Why using multimedia will improve your SEO

No matter what their field is, all business website owners have a range of simple goals – to boost traffic, capture the audience’s attention and convert visitors into potential customers.  Whilst achieving these goals every webmaster needs to keep in line with Google’s guidelines and provide interesting, creative and unique content to help improve SEO performance.

Adding multimedia content is an excellent way of doing this. If you’re puzzling at the minefield of infographics, podcasts and more, here are some useful ways to help you maximise your use of multimedia.

Diverse content

Written content is a vital part of any web page – but it is not the sole or most important element. The role of a website is to convey information across to your audience, and when you have hundreds and thousands of pages competing for their attention, it’s important to do this quickly, efficiently and attractively.

Combining different types of media solutions together is an excellent way to get readers engaged – and keep their attention for longer. There are numerous different elements you can use such as video, audio, slideshows, infographics, quizzes, games and text, to convey different types of information in the most interesting and memorable way.

Visual interest

It’s no secret that having an attractive and easy to navigate page is essential if you want to capture the attention of your audience. Similarly, having a lengthy page of block text is unlikely to inspire readers to stay on your site for long – no matter how scintillating the content.  These days people move quickly through websites just like you scroll through your social media timeline, it’s often not the text that makes you stop but the images or video that catch your eye.

Add visual elements to a page, but use them carefully and wisely. Multimedia add-ons for the sake of it will not add much value to your site; instead, they should complement and enhance the other content, to help your audience get as much information and understanding as possible. Visual features can be used to highlight key points, expand on certain elements or provide clarification when needed.

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SEO advantages

Having a variety of media on your web page can assist on-page SEO by providing additional signals to Google including the length of time spent on page, clicks and shares. To maximise your use of multimedia, incorporate related keywords and  phrases within images, pdfs, video names and infographics to highlight them.  Great content goes hand in hand with multimedia and encourages sharing, it’s also a valuable tactic to incorporate a variety of different digital media types across a range of posts. Relying solely on text, perhaps with only a sprinkling of imagery, will have far less of an impact. Instead it’s useful to utilise a rich selection of varied and relevant media content – including podcasts, videos, graphics and more, as these demonstrate that you have made the effort to provide useful content for your visitors, these visitors will also be more likely to return in the future. You also have the added advantage of enabling your content to be found through search engines as well – for example, video or images may show up through separate searches and divert traffic back to your site.

What kind of multimedia to use

Different types of multimedia serve a variety of purposes, and it’s important to select the right form of media to suit your objectives.

Images add instant visual appeal and can help to illustrate an article effectively, in fact, it’s very much the industry standard for blog posts to contain a header image these days. It’s vital to use the right kind of images, though – an attractive but generic stock image will be worth far less to your site than a screenshot illustrating what a user should be experiencing, for instance.  Although don’t underestimate high-quality stock images that can be tweaked, edited and have text added to them.

Infographics are another form of media that help bridge the gap between written and visual content – especially when numbers are involved. They are highly popular at the moment and can run on their own or back up textual content.

Rather than simply presenting a series of dry, uninspiring graphs, text and charts, infographics combine an engaging and appealing narrative to grab attention and convey the essential points across quickly and are well shared across social media.

If you have a lot of visual content to share, then a slideshow may be a more effective presentation channel, as it often gives readers the option to view, download and save. This is especially helpful when considering mobile platforms, as it saves readers from having to wait for an image-heavy page to load when they may prefer to look at it later.  Slideshows are easy to use and these days very easy to set up on websites.

Audio and Video are both excellent ways of getting your message across – but as with everything else, it’s important to think about what to include and how to maximise these channels. Podcasts and music are shared in their millions and recordings from conferences and Google hangouts and webinars can prove popular.  Before making decisions on what you will create, know your target market and consider what type of content may add the most value.

Videos are no longer just about boring lengthy, uninspiring interviews, there are so many great pieces of software that can help you get started using graphics, basic animation and editing. A small investment with professionals can provide serious video marketings and sharing opportunities.  Dull sales videos will not do much to get the attention of your audience – instead, providing useful and rich content, quirky, funny, memorable videos or well thought out tips, advice and tutorials, is far more interesting.

Digital multimedia can come in so many shapes and sizes and can include text, graphics, video, animation, and sound in many different forms.  So when you write your next blog post or create a new page on your website consider who it is aimed and how it stands out from the other plain content on the web.  Don’t be the same as everyone else, make yours the site that visitors want to come back to and yours the content that people want to share.

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