Let’s take it as predefined that you spend a whale of time shooting awesome videos, producing great content, but what’s next? After all your friends and friends’ relatives watched your terrific episode, do you sadly observe the sloping graphs in YouTube Analytics?
You are lucky to jump on this page because here you will find everything you need to make your video content rank on the web. I’ll briefly explain how to optimize your videos to rank them on YouTube (and Google) and what sources and tools to use to do it like a pro.
Use the full potential of in-built SEO tools on YouTube
The first place to start digging for video optimization is to use wisely all the tools that you already have. Most likely, you’ve already published some videos on YouTube. Check how well you’ve done all the job describing its SEO-related elements: do you have an SEO-optimized video description, proper titles, and tags? Probably, you can add subtitles, or timestamps to split the video content into navigable pieces? Have you added Cards with calls-to-action to subscribe or to watch another next video of yours? All these things are absolutely necessary to enhance user engagement and increase viewers’ dwell time on your videos.
Where to find keywords for YouTube SEO?
Here goes the question: how to choose the best keywords for a certain YouTube video? SEO optimization will help search engines evaluate your content and render it more efficiently to better targeted audiences. Moreover, well-written SEO titles and descriptions usually make them also well-written for human beings. So, by doing SEO optimization on your video, you kill two birds with one stone.
Finding your good keywords for YouTube is as easy as one, two, three. First, you can use YouTube Suggestions to find those long-tail queries that match your topic. Enter a few words in the Searchbox and check out suggestions to know the most popular questions people ask about your main keywords. This definitely needs your consideration.
You can as well consult Google Trends for trending YouTube videos. This is not a lavish source for long-tail queries. However, this is a magnificent study of viewers’ preferences about watching videos on YouTube. One of the curiosities of this source is that you can find emerging trends and even some keywords that hardly ever appeared on search before.
On viewing your video, check out Up next — these are the videos that YouTube treats as similar to yours. Such videos appear to be related by topic, area, location, or style (and actually based on your search history), and most popular ones. These could be your competitors or even partners, so don’t miss a chance to find out their best practices in video optimization.
How to pick your best video keywords?
Here you may want a keyword tool to scale your YouTube keyword research. YouTube has abated the keyword tool of its own long ago (probably, you will only find a few of the basic keywords suggested in the tags section). But there are some tools that will do all the work for you. These can be browser extensions like TubeBuddy.
With this extension, you will have your analytics stats about the video page right in front of you. Here in the extension window, run Keyword Explorer and enter the keyword you are interested in. You will see its basic stats about search volume, tags used on the video you’re watching, etc. To unveil more in-depth statistics about keywords and competition, you will be offered to upgrade.
As an alternative, try the desktop YouTube rank checker that does keyword research for all possible search engines and popular search platforms, including YouTube. Once you have it installed, launch the software, paste in the URL you need to analyze, and kick off with your free keyword research.
In the Keyword Research module, you will find Autocomplete Tools feature to mine hundreds of valuable keywords related to your main query. Paste your head keywords, select YouTube Suggestions as a search method. And check out your keywords, alongside important stats like search volume, competition, estimated traffic, CPC etc.
You can analyze the potential of each keyword phrase you’ve found, and add them to Rank Tracking. From this module, the Youtube keyword tool will be holding records of your rankings stats on the SERPs. You can monitor your own videos as well as your competitors’ pages, across any search engine, be it Google, Yahoo, Bing, on desktop or mobile devices.
For example, you can investigate what pages of your competitors rank on Google with a YouTube video. Go to the Keywords and Rankings tab and see which of your target keywords rank with rich results, like video, thumbnails, etc. Dig deeper into what keywords these top pages are ranking for. If you see that your video is strong enough to compete — go for them!
Analyze your clickstream stats
Once you’ve implemented all those optimization tasks, it doesn’t mean your work over this video is done. There are some more YouTube SEO tips to optimize your videos, playlists, and the channel overall, if you intend to make it long-term.
In any case, check out your YouTube Analytics. Except for views and subscribers, there’s a ton more data to get: watch time, user engagement, and audience retention. All these user behavior factors mean a lot for YouTube ranking. Having them improved will increase the chances for your video to appear among those recommended ones.
I hope you’ve found these tips useful. Just do it, and you will see yourself that only a few SEO efforts will win pretty much for your video promotion.