and content is a great way to generate interest, interest spreads and turns into others linking to your site. If you’re concerned about untoward comments then on YouTube use the option to view comments and approve before they are displayed publically; better safe than sorry.

Social Bookmarking

Social bookmarking sites are also a good place for backlinks. If you have good content be sure to submit it to places like Digg, Technorati, Delicious, etc. These are places that can generate a lot of traffic and sometimes a good heavy backlink as well. Other places like StumbleUpon.com will let you submit your site for links as well.

Summary

Most linking strategies that work for SEO will work for Video SEO. However, no matter how you go about it you need to be sure you don’t get tagged as a spammer, because then many of your links will be useless and ignored by the search engines making it all a frustrating waste of effort. This is especially true if you are posting links to message areas, forums or in comments. You need to make sure that your link and content are relevant to the site or page in question that you put the link on, in many ways it’s only good manners!

Finally you will want to check those backlinks from time to time and see how they are, if they are still there and if they are worth anything; things do get changed or corrupted, so an occasional check is worthwhile. It amazes me how many links don’t work.

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