What format should you use when you make video for the web?

The quick answer?  MP4.  But, wait.  There's more...

In this video, I talk about the importance of optimizing your screencasts and videos for the web.  This is especially important if you're self-hosting your videos either on your own server or on a service like Amazon's Web Services.

Non-optimized video can cause loss of viewers, and even loss of sales if you're using video for marketing purposes.  If, because of un-optimized formats and settings, your video ends up stopping / starting, and otherwise stuttering in those annoying ways they occasionally do, then you can bet your viewer will just click-off and go somewhere else.

I mean, think about it: wouldn't you?

"Why not just use YouTube?"

Well, in fact, services like YouTube, Viddler, Vimeo, and so on, do in fact do a good job at transcoding your video in such a way that they're optimized for web delivery.  But, there are some very good reasons for self-hosting.  Not the least of which is accommodating custom actions (as I'll demonstrate in the video above).  Also, security for some videos that you don't want to make public is another reason you might want to self-host your video.

handbrake logoThe good news is that optimizing video and screencasts for the web isn't tough.  There's even free software I'll show you that will help you make video for the web sufficiently optimized.  Check out the video above.

If you find it helpful, I'd appreciate you sharing it.  And, let me know in the comments below if the information helps you in any way.

Till next time... Mel-out.  :)

Ready to learn the Screencasting Wizard's secrets?Learn to teach online. Go beyond PowerPoint: learn to screencast using Camtasia Studio for Windows, Camtasia for Macintosh, or ScreenFlow for Macintosh. Watch the free previews now and read the topics list on our 5-star rated screencasting courses. Click here to learn more.

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About Mel

Mel is the online training architect and screencasting wizard at Kareo, one of Forbes' 2013 list of 100 Most Promising Companies in America. He's also the creator of Digital-Know-How, a training website devoted to developing learners' skills for screencasting and web video course development. Mel is also the chief blogger of ScreencastingWizard.com; Mel's personal blog. The comments and opinions you read here are Mel's and not associated with any other company.
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3 Responses to What format should you use when you make video for the web?

  1. Pingback: How to encode video and screencasts optimally for the web – Part 2 | Screencasting and Social Video Roadmap

  2. Pingback: How to convert non-YouTube video to the best format for the web | ScreencastingWizard.com

  3. Is there a down side to posting a video which is to be incorporated into a blog, using both screencast.com (for branding on the blog) and also on YouTube?  I take it from your posts that YouTube will get more traffic, but for branding and a professional look, screencast has advantages.  Would putting a video on both incur some penalties from search engines?

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