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YouTube SEO: Guidelines To Improve Your Search Ranking

A person holding up a phone with the YouTube logo on it

Let’s be honest, between reading words and watching videos, we all prefer videos. It’s more intriguing and fathomable. Video content has always been a favorite of people, and in certain cases, a need.

Today, thanks to the Internet, anyone from almost anywhere in the world can access YouTube in only a few seconds. Hence, with more cutting-edge technology entering the market, it is obvious that video content will only become more and more popular.

However, our main concern right now is how can marketers make their video content stand out against the rest given the number of people who are uploading videos to the internet and how much video content is currently available there, (Hint: It’s growing incredibly in number every day)

So, if you haven’t mastered the art of Youtube SEO, we suggest you get right on it. Not sure how? Just keep on reading! We’ve simplified 8 steps in order for you to rank higher in search results.

What Does A YouTube SEO Strategy Entail?

A YouTube search engine on the laptop screen

In contrast to Google, which evaluates rank using backlinks and other considerations, YouTube SEO entails optimizing your channel, playlists, metadata, descriptions, and videos.

As a marketer, you might be familiar with the fundamentals of SEO for YouTube videos, such as using keywords in the channel name, meta description, and tags.

What you might not know is that you can improve YouTube SEO even further, by making videos more accessible. As search engine bots are unable to view videos, they must be properly indexed using the accompanying text information.

Using the text in your video in the form of transcripts, closed captions, and subtitles is an essential part of a YouTube SEO strategy since it has the potential to improve user experience, engagement, watch time, viewership, and SEO.

8 Straightforward YouTube SEO Tips To Boost Your Ranking In Search Results

Utilize a strong keyword

Making the appropriate keyword or phrase selection for your video is necessary before you can optimize YouTube SEO. Keywords frequently appear in video titles, metadata, captions, and transcripts when they are stated in the audio. It benefits SEO in the long run.

The words and phrases you use for your keywords and keyword phrases should

appropriately describe your video and be similar to what people type into search engines to discover video content like yours.

How do you find a strong keyword? You'll need to conduct some keyword research to learn what terms and phrases consumers use while searching. Using YouTube's Search Suggest feature to identify a keyword for your video is a simple strategy. See the recommendations that appear when typing a term or phrase in the search field that is applicable to your industry.

Moreover, you may get keywords from your YouTube search report (found in the YouTube Studio under Traffic Sources > YouTube search).

See how many "About results" a YouTube search yields to see if you have a strong keyword. In order to stand out from the crowd, you should seek keyword variants with a high search volume yet low competition.

Include keywords in the title of your video

The first step is to comprehend what your audience is looking for. Informational, commercial, navigational, and transactional search intent are among the most prevalent categories. For your video to appear in search results, it is crucial to align its subject matter with the interests of your target audience.

The second thing to do is to confirm that you are aware of the reason you’re making a YouTube video and who your target audience is. For instance, put the product name in the title and description of the video if you want to highlight a product review. While it seems so easy, a lot of YouTube channels skip this step, which causes their videos to rank poorly in Google and YouTube search results.

For example: Rare Beauty product review

Search results for 'rare beauty review'

Incorporate keywords into your video file

Now that you've chosen a strong keyword, make sure to include it in the file name of your video so YouTube is aware of its subject. For instance, your file name may be "10 minutes everyday make up tutorial" followed by the type of video file.

Although it is quite easy, YouTube may utilize this as one of the ranking elements when displaying your video in search results. Your video will have a far greater chance of ranking and receiving more search volume if the file name you are uploading contains the targeted keyword.

You may view the filename when adding a brand-new video. Before you post the video, make sure the file name is revised because YouTube will use this to determine whether the video is pertinent.

Work on improving the description of your YouTube video

Having a strong, optimized video description is one of the most crucial ranking elements for YouTube SEO. YouTube will reassess the video if you modify or update any part of the video, including the video description, closed captions, and thumbnails.

YouTube advises keeping your description to no more than 200 words and using your most relevant keywords in the first few phrases. What we’re saying is to make your description relevant, in general. If it’s unnecessary or irrelevant, don’t bother including it.

You can see in the screenshot below that the description of the video that has shown up uses the phrase I entered into Google (makeup) in bold. This is YouTube's method of informing me that the videos are pertinent based on the video descriptions.

Search results when 'make up' is typed into the search engine

The Youtube Creator Studio, a site that is always updated with the most recent information, contains some excellent resources on Youtube. It includes a helpful list that walks you through the procedures for writing an effective video description:

  • Provide a natural-language summary of your video rather than just a list of keywords.

  • Start your description with the most crucial keywords.

  • Choose one or two relevant keywords to represent your video, and be sure to emphasize them in both the title and description.

  • To find popular keywords and their synonyms, use keyword tools like Google Trends and the Google Adwords Keyword Planner. Adding these phrases can help you increase search traffic.

Employ hashtags for videos to improve YouTube search results

Users may now utilize hashtags (#) on social media and Youtube to search for information that responds to their queries across a number of sites. To make it easier for viewers to locate your video when they search for a particular hashtag, you can also add hashtags to the descriptions and titles of your YouTube videos.

Hashtags also aid in advancing search since they highlight important current trends. When you include a hashtag in the video description, it will first appear above the video's title before turning into a hyperlink.

Choose a video category

While uploading your video, you have the option of choosing a category. This step is very important for SEO rankings.

Users can choose to limit their search while looking for a specific video using advanced settings. It's crucial to contextualize your video with categories before uploading it to increase your chances of being found by viewers.

With the variety of options, you should be able to choose a category on YouTube that matches your videos. The following is a list of the current YouTube video and channel categories:

Autos & Vehicles




Film & Animation


Howto & Style


News & Politics

Nonprofits & Activism

People & Blogs

Pets & Animals

Science & Technology


Travel & Events

Create a unique thumbnail picture

Your YouTube videos' thumbnails can promote or penalize them. On the search results of YouTube, thumbnails are the first thing that catches people's eyes. A good thumbnail may increase view time, which can significantly affect a video's position on YouTube. To ensure that your video is seen, come up with something that is attention-grabbing and sticks out among the rest.

Keep in mind that while making a distinctive thumbnail is a good approach to getting results, the actual secret to success is to make your audience understand what your video is about and how it will benefit them.

Include subtitles and closed captions

The final piece of advice for navigating YouTube search is to use closed captions and subtitles.

Closed captions are intended for viewers who cannot hear the audio, whereas video subtitles are used to translate video speech for viewers who cannot understand the video language.

Both closed-caption files and subtitles include the text of what is spoken in the video, similar to a transcript. In order to match up with voice or another visual component, the file will also contain timing codes for when each piece of text should be presented throughout the video.

Another advantage of having a transcript for your video is that it may be indexed by major search engines, much like a blog.

Final Words

And finally, just like you would with any other piece of content, conduct thorough research. Videos today have increased in popularity, utility, and production quality. In order to increase your content portfolio, concentrate on producing timeless videos that you can expand upon.

These tactics will help visitors notice your video, but you must still provide helpful content in order for your target audience to subscribe or become customers. The more user-friendly material you provide, the more traffic search engines will send to your website and YouTube channel!


Well, aren’t we glad you asked! We at DigiCom are obsessive data-driven marketers pulling from multi-disciplinary strategies to unlock scale. We buy media across all platforms and placements and provide creative solutions alongside content creation, and conversion rate optimizations. We pride ourselves on your successes and will stop at nothing to help you grow.


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