YouTube has long been considered the king of online video platforms. And while other social sites are starting to focus a bit more on video, plenty of people still turn to YouTube first.
For that reason, your company’s ranking on YouTube is an important factor. A high ranking can impact the overall visibility for your videos and channel. Sunny Popali, SEO director for Tempo Creative, talked with Small Business Trends about creating high ranking video on YouTube. Below are some suggestions to create high ranking YouTube videos.
How to Create High Ranking YouTube Videos
Research Keywords First
Before you start optimizing your videos for search results, you need to decide on the best keywords to use. That means you should do some preliminary searches on YouTube and Google to make sure that your preferred keywords are not too crowded. You can also use Google’s Keyword Planner to see how many searches your preferred keywords get per month.
Optimize for Google, Too
Aside from making your video one of the high ranking YouTube videos, you should also work to bring in views through Google. YouTube videos already show up before other video results in Google. So just do a quick search of your video keyword in Google to see if any videos show up on the main search page. Those make for stronger keywords.
Use a Relevant Filename
Before you even upload your video to YouTube, make the name of your file a relevant keyword. That should improve its relevance in search results.
Include Keywords in a Short Title
The title of your video is one of the first things that can really draw in potential viewers and help your video become one of the high ranking YouTube videos. Popali suggests creating titles that are about 50 characters. Include your main keyword or phrase. And try to keep it just a bit different from other videos so that it doesn’t just blend in.
Add Relevant Tags and Categories
Tags and categories can help get your video in front of searchers and people watching similar content. For each video, you should include six to eight tags that are relevant to your video. You can use a few different variations of the same word or phrase if necessary.
Write Lengthy Descriptions
Since search engines can’t crawl the actual content of your video like they can with text, the description of your video is extra important. Include as many relevant keywords in the description as possible, particularly in the beginning.
Use Annotations Sparingly
YouTube offers the ability to add annotations, which are small inserts that can include text, links or short breaks in your video. Too many of these can look unprofessional. But on a small scale, they can be effective. For example, adding a link at the end to another relevant video or playlist can help increase your views overall.
Choose an Eye-Catching Thumbnail
The thumbnail image of your video is what people will see when they first see it in search results or the YouTube sidebar. So choose something that will make your video stand out but also show an image that is relevant to your content.
Keep Them Watching Until the End
The amount of views your video gets has a big impact on your YouTube ranking. But getting people to click on your video and watch the first few seconds isn’t enough. To keep people watching, consider giving a brief description of what people can expect from your video right at the beginning. And try to make it as engaging as possible.
Ask Questions to Encourage Engagement
Comments can also have an impact on your YouTube ranking. To encourage comments, you can ask questions or offer a prompt of some kind at the end of your videos.
Encourage People to Subscribe
You can also encourage people at the end of each video to subscribe to your channel. The amount of subscribers can impact your ranking directly but also increase your views for each video over time.
Don’t Go After Fake Views
Services that sell YouTube views may sound like a quick and easy way to improve your rankings. But YouTube can tell the difference between real views and fake ones. So spend your efforts building your views and subscriber base the old fashioned way instead.
Personalize Your Channel
Your channel is the public face of your business on YouTube. Simple branding elements like keeping the colors and header and background images consistent with your other branding can encourage your fans from other corners of the web to subscribe.
Playlists are groups of videos that fit into a certain category or topic area. Creating them can encourage viewers to continue watching multiple videos so that your views go up even more. And as Popali pointed out, you can include any videos on YouTube in your playlists. They don’t have to just include your own videos. So that can increase the relevance of your playlists and thus, the relevance of your own videos that are included.
Share Videos on Other Social Platforms
Another way to increase your views is to share your videos beyond YouTube. Post links to your other social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and more.
Link to Them on Q&A Sites
Q&A sites like Quora and Yahoo Answers can also be great places for posting links to your videos. If your video shows how to do something or solve any kind of problem, posting a link in relevant threads can bring you a lot of views.
Embed Your Videos Whenever Possible
Embedding your video on your blog or in other locations can make it even easier for people to watch. Those who don’t want to click on a link and visit a whole new site can just watch it on the page they’re already on.
Include Recent Videos in Your Email Signature
Your email signature can be another great place to share your recent videos. You can share a quick link or a small embedded version of your video so that you can easily share it with your email subscribers and anyone else you send emails to.
Include Snippets on Your Website
Since your website is the main location for your video online, it’s a great place to tell your customers and visitors that you have a YouTube channel. At the very least, include a link to your channel somewhere on the main page. But you can also include embedded versions of your recent videos to make it easy for people to watch.
Make Your Videos Look Professional
Relevant keywords and a few places to share your videos can really improve your chances of a high ranking. But in order for people to rate, share and give a “thumbs up” to your videos, they have to actually enjoy watching them. Hiring a professional, or at least using some professional equipment, can go a long way in making videos that are likely to receive high rankings.
Share Content That’s Actually Valuable to Your Audience
The content of your video is also incredibly important. Don’t just make a video because some experts told you that you need to make videos. Make something that will really provide value to people in your target audience, through entertainment, information or other aspects.
Help People Solve a Problem
Videos that show people how to do something or solve some kind of problem tend to be pretty popular on YouTube, since video is an effective platform for demonstrations. So if you can create videos that fall into that category while also being relevant to your business, that could be a great place to start.
Don’t Cut it Short
Many social platforms put a focus on brevity. But short YouTube videos aren’t always the most popular ones. While there isn’t one right length for every video, make sure that yours are long enough to really explain or get your point across. Don’t feel the need to edit them down to fit a certain time frame.
Have a Regular Posting Schedule
There’s also not one right answer to how frequently you post videos. But you should try to keep it as consistent as possible. Post one video a week or maybe even once a month. Just let people know so they can anticipate when new videos are going to be posted.
Use YouTube Analytics to Improve Performance
After posting a few videos, make sure you check in with your YouTube Analytics to see how they’re performing. Take note of any variations and decide what it is that might make some of your videos stand out from others. Make adjustments based on your findings.
YouTube Photo via Shutterstock