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YouTube SEO

YouTube SEO: The Advanced Guide (2017 Updated)

How To Rank YouTube Videos

Ranking a YouTube video is not a tough job at all?

It only seems like that!

Yes! You are right, It’s about YouTube SEO.

If rightly done, you will hit the 1st spot on both search engines.

I’m talking about Google & YouTube. But to be number one, it’s not only about SEO.

A big deal is:

Your video must be of that quality and relevancy.

Once you’ve done both the things, You’ll rock.

But how to do that?

Today, I’m back with my awesome buddy to share with you best YouTube SEO Tips, in perfectly drafted guide’s form.

So keep reading with me, while I’m writing just for you.

I don’t know either you like it or not, but i usually provide you with Bonus Learning Tip with each of my post.

Here is for today:

Learn To Plan and then Manage your tasks.

A proper plan backed by a pro-active management results in extreme time saving and keeps you away from other work headaches.

It speeds up your work like you couldn’t imagine.

I suggest you to use Microsoft Office apps and sticky notes etc.

Well, let’s just not be anymore off-topic and get back to our major discussion.

Starting with:

Chapter #1
Keyword Research

SEO is not something like “Plug and Play“.

You have to keep on learning the changing trends, while keeping a perfect track of its basic terminologies.

Very first and extremely important terminology is keyword research.

It doesn’t matter either for Blogging or YouTube video ranking, Keyword Research plays vital role.

In-fact, a little more specifically I should use the word YouTube Keyword Research.

Which is a little different as compared to our traditional keyword finding methods.

And the best way to find these keywords, is looking into YouTube Suggestions.

Because mostly views come from these suggestion, as viewers are too lazy to type in the complete keyword and end up clicking one of the suggestions.

You know what?

There are a lots of keywords which have high searches in google while very low in YouTube.

And some others are vice versa.

That’s why I said it’s Keyword Research is a little different.

Hence you need  to find perfect keywords for your video to get maximum views and 1st place ranking.

How?

Let me show you some cool ways.

Many people will only tell you only one way that is “Auto Suggestion”.

But today, the case is a little different.

I’m going to tell you the best ways to find Perfect Keywords for your videos.

#1. YouTube Suggest

Its same like Google Search.

You just need to type a Keyword in YouTube Search and it will show you some more keywords related to your main keyword.

Just type in a keyword in YouTube search and it will show you more related to your main keyword.

YouTube Suggestions

Wait! Its not enough i got something really better than this.

Pro Tip: You just need to put an underscore (“_”) before starting a keyword and it will show you all the words before your keyword.

Underscore Suggestion

You can use this underscore (“_”) at the end of the keyword too.

Underscore Last Suggestion

#2. Video Keywords

Secondly there are typical video keywords.

Your minds still might be at:

“What are these Video Keywords?”

Right ! Wait, Let me clear this…

When we search some keywords in a search engine like Google, we usually get websites in SERPs.

But you may have noticed that sometimes you get videos in search results, more than simply written content.

These searches are “Video Keywords.”

Not clear yet? Take a look at this:

Video Keywords

Can You Guess a few Video Keywords?

Try to do some experiments with below mentioned info:

In general, Google tends to display video results for these types of keywords:

  • Keywords starting with “How To.”
  • Reviews
  • Tutorials
  • Keywords with the word “Video.”
  • Songs/Movies
  • Watch

Next is totally on your end.

I mean do experiments while using above mentioned words along with your niche to make some video keywords.

Yes!

You can use keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner, MOZ Keyword Explorer or any other you usually use to explore relevant keywords.

Filter your video keywords from the list you generate by using different tools, and then you may inspect every single keyword in google to find if that’s actually a video keyword or not.

Now, you know the both methods to find the perfect keywords for your Videos.

Which can b ranked on Google and YouTube too.

Next is a cool addition.

#3. Google Trends

Well I don’t know why, but my buddy Afraz likes it a lot.

