With 100 hours of video being uploaded to YouTube every minute, video discovery is a challenge. These YouTube video optimization tricks will help drive more views to your videos.
1) Use Keyword-Rich Titles, Tags and Descriptions
YouTube can’t watch your video, so it relies on the text around the video to determine its subject matter. Using keyword-heavy titles and descriptions is crucial to being found in YouTube search results.
The title of the video is the most important factor in YouTube video SEO. Use important keywords at the front of the title, followed by your channel’s branding. Try to include “video keywords” – keywords that allow your video’s thumbnail to appear in Google search results. Examples of video keywords are “how to,” “review,” and “demonstration.”
Tags are words used to describe YouTube videos. Use keywords as tags to help YouTube determine what a video is about. Try to use the same tags across multiple videos. This will make it more likely for your other videos to appear in the suggested videos section to the right of the video being viewed. In addition, using the same tags as a popular, related video increases the chance that your content will appear as a suggested video alongside the other video.
The video’s description is a great place to let viewers and search engines alike know what your video is about. The first 157 characters in the description are particularly important. This snippet is shown next to the video’s thumbnail in YouTube and Google search results. Furthermore, the first couple of sentences appear above the “Show More” button on a video’s YouTube page. Use interesting first sentences to entice people to watch the video. Important keywords should also be used in these sentences.
In addition to your main keywords, long-tail keywords should be included in your video’s description. YouTube allows up to 5,000 characters in the description, so there’s plenty of room to include secondary keywords.
2) Take Advantage of Social Media
Use social media features both within and outside YouTube to drive more views to your videos. Within YouTube, viewers can share, like and subscribe to your videos. The YouTube search algorithm takes the number of video likes and channel subscriptions into account, so likes and subscriptions improve your search rankings. At the end of a video, ask your viewers to like and share the video and subscribe to your channel. Repeat these calls to action in the video’s description.
Use other social media sites and online communities to increase your videos’ views. The number of views affects a video’s search rankings. Thus, driving external views to your videos will help increase their visibility inside YouTube. Post links to your YouTube videos in forums and online communities such as Reddit and Quora. Use social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook to alert your audience to newly released videos. Encourage your social media followers to like and subscribe to your videos. You can also add links to your Twitter and Facebook pages in a video’s description to further grow your audience.
3) Content is King
Video SEO is important, but content is still king. Creating engaging content will encourage viewers to share, like and subscribe to your videos, driving more views. However, the number of views is no longer the most important factor in YouTube video SEO. The YouTube search algorithm now takes into account the amount of time users spend viewing a video. Informative, useful and entertaining content will increase your viewers’ “watch time,” ultimately leading to higher search rankings.