— August 9, 2019
Google Podcasts now makes it possible to search for episodes based on what you discussed in your show. Google Podcast has recently begun automatically transcribing dialog in using it formatted data. This allows users to search for specific episodes even if they can’t remember the name of the Podcast. Transcripts are being logged as part of the page source of episode Web pages on the Google Podcast Web portal. You can search for text in the transcript using the Google Podcast app and find the right episode.
Transcripts cover the entire show, but because they are automatically generated they are not always perfect. For instance, some names and similar-sounding words maybe incorrectly transcribed.
Currently, transcripts are not being generated for all episodes. When they are generated, it greatly improves the discoverability of an episode. We expect that this could change in the future – though there’s no real way to determine if your podcast will be one of the ones that’s automatically transcribed.
Last August, Google’s Podcast team announced plans to make audio content more searchable and we are now seeing the first signs of that plan becoming a reality. This approach has the potential to help more Podcast reach new listeners and it can also help Podcast be found by lapsed listeners. If a former listener remembers the line of dialog but cannot remember what Podcast it was from, they may be able to find the exact episode courtesy of these transcripts.
In the future, we expect Google to continue doing more with the podcast transcripts because they could publish them on the Web to make them even more searchable.
Podcasts are a wonderful way to connect with your audience without relying on the written word. They are a popular form of content because people can listen to them on their daily commute. If you’re using a podcast as an additional form of content to reach a wider audience, you can add it to Google Podcasts for wider syndication.
Why You Should Transcribe Your Podcasts Anyway
If you’re running a podcast and you aren’t transcribing it, you’re missing out on valuable SEO ranking opportunity. There are many people who don’t necessarily have the time to listen to a full episode of a podcast and just want to get the gist of what was covered.
Including a transcript of the podcast episode on the website helps capture those would-be listeners, populates your blog with content, and thus gives Google extra stuff to index and rank.
With so many transcription services available on the internet today, it’s quick and easy to have someone handle transcribing all your podcasts so the second they go live on your site, you have the full transcript ready to go. When that’s the case, you don’t have to worry about any mistakes an automatic transcription of your podcast episode may produce.
And if you’re already transcribing your podcasts, you’re one step ahead of the game. The more content we generate, the more Google and other search engines want to make it searchable and discoverable for users.
Not only this, but your transcripts are essential for those who are deaf and hard of hearing. It’s much the same way we rely on subtitles on videos and movies. Transcripts are necessary for reporting, storytelling, and sharing the podcasting experience with those who cannot otherwise enjoy it. You should be working to make everything you do online as accessible anyway – and if there’s a motivator to do it – many people will listen to something that’s been transcribed just because it’s accessible – even if it’s not something that appeals to them. Adding a transcript is a good option for any podcaster that is trying to grow their audience.