Google Trends Tool is simple and contains tons of information to set-up our efficient predictions about user intention.

I hope you all know that:

User intention of a keyword is the real game.

So I would say, go as deep as you can to predict user’s intention before starting any type of SEO or internet marketing work.

All level up SEOs know that finding user’s intention of a keyword is lot more important than looking for its search volume.

Now the thing is how to play with that thing?

Its quite simple just explore any term/keyword and change the search type from “Web Search” to “YouTube Search”.

Here is the graphic for clear understanding:

Web Serach To YouTube Search

It shows either people on YouTube have any interest in your search term or not.

Simply stating if it’s a video keyword or just another written content friendly term.

Google Trend Web Search

Google Trends YouTube Search

These displays are clearly indicating that “smart watch” is a web content friendly keyword while “How to tie a tie” is a pure video keyword.

You can verify all your video keywords collected in the previous step.

Caution: Make sure, use trends to explore one term at a time for better results. Don’t do comparison like i have displayed. There is a kind of bug in trend graphs when we explore multiple keywords in a single screen. I am going to make a detailed report to Google for this.

And there is a lot more in trends…

You can try exploring your keywords for different locations, try changing location from “World Wide” to “(Any where you want)”.

Take a look at this:

Google Trends Location

It will show you either your target audience have any kind of interest in your topic or not.

Google Trends Region

In this one, you can see interest breakup of audience from different locations.

That keyword will attract more visitors from Canada & USA as compared to any other region.

And what about if you want to know more about your target audience.

Same like above two processes, now its time to change category to figure out what type of audience is more interested in your target keyword.

Changing Category

Try checking and comparing results with different options and i am sure your keywords research techniques will level up automatically.

Let’s move to our next chapter.

Chapter #2
Create Perfect Videos

How do you describe a perfect video in your words?

Well…

According to me, if i may creatively define a Perfect Video for YouTube:

It is nothing more than a user engaging video with extreme relevancy.

I know there are a lots of other things like video quality, run-time and all that stuff.

But all these things are second priority and can be done like with a push button.

Hope you’ve understood how to go with your video making.

Now why do you need a perfect video?

I don’t think i still need to answer this question, but only for you guys…

Because “User Experience” is everything.

If your viewer is happy with your video content then trust me no one can stop you to be on 1st spot.

Use some Professional Effects and Visuals to increase the user Experience.

Let me show you one sample video.

YouTube SEO

Did you see that?

Not even close to boring video, in-fact effects were keeping you engaged.

Some technical parameters to evaluate a perfect video are as under:

  1. CTR
  2. Engagement
  3. Watch Time

Once you’ve started getting good signals from these parameters, trust me you’ll be very close to hit #01.

Let’s just dive into these to learn more interesting and extremely important things.

1. CTR

CTR is very straight forward parameter, but it also needs experiments to grow.

It is very directly dependent on these two things:

“Title Of Your Video” & “Thumbnail”

If you keep these things attractive, your CTR will rise.

You will know more about these in next sections of this guide.

2. Engagement

Engagement comes with user’s interest only.

Well if you believe that, you need to modify your thoughts from now on.

Engagement of a topic or even web content is very closely linked to “How you present it” & “Your content values”

By content values, i mean how valuable information you’ve embedded in your video.

If you can learn the trick to keep a user curious about every next minute of your video, you will get maximum possible engagement.

And its very simple indeed:

Just share the right information at its best time in your video.

While trying to keep your content engaging, make sure you provide your user the value of his time spent on your video.

Simply stating, a user should watch complete.

3. Watch Time

For how long a user watches your video, is it’s watch time.

A clear point is you need to increase this to improve ranking of the video.

Here is how you can do it:

Simply stating, create long videos.

Let me give you an example…

You and your competitor are working on same keyword.

You both post videos with somewhat same level of user engagement and video quality.

Your Video’s Length is 5 minutes and his Video’s Length is 10 minutes.

