You probably do know, or at have least heard about SEO but do you know what exactly YouTube SEO is? It is the process that helps optimizing your videos, playlists and your channel(s) on YouTube’s organic search results for any given query.
Before we dive in, let’s first discuss YouTube’s video ranking algorithm:
According to YouTube, “Videos are ranked based on a variety of factors including how well the title, description, and video content match the viewer’s query. Beyond that, we look at which videos have driven the most engagement for a query, and make sure it’s easy for viewers to find those.”
That just confirms that from both in-video perspective and on-page, keywords play a pivotal role and making the same match the search intent is of paramount importance. High engagement is the key ingredient for effective SEO. The aim here is to keep the viewers on the platform for as long as possible. This corresponds to more video views, which translates into more time for ad exposure which ultimately means more money.
5 Steps to optimize YouTube SEO for higher ranking of your videos:
- YouTube Keyword Research
It is pretty obvious that if you don’t target keywords with search volume, then you potentially will lose out on getting search traffic. Now searching for keywords, rather than searching target keyword is a tricky job. Here are a few strategies and tips that can help you to confirm your target keyword/s:
- Do a Google search for your target keyword and analyze the results
- To search for videos by topic, use the content explorer
- For high traffic opportunities, you can use the site explorer & batch analysis
- Identification of search intent
Why exactly does any user search their query is nothing but the search intent of that user. Search engines are certainly capable of determining the search intent. Just search the target keyword and look for the 3-5 suggestions that follow and you have a set of keywords that would define the search intent for you.
- Employ a high retention video to satisfy your search intent
Now let’s say you have your search intent and the target keywords all figured out, the next step is to upload a video with high audience-retaining quality. That just means that you should be able to deliver content as promised. High retention generally means more likes, comments, and engagement.
In simple words, your targeted keywords will do the work of bringing the viewer to your video but retaining them with your content is the real job.
- On-page video optimization
These are the 4 things to keep in mind for on-page video optimization
If any of these are missing, your views are going to suffer. They are rightfully called the recipe for best CTR and conversions.
- In-video optimization
Here is what part of the In-video optimization:
- Transcripts/Closed captions:
If your video has closed captions files it makes it easy for YouTube to understand the context of the videos and hence appropriate and relatable ranking.
Cards are an interactive feature that you can use to engage your audience, it lets you choose between the 5 options:
- Donate to a nonprofit
- Visit an external link
- Answering poll
- Discover another youtube channel
- Watch a video or playlist
- End Screens:
You can optimize your end-screen i.e the last slide that appears after your video is done playing.
End-screens are similar to cards but just cards can appear anytime between the video and end screens appear only towards the very end of the video.
To summarize, these are a list of pre-requisites for YouTube SEO, that when fulfilled while propelling your videos to a higher ranking.