YouTube SEO: How to Apply Best Practices for Video Content

YouTube SEO: How to Apply Best Practices on Video Content
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When you think about SEO, you might be thinking about written content, but it actually extends much further. If your business uploads videos to YouTube, there are a lot of extra steps you should take to improve the view count. Therefore, hiring professionals to provide SEO services can be incredibly important.

It’s not enough to just get a lot of views. If you monetize your videos, it will bring in a little bit of extra money. To get a worthwhile amount, your business should be pulling in millions of views every time. However, that isn’t always realistic, especially if you’re a local business.

The goal is to bring in viewers who properly align with your target demographic. When they see your video, they’ll be more likely to purchase your product than someone who just randomly chances upon your content.

What is SEO?

SEO stands for search engine optimization. It is a process of organically improving the quality and quantity of online traffic using proven ranking strategies. SEO excludes any paid advertising or other “bought” impressions.

For example, if you upload a YouTube video and use that video as a paid advertisement to be played in front of other videos, that isn’t SEO. SEO would be gaining targeted views by using strategically chosen keywords, tags, and hash tags.

How to Improve Your YouTube SEO

There are numerous ways to improve SEO for your business’s YouTube videos. Let’s take a look at some of them in detail.

Using Keywords

Keywords are one of the most powerful tools for growing an audience, and it applies equally to YouTube SEO. Uploading to YouTube is a lot more complex that just hitting “publish” and calling it a day, if you want to maximize visibility for your videos.

Research is the best way to know if you are using the best keywords for your titles and descriptions. It’s important to examine what people are searching for, what kind of language they are using, and what your successful competitors are doing.

A good SEO company has experienced professionals who will be able to efficiently determine what’s right for your business.

Tagging Your Videos

When uploading a video to YouTube, you’ll see a space for tags. In this box, you can pick many different words and phrases that relate to your video. There is no maximum number of words or phrases you can use, however you’ll have to fit them all within a 500-character limit.

Tags are a great tool if your content has keywords that are commonly misspelled, because they help YouTube redirect people to what they are trying to find anyway.

Capitalizing on Hashtags

A lot of people don’t know that you can use hashtags on YouTube. It’s sort of like a hidden feature–there are no instructions telling you to use hashtags while uploading or editing the metadata.

So where do the hashtags go? You can manually place up to 15 of them in the description, with the first three automatically showing up right below the video as it plays. But don’t go overboard and pick more than 5, because YouTube will ignore all of them if you do. SEO companies can assist with choosing the best hashtags to increase the quality of your traffic.

Building Playlists

Playlists are an amazing way of keeping people on your YouTube channel, especially if you have videos that are similar or part of the same series. When someone watches one video in a playlist, it will automatically play others which you get to hand-select in advance for the playlist.

You will also be able to add a title and description for your playlist, so make sure to use those keywords!

Optimizing Thumbnails

Don’t Overlook This One!

A good thumbnail might be one of the most important parts of uploading a YouTube video. Let’s say someone searches for a keyword and your video happens to be the first search result. Congratulations!

But there’s a problem. You don’t have a custom-made thumbnail and the video below you on the exact same topic does. In fact, they went all out on it and it looks extremely eye-catching. Guess which video will likely be clicked? If you guessed the one with the custom thumbnail, you’re probably right.

Coupled with YouTube SEO, you’ll be able to stand out better with a creative thumbnail for your video. This can be the difference between a click and someone passing right over it.

Linking and Making a Call to Action

Typically, if you’re a business, the point of your YouTube video isn’t just going to be racking up views. The point is to get people interested enough to purchase a product or service. Be sure to serve up a call-to-action at the end so they know what to do next.

If they like what they see and they’re given an easy path to a purchase, your odds of closing a sale will leap substantially. Let them know what to do at the end of your video. With the help of SEO professionals, you can provide links in the description that will get them started.

You Can Improve Your Business with YouTube SEO

Whether you are currently uploading YouTube content or looking to start, you can benefit from bringing in a qualified SEO company.

Of course, SEO takes time to work, so don’t give up if it fails to show results at first. SEO requires dedication over time. If you remain focused and consistent with your YouTube SEO efforts, you should begin to gradually notice a huge improvement in your online presence.


Feature image provided by the author under his or her own license.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions stated in this post are that of the author, and Return On Now may or may not agree with any or all of the commentary.

This guest post brought to you courtesy of Return On NowProfessional Austin SEO and PPC Services Company.

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Shay Berman

Founder and President at Digital Resource
Shay Berman is the founder and president of Digital Resource, a full-service digital marketing agency located in South Florida. Shay’s clear-cut approach to internet marketing has driven his clients' businesses to new heights and allowed Digital Resource to land on the Inc 500 list two years in a row and be named as No. 49 on Entrepreneur magazine's Entrepreneur 360 list.

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