Then his watch time will b 4X more than your’s and his ranking will also improve.

Because Watch time is the most important ranking factor in YouTube algorithm.

YouTube Said “Pay close attention to the first 15 seconds of every video — that’s when viewers are most likely to drop-off.”
Source

If a user drop here and you’re ranking good on a video then your ranking will start falling.

Reason? Less Watch Time.

So Try to focus on your every video’s first 15 second.

Now, Move to next Chapter.

Chapter #3
Video Optimization

Hope you all know much about on page SEO of a website‘s post.

We need to do somewhat about same things for our video to optimize it for YouTube.

These are very very simple things which need to be done.

Let me show you one by one.

Change the name of the video to your keyword, by simply doing right click on the video and using “Rename” option.

Then go to the properties, again by just doing right click and reaching “properties” on the menu.

Now go to the “Details” tab and fill all the boxes with the name of your video.

#1. Video Title

The first and foremost signal for YouTube to check whats your video is all about, is the title of your video.

A major factor for YouTube SEO.

What to do with this?

  • Include your keyword once in your title
  • Try to use attractive title.

By using attractive title you can get maximum Click Through Rate (CTR).

#2. Video Description

Time to tell a little more about the video as YouTube is too dumb to look whats inside.

Yes! YouTube can’t see what’s inside your Video.

To give better understand of the video and its content to YouTube we use description.

In the description, I usually like to:

  • Write at least 200 words of unique & descriptive explanation. I like to summarize what the video is about (don’t ever stuff it with your target keyword).
  • Add some external links to websites and social profiles.

This can help you to get your Video Featured in “YouTube Suggested Videos”.

This is your video’s communication with the search engine.

I should better say “conversation” with YouTube’s search algorithm.

#3. Video Tags

I usually want to laugh when someone says tags have nothing to do with ranking a video.

Video Tags are relevancy signals for YouTube.

And remember, i have mentioned earlier that relevancy is one the major consideration while creating perfect video for YouTube.

Wouldn’t it be crazy that you upload a video and ask YouTube.

“Hello Miss YouTube….! I have uploaded a video now its your turn to figure out what exactly it relates to. 🙂 ”

Well, that was a joke’s part but still making a clear sense.

Its a kind of hurdle you need to get rid of. Do use cool and relevant tags.

They are used for Classification.

We can explore two different ways to find tags quickly…

1. Own Tags

Just like the name of this heading suggests, you have to find tags for your video on your own.

Let me give you an example:

You have a video related to “YouTube SEO” and you want to add some tags.

Firstly you can brainstorm on your own to think of some relevant keywords like “Video Ranking“, “How to Rank YouTube Videos“, “SEO for YouTube Videos” and “Ranking YouTube Videos” etc.

Secondly you can use Google suggest & YouTube suggest for this.

Let the search engines help you out.

How?

Simple! Put your main keyword in search box and it will show you long tail keywords.

You can also use my (“_”) sign trick for more suggestion.

By doing this you’ll have some good amount of tags related your video.

2. Competitor’s Tags

Don’t know how you gonna consider this heading. I mean isn’t it a kind of stealing.

Well at least I can say tags are not copy-righted. It is more like spying than stealing.

Anyway lets look into the method as we are  looking forward to grab some cool video tags.

In this, we have to steal the tags of our Competitor.

But How?

Here is quick walk through:

  1. Install TubeBuddy Chrome Extension.
  2. Type your main keyword into YouTube search.
  3. Click on top 5 ranked videos
  4. Click “tags” in TubeBuddy to view competitor tags
  5. Copy and paste these into your video’s tag place.

Isn’t it too easy?

#4. Video Thumbnail

In case you don’t know what it is:

Thumbnail is the display picture of your video.

The more engaging and attractive it is, better are the chances for the user to click on it.

So, do some experiments to create most attractive thumbnail for your video.

This can help you to get Awesome CTR.

And who can deny???

