Five Super Simple Ways to Optimize Your YouTube Videos

Konabos Inc. - Konabos

10 Sep 2021

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Let’s face it, SEO is a game that we all need to play if we want to get our site ranking in search engine results, and it’s not enough to write the best content in the world if your SEO is off track. We know the importance of making our website SEO friendly and using the proper keywords to help boost our organic ranking for all the great content we produce. But what about the content that does not rely on words alone? 

Blogs and articles are still popular ways to consume content, but the online world is rapidly recognizing that media is absorbed in numerous ways, including through visuals (photos), audio (podcasts) and video, which means you need to ensure you can optimize accordingly. 

Think about the last time you searched for a video on YouTube, and what made you click on one video as opposed to the others. Was it because it was number one on the page? Was it the image or title that drew you to it? Chances are that the video in question was optimized to increase visibility, generate clicks, and convert audiences to viewers. Below we will look at five easy and straightforward ways you can optimize your YouTube video to make sure your content doesn’t find itself buried in the realm of long-forgotten videos.

Rename Your Video Using Relevant Keywords

When you’re saving a video on your computer, chances are that it automatically uploads using a generic title such as MOV_23, or maybe you rename it using a specific project name, example, Q2-marketing efforts-final-version. While there is nothing inherently wrong with using either title, you should use keywords pertinent to your content to get the best value for your SEO efforts. YouTube doesn’t understand video content, but it can read the name ascribe to a video, so rename it using descriptive language that reflects the content material is ideal, but no need to get too specific. Besides, saving it using a descriptive title will make it easier to identify if ever you need to retrieve that video at some point.

Optimize Your Title Using Targeted Keywords

When you’re looking for something, chances are you will type your query exactly in the way you think it in your head (example: how to make no-bake brownies), and the top results are likely to have similar titles, as this often determines whether someone will click on the choices presented. Exact matches are not necessary, but the main keywords should find their way somewhere in the title. Your title should be clear and concise to let viewers know what to expect when they click on your video.

Create A Customized Thumbnail Image on The Results Page

Much like your title will influence viewers to click, so will your thumbnail image. YouTube automatically chooses a few stills from your video and loads them when you publish your final video. However, YouTube does not (yet) have the capacity to judge if any of these thumbnails best represent your video or if they have the potential to attract viewers. The best solution is to create a custom thumbnail using Canva or Photoshop and add your title, brand name and other various designs to use as your thumbnail image. Doing this can also help you establish a style that will become part of your brand, and people will recognize it right away.

Optimize Your Video Description 

Contrary to a blog post, a video description is not the focus of your content and writing long paragraphs with deep and complex thoughts is not the place to do it. You need to get your description in under 1000 words (which isn’t too hard to do!), but only the first 2-3 lines will appear when your video shows up in the YouTube algorithm. Treat your description like a tweet and try to get any CTA or interesting facts out at the start. All links, promotions or extra information can go underneath, where viewers will have to manually choose the “show more” option.

Tag Your Video with Keywords

Adding tags to your video helps build your SEO as they breakdown your content for the YouTube algorithm. Since YouTube cannot grasp video formatting, it uses tags to find similarities between your video and other uploaded videos. You have the option of entering multiple tags, but best practice dictates that your first few tags should be optimized using primary keywords, including any form of long-tail keywords, example of a specific match long-term keyword would be: how to change a car tire.

There are no rules as to the number of tags you should use, but keep it brief, incorporate both exact match keywords and broader relevant niche-specific keywords. The main idea behind tags is to expand your reach by appearing in search results of people looking for similar content on your subject matter. This reduces the risk of your videos reaching the wrong audience and showing up for terms that are entirely unrelated to your field and subject.

Video is still one of the preferred ways for people to consume content, and unsurprisingly, the trends show no signs of slowing down, which means it is worth creating an elaborate YouTube SEO strategy into your digital marketing plan. Video content is another way for you to give your brand a voice (literally!), and just like you spend time optimizing your site and written content, it becomes just as important to optimize any video content you upload to YouTube.

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