New to Video? Get Started on YouTube With This Quick & Simple YouTube SEO Guide

YouTube has over 1.9 billion logged in monthly users around the world and it is increasing every day as more and more people gain access to the internet across the globe. Also, not to mention, that YouTube is the second largest search engine on the World Wide Web right after Google.

Because of such numbers, it is not surprising that good SEO is an important part if one wants to succeed on this platform. Thus, it is essential for every new creator to learn at least the basics of YouTube’s search engine algorithm and apply the learned rules onto their videos.

At first it YouTube SEO might seem haunting. However, the basics aren’t hard to implement and you only might need to make tiny changes to bootstrap your performance. It is even better to run YouTube channel if you have a blog because it is known that including your video in a blog post increases organic traffic from search by about 157%

So, without further ado let me present you simple actions that you can take to optimize your YouTube’s channel SEO.

Optimize Video Length for Your Content

The Audience Retention rate is an average percentage of video watched and it plays an important part in YouTube’s search algorithm. Those videos that have a higher percentage of it tend to have improved visibility on the platform because it is important for YouTube to keep people on their platform as it means increased ad watch time. Consequently, more revenue for YouTube and the creator.

So, when creating your video you need to ensure that all of your video content is engaging and there are no unnecessary bits that might make people skip through it or just close it. In general, the greater the retention rate and the longer the video means a bigger possibility to rank higher as well as get recommended.

Also, if you are targeting to optimize your videos not only for SEO but for ads as well, I recommend aiming for video length to be of at least 10 minutes as this leads to a larger number of ads on your content.

Invite People to Subscribe, Like and Comment on Your Video

Another metric that shows that your content is engaging and is worth promoting on the platform is your subscriber count, like/dislike ratio and a number of comments. This is another way of evaluating how likely your videos are to retain viewers on the platform.

It is kind of obvious that the higher the subscriber count, the influx of new comments and positive like/dislike ratio contributes to your video chances of being promoted on the platform. Because of this reason, you should make sure to invite people to like your video and subscribe to your channel as well as engage with people through the comments like ask a question at the beginning or the end of the video.

Write Detailed and Clear Video and Channel Descriptions

Although these days YouTube filters all the video content with advanced speech and image recognition algorithms and feeds everything into the search algorithm, the description still has a bit of weight and it is important to be clear and detailed in it.

Use keywords and explain thoroughly what your video is about. A lot of people contain external links in the description to their socials, merchandise stores or sponsors. However, I wouldn’t recommend that if you are just starting out because there are rumors that YouTube punishes people when they leave the platform through your channel. This is because it cuts YouTube watch time and they don’t like that. So, you should weight if the link is worth including in the beginning, for example, social media might not be that worthy to include, but links to Patreon and your merchandise store might outweigh the drawback.

Share Your Video Everywhere You Can and Collect Backlinks

The same way backlinks benefit regular SEO it benefits YouTube videos as well. They not only influence this as a backlink but also YouTube logs how many viewers through your links you have attracted and they will award you with a bigger chance of being promoted as you increase the almighty watch time.

Probably the first task you should perform is to share all of your videos on your social media accounts and upload it to different online video directories. Also, you might perform broken link building campaigns the same way you do it with blog posts. There is an added benefit here because it might prolong your video’s lifetime and generate consistent views on your videos. This will help you to grow your channel and consequently score more points on the search algorithm.

General Rules to Keep in Mind

There are several other really simple rules that you need to keep in mind if you want to rank higher.

First of all, don’t forget to perform a keyword search and include your keyword into your YouTube title. Name the video file that you’re uploading to YouTube with your main keyword or video title. Obviously, try to upload high-quality content as frequently as possible and create themed playlists.

Furthermore, always include custom engaging thumbnail in your video, you can use Canva for that and fill all of the fields in YouTube video upload form and don’t forget to analyze your audience to find what time is the best to upload.

I hope these simple tips will help you grow your channel rank higher in the search and get recommended by YouTube. However, remember that for SEO to work one needs to create worthwhile content and be dedicated as it requires time for the optimization to kick in.

Eric Hebert

Founder and Lead Digital Strategist