Three Types of Content To Keep Off Your Website
December 31, 2014
Running a website is easy and inexpensive these days. With cheap domain names, hosting packages running under $5 per month and gigabytes of space and monthly data transfer, anyone can quickly get started with a new site and put their name and message out there. Better yet, user-friendly tools like WordPress and Joomla make it easy to go far beyond a few static pages and to create a full multimedia experience, adding audio and video content to your site to entertain and engage your visitors. With all the space and resources available to you through the average hosting package, however, it’s often better to store some of your content, such as video, on other sites and then display it on yours so your visitors can still see it.
Nowadays, it’s easy to create videos to share with others online and they’re a lot more attention grabbing than paragraphs of text. With gigabytes of space at your disposal, it’s easy to upload them to your site and link to them on a page. A better solution, however, is to upload them to sites like YouTube or Vimeo and then embed them within your pages like the one shown below.
Off-site hosting of streaming content like videos is a better solution for a few reasons.
- Sites like YouTube are designed and optimized especially for streaming video. This can mean a better viewing experience for your visitors. These sites have the server space and the bandwidth to accommodate videos hours in length and in multiple formats. There’s no need to worry about the size of your file or what folder it’s stored in on your site; just upload it to one of these site and then use the provided code to embed it within a page on your site. YouTube even offers tools to polish your video once it’s uploaded, adjusting colors, adding titles and so on.
- Using a video streaming site gives you a boost with the search engines as these professional sites maintain their own search engine optimization (SEO) and all their content, including video titles and descriptions are indexed by Google and other search providers. If you do a Google search on any given subject, notice the results include a tab especially for videos on that subject. If your video is hosted on a professional streaming site, it’s lkely to get a better showing here. Sites like YouTube are increasingly search engines in and of themselves as people specifically search for videos on subjects.
- Once you have that SEO boost, you can use it to point more people to your own website by including links in the video descriptions and even references to your business and website in the video itself. You can also point people to your own YouTube Channel or Vimeo Feed to see all the videos you’ve created and engage their interest even more. Both sites also maintain statistics on the number of times people have watched your videos.
- Backups of your own website go a bit smoother because you don’t have those tens or hundreds of megabytes of video to maintain and restore if necessary. The original videos can be archived once in a separate backup.
- Finally, in the event you do produce the next blockbuster video, you won’t have to worry about running up against the relatively limited resources of your hosting plan or server setup. All the traffic is coming from the other site – you’re just pointing people to it from your own site and other sites like Facebook.
If you’re a musician posting your own music online or a blogger creating your own podcast, you will want your visitors to be able to listen to your content through your website whenever they want. While the video streaming sites are sometimes used to host songs that have been made into videos with various backgrounds, there are also dedicated audio streaming sites that offer many of the same benefits.
SoundCloud is a popular site that hosts a variety of music and audio including new releases from professional artists, radio shows and audio blogs of various types. Just like with YouTube and Vimeo, users can upload their own content and link to it or embed it on other sites. While it might not provide the same SEO boost as the other sites, it does have many of the same benefits such as resource sharing and streaming optimization. Your content can also be made visible to other SoundCloud users for promotion and its embed code provides its own attractive player on your web page which can make your site look a little more professional.
Slides and Presentations
You created that 20-slide presentation for the conference and it was a big hit. Now you want to share it online for people who couldn’t make it or just want a copy. Presentations generally aren’t as demanding as audio and video and you could easily host it on your own site but there are still specialized sites that are made just for hosting your presentation and making it easily available.
Speaker Deck is a presentation-sharing website where you can upload your presentation in PDF format, embed it on your website and share it on other sites like Facebook and Twitter. The interface is simple and basic, providing the single statistic of how many times your presentation has been viewed and allowing you to enter a title and description. A sample of an embedded presentation is shown below.
SlideShare has a few more features and supports more formats including PowerPoint, OpenOffice and some video formats. It also provides detailed statistics of how many people have viewed your presentation, when and from where and whether they clicked Like. In addition to Facebook and Twitter, it enables users to share presentations on LinkedIn and Google+.
Sharing your presentations on other sites might not make as much of a difference in terms of resources but it does give your online delivery a more professional edge. Another advantage, if you upload the slides before presenting them to a live audience is that your presentation has some protection against the odd equipment failure. If your laptop or data storage fails for any reason, the presentation can be accessed from any computer that has Wi-Fi access.
You’re probably asking something like “But I’m paying so much every month for this hosting package? Can’t it handle this other content?”. Think of it like visiting your doctor. In many cases, your family doctor is perfectly capable of helping you with anything that comes up such as the yearly physical or occasional flu. In some cases, however, your doctor’s going to tell you to see a specialist who is better able to treat whatever’s going on. In this case your own website is like the General Practitioner who takes care of the every day stuff and the video streaming sites are like the specialist who has more in-depth expertise on a particular subject. Best of all, these specialists are free!
If you would like to know more about how to host your specific content online, please contact us through this website or by phone at (352) 572-2997.