Uploading your own videos on platforms such as YouTube? You’ll want to be SEO savvy to make the most of them.
So, what is SEO? Search engines, such as Google or Bing, they present search results based on popularity and relevance to what is searched for. They regularly scan all the text within uploaded content (called crawling), analyze and index the data, then use filters to present the information to the user according to the keywords they have entered. When you create a video, a website or an online business, by using keywords within the file name, titles, content, descriptions, subtitles and tags, Search Engines, using the keywords people most search for, within your content, will raise you higher on Search Engine’s lists.
But it’s mandatory to understand that in order to go higher in those lists, you’d need authority which is only obtainable if other websites link to your specific pages, which builds up backlinks and tells the search engines that this is relevant information to the users.
What keywords do you use? Think about what you are presenting. Don’t be mysterious and enigmatic. Tell it like it is. By describing to yourself what you see, pick out the main words. Research trends. Check out the YouTube trending tab. Use these ideas and add to your list. Use synonyms. Use your keywords when you write the descriptive text. Just repeating them wont help as Search Engines can see duplicated content and their filters will end up working against you, plus your viewers won’t want to read a garbled script. There are tools you can use to help you choose.
Google Keyword Planner via Google Ads will let you know how many times your keywords are being searched for every month and suggest more effective choices.
YouTube tags can be helpful, but you shouldn’t put too much thought into them as what’s most important remains the video description and title.
But keywords aren’t everything.
With YouTube, after you upload a video, the algorithm shows it to a few users on the homepage (mostly to your subscribers), and if it appeals to, engages and satisfies those viewers (i.e., they click on it, watch it all the way through, like it, share it, etc.) then it gets offered to more and more new viewers.
You need to get people’s attention.
An eye-catching thumbnail and an attention grabbing headline are a great start. These are the first things that the viewer will see, you will want to hold that attention. Use your keywords in the headline. Include a bit of description, if you are going to teach the viewer something, let them know, entice them. The more clicks and watchtime you get, the more your video would get suggested to new viewers. In your video description, add those keywords early on. Be engaging and dynamic. Same if you have script in your video.
Adding CC (subtitles) is beneficial: it allows you to reach those who are hearing impaired, the subs also can be translated to other languages and they give the algorithm more freedom to spread your content to non-English speaking viewers, which you’d otherwise not get to. Auto subtitles that YouTube generates can be acceptable, but if you want quality, you need to edit them proper.
Create a playlist, allowing your viewer to watch your content one after the other. The more time they spend watching, the higher you rank, as YouTube like the chance to get some adverts in. This also applies to creating videos with longer content.
You can benefit from backlinks on YouTube. These can be links from one web page to another. They are created when people find your content via mentions on social media, or by finding you from a Search Engine. By reaching out to other content creators and YouTube channel owners, asking them to add a link to your videos, you build more backlinks.
You could also get your work added to other people’s playlists. Find someone with similar content, but not identical; ask them; be complimentary of their work and suggest you will return the favor, then Bingo! your content will start popping up all over the place, increasing your audience range.
Most people do not look beyond the first page of search results. With great content, optimized SEO and an inviting temptation to click, your brand will improve, you may find you grow a fanbase. Remember, even the highest ranking influencers started off with just one like.