Podcasting has been growing in popularity over the past few years. Companies like Anchor (owned by Spotify) encourage people to start podcasts and earn money through monetization.
Podcast search interest over time:
Luckily, you can use plenty of SEO techniques to gain the visibility you need to reach more listeners and make your podcast even more successful.
One of the best ways to make your podcast searchable by major search engines is by using Podcast SEO or optimizing your podcast to appear in search engine results pages (SERPs).
Preparing your podcast for search engines can be quite a tedious task. It often takes a lot of time and attention to detail.
In this article, we’ll look at several steps you can take to improve the searchability of your show and learn how to rank your podcast in search engines like Google.
Podcast SEO is a technical approach to ranking a Podcast show on Google. You can achieve success in Podcast SEO by adhering to several search engine guidelines and general best practices for the web.
Creating great content brings listeners.
Creating great content is essential. By focusing on quality over quantity, you’ll attract a loyal audience that looks forward to hearing your podcast every week and shares your show with others who might enjoy it as well.
Create conversations through call-in topics and play requests: While it’s good for a small percentage of listeners, most people listen to podcasts at their convenience—meaning they choose when and where they listen.
Create a website or blog associated with your podcast
Making your podcast visible online is essential if you want people to hear it. After all, how else are they going to find out about it? Create a website or a simple landing page where people can learn more about your podcast. Make sure it’s easy to listen, share and subscribe on whichever platforms they use.
Use your show’s name as your domain.
This is a straightforward way to ensure that people looking for your show will easily find it. Use your show’s name, with or without podcast tacked on, as your domain. (Just be sure that it’s not taken already.)
If you want people to find you with an easy-to-remember short URL, pick a phrase from your podcast name or episode titles and turn it into a new domain.
Add show details on your website.
Adding show details like your episode list and show description on your website lets search engines crawl your content for keywords. This practice is called search engine optimization (SEO).
If you want search engines to understand what you do, and include your podcast page in results when someone searches for terms related to your show, then make sure all of that information is included on a page separate from where you post your episodes.
Get keywords (topics) right
Use Keyword Research Tools. Once you’ve decided on your topic and angle, it’s time to do some keyword research.
The right keywords can make a huge difference because they help people find your content and because they can influence how much (or little) traffic you get from search engines.
They can also impact whether potential clients click on your link when doing a Google search.
You can use keyword research tools like Ahrefs, SEMrush, and Google Keyword Planner (FREE).
Title your podcast episode
The first thing that you need to do when creating your podcast makes sure that your episode titles are catchy and contain relevant keywords.
This will help listeners find you while searching through search engines, but it also can help with Podcast SEO later on. You want people who hear your podcast episode to easily find it in search engines later.
Ensure that each title contains relevant keywords that people might use when looking for content related to your niche.
For example, if you have a vegan cooking show, then make sure that your titles include words like vegan or cooking (it doesn’t matter if these words appear in context because they still could get picked up by a search engine).
For some inspiration, check out what other podcasts in your niche are doing with their titles. Try to incorporate their methods into yours.
Add a transcript
A transcript allows search engines to understand your audio file and provides context for users who can’t listen or don’t have time to listen.
A transcript is essential if you want your podcast—or an episode of your podcast—to rank well in search results. Without a transcript, Google doesn’t know what you talked about or can only make assumptions based on your title and description alone.
Transcribe your episodes before publishing them by hand or use speech-recognition software to generate text automatically; there are many options available that range from free to paid.
Remember: As with all things Podcast SEO, it’s about putting in effort over time. You won’t start ranking at #1 overnight (if ever), but give it enough time and keep up with these basics. Within a few months, you’ll see improvements as Google continues adapting its algorithm to include more audio content into searches.
Understand podcast RSS feeds
An RSS feed, or Simple Syndication, is a special file that makes it easy for people (like Google, iTunes, etc.) to see when new episodes of your podcast are published.
A free service like FeedBurner can help manage podcasts with multiple hosts and grow audience engagement at no cost.
Services like SoundCloud and Anchor would automatically generate RSS feeds for your podcast shows.
And if you’re running a WordPress website, Seriously Simple Podcasting by Castos would let you host and create RSS feeds manually.
Get links from popular sites.
Chances are, if you’re starting a podcast, you’re probably looking for an audience, and one of the best ways to do that is by establishing a relationship with other popular sites.
Request that those sites link back to your site in exchange for linking back to theirs; it’s good for Podcast SEO.
There’s no harm in posting your podcast links to nice-specific subreddits as well.
Get listed on other websites.
Just getting a podcast listed on iTunes is only half of what it takes. You need to spread that word about your show far and wide, especially if you want to grow an audience.
If there are other sites that people who would listen to your podcast might use, it’s worth considering getting a listing there as well.
Podcast directories to consider
Here’s a list of podcast directories where you can connect your podcast show’s RSS feed for better SEO and search engine visibility.
- Apple Podcasts
- Google Podcasts
- Pandora (US)
- Podcast Addict
- Overcast (Popular iOS App)
- Laughable (Comedy podcasts)
- YouTube (Convert to MP4, upload, and create playlist)
Create social media accounts
If you don’t already have a social media presence, setting up pages like Facebook and Instagram can help your listeners find your podcast. And once they do, they can follow along with updates as new episodes are released.
Collaborate with others
If you have connections, try reaching out to them and working with them on something. This could mean guesting on their podcast or sharing a similar audience.
They’ll help you with exposure, and if things go well, then maybe they will return that favor down the road too.
Be honest and make sure your pitch is short, concise, and full of value. There is no better way to cultivate trust than by being helpful first before asking for anything in return.
Hire someone who knows Podcast SEO and SEM.
Podcast SEO (search engine optimization) and SEM (search engine marketing) are different disciplines.
SEO is about getting your site into search engines; SEM is about promoting your business once it’s already there.
While both are important, picking one person for each task is critical, as those marketing tasks require entirely different skill sets.
Having a solid SEO consultant on board can make all of the difference for your podcast as people start searching for it.
Getting your podcast ranked on search engines takes effort—but it’s worth doing if you want new listeners or a bigger audience. Success is definite if you choose your keywords carefully and engage with your audience consistently. Podcast SEO isn’t a tough nut to crack. Good luck!
Need help improving your podcast’s search presence? Connect with me today and I’ll improve your podcast SEO strategy.