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You can’t go far without content optimization nowadays. It’s all about keywords, research, proper incorporation, and visitor engagement.
Every YouTuber is dreaming about making their video a trend because of many reasons. The list includes popularity, opportunities, and monetization, of course. But how to optimize videos for YouTube search? What should you write in the caption to make sure people find your piece and watch it?
We know what to do. Years of experience allow you to get used to new trends quickly, so we got you covered with this selection of tips and hacks to optimize YouTube videos and get the most views!
First, we’ll discuss the SEO part. Then, prepare for audience engagement tips.
Include Proper Keywords in the Title of the Video
A proper keyword is the king of the content success land.
Choosing such for every video will logically bring more viewers. Usually, people ask similar questions when looking for videos on a topic. Including the formula in the title of your video will show it, hopefully, on the first results page.
Where to look for proper keywords for a YouTube video?
The answer is easy: Google. Think of a name for your video that starts with “how to” “what is”, and similar phrases. Google will suggest the rest; you only have to choose the closest keyword.
You can either:
- Include a short-tail KW in your custom title;
- Use a whole question (a long-tail KW) as the title.
To make sure the most suitable words are also frequently searched or need answers, use Google tools or instruments from other sources like Ubersuggest.
A couple of tips:
- Don’t make the title look spammy;
- Embed the keyword in the most natural way;
- Keep the heading concise and interesting.
Work on the Name of the Video File, Too
Some specialists say that YouTube may pay attention to the video file name as well. The platform can’t actually watch your video to categorize it, so such keyword use may help with indexing and even rating.
Write the main keyword you want the file to associate with as the name, separating words with hyphens.
Get Deeper into SEO
The best approach is to invest time and effort into finding the best SEO keywords to get traffic.
Finding keywords and using them is one thing, but learning about the basics of SEO and its trends is essential. While learning, each new video of yours will get more likes, comments, and views.
You should also read more about creating engaging content. There are plenty of easy recommendations that will result in a piece that is both interesting and well-optimized for search engines.
Fortunately, the volume of educational materials from the best SEO and content specialists is enormous online. Just make sure you choose the right source.
Adjust Your Descriptions with Keywords and a Proper Structure
Another thing to do to optimize your YouTube videos to get more traffic is to adjust your description. Some people like to write all the hashtags in the world there in one line. However, many people pay attention to what’s under the video as much as to what’s in it.
Create an attractive video thumbnail. A high-quality splash screen can increase your CTR several times. Pay special attention to it. Enhance pictures using a design service or you can order this service from a professional designer and compare the results.
Check your captions according to the following recommendations:
- A concise and clear description of the contents of the video;
- A topical keyword used properly and naturally in the text;
- The caption is scannable, which means there are separate paragraphs with only a couple of sentences in one, subtopics, and lists. The viewer should be able to “scan” the description with their eyes;
- This shouldn’t be a whole essay. Use the 1,000 characters available wisely.
If you miss out on any of these, it’s time to optimize every caption you have.
Choose Proper Categories and Tags
Categories are available in the Advanced Settings section. Choosing the relevant ones will help your videos get on automatically created playlists. This will improve the viewability of your content a lot.
While this seems very easy, invest a lot of effort in the choice. Answer questions like:
- What the top videos in the category are? Is my content any similar to that by topic or approach?
- Do my videos answer questions people most likely ask when browsing through the category?
- What’s the overall profile of the videos in the category? Do I fit there?
Surprisingly, you may want to change the initial category list after answering these questions honestly.
As to the tags, it’s easier. Use the focus keywords as tags. Correct tags will show the essence of the video not only to the viewers but YouTube as well.
Make Use of End Screens and Cards
End screens work similarly to cards but at the end of the video. It’s more focused on the visuals, like an image representing your product and a link.
Adding such screens may seem difficult. But there are so many materials online that will guide you through the process step by step. Official sources like Google and YouTube also provide necessary information for all creators.
Such small additions will enhance the user experience. Viewers won’t only watch useful videos but get options on what to do after that. You’ll get many more conversions by implementing such strategies. Many people are actually ready to buy a high-quality product or service. But if you don’t give them options, a large part won’t bother to search your brand or persona.
As to the cards, we’ve all seen them when watching YouTube videos:
- An “i” in the corner of the viewing screen with information about your brand, the topic, or an invitation to buy something;
- A non-invasive bar with the same information, etc.
YouTube offers up to 5 cards in one piece, and you can place anything there:
- Ask people to subscribe;
- Ask to check out your product;
- Recommend buying a book, your service, etc.;
- Link to a third-party source with more information;
- Recommendation to donate, etc.
Optimize Subtitles and Closed Captions
Remember keywords? Well, using them in subtitles and closed captures will increase your chances of getting to the top of the results page. Creating and adding them isn’t a problem compared to the benefits you will get.
If this sounds like a lot of time and effort, professionals will help you write and time subtitles. You can find a lot of options and tools in the “Video Manager” or “Videos” section of your YouTube Creator account. Choose the “Subtitles/CC” option and adjust the way you want the subs or captions shown.
Engage with Your Audience
The easiest way to get something is to ask, right?
Most YouTubers don’t shy away from the fact that they get a lot of benefits from the viewers. It’s an equal exchange: they provide valuable material, you like, comment, and subscribe if the topic resonates.
Along with all the previous SEO tactics, you should also engage with the people you want to get those benefits from. Ask them to do all those actions and explain why. Say how meaningful every like is for you and highlight the fact that it only takes seconds to provide enormous help.
Make sure the speech isn’t too long and boring, though. People tend to skip such “spoken essays”.
Of course, when asking to comment, think about a way to reply to everyone before you start getting thousands of comments a day.
Create a complex of actions before making the video public and implement it every time. Soon, it will become a habit, and the results will come along promptly! Follow the trends of SEO and YouTube guidelines to get the most out of your tactics!
Marie Barnes is a journalist, freelance writer, and editor at Studyscroll. She has worked for many major publications, but she also ambitiously pursues challenging freelance projects. Her love for traveling motivates her to explore the world. Marie wants to inspire people to follow their dreams by sharing her experiences online.