YouTube SEO: How to Optimize YouTube Videos

YouTube SEO - Video optimization

When you come up with producing some content, promoting this content becomes an essential point. It is crucial in spheres where the competition is very high, such as video blogging.

If you are a video blogger, you probably know that making people notice your videos among dozens of other clips can be challenging.

That is where search engine optimization can be beneficial. Taking SEO into account, you can let people notice your content and assure them it is outstanding. That is why YouTube SEO is significant for YouTube bloggers.

Choosing YouTube for Blogging

Use YouTube for Blogging
How to Use YouTube for Blogging

First of all, why is it worth the time and effort to start a vlog on YouTube? According to statistics, people spend 100 minutes a day watching online videos. And YouTube ranks second in popularity among social networks after Facebook. Moreover, YouTube also ranks second among all of the websites in the world after Google. That makes YouTube a perfect platform for your blog.

But you also need to take into account that such popularity causes very high competition. That is why it is better to start a vlog on some trendy topic: trends show you what your audience is currently interested in so that you can make your content based on people’s needs. Here are several YouTube trends in 2021:

  • How-to videos. This kind of content is one of the most popular among users. Many people prefer video instructions to text, so tutorials that can help users solve their problems are in trend.
  • Immersive shopping videos. As online shopping is becoming more and more common, videos that can offer a tour of a shop and show pre-purchase and post-purchase stages to users can be valuable for people.
  • Videos about morning and night routines. This kind of storytelling puts rituals in the center, and people like stories – especially when they are complemented with a beautiful clip of making coffee, doing yoga or other exercises, etc.
  • ASMR videos. ASMR means “autonomous sensory meridian response,” such videos are intended to evoke feelings of satisfaction and calmness in viewers. These videos can include whispers, book reading, cooking, eating, and much more.
  • Gaming videos. Gamers with their Let’s Play videos showing and commenting on walkthroughs of different games are always in the top ten channels. This is an excellent example of entertaining content that does not lose popularity.
  • This list includes just a few examples of trendy topics for a YouTube channel. If you would like to start with another theme, it is better to check first if this theme is in demand today. Unfortunately, SEO cannot help promote content that is not interesting to the audience.

Starting a Channel: Key Points

Create your own YouTube channel
Create your own YouTube channel

When you have already chosen a topic, it is time to create your channel, and search engine optimization begins here. There are three moments to take into account: the name of the channel, the description of the channel, and the channel trailer.

Naming Your Channel

The name of the channel can work for your brand awareness in the future, so you need to choose the best variant from the very beginning. There are four main ways of naming your channel:

  • Use your name (Justin Bieber).
  • Use the name of your brand (Zippo).
  • Describe the essence of your content in a couple of words (Unbox Therapy).

The first two variants can work perfectly to promote your brand; however, it can be challenging for users who don’t know you to understand what your channel is about.

Accordingly, they can just dismiss it among other search results. The third variant can work better as users can clearly understand what content they can find on your channel from the first glance at its name.

Describing Your Channel

At this stage, it is necessary to use keywords. The best way to write a description for a channel is to choose several keywords that are relevant to your topic and write them into the text that describes your channel and your content.

Note that the description should not contain keywords only; it should be a short but engaging text that makes users interested in your videos. Also, try to make keywords look natural so that people don’t feel this text was written for search systems.

Creating a Channel Trailer

A channel trailer is short video users see first when they visit your channel. Together with the description, the trailer introduces you and your content to your audience, so it is significant to use keywords in its name and the description of the trailer.

Also, as YouTube transcribes what you are saying in videos, it is good to pronounce the keyword you are optimizing your channel around. It can help users quickly determine if your videos can be helpful for them.

Creating Content Tips

Young blogger creating content for YouTube videos
Young blogger creating content for YouTube videos

Talking about SEO, we should mention that YouTube algorithms strongly consider such factors as audience retention. Audience retention measures the percentage of videos people watch. For example, if you have a 10-minute video, and most of the users watch 5 minutes of this video, your audience retention is 50%.

