YouTube. Ranking Tips

March 1, 2016

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YouTube is not only the most popular way to share video content on the web, it is also the second most used search engine on the web. Getting your YouTube channel to rank well will give your overall strategy a boost. Here are some tips to get you started that i found over at SearchEnginePeople.

Create A Vanity URL

Start by optimising your YouTube channel.  If your channel is more than 30 days old and you have 500+ subscribers, you can claim a vanity URL for your channel, which will give you a memorable URL.

Link To Your Website

Add your website URL in the ‘associated website’ section in your channel settings. This will help to establish your brand authority.

Make Your Channel Homepage Engaging For Users

Spend some time on setting your home page up correctly and fully. Include relevant keywords in your description. Add to your website and other social media pages. Use the ‘featured video’ facility to set a video to play automatically when someone visits your channel. Highlight video playlists on your homepage so users can quickly navigate your content.

Retention Matters

In March 2012, YouTube made changes to their systems in order to prioritise retention time over the view count. With this change, instead of search results showing videos with just high view counts first, the results now take into account how long each video is viewed for before users stop playing or click away. So to get the best results, not only do you need to hook the audience in to watching your videos, but you must also ensure that they continue watching until the end.

Have A Clear Video Title And Description

You want your audience to know what type of video they’re watching from the title alone, so it has to be clear and easy to understand. Attempt to link in the subject matter and any keywords that might be used to search for the video, although do not do this at the expense of a video title becoming too complex. Video descriptions are your chance to expand on the subject, giving viewers a more detailed description of what is going to be covered in the video, as well as your chance to link them to any sources or extra material, alongside social links and other ways they can interact with you.

Tag The Way You Search

Tagging your videos correctly is an important step for them to appear in organic search results. A good rule to follow when it comes to tagging on YouTube is to “tag the way you search”. For example, if you were creating a video with SEO tips aimed at bloggers, then you could use tags such as “SEO tips for Blogs”, “SEO tips for WordPress”, “SEO blogging tips”. Using long tail phrases instead of tagging the single keywords (“SEO”, “tips”, “bloggers”) will increase the chances of your video being found for those terms, as there will be less competition on those more niche terms.

Use Video Transcriptions

One tip that is rarely talked about is that YouTube search results will often prioritise videos with transcriptions. Whilst these can be done automatically, auto-transcripts can often be incorrect, so manual intervention is advised. YouTube uses these transcriptions whilst searching for videos to rank the true content of your video. Therefore, by having an incorrect transcript, you may not be showing up in search results, due to YouTube believing that your video content is different from what is being searched for.


You can read the full article and get more great tips on ranking well for YouTube in the full blog post from SearchEnginePeople

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