We’ve blogged in detail about how important videos and images are when it comes to your SEO (search engine optimization) campaign. And YouTube has become a search engine to be reckoned with, so if you’re using YouTube as a platform to grow your brand, it’s really important you’re doing it the right way.
Let’s talk about the best ways to make sure your YouTube videos rank on the search engines.
Are you wondering where to start when it comes to your keywords for your videos? Wonder no longer. We’ll tell you exactly what to do.
You’ll start with a general list of terms you think are relevant. Easy. What would you search for to find you? Looking for more ideas? Of course you are. Head over to YouTube and type in your search, then look at what YouTube suggests you search for which will pop up as a window immediately. This window is crazy-helpful because it shows you what users are actually typing in and searching for. Read all of the suggestions and choose keywords that apply to you.
Look at your competition, too. You can peek at their most popular videos and copy those terms. They’ve done some of the work for you, so you might as well take it! They’d do it to you. Look at their title, description, and tags for all the keyword knowledge pertaining to that video and add relevant terms to your list.
Now you need to review your list carefully and find the one keyword that will benefit you most. This should be a term that has very little competition. If you use words that every video in your industry is using, you’ll be hidden right next to them. To check if your chosen term is too broad, search it and then review the “About results” which will give you the number of videos with that term. The lower the number, the better.
Next you should look up your keyword on Google. Yes, it’s important to rank on YouTube, but if you can also generate powerful ranking on Google you’ve got a lot going for you. Take a gander at your industry’s videos that are already populating on Google, what keywords are those videos using?
Google loves to show videos with keywords such as: How-to, reviews, tutorials, and funny videos. So think about those words playing a role in your optimizing.
High-Retention Video Creation
Ranking videos are videos that hold the users attention and keep ‘em watching. If you can keep users interested, YouTube ranks you higher. Makes sense to us. So, how can you be sure your users stay with you?
First off, it’s important to know that you don’t need a camera crew in order to create a winning video. Don’t break the bank on lighting and sound equipment either. Production isn’t of the utmost here, what you’re providing your user, however, is. Make an engaging, informative video that doesn’t suck, and you’re golden. But if you make a video that lacks quality, it won’t rank no matter how much optimizing you’ve done.
Here are the important audience interactions that YouTube is looking for in a video:
- Comments- this tells YouTube if a video is liked, so encourage that relationship as much as you can through questions, quizzes, fun activities- and don’t forget to respond to comments received.
- Subscribers- when you get users subscribing to your channel, YouTube knows you’re quality. All you gotta do is ask.
- Shares- if your users share your video, it’s most likely a good one, right? YouTube agrees.
- Clicks- when users click on you instead of your competition, YouTube notices. The more clicks you get, the better. (Unfortunately, they also notice if users are clicking on your competition and not you- so review your thumbnails and tiles, make them better, and steal those clicks.)
- Thumbs- are you getting thumbs up or thumbs down on your video?
- Length- typically, the longer the video, the better. That said, quality content takes a higher priority, so don’t drag a video on and on if it’s not adding any value to the user. Just make an awesome video and when it ends, it ends.
YouTube transcribes your videos, that means you need to be sure that you’re saying your keyword in the video. I know, you’re like, “Duh.” But, believe me, it’s sometimes an oversight and you don’t want it to happen to you. So, consider this a reminder. When you say that keyword, YouTube understands what your video is about.
You’ll want to create a pretty great title of at least five words for your video. Again, your keyword needs to be here. And whenever possible you should start the title with your keyword.
Your video description is a big deal. This is what YouTube and Google look at to gain context, the more they understand what your video is, the higher you’ll rank. Be sure to know the following:
- Your keyword should be one of the first 25 words
- Your description should be at least 250 words
- Your keyword should be in the description 2-4 times (and don’t make it sound all spammy when you do it)
Your first tag is your target keyword and then create some variations of that word, the rest of the tags should be other topics you cover in the video. Tags also help YouTube and Google know what you’re providing, so just be clear and they’ll get it.
Use the same tags as your competition! If a user is watching a video that has your same tag, you’ll show up on the sidebar. Nice!
So, you’ve created a killer video that’s following all the guidelines noted in this blog post. Great. How do you get your people to watch it? Tell them! Head to Quora where people are searching and searching for info- all you have to do is find your people. Do that by searching for your topic and looking at the questions, find one that you can answer and after you do that, link to your video. Because these users are wanting your valuable insights, they’ll watch the whole video which will contribute to your ranking (video retention, remember?). Well done.
Think about embedding your video to a relevant blog post. If people are reading your blog, they care about what you have to say. So this is an excellent way to get guaranteed views.
You can also add your video link to your email signature. I mean, your friends and family may want to see it, but also if you have a newsletter or email list, you already have a following. Take advantage of that.
More than one video? Awesome. Create a playlist. This allows for other videos (that you choose and make sense to show together) to play immediately after a video finishes. Creating a few of these playlists on your channel will give you loads more views.
While on the subject of your channel, make sure your channel page looks great and is well optimized. Optimizing will not only help your rankings, but it will get you more subscribers. And when you write your channel’s “About” section, use your keywords (use them wisely so it reads nicely and doesn’t look spammy).
Now you’ve got some great tools to effectively make your YouTube video amazing, and get it ranking. If you’re in need of some help with YouTube video creation or anything digital marketing. Give us a call today.