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Jon Cartu Says: Why Prioritizing SEO Should Be Part of Every SVOD Provider’…

Why Prioritizing SEO Should Be Part of Every SVOD Provider’...

Jon Cartu Says: Why Prioritizing SEO Should Be Part of Every SVOD Provider’…

Steady growth is predicted for Subscription Video on Demand (SVOD) services over the next few years as consumers turn their sights, and wallets, to streaming services.

For SVOD providers (such as Netflix, Hulu, etc.), this increase in consumer demand means more opportunities to capture the attention of their target audiences with an important caveat – content must be easily discoverable.

“Content discoverability” refers to the ease of which consumers can hear about and find streamable content.

It’s cited as one of the major sticking points for consumers who frequently sit down to watch TV without a specific show or movie in mind.

This fact, paired with an increasingly saturated market of streaming service providers and content libraries, illustrates the importance for SVOD product marketing teams to prioritize content discovery on their 2020-2021 roadmap.

While there are many “marketing pieces” that connect within the”content discoverability puzzle”, search engine optimization is a key piece that mustn’t be ignored by product marketing teams.

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Throughout the remainder of this post, I’ll walk you through:

  • The consumer demand for SVOD services.
  • The high stakes surrounding content discoverability and SEO.
  • Three tips for getting SVOD content discovered in Google.

The Demand for SVOD Services in 2020 & Beyond

The SVOD industry is predicted to grow consistently over the next few years in the areas of users, revenue, and time spent streaming.

And the Coronavirus pandemic played a big factor in the rising demand.

More details below.

User + Revenue Growth By the Millions

A June 2020 research study from Statista predicted that:

  • U.S. SVOD users would increase from 127.5 million in 2020 to 135.5 million by 2024 (a +5% increase).
  • SVOD revenue would increase from 12.5 million in 2020 to 13.6 million by 2024 (a +9% increase).

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In total, the study predicted an 8-year percentage growth for SVOD users from 2017-2024 to be 16%, and for revenue is +45%.

online browsing is a top way users find what to watchthe demand for svod services in 2020 and beyond revenue

A study conducted by eMarketer in February 2020 had user growth findings similar to Statista.

It predicted that the entire OTT industry (the overarching umbrella that SVOD falls under), would grow from 221.9 million U.S. users in 2020 to 236.2 million in 2024 (a +6% increase).

It also anticipated that by 2024, nearly 70% of the U.S. population would use an OTT video service.

ott video service users 2020-2024

Unsurprisingly, this data affirms that as more of the population begins using OTT video services the opportunity for providers to generate revenue also increases.

Users Are Spending (Way) More Time Inside of Streaming Apps

Along with the OTT/SVOD industry’s increase in overall users and revenue, comes an increase in the average number of hours spent by U.S. consumers actually streaming content.

A February 2019 research study from Deloitte found that U.S. internet users spend 6.1 hours per week (52 minutes a day) on average watching SVOD content.

U.S. internet users spend 6.1 hours per week (52 minutes a day) on average watching SVOD content

A September 2019 PCMag informal poll saw even larger numbers.

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Of the 1,001 U.S. adults polled:

  • 52% of participants spent 10 hours a week (1.42 hours/day) on streaming services.
  • 24% of participants spent 20 hours a week (2.85 hours/day).
  • 10% of participants spent 30 hours a week (4.28 hours/day).

PCMag

While these two studies don’t line up perfectly, they seem to agree that U.S. consumers are spending hours per week streaming SVOD content – ranging from the equivalent of one full workday (~8 hours) streaming to one full work week (~40 hours) streaming.

Coronavirus Leads Consumers to Subscribe to More SVOD Services

The stay-at-home policies enforced due to the pandemic have contributed to a spike in SVOD subscriptions in the U.S.

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A study conducted by Integral Ad Science of 1,072 U.S. adults indicated:

  • 27% of participants in the age group of 18-29 subscribed to a paid SVOD service due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
  • 47% of this age group subscribed to a free SVOD service due to the pandemic.

The same study found that:

  • 24% of U.S. adults in the age group of 30-44 subscribed to a paid SVOD service directly due to pandemic.
  • 52% of this age group subscribed to a free SVOD service due to the pandemic.

Why Prioritizing SEO Should Be Part of Every SVOD Provider’s RoadmapWhy Prioritizing SEO Should Be Part of Every SVOD Provider’s Roadmap

Another study reported that 21% of U.S. adults listed the pandemic as either a minor or major reason for subscribing to a new streaming service.

There’s been a general 4% increase in the number of SVOD services U.S. adults have from Q4 2019 to Q2 2020, as well as a 3% decline in U.S. adults with no SVOD subscriptions.

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To win the streaming wars, SVOD providers need to get competitive.

Having great content isn’t enough – it must be discoverable too.

In the coming section, we’ll review the importance – and current challenges – in getting content discovered by consumers.

Importance of Content Discoverability

As SVOD content libraries continue to grow, prioritizing discovery becomes increasingly important to maintaining an edge in the market.

Research suggests that there’s still plenty of room for improvement to make it easier/less frustrating for consumers to find their next show or movie.

For example, a research study conducted by Nielsen last year found that most U.S. adults frequently don’t know exactly what they want to watch prior to sitting down. It found that:

  • ~22% of the time U.S. Adults ‘don’t know what they want to watch at all prior to watching’ – peaking at the 18-34 year old demographic at 30%
  • ~33% of the time U.S. Adults ‘have a rough idea, but don’t know exactly what they want to watch’ – peaking at the 18-34 year old demographic at 40%
  • ~66% of the time U.S. Adults ‘know exactly what they want to watch’ – peaking at the 65+ years old category at 70%

A quote from the study:

“As more and more streaming platforms compete for users’ time, operators are struggling to differentiate their offerings, crack the content discovery code and keep consumers tuned in.” – Nielsen

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Ofer Eitan

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