7 Benefits of Proper Video Transcription

video woman watching video

Have you ever been looking at a video on YouTube and see the “CC” button or subtitles button at the bottom? What the heck is that? Closed captioning, friend! These are not just for your grandmother's television anymore. While this feature is great for keeping up with videos in sound-sensitive areas, did you know that transcriptions of your videos can actually help throttle your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts? In this piece, we’re going to look at the benefits of quality video transcription.  

woman watching video on train

Not just for your grandmother's television.

woman watching video

The Benefits of (Quality) Video Transcription

1. Video transcription helps the hearing impaired.

Closed-captioning was first developed to address the needs of the hearing impaired and continues to serve this purpose. When you make the effort to provide edited subtitles or closed-captioning on your videos, this not only opens up your video content to this community but also shows that you care about their ability to process your message.

2. Video transcription is great for low volume/volumeless content viewing.

We’ve all been in scenarios where we’d like to watch a video on a certain subject, but the situation doesn’t allow for external sound. Maybe we’re in a public place with no headphones, a loved one is sleeping nearby, or other sounds would mask the video’s audio. Quality subtitles allow your audience to consume your content in more situations.

3. Video transcripts are crawled by search engines.

When you provide a transcription of your video’s content, you’re essentially telling search engines what the video is about. This is true whether or not you provide the transcript in the subtitles/closed-captioning feature of the video player or simply listed in article-form on the same page of the featured content — both! We definitely recommend both.

4. Video transcript content can be repurposed.

Sometimes, sitting down and writing a new piece of content can be a headache (lucky for me, I actually enjoy it). When you’ve developed a full transcript from a well-developed video, you typically have more than enough material for several different types of content. Whether you want to structure the points and improve the language for an article, use the ideas for a podcast episode, or create a useful infographic from the material covered, you’re off to a great start. Different kinds of visitors have different media consumption preferences. Diversifying your content types will expand your audience reach.  

5. Video transcriptions can increase link-building opportunities.

When you feature an edited video transcript along with it’s accompanying video on a website, this allows you to link sections to other relevant pages on your website. Linking to other relevant pages on your own site can help visitors see you as a quality source for such content. You may also link to authoritative websites used as source material. This not only strengthens the authority of your own content but also can increase the likelihood that these authoritative sites may link back to you.

6. Video transcription can increase social engagement.

An SRT file is a video transcript file that contains time markers for when certain lines are spoken. For many videos on social media, especially Facebook, if this SRT file is installed, it can show the user what is being said within the video even before they interact with the video in their timeline. This preview can drastically increase the rates of user interaction with a video on social media.

7. Video transcripts can open your content to non-English speakers.

This point may sound way out in left field but bear with us. The accuracy of the translation systems is getting better — whether they’re built into web browsers or video players. When you create a solid transcript of your video content, it makes it easier for these programs to translate it into different languages for non-English speakers, thus expanding your audience.

YouTube Auto-Transcription Stinks

If you’re reading this and thinking, “I already have my videos set to be transcribed by YouTube, so I’m good to go,” the content of your videos is definitely not reaching its full potential. Why aren’t YouTube’s auto-transcriptions not good enough?

  • YouTube auto-transcriptions are often incorrect. If you’ve ever attempted to follow the auto-transcription of a YouTube video, you’ll notice that grammar is nearly non-existent. You’ll also notice that many words, especially industry-specific terminology and lingo, is almost always misspelled. For example, watch any video about SQL Server and you’ll think you were watching a view about “sequel server” — not a lucrative keyword.
  • YouTube auto-transcriptions provide a disjointed reading experience. Sentence structure is nearly an afterthought for auto-transcription. Following broken phrases as they come across your screen can make for a very unpleasant reading experience for anyone hoping to comprehend the content of a video.

Spiff Up Your Video Transcript

If you’re planning on featuring your video transcript in a text section on a page along with your video, you will want to clean up this text up a bit. Consider running the video transcript through a spelling and grammar checking service such as a Grammarly or the Hemmingway Editor. If the content of your video contains a variety of ideas, organize them into paragraphs with relevant headings. Breaking up thoughts in this way will make it easier on your reading audience to consume.


If you’re looking for many other great marketing tips to expand your brand, head over to the Brookside Studios Blog. We’re adding new articles several times a month on a wide variety of marketing subjects.

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