Keep it organized: handling multiple videos on your website

Having an active video presence online is one of the best business strategies you can utilize these days. But as with gourmet food or a fine art collection, presentation is everything. Getting top-quality videos produced is a huge step, but you have to show them off for best effect in order to get maximum mileage from them. The time to start organizing things comes well before the first frame of video is shot. Ideally, you’ll do a lot of the groundwork yourself, since this is your project, your baby, and your business, and you know how you want things to look.

The first thing to do is take a good long look at your website. It must be optimized for video, so that the videos will play without a hitch no matter what device a visitor is using. Next, look at the layout of your site. Is the menu easy to find and navigate? More importantly, would it be easy for a first-time visitor to know what each page is for? If your main menu has a page labeled “About Us” and another designated as “Meet the Team”, which one do you think the visitor will go to first? If they opt for “Meet the Team” and decide they don’t need to bother with “About Us” will they miss valuable information, such as your core mission statement? Consider whether you can subcategorize pages that are redundant on the main menu. For example, you can clean up the main menu by removing “Meet the Team” and making it a subcategory on the “About Us” page.

Review your website carefully to ensure you're displaying your videos to best advantage

Review your website carefully to ensure you’re displaying your videos to best advantage

Making a list of the various pages on your website will help you determine how many videos you need, and what the content should be. It will also help you revamp your site if needed so that visitors can easily find what they want without going on a scavenger hunt.

Now that you’ve got a plan for reordering your website, you can start looking at where videos can be most effective. Going back to the above examples, you should decide where you’re going to use the “About Us” video. Will it be on the home page, used as a sort of introductory video, or will it be on the “About Us” page?  This is where the pre-production consultation with your video company can be useful. An objective outside opinion can help you clarify your needs. The storyboarding and scriptwriting processes also are useful. After seeing the initial script, you may decide the “About Us” video contains too much specific information to be useful as a “Welcome” video on the home page.

Suppose you decide you would like to do a series of videos highlighting your expertise in a certain area. You can certainly have a page specifically for these video tips (and make sure it’s clearly displayed on your main menu, rather than subcategorizing it), but consider whether you might also want to have a place for it on your home page as well. Your webmaster can help you rotate the content, so that every day a different tip video is found on the home page. Or, the videos can be shuffled so that each time a user loads the home page a new tip video shows up.

You may also want to consider organizing videos even further if you have several on one page. Having a hodgepodge of videos organized by loose criteria, such as having the most recent video go to the top of the queue, could be confusing and frustrating to the casual visitor. Even having an internal search engine might not be enough unless you organize the data on your videos so thoroughly that you include every possible relevant search term a visitor could come up with in the metadata.

Don't just throw your new videos onto your website. Plan carefully where they will go and how long you'll need them

Don’t just throw your new videos onto your website. Plan carefully where they will go and how long you’ll need them

Categorizing your videos on the page can be extremely useful. You may come up with broad topics under which each video will be filed according to relevance. Or, you could categorize them by the type of video, such as “Media Appearances” or “Product Tutorials”. If you do videos to post on your social media accounts, make sure they can be accessed from your website as well. If those social media videos include announcements such as new partnerships or a client project you have successfully completed, find a way to display those videos as prominently as possible on your site (preferably on your home page as well as a sub-page like “In The News”.

When sending out such videos as part of media releases, make sure to include links to your website—not only the page where that specific video is located, but also other pages which highlight your great video content. Marketing emails that include videos have a much higher click-through rate, but the real trick is to have an engaging end destination as your link.

It’s possible to have certain videos appear on more than one page on your site, but we suggest being very sparing about this. If you try to fit too many videos in multiple categories on your site you essentially increase clutter while decreasing impact for visitors. When you turn out a lot of videos, don’t feel that every one has to be on your website forever and always. It’s fine to remove older videos, especially if they have dated material. It’s better to keep your site fresh and relevant for visitors as opposed to trying to overwhelm them with an avalanche of media. Remember, if you have a YouTube or Vimeo channel, you can use them to house all of your older videos if you absolutely can’t bear the thought of sending them into the void of deleted content.

Hencar can help you come up with a plan to highlight your videos on your website. We’ll work with your web developers to give you exactly the content you want, the way you want it, with the most effective presentation.