Looking for a blog post idea? Posts do not have to be only the written word. A video can make a great post and–here’s the really cool part–it doesn’t even have to be a video you created. Whether you’ve found a video on YouTube that you just have to share with the world or you have created a video and uploaded it to YouTube, adding it to your blog is as easy as click, copy, click, paste, done.
Why Embed YouTube Videos in Your Posts?
You might want to add a video by you or someone else showing how to do something you are explaining in a post. Or you simply might want to share something interesting and useful you found. Although a video can stand on its own, it is a good idea to add some text saying why you are sharing that particular video, describing what it is about, or offering other comments about the content. If it is your video, you might even want to put a transcript of the video on the page. (Lots of people like video, but there are others who prefer text. And the search engines can index the text on the page.)
If you are comfortable creating videos, this can be an easy way to come up with a post. Create a short video, upload it to YouTube and embed it on your site. Even if you have never made a video in your life, though, you can use videos created by others. Most videos on YouTube have simple code that allows you to embed the video. That means that you can legally and ethically copy and paste the video into your site.
How to Embed a YouTube Video
I am going to share the specifics of adding a YouTube video to a WordPress post, but the basic technique will work with many other video sharing sites and other blogging platforms or HTML sites.
- Edit the post where you want to add the video, or click Add New to start a new post. WordPress has two editing modes, Visual and Text. You want to be in the Text editor, so just click on the Text tab above the editing window.
- In your web browser, get to the YouTube site and go to the page of the video that you’d like to add.
- Below the video player you will see like/dislike buttons, information about the video, etc. Click on Share then Embed and you will see something like this:
Note: YouTube changes this from time to time, so depending on when you are reading this, these choices may look different or be located elsewhere on the screen. What you are looking for is the Embed code.
- You can use the default settings or make changes. One change you might want to make is choosing a different size for the video. Sizes are given in pixels. If you are not sure what size you should use, start with the default. You can always come back and choose a different size if that one is too large or too small. Copy the embed code and paste it where you want the video to appear in your post.
- Preview it to make sure the video has been placed where you want it. If you want to center the video, while in the Visual tab, select the video player then click on the Center Alignment button. Watch out for this: If you see the code displaying instead of the video, that means you pasted the code into the Visual tab instead of the Text tab. Refer to step one to select the text tab, then copy the embed code into the post again. Once the post looks the way you want it to, save and publish the post.
One of the great features about embedded YouTube videos is that they are already compressed to the most optimal viewing size. This means that it takes mere seconds for most visitors to view the video. There’s nothing to download and no lag time. And because the video is stored on the YouTube site, not yours, it doesn’t use your bandwidth or slow your site.
What questions do you have about using videos on your blog?