The higher your audience retention is, the higher this video will appear in YouTube rankings, so one of your main goals is to create content people would like to watch to the end. Here we have collected several tips that can help you make your videos more engaging.

Focus On the Quality

It is not a secret that people like watching high-quality videos, so it is worth obtaining good equipment. Fortunately, almost all modern smartphones can shoot videos in HD, so there is no need to buy a professional camera. However, you still should think about using a tripod to avoid shaky videos.

Shoot With Proper Lighting

It would be a good idea to buy professional lights so that you could shoot in any location at any time regardless of the time of day, weather, and other conditions. If you don’t have such an opportunity, you can benefit from natural light. Use such sources of light as windows, make sure that you choose a good time of day and there will be enough light, make sure that the light shines towards you.

Use a Good Microphone

The quality of the sound is essential for the perception of the entire video. If you use your phone to shoot, consider buying an external microphone so that you can record your voice and other sounds you need in high quality. Otherwise, the impression of your video can be spoiled by noises or too quiet voices that viewers need to play several times to understand what you are saying.

Make Use of Video Editing Software

The stage of post-production of a video is essential as it lets you remove unwanted fragments and add effects. In addition, you can edit both video and audio tracks in order to make a video perfect. For this purpose, you can use desktop programs and online services; for example, Fastreel Video Editor which boasts comprehensive functionality and a user-friendly interface, or Magisto, a very straightforward tool.

Optimizing Your Content for YouTube Ranking

YouTube video search optimization
YouTube video search optimization

So your content is ready for publishing, what should be your next YouTube SEO steps? When publishing a video, you need to take into consideration several points: the title, the description, and the tags. Moreover, you need to think even about the name of the file you are going to upload. Let’s take a closer look at each of these points.

Pay Attention to the Name of Your File

The optimization of a video starts from the moment of uploading this video; that is why it is essential to check the name of the video you will publish. The algorithm of YouTube considers it, so if your file’s name is like “20210530_ex2final.mov,” consider changing it to the name that would include the keyword you are going to optimize your video around; for example, “yoga-best-practices.mov.” It can help YouTube algorithms rank your video more effectively.

Optimize the Title

The title plays a significant role in ranking a video. Moreover, the title is the first thing users see, and they decide by the title whether a video is worth their attention or not. That is why your video’s title should meet the following requirements:

  • The title has to describe the essence of the video so that it would be clear to users what this video is about.
  • The title should include the keyword that is the most relevant for this very video.
  • The length of the title should be at least five words so that it would be able to describe a video; however, your title should not be longer than 60 characters.

Write a Good Description

Descriptions are vital as they help users and search systems understand the context of a video. The better this understanding will be, the more views from users you will get, and the higher YouTube and Google will rank your video. Crucial points here are:

  • Your description should be about 250 words long.
  • Write a keyword into the first 25 words.
  • If you use several keywords, don’t use them in one sentence.
  • If you use one keyword, use it 2-4 times in the full description.

One more important thing: remember that YouTube displays only 2-3 first lines of the description; to read further, users have to click “show more.” So make sure that the first lines include the most important information about the video viewers need to know.

Add Tags

Though tags don’t influence YouTube ranking directly, they can help show your videos as suggested to those people who watch related content. Thus, you can use keywords for your topic and some related topics for the best result. For example, if your target keyword is “SEO YouTube,” you can add such tags as “YouTube search engine optimization,” “search engine,” “video SEO,” “link building,” etc.

Researching Keywords

We used to talk a lot about keywords, but how is it possible to find the most relevant of them for your topic?

The easiest way is to brainstorm. For example, you can go to YouTube and start typing a keyword in the search box; then, YouTube Suggest will display the most popular searches related to this topic.

Another way is using the Google Trends tool. You can find a “YouTube search” option under the “Web search option.” This tool lets you see the information about different search requests, particularly for YouTube, and compare them.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are many details you should better take into account when optimizing your content for YouTube. However, YouTube SEO does not require any special skills; you only need to spend some more time and effort to benefit from it. Using keywords and paying attention to the title, description, and tags of your video can help you increase the popularity of your content significantly.

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