When building a video marketing strategy, search engine optimization (SEO) can be just as vital as storyboarding. Before you publish your videos to YouTube, make sure that every piece of copy, tag, and keyword are complete. This video SEO optimization will help your channel’s content outrank your competitors.

YouTube’s algorithm uses a number of factors to determine which videos are most relevant to a user’s search. The information that you provide about your videos is the language that YouTube interprets to drive users to your content.

Here is what you need to know about YouTube’s ranking factors and the techniques you can use to optimize your videos for maximum exposure.

#1 Keyword relevance

You create keyword relevance by writing clear and concise descriptors for everything from the video’s title to links that you may include in its description. In turn, YouTube uses this information to help increase traffic to your content by showing your video in relevant search results. Consider trying a youtube keyword tool to find the right ones.

Do this:

Write a great title. The title of your video should incorporate keywords that best describe its content. Next to the thumbnail, this is one of the first things people notice and consider when deciding what to click.

Use video tags. Tags are a part of your video publication that contain all the keywords that relate to your video. While your title contains 2-3 main keywords, you can use tags to provide more information that speaks to your audience and your brand.

Fill out your video description. It’d be a mistake to limit your description a few sentences and a link back to your website. Anything that gives your audience context to your video—such as links to similar content, content summaries, or calls to action— helps SEO optimize your video.

When appropriate, consider using closed captions or uploading a video transcript. Closed captions and transcripts can also contain keywords and help describe your video in a similar way that the video description does.

#2 Quantity and quality of video views

YouTube wants to know how many people are watching your video, how long they stay to watch, and how many times they rewatch it. It’s not enough to generate lots of video views—your video metrics should also indicate engagement and quality content in order to have a positive impact on video SEO.

Do this:

Share your YouTube videos on other platforms and online communities. What audience are you creating content for? Reach them where they are and try techniques such as linking to a video that might help answer a question they have. This helps your business achieve the high-retention views that YouTube values.

#3 Audience engagement after watching

The audience reactions that your video marketing content generates in the form of likes, dislikes, shares, and comments are also essential to creating sustainable SEO value.

Do this:

Include calls to actions. Use calls to action to inspire people to take action, whether it’s commenting or sharing your video. You can place them in 1) your video description and 2) at the end of your video as an annotation.

#4 Channel strength

Your YouTube channel’s following and overall performance also has a great impact on the SEO standing of your marketing videos. Number of channel views, subscribers, total video views, posting frequency, and channel branding all factor into the equation.  

Do this:

Publish consistently. When you publish a video, your subscribers are notified. The potential and continued engagement that comes from a fresh video is a big plus for your channel’s success.

Create playlists. Playlists have titles and text descriptions of their own. Organizing your video content into playlists not only has SEO value, but also encourages people to view similar content from your brand.

Write keywords, descriptions, and tags for your channel home, too. Creating descriptions for your channel will help tell YouTube what makes you an authority in your field.

The information that you provide about your videos is the language that YouTube interprets to drive users to your content. And when it comes to video SEO optimization, it’s not all about the keywords, but the overall strength of your YouTube channel, too.


Share your tips for YouTube SEO optimization in the comments below!  


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