What You Should Know about Video Optimisation for YouTubeNovember 19th, 2015 by Viviane Carter
YouTube is huge. It is the second largest search engine and the third most visited website on the internet. In addition, YouTube’s reach and popularity are increased as they feature prominently in Google web and video search results.
So how do you optimise your video content for YouTube and Google search? Which factors affect how you rank?
The first important factor of video optimisation is your content. Does your video provide great content? Is it interesting, funny or helpful? Even if you optimise your video for YouTube and Google, if the content is bad, people won’t watch it or at least not to the end, they won’t like your video and they won’t comment. This will affect your ranking so, first of, make sure you create great, engaging content. How-to videos, tutorials and reviews are great examples of content that can do very well on YouTube. If you own a business, you can use your expertise to create valuable content by sharing your knowledge.
Title and description
Like with any web page, title and description are very important for getting your YouTube video to rank well. Your title needs to get people to click on the link to your video, draw them in, but at the same time it is important that your title doesn’t promise something your video won’t deliver. Do keyword research for your title to make sure you include all the important keywords you want to do well for. The description is equally as important. Write an actual description of your video. Don’t just add a link to your website or a one liner description. Make it count. We recommend that the video description should be around 300 words long. Add keywords to your content as well as a link to your website or product page.
On YouTube, you have the option to add tags with your video. Use them. Again, doing some keyword research will be incredibly helpful for making sure you include all the important keywords. Think about what search terms people would use to find content like yours. Use these keywords in your tags.
We highly recommend transcribing your video. YouTube offers an automatic transcription option which will add closed captions to your video as well. If you have no time to manually transcribe your videos, at the very least use this feature, but we recommend doing a manual transcription, as this is much more accurate than the machine transcription offered by YouTube. Not only is it more user-friendly to offer closed captions to your viewers, your transcription is used for indexing and for ranking your videos for keywords.
Another important ranking factor is your YouTube channel authority. YouTube doesn’t just look at your one video, they look at all videos you have uploaded to your channel and the engagement on these videos. This means that if all your other videos have little to no engagement, Google is inclined to expect your new video to be of similar quality and value. But if your other content has consistently high engagement rates, this can be beneficial for how your new content ranks. So make sure you offer content your viewers want to watch, want to engage with by liking it, commenting on it and sharing it. And then engage with your viewers by replying to their comments.
Increasing views of your videos and inbound links
Having more views will help you rank better. To increase the views of your video, share it on your website, your blog and your social media channels. If you send out a newsletter, include it there. Because it is also important for your rankings, whether people watch your video to the end or drop off halfway through, it is important to ensure that your content will be engaging to the end.
Sharing your video is also important for creating links to your video. If you have shared your video on your website or your blog, this is an inbound link. So are links from social media channels. Link to your YouTube channel from your homepage like you would to other social media profiles. If you have embedded your video on your website, this is also a positive sign for Google and YouTube that your video is adding value for many users, which in turn means that it will rank better.
Other forms of engagement
As I mentioned previously, comments and likes are also a factor in how your video ranks. If you get a lot of comments, this signals to Google that people want to engage with your content, so it is more likely to be of value and quality. Be sure to reply to comments to interact with your viewers and to get them to interact with you.
These and more factors all affect how your YouTube video will rank. If you would like more advice or help with optimising your video content for YouTube, feel free to get in touch.