No matter what part of the globe people live on, if they want to search for a video on a particular topic, they usually turn to YouTube. That’s precisely why the video-hosting giant has become the world’s second-largest search engine, eclipsed only by its parent company Google in search queries.
YouTube didn’t become the behemoth it is through luck alone. Sure, they started as a video-sharing site that was mostly used by amateur videographers, but it’s not just any company that gets acquired by Google. The folks at YouTube make continuous improvements. More recently, these changes have made the service more useful to businesses and marketers.
In March 2015, YouTube introduced interactive cards – a feature meant to phase out annotations altogether. Like annotations, cards are designed to engage viewers. Whereas annotations only appear to desktop users, cards allow for engagement across all devices – mobile or desktop. With nearly 30 percent of worldwide Internet traffic coming from mobile devices, any feature that appears to viewers regardless of device means more reach and interaction with your audience. Plus, cards make taking action easy for the viewer (and that’s a win for everyone).
Using YouTube cards for business growth may seem daunting at first, but it’s actually pretty straightforward. You can access this feature under the “Cards” tab in your Video Editor. Cards can be added or edited at any time.
How do YouTube cards help business growth? Well, right now, YouTube offers six kinds of cards: playlist, video, associated website, merchandise, fundraising and fan funding. We’ll talk about the four types of cards that are most helpful to businesses: playlist, video, associated website and merchandise.
Don’t let YouTube suggest what your viewer watches next. Create a playlist card to keep your viewer engaged with your content. The longer an individual stays on your channel, the more chances you have to convince them to take another action. It also shows YouTube that your viewers find your content relevant and entertaining, which will improve your ranking in the search engine results and drive more organic traffic to your channel.
The video card takes your viewer to a specific video, which also works to keep your viewers engaged with your content and increases your YouTube authority.
Use the associated website card to drive individuals to a relevant landing page where they will find more information on the topic or be given the ability to make a purchase. Make sure your website is optimized so they know exactly what to do when they get there. Additionally, it will be important to ensure the call to action is aligned with the original goal and the content in the video.
YouTube allows you to link to approved merchandise retailers. Do so by clicking “create link.” You will then be prompted to insert the URL for your storefront. You could create a specific landing page or product to track how your viewers interact with your content.
Cards help guide your viewers to more of your content on and off of YouTube. Many companies use these cards as a call to action to nurture the relationship in hopes of pushing viewers down through the sales funnel and eventually turning them into a client.