As Google becomes more and more advanced, it enables various types of media to shine and come to the forefront. One of the best examples of this is podcasts. Podcasts are listened to by hundreds of thousands of people daily. However, there are very few SEO consultants who would consider them to be direct SEO assets that could help you rank in SERPs.
Podcasting is more of a means of expression, promotion, and networking. It could help drive some traffic, but it doesn’t help with organic searches. However, many are predicting that this can change. Google has been hinting at introducing SEO to podcasts for years, and in May of 2019, it was finally announced that podcasts would be indexed. While this is exciting for many of us, it now brings an additional benefit for podcast creators – SEO.
Podcasts are slowly but surely making their way into organic search results. They might be the next big thing for ranking since videos made their way into SERPs. It is essential to understand how the upcoming podcast “revolution” can benefit you.
Why All the Hype?
Many of us have been listening to podcasts for years. It is the perfect way to make the best of your commute to work or learn something while tidying the house. Why the commotion all of a sudden? It is true that podcasts have been around since 2004. However, they were never displayed in search results. Why did it take over a decade to rank one of the most popular mediums on the internet?
The answer is simple – technology. The last couple of years have proven to be very fruitful for a lot of Google’s projects. Advancements in AI and natural language processing have come a long way, a great example of this is the BERT update. While BERT’s main focus was not on analyzing verbal speech, it shows how far AI has come in interpreting language. Google is gaining the ability to “understand” verbalized keywords in podcasts, videos, and other forms of audio. With the new advancements, Google is looking to make the content of these podcasts more available for users.
How Can This Affect Organic Results?
As of May 2019, Google allows people to apply SEO to their podcasts. With the new update, Google searches for specific podcasts will not only show up the page of that podcast, but also a playable list of episodes. People can simply hit play and enjoy their favourite topics. Any SEO expert can tell you that this focus on podcasts is a step in the right direction. It opens the doors for creators to reach a bigger audience with their content.
Potential for Creators and Businesses
With so much innovation, many are predicting how podcasts will show up on SERPs. The closest thing available for comparison is the recent video update. Podcasts will probably have their own designated spot on pages. This will enable great content to pop up and reach a wider audience.
There is also news of users being able to find the content they are looking for with voice searches. Imagine the convenience of Google taking you to a timestamp in a podcast that explains your query. Thanks to the constant progress in natural language learning, people will get information from professionals faster than ever before.
As Google keeps innovating and making life easier for its users, it is up to SEO experts to anticipate changes and adapt. Knowing what factors can help you rank in the future is a great way to keep ahead of the competition and get a head start.
As we wait to see what newer updates will bring, it is up to us to prepare for the effects it can have on SEO analysis and optimization. If you wish to start enjoying good results for your business faster, don’t hesitate to contact me. I’d love to discuss your marketing strategy and help in any way I can.
Rob Dunford is a Marketing Consultant in the Great Toronto Area with over 20 years of experience in implementing marketing plans for small businesses.