Why Do You Need SEO for YouTube Videos?
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process taken by website owners to increase visitor numbers (and those viewing particular pieces of content within their website), by ensuring that their site ranks as highly as possible within search engine results lists.
Making sure your content appears in a range of different places is crucial for achieving great exposure. Use of media is a great alternative to traditional, readable text and adds a different dimension when promoting content…and with more than three billion searches per month, YouTube is where your media needs to be.
How Does SEO Work for YouTube Videos?
There are a number of factors at play in the YouTube results algorithm, including video length and engagement rates. But SEO will also have a huge role to play. Achieving great SEO rankings for your YouTube videos is a strategic process which involves optimising your channel, your playlists and your metadata description ensuring specific keywords are incorporated. You also need to follow systematic SEO best practice when editing your videos.
So, now we know why and how, here are a few simple hacks to help your YouTube SEO go into orbit…
Know Your Video Keywords
Keywords for YouTube are a bit different from the keywords which appear on mainstream search engines such as Google or Bing so bear that in mind when you carry out any keyword research.
YouTube Video Title Optimisation
First off, make sure your keywords are in your video title. YouTube gives heavy-weight to the keywords in your video title.
YouTube allows 100 characters however, try to keep your YouTube title to around 70 characters long (including spaces).
YouTube Description Optimisation
Next up, is your video description. YouTube allows you to write a ton of content for your video descriptions so, here are a few tips:
You can write up to a whopping 5000 characters in the description field. Use as much as you can, even if it turns into a blog post style description.
The first 100 characters in your description field typically get picked up in the part of the description that shows in the YouTube search results page with your video. Make the most of this space by using a super quick intro, including your main keyword, and make sure you finish the 100 characters with a link to your site.
Always try to keep your main keywords close to the start of your descriptions and be sure to include links to your website, other YouTube videos, subscribe links, and social media links.
Always use as many ‘Tags’ as Youtube will let you. Here are a few ideas on what tags to use:
- Include a few branded terms so people looking for you are more likely to find your videos.
- Look at what other competitors and similar videos are using. If people are using those tags, they are likely popular already and you can jump on that bandwagon.
Keep it Long
YouTube was built to compete with television (and comparable advertising rates) therefore, the longer, high-quality videos tend to perform better in searches. Videos should be at least five minutes in length and packed full of high-quality information on the topic at hand.
YouTube Video Annotations
Annotations are used in a variety of ways. They can increase your views, the video watch time, and direct traffic to other videos, products and your website. They are clickable links which can be placed anywhere in your video at specific time intervals.
- Allow users to skip ahead in the video
- Include more information links
- Link to your website and products/services page
- Link to further videos you have made
Share to Socials
Don’t miss the opportunity to share your media from YouTube across to your social networks. Not only does this give users direct access to your content, but the backlinks will help search engines to index your content much more quickly.
At the end of your video, a simple one-line call to action can have a dramatic impact on boosting your channel’s reach. You will no doubt have heard the regular one line feature at the end of most people’s clips. Something along the lines of: “If you enjoyed this video, hit subscribe”! It may seem obvious but this simple reminder is often enough to increase your followers, get them tuning in regularly, and recommending you by tagging in others.
In a nutshell SEO is the effort of actively connecting your content with the right audience. If you’re really good at it, users will be directed to your content even when they’ve searched using a term which is only within the ballpark of what you offer. Branching out into use of media ensures your marketing approach is more well-rounded and holistic, and it maximises your chances of reaching your full SEO potential.
YouTube (as the world’s most widely recognised media platform) offers an exceptional opportunity to switch up the way in which your regular audiences can get access to you and ,crucially, it can provide a gateway for brand new subscribers.
If you’re keen to exploit the opportunities that YouTube offers but are still unsure of the first steps to take, our marketing geniuses at The Digital Studios are always on hand to help.
Pop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about our services.