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YouTube SEO: How to Optimize Videos for YouTube Search

YouTube SEO: How to Optimize Videos for YouTube Search

YouTube is a video-sharing platform that ranks videos by how many views they receive. To rank higher on search engines, it’s important to optimize your videos for YouTube by following proven techniques that Youtube loves.

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In this article, I’ll give you some tips and ideas on how to optimize your YouTube channel so that you can get maximum exposure for your videos, increase traffic to your website and generate more leads.

Add keywords to videos that are relevant to the content

With 4 billion videos being viewed every day, including your keywords appropriately is crucial if you want to be successful.

Make sure to include appropriate keywords in the title and description of each video. The first few sentences should be written as though they would be used for a search engine snippet if possible.

If you have a video about “Lead Generation,” add the word in your title and description. If possible, include keywords that are relevant to your product or industry. When people search for keywords related to videos found on YouTube, they will sometimes see other recommendations based on their search.

Both Google and Bing use information from YouTube when ranking keyword-related searches so it’s important to optimize the metadata of your videos appropriately if you want them to be found by customers searching for topics related to your business.

Include a call-to-action in the annotations of each video

Within YouTube’s annotation tool, you can overlay text onto your video that viewers must click before accessing additional details relating to the content displayed in this space.

This is an excellent way to direct your viewers to a specific page on your website including a “resource center” that will provide tutorials, videos, reports, or press releases.

If you want people who’ve watched your video to get in touch with you, download a PDF file, or move down your sales funnel, this is an incredible opportunity to do so.

Don’t forget the tags and description


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When it comes to tags, be careful not to make them sound spammy by stuffing keywords where they don’t belong. Write naturally while still incorporating important phrases into your tags. Also, remember that you can upload up to 30 tags per video – though I don’t recommend that you use up all 30.

Create keyword-focused playlists

On your YouTube channel, you can create various sections or “playlists” that separate the videos you choose to have listed under each of these headings. Don’t forget to label them in such a way to make it easy for people searching for specific topics to find what they’re after.

A good playlist will help people find more videos on topics that interest them. Additionally, you can include relevant playlists to optimize your channel’s overall presence online.

Get other YouTube users involved

Invite other people who have relevant or appropriate content to collaborate with you by adding their video links on the “resource center” page of your channel. This will help both of you connect with like-minded viewers and provide useful information in one spot for anyone browsing through these various videos.

You can also ask these partners if they would be willing to mention any website promotions or offers happening on your site in their content.

Inform influencers about your channel

If you are in a related field where it may make sense to approach other YouTube channels and personalities with the offer of collaborating, this is a great way for them to promote content from their viewers and followers.

Sometimes people feel less inclined to link back or mention products featured in videos hosted on YouTube, however, if another YouTuber has demonstrated interest by featuring content from your website in one of their videos, they’re far more likely to provide some type of acknowledgment as well.

Create an appealing banner image

You should have already uploaded an eye-catching graphic that will be displayed at the top of your channel page when someone views it through either Google search results or YouTube itself.


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This image seems minor but it’s very important to include keywords in this space so that people who are browsing through search results can find your channel and start to remember your personal brand.

Use a similar graphic on all videos uploaded to your channel(s). This way people who click through from one of these videos can still recognize the organization responsible for uploading this content in the first place. Be sure to title it appropriately and include tags that make sense with each video.

Don’t forget video transcripts

You don’t want someone trying to engage with your videos because they’re interested in a specific topic, only to be frustrated by the fact that it hasn’t been captioned and now they must rely on audio alone. This will likely lead them to click elsewhere to view an option where they can avoid this hassle.

Also, transcriptions are an awesome tool for showing videos to people who may not have visual access to the entire video. This might include people that are using screen readers due to vision impairments.

Participate in related YouTube channels

There is a huge community of YouTubers online and many of them will be more than happy to help promote your content if you participate in their channel as well. Highlight any relevant information that ties into yours.

Be sure to add a link back to your site within the description or annotation fields of whichever video you choose to promote and encourage viewers to follow up with either you or whoever owns that particular channel directly. This will allow you to grow your YouTube channel and get more people to come across what you’re creating.

Get creative when it comes to embedding your videos elsewhere

Embedding your videos on other websites is a great way to go viral and get the most out of your YouTube content.

Be sure to add this to your website, blog, or relevant forum posts. You can even include links within your description field that direct interested viewers back to your channel as well as show them more videos and related information.

Optimize videos for search engines by using a keyword research tool

You’ve probably heard the term “SEO”, but what does it mean, and why is it important for your YouTube channel? SEO stands for search engine optimization and is a marketing term that relates to optimizing your video as best as possible.

This will allow more people to find it in YouTube searches as well as search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo.

There are many ways to do this; one of the most effective methods is through keyword research. Keyword research allows you to discover long-tail keywords or phrases people use when they’re searching online. For example: if someone searched, “How to make chocolate chip cookies” and you optimized your video for that keyword, your video will rank higher in search engines and you’ll get more traffic.

Using tools to find the right long-tail keyword

Here are some great tools to use to find long-tail keywords:

  • Ubersuggest – Ubersuggest is a free tool that helps you find related keywords in relation to the main keyword. Enter your keyword and select which search engine you want to use: Google, YouTube, or Bing.
  • Keywordtool.io – This is another free tool that offers suggestions for additional keywords if you enter in the main keyword phrase.

This is also an easy way to discover new long-tail keywords related to your business idea without any extra work. You can just enter your keyword and hit the “show me more” button to get some great long-tail recommendations.

Once you have discovered these phrases, simply add them into YouTube’s video editor box under “tags.” This will help boost your overall views as well as your SEO.

What happens if you don’t do the right keyword research?

You might create a great video or even a series of videos, but no one ever finds them. So don’t leave this critical step out of your video creation process. There’s nothing worse than creating a video and then realizing that your title, tags, or descriptions aren’t optimized for these long-tail keywords.

If you don’t optimize your videos correctly, they won’t rank highly in YouTube search results; not only that, but the SEO process will take longer to work because Google needs to understand what the content is about. If you do this correctly, when someone searches for something on Google, they can find your video right away even if it doesn’t show up in YouTube’s main feed.

The most important tip we can give you when it comes to optimizing your YouTube channel and finding keywords: do your research beforehand. You can do a quick search on Google and find tons of keywords you didn’t even know existed (for example: “how to make homemade ice cream” is not just one keyword, but you can come up with many different long-tail keywords based on that).

If you’re planning a series of videos, try and plan so that you can easily add the new keywords into each video description, tag, or annotation.

Expected results with proper keyword research

If you’ve done the proper keyword research, YouTube’s search engine will start to recognize the kind of videos that your channel has and you’ll begin showing up on Google when someone is searching for a topic related to your video.

This allows you to get more traffic right away without having to wait for views and then hope it shows up in the feeds or search results.

Final thoughts on YouTube SEO

In conclusion, you want to spend some time on YouTube keyword research before actually creating your videos. It’s one of the most important steps you can take when creating your channel and making new videos – and the results will start showing both in the short-term and the long term.

It takes some time to plan, but eventually, it’ll pay off with more views, more traffic, and better overall SEO results for your videos. This means that people will find your videos and take the actions you want them to.

Guest author: Hanson Cheng is the founder of Freedom to Ascend. He empowers online entrepreneurs and business owners to 10x their business and become financially independent. You can connect with him here.

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