YouTube is one of the internet's most handy and efficient video-hosting platforms, and as such, you might be using it to house your company's videos on and/or off your website. However, it does employ a number of disguised features designed to drive traffic to YouTube itself rather than your website. Luckily, there are ways to combat these features and ensure that your hosted videos aren't driving traffic to anywhere you don't want them to.
Assuming your videos are embedded on your website (if they aren't - get that done ASAP), you'll want to ensure that the HTML embed code of the video is optimized such that YouTube's suggested videos panel doesn't display itself at the end of your video. If your embed code isn't optimized properly, viewers will see a group of popups for related videos, and there's no concrete way to ensure that those videos will belong to you. Furthermore, clicking on these links will take the viewer to YouTube itself, meaning they're spending less time on your website. At worst, this may even lead your viewers to videos that belong to your competitors! Having the proper embed code will ensure that viewers aren't led away away from your page and onto videos that don't belong to you or your company. Thankfully, there is an easy way to accomplish this. See this blog post: https://www.davideocompany.com/blog/take-control-of-your-youtube-videos
But the above information presents a fairly controversial revelation: it may just be disadvantageous to include the YouTube icon as part of your outbound social media links. Let's clarify. If your videos are already hosted on YouTube, an outbound link to them already exists in the player of the embedded video. This means that clicking on the link will open a new tab to the same video, except that viewers are now on YouTube's website. That's one risk you take in viewers being led away from your website.
Having another clickable link to your YouTube page is yet another opportunity for viewers to be led away, ESPECIALLY if all the videos on your channel are already hosted somewhere on your website. The player already communicates to your clients that your videos are hosted on YouTube, meaning you must have a channel to visit. The extra embedded link, while nice to see among other relevant social media icons, is just superfluous.
But then, what is exactly is the point of having a YouTube page at all? We're certainly not arguing that YouTube pages should be done away with entirely. If you have legacy content that maybe doesn't hold up to today's HD standards, it's an excellent idea to store those on your YouTube page and leave only your best on your website. Speaking from experience, this is likely one of the most appropriate uses of a YouTube page for a business, especially if you're part of a videography company like us. Also, don't forget that YouTube has its own search engine which millions of people use everyday. Having a landing page where potential clients can be led to your website is a no-brainer, but that stepping-stone quality is the most important part of the channel. Your primary objective should be to lead those YouTube searchers to your website! It is still, however, important to be wary of the potential for viewers to be led away using YouTube embedded players or a YouTube icon in your social media links.
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