Video Search Optimization: 2024 Best Practices

In the ever-competitive world of digital marketing, video content has emerged as a cornerstone of effective strategies. As we stride into 2024, the importance of optimizing your video content for search engines has never been more pertinent. 

With video expected to make up over 82% of all internet traffic by the end of 2024, it’s clear that video search optimization (VSO) is an essential tool in any marketer’s arsenal.

Let’s dive deep into the best practices for video search optimization in 2024, ensuring your content not only reaches its intended audience but deeply engages and converts them.

Why We Suggest Optimizing Videos for Search

Rich Snippets and Featured Videos: Videos often appear in rich snippets or as featured content at the top of SERPs, providing immediate visibility and an enhanced click-through rate. Such placements are a testament to the power of well-optimized video content.

For example here is the the “how-to” search showing video’s SERP dominance in action: 

Voice Search and Video Results: With the rise of voice search, videos are increasingly presented as answers to voice queries, especially for how-to guides, tutorials, and other explanatory content.

Increased Engagement and Dwell Time: Videos inherently engage viewers, keeping them on the platform longer. This engagement signals to search engines the content’s value, further boosting its ranking potential.

Which Video Hosting Platform is Better to Use: YouTube vs. Self-Hosting

When it comes to enhancing your Search Engine Results Page (SERP) rankings with video content, both YouTube hosting and self-hosting prove to be effective strategies, albeit through different mechanisms and advantages. Understanding how each approach can impact your SERP performance is crucial for tailoring a video marketing strategy that aligns with your goals and resources.

YouTube Video Optimization

With over 2 billion logged-in monthly users, YouTube is not just a platform for video sharing; it’s an expansive search engine in its own right. Optimizing your video content for YouTube can dramatically increase your visibility and user engagement. Here are the key strategies:

1. Comprehensive Keyword Research

Begin with a robust keyword research process, incorporating both short and long-tail keywords. Tools like Google’s Keyword Planner and ahrefs can provide insights into search volume and competition levels.

2. Strategic Title and Description

Craft your titles and headlines to be both keyword-rich and compelling to click. Your video’s description should provide a clear overview of the video’s content and make use of relevant keywords without spamming.

3. Custom Thumbnails

Visual appeal counts. Design custom thumbnails that are both intriguing and reflective of the content, encouraging users to click through to your video.

4. Engage and Encourage Interactions

Prompt users to engage with your content by asking questions and encouraging comments. Higher engagement rates signal to YouTube that your content is valuable, boosting your visibility.

4. Watch Time Optimisation

Creating a video structure that fosters increased watch time is essential for enhancing your content’s performance. Watch time is a critical metric used by search engines and video hosting platforms to gauge the relevance and quality of video content.

Self-Hosted Video Optimization

A significant advantage of self-hosting your videos is the complete autonomy it grants over branding and cookie management, aspects that hosting through YouTube may somewhat limit.

Our main goal is to make the video crawlable and eligible to rank in video search features, all main rules can be found in Google’s Video SEO best practices guide 

For videos hosted on your own site or platform, different considerations come into play. 

Here are the essentials:

Public Accessibility: Ensure each video is hosted on a public webpage that is not blocked by robots.txt or noindex meta tags, allowing Google to find and index the page.

HTML Tags: Embed your video using appropriate HTML tags (<video>, <embed>, <iframe>, <object>) to help Google identify it more easily.

Video Sitemap: Submit a video sitemap to Google to facilitate easier discovery of your videos.

Avoid Lazy-Load for Primary Content: Ensure Google can view your videos without requiring user interactions like swiping or clicking.

Ensure Your Videos Can Be Indexed: Use structured data to describe your video content, ensuring consistency between the information in structured data and the actual video content.

Supported Video Encodings: Google can fetch and index a wide range of video file types including MP4, MOV, AVI, and more.

Stable URLs: Use stable URLs for video and thumbnail files to ensure Google can consistently access and index your content.

Maximizing Video's Impact for Better Search Visibility

To truly leverage your video content for optimal search visibility in 2024, integrate the following tactics into your strategy:

Continuously Analyze Performance

Make use of analytics tools available on platforms like YouTube and Google Analytics to track your video’s performance. Look for insights into views, engagement, and conversion rates, and use this data to refine your strategy.


Share your video across all possible channels—social media, email newsletters, and embeds on relevant blog posts—to maximize reach and engagement.

Social Media Highlights: Extract captivating clips or quotes from your video for social media posts, tagging any collaborators to broaden your reach. Consider compiling a “Top 10 Moments” blog post from the video and feature it in your newsletter, embedding the original video to boost views.

Tap Into Influencer Marketing

Partner with influencers to extend your content’s reach. Choose partners whose audience aligns with your target demographic for the best results.

Incorporating Video into Email Campaigns

Adding video to your email campaigns can significantly improve engagement and open rates. Strategically including the word “VIDEO” in email subject lines can surge open rates by an impressive margin, offering an instant boost to your content’s visibility.