Google announced that podcasts were going to start being indexed. For the first time, podcasts were going to appear in search results on Google.
While YouTube videos had been appearing in SERPs (Search Engine Results Page) long before this, it was the advancements in AI and language processing, along with Google’s recognition of the considerable popularity growth in podcasts, that brought about this change.
What did it mean for podcasters? Now we must consider how to best optimise our podcasts for SEO if we want to maximise our visibility, audience growth, and overall success.
Is your Podcast optimised for search engine rankings? Check out these 9 tips on how to boost your podcast’s ranking on search engines.
Your podcast needs a theme or a topic. Not only is it good for your listeners, but it will also help your SEO immensely. It will be much easier forGoogle to index your podcast if you have a clear topic.
When it comes to choosing a topic or a theme for your podcast, your podcast won’t do very well if it is based on a random topic that there is little or no interest in. To help you choose one, you can adopt a similar approach to how you would choose a blog topic. There are a host of tools out there to help you choose the topics that are going to rank well in search results.
Ubersuggest and SEMrush are two tools that you should definitely be using. By simply typing in a keyword or phrase that’s related to your podcast you can see what topics or themes people are searching for and you can plan your podcast around it.
Now that you have your topic or theme, using keywords is arguably the most useful element to get right to ensure your podcast is ranking in search results.
Keep an eye on what keywords are trending so you can plan upcoming episodes around them. It is also a great bonus to use keywords that have a high search volume but don’t necessarily have a lot of competition. When you are planning your episode, you should always have your keyword(s) in mind.
Your keyword(s) should be used in as many places as possible for best SEO practices:
Having a website for your podcast is essential for SEO rankings. The more ways Google can find your podcast, the better you will rank. There is also the benefit that if someone is not searching for a podcast at that time, they could still find your website on a results page and you could gain another listener and grow your following.
Whether you have an existing website where you want to dedicate a page to your podcast, or you prefer to create a standalone website solely for your podcast, you need to have one or the other. A unique website for your podcast is our recommendation as you can name your website so that it is directly related to your podcast. It also creates a unique URL specific to your podcast. Both are beneficial for your SEO.
If you don’t have a website yet, WordPress is a great place to get started, with its nearly unlimited customization, flexibility, affordability, and numerous tutorials out there.
Show notes make it clear exactly what your episode is about - to both search engines and your listeners.
They give you a better chance of appearing in search results. Even if it is not your keyword that has you appearing on the SERP, it could be a specific topic or idea you mention throughout your episode that gets you there. Also include timestamps for each topic or idea you discuss to be as clear as possible. Give yourself every opportunity to rank!
Along with your show notes, help Google even further to decipher what your podcast is about by including the transcript of your episode. Your transcript will cover everything you and/or your guests say during your podcast, so gives you the best opportunity to match what your audience is searching for.
Don’t worry about having to re-write your transcript from scratch – there are so many tools available (like descript or otter.ai) that will do it for you! It’s a good idea to go back through it afterwards yourself and edit out any filler words like “em” if the software doesn’t do it for you.
Check out our post "Podcast Transcription - why and how you should be doing it"
Another great way to boost your search rankings is to repurpose your podcast episodes into blog posts. Blogs and podcasts are very different forms of content that appeal to different types of target audiences. It will even be a case that for the same person, on a different day or at a different time, they will have a preference over whether they would want to read your content or listen to it.
Having a blog post to accompany your podcast episode will appeal and appear to whichever your audience is looking for. A potential listener can find your blog via your podcast or vice versa.
When repurposing your podcast into a blog post, don’t just use the transcript and call it a day. Instead, you should include the best parts of your episode. Take the time to edit your episode into a great blog post that will engage your readers and entice them to read more. Be sure to include your keywords too and your SEO will thank you for it.
The more places your podcast appears the better. You must be linking your podcast to social media. Whether is on IGTV, a tweet, or a LinkedIn post – if your podcast isn’t out there it won’t be ranked and founded by new listeners. Think about who your target audience is and what social media platforms they use.
If you have guests on the show, ask them to promote the episode to their audiences. More coverage drives stronger SEO. Be sure to make it easy for your guests to promote your podcast -let them know when the episode will be released and give them a simple press kit, with ready-made promotional material such as copy, audiograms, and episode quotes that they can post easily to their socials.
Have you considered making your podcast into a video podcast? Publishing your podcast in video format gives you additional leverage to show up on SERPs. You will appear in search results for both the podcast and video section of Google’s results page and also appear in searches on YouTube.
Check out our How to Launch a Video Podcast Guide here!
Don’t be shy. Ask your audience or third-party sites to review your podcast. The more your podcast is loved and the more credibility it has, the higher it is going to rank in search results. Google places a lot of emphasis on reviews so it is always a good idea for SEO to have as many as you can.
Follow these 9 tips and your podcast is guaranteed to rank higher on search engine results pages.
Keep in mind that search engine optimisation isn’t the only way to grow your podcast, check out our 10 Best Podcast Promotion and Marketing Strategies to get your podcast out there and into the ears of your audience.
If you need assistance with running your podcast, contact us here at Zorbiant.