Videos are difficult and expensive to produce. But the marketing benefits of high-production-value videos are tempting and measurable. Video can make your site or product go through the roof in terms of traffic and overall visibility. So you need videos. But if your videos aren’t popping up in search results, what can you do? Help the search engines find your videos with a video sitemap.
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What Are Video Sitemaps?
First, if you don’t already, you should know what a regular sitemap is. You can think of sitemaps as a literal “map” of your site. A sitemap is basically a structured listing of all your web pages in a format that’s most easily digestible for search engines. It’s like giving the search engine a helping hand in finding all of the content of your site.
Sitemaps are a pain to generate manually. That’s why there are WordPress plugins to help you. These plugins can generate the sitemap automatically, saving you hours of hard labor.
A video sitemap lists all of the pages of your site that contain videos. All you need to do is embed the video properly on your pages and/or posts, and the plugin will crawl your site to generate the video sitemap.
Using Video Sitemap Plugins
Here is a short list of video sitemap plugins you may want to try out on your site:
- Sitemap Generator: This WordPress plugin creates standard sitemaps in the free version and is well reviewed by users in general. The video sitemap feature comes with the paid version of the plugin.
- YouTube Video Sitemap Generator: This free plugin solution is favorably reviewed, but it hasn’t been updated in over four years. It may be abandoned by the developer. Use with caution.
- Yoast Video SEO: probably the best choice for small business purposes, the Yoast Video SEO plugin is a paid plugin that lets you use YouTube as well as Wistia and Vimeo videos for your sitemap.
Having a video sitemap greatly improves your chances of getting better video search results. But, make sure the rest of your SEO game is solid, and you’ll be giving your site a good chance of ranking well.