Many small business owners and internet marketers are using video marketing, by means of a YouTube channel, to drive free traffic to their sites. Having a traditional website is great, and absolutely necessary, but only allows you to reach a limited number of people. However, by creating a YouTube channel, you can increase the number of people who will find you online, and will view the products and services you have to offer. Here are some things to keep in mind as you build your online brand.

First, disregard the silly, trivial videos you’ll find all over YouTube, such as videos with bunnies and kittens, and sleeping babies falling headfirst into a plate of spaghetti. While videos of this nature can garner hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of views, it is inappropriate for and unrelated to your business needs.

Instead, create videos highly targeted towards your industry. A real estate agent might create a video introducing herself and showcasing a few of the homes she has available for sale. A car dealership might make a video “commercial” with shots of rows and rows of cars for sale. A software developer might make a video demonstrating some of his offerings.

Because Google and other search engines are now giving YouTube videos preferential search engine ranking, it is not inconceivable that your video could end up on the first page of search results for your targeted keywords. Be mindful of this as you are creating your video, from shooting it, to titling it, to writing the description for it. This has incredible potential for your business.

Consider that there may not be many searches conducted for the phrase, “Kalamazoo cars.” But your video which has the words “Kalamazoo cars” in the title is likely to make the first few pages, if not the first page, of Google search results (again, due to the preferential search results Google gives to videos), and you would benefit from the searches that are conducted for that term.

Because videos receive preferential treatment in search results, the question for you as a business owner is, “How do I use my YouTube channel to encourage people to visit my website?” The answer is simple; give them incentive to do so. For example, offer something free for heading over to your site, such as a free report, or a small sample if you sell products that lend themselves towards this, or maybe even a coupon code.

Another idea is, you can ask them a question about a problem they may be having (the question posed should relate to your business); to view the answer, they need visit your site. People are drawn to solutions to problems they may be having. This is invaluable for market research. In combination with the free offer, this creates increased incentive for viewers to visit your site.

Yet another idea is to create videos that share only a portion of the message you want to communicate. Do not tell the whole story in the video; instead, tell just enough to engage your viewers. Then, direct them to visit your site for the rest of the message. Viewers are drawn to a good cliffhanger, and you will further create interest in your site.

The goal is to capture your viewers’ attention in the moment–directly after having watched the video. If you don’t, most viewers will simply click elsewhere, and you will have lost an invaluable opportunity to reach them. Make sure you include a link to your site in the video’s description, to make it easy for viewers to get to your site. Capitalize on their interest; tell them where to go and what to do next. You may be surprised to see how many obey your orders. You don’t have to be James Cameron to produce traffic-grabbing videos with these simple methods.