High CTR = Higher Ranking

It is also a strong user engagement signal for your video.

You can use these tools to create eye catching thumbnails.

  1. Photoshop
  2. Canva

This chapter was a little like On Page SEO which is done if you’ve understood these things.

Let’s now make your channel a brand.

Chapter #4:
Channel Branding

Don’t create a YouTube Channel, create a Brand.

Well…! You may rank videos without  taking any type of care about developing a brand.

But to grow unlimited, you have to focus on developing a YouTube Brand.

And once again, there is no rocket science evolved.

All it takes is hard work, dedication and interest.

Hard work plays a vital role even if you have lack of interest in your selected niche or topic.

Let’s see a bit more in detail about how to do that?

1. Setup Your Content Focus

Have you ever noticed that brands put extreme focus on limited categories at a time.

They don’t deviate from their core selection and that’s what makes them successful.

Well there are multi-category brands as there are always some exceptions.

You can think of something like a clothing brand, as an example.

Same stands true for YouTube channels.

Content or niche focus is most important when we talk about developing a YouTube brand.

Work hard, do deep research and keep on making awesome videos on your topic.

2. Develop Fan Following

If you’ve concentrated on the first step, you will automatically develop a strong fan following.

You can also call YouTube Subscribers as your fans.

Keep your fans engaged and give them a value.

You can also do that easily by:

  • Developing topical relation with your fans
  • Responding them in comments
  • Accepting compliments and critics to improve the quality of your channel
  • Extending outstanding support with your videos

3. Brand Icon Recognition

So you’ve developed a brand without any identity?

It doesn’t even go that way.

Give it a name and then do following:

  • Get a unique and attractive logo
  • Use a profile picture on your channel
  • Use a channel art on your channel
  • Link your channel with your relevant blog and social media accounts

Hope you’ve got all the points about branding your channels.

This was extraordinary step to increase your channel’s trust in the eyes of YouTube.

Chapter #5:
Video Promotion

Well, YouTube SEO is incomplete without Video Promotion.

Do you really think writing a complete chapter about YouTube Video Promotion is a fare trade?

I mean is it really that important?

Yes it is equally important as any of other chapters of this perfect guide.

YouTube SEO is incomplete without it.

And i don’t want to say anything more in its favor.

Just consider it and plan your video promotions even before posting on YouTube.

One more thing as soon as you start promotions, it becomes a ranking signal for your videos.

Simple Like:

Video Promotion = Social Sharing = Higher Ranking

Okay now?

I hope you know a lot about how to do promotion.

But who cares, as i am still going to write each and everything in my way.

Here is how and where to promote:

1. Attack Facebook Pages & Groups

I don’t really mean to hack Facebook or anything like that.

You can promote your videos on Facebook.

Where?

If you are thinking about Facebook Pages & Groups, you are damn right.

Like if you’re publishing a video on Subway Surfer Game, then you can search for Subway Surfer’s pages and groups.

How?

Its soo simple!

Just look at the picture below:

YouTube SEO FB Pages

You can promote your video by commenting on the page.

FB Page Example

Pro Tip: Use Attractive Taglines and Thumbnail for better CTR and Good Traffic.

Same method stands applicable for Facebook Groups even.

YouTube SEO FB Group

You can post your video links in Groups.

But make sure to avoid spamming at any cost!

Up  next is Reddit…

2. Reddit Gives You Premium Viewers

This is something HUGE…

Reddit is a social network, full of people from Premium Countries like USA.

Don’t tell me that you don’t know the value of traffic from US.

You just need to increase your Reddit Link Karma and then post your videos in Sub-Reddit.

Reddit Example

What is Sub-Reddit?

It is same like a Facebook Group.

You’ll get very good traffic from Reddit. One of my all time favorite social websites.

3. Google+ Gives a traffic boost

Oh Yeah! Google+ is very good source to get traffic.

You need to find related Google Plus Communities and post your video link but again taking serious care to avoid spamming.

