It’s common knowledge that SEO is driving factor for a successful blog and web content circulation and site rankings, but did you know it is also imperative to maximize views for your video content as well? Today we’ll be specifically focusing on how to bolster your YouTube videos with the necessary information to increase your video content search results in search engines such as Google or Bing.
Every Video Needs a Great Title and Description
The title, similarly to in articles or heading on web pages, holds a lot of weight when search engines sort their results. Your video title needs to contain all your primary keywords; this is the first point of reference for the search engines to assess the content of your video to determine its relevance to a user’s search query. The video description is equally important and is the place to capture entirely other terms users may implement in their questions. If you cannot fit all your desired keywords in your title, make sure to place these in your description, along with synonyms of your title keywords to reach a broader range of people searching for the content in your video.
For example, if you post a video about cakes and use the word “cake” in the video title, you will want to include additional keywords such as “baked goods, pastries, baking, dessert and cookbook” in your video description.
Tagging Is Important
Social media has turned the hashtag into a thing of ridiculousness and search engines have made them obsolete, but tagging for video search is still a viable part of SEO for video content. Typically, the bots pull from keywords within the material, and tags aren’t necessary.
This process also prevents people from using tags to bolsters their search rankings with unrelated keywords. Because web crawlers can’t crawl through video content, tags allow the search engine robots to know the content of the video without requiring a transcript. Tags are especially helpful for videos that don’t contain verbal content.
For videos that do contain speech, YouTube transcribes the video, pulling from the data within, turning the video speech to texts. This feature is not yet foolproof, however, you should ensure your tags make up for any errors YouTube may encounter.
Keep consistent across your title, description, and tags, keeping each a reflection of the actual transcribed content of your video so YouTube will rank your video accurately.
Be a High Performer
Like social media, the likes and shares matter on YouTube. The more likes and shares you get; the higher YouTube will rank your video in search returns. Another qualification they consider is how long people are watching your video. If your video is 10 minutes and people exit out after 30 seconds, your rankings will decline. If your video is 10 minutes and people stay for 8 minutes, your rankings will increase, as this is a high retention time. YouTube will consider your video to be of higher value and will rank it higher for search engines.
Putting it into Practice
Let’s look at a well-known YouTube Channel to see how they use their title and description to represent their video, while also making it suitable for search engines.
The Nerdist channel includes the topic of the video and the category of video within the title. “Our Official First Look at DC’s Shazam (Nerdist News w/ Jessica Chabot)” calls out the video topic as being a look at an upcoming superhero movie from the DC comics universe.
The title also lets viewers and searchers know this is part of their YouTube series “Nerdist News.”
When we look at the description, we see they further boost the keywords DC, Shazam and Nerdist News to bring in views searching for any of these terms. They also include Zachary Levi, the name of the actor in tandem with Shazam to reach those searches as well.
We can assume Nerdist added tags to represent all of these keywords as well, along with additional related keywords such as “superhero, comics, and movie.”
Note they list the category as Entertainment, which helps to narrow down search results as well.
When you are uploading your own YouTube Videos, take each of these aspects into consideration. The title, description, tags, category, and production value all play a part in developing the SEO for your YouTube video to make it searchable not only within YouTube but on Google and other search engines. Be intentional about how you represent yourself or your business on YouTube, and you’ll have a much better chance at high search rankings.
Emin is a Los Angeles-based SEO specialist. On his free time, he enjoys blogging about marketing and web design. He also likes drawing, swimming and reading books.