Google+ Example

Well, you can use Twitter too. But I don’t use twitter that much so let me know if you’ve had a good experience with that as well.

TIP: Try to keep your video attractive as much as possible depending upon your topic. You can do research to develop informative videos with good amount of curiosity and that will surely increase user engagement level of your videos.

In other words.

Success of video promotion is directly proportional to its engagement and attractiveness.

Now lets move to somewhat YouTube Off Page SEO.

Chapter #6
Video Ranking

Lets get to link building of our videos just like we do off page SEO of our web page.

That’s why i often call it “YouTube Off Page SEO”.

And how you can build links for your videos?

Once again it is something like you already know how to do, but not doing it yet.

Yes…! You’d agree if i say “We often know a lot, but don’t try much.” I can bet, you can learn a lot by trying different things you know.

Anyway, here is the deal:

1. Web 2.0 Video Embedding

I’ve tested this method on my videos.

And It really works well.

You just need to create a web 2.0, then do a post and embed your video there.

Isn’t it a butter’s bite.

Example? Ah Yeah! Here it is:

But why this works?

Because Embedding YouTube Video is one of the most important ranking factor in YouTube algorithm.

2. Forum Commenting

Just like we use to do Blog Commenting for SEO, we can do forum commenting to rank our YouTube Videos.

Simply reach out some relevant forums and then search for your topical threads.

After that leave a normal comment there with your YouTube video embed.

Here is a perfect example.

3. Video Embeds By Outreach

I don’t know why i feel like you haven’t tried this method yet as well.

Why?

Because it’s about reaching out video embed-ders.

But first let me tell you “Who are Video Embed-ders?”

These are the people who have published content related to your video, on their websites.

This is the best way to get contextual video embedded links.

But how can you do this?

Here is the deal.

If you can remind, in Chapter #2 I showed you a video of Arvind Rana. Which is about Google Assistant.

You just need to search for articles related to Google Assistant.

How?

You can use these queries:

intitle:”Google Assistant”and

inurl:”Google Assistant”

This query will show you all the posts which are on “Google Assistant”.

Just open the site, get their contact details and send them a mail.

Want my E-Mail template which I used?

Hello [Author Name],

How you doing buddy? I just read your Article [Article Title].

And it is more than Awesome.

But I think there should be a little more to make it outstanding.…

What can be better than a YouTube Video!

Well, I just wanna share that I’ve made a Video on same topic.

And i’d feel great if you wanna embed it in your post.

Here is the link: [Video Link]

Feel free to ping me anytime.

With Kind Regards:
[Your Name]

4. Quora Solves the Problems

Having trouble with anything?

You can give a quick try to Quora, and the community will get back to you with the best answer to your question most of the time.

If you don’t have any idea, Quora is a question & answers related social community.

But how this can be useful for your videos?

If you are developing videos with answer to some very important questions, which might be a trend on Quora as well.

It can be used for ranking as well as for traffic.

You can embed your videos on Quora.

You just need to search for your Video Relevant Topics on that platform.

Find some questions and answer them with an embedded video.

Here is the perfect example:

Quroa Example

You know why I’ve mentioned this?

Google Knowledge Graphs show the direct answers of questions.

Any I’ve seen many knowledge graphs of Quora and also seen the videos which have been embedded with answers.

Think it’s too much for you to rank any video in YouTube.

Now don’t tell me you’ve applied all these things and still waiting for ranking.

Because i am sure, if you’ll work hard you’ll surely be successful.

Let’s wrap it up now.

Wrapping it up

That was a compact share about YouTube SEO by team BlogRex.

Hope you’ve improved your knowledge.

Even if you already knew all these things:

Must share your feedback about how you doing with your YouTube SEO Campaigns.

Feel free to ask anything.

And at the end if you consider this guide helpful, Do give us a happy share.

Ali Haider

Blogger By Passion, Programmer By Love and Marketing Beast By Birth.