YouTube SEO: Tips for High Video Ranking

YouTube SEO: Tips for High Video Ranking

The first step to achieving good results for each of your videos published on YouTube and ranking first on the video platform is understanding what SEO is and its strategies to reach good positions.

What Is SEO?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a set of techniques to improve a website’s positioning in search engines. Usually, when talking about SEO, it refers to Google. Still, it can and should also be followed in other search systems that involve videos or images, such as YouTube, for example.

SEO involves a series of practices ranging from content production and design to more technical programming issues. The more optimized your page is, the more relevant it will be to the algorithm.

What is YouTube SEO?

YouTube SEO involves optimizing your video content, channel, and metadata to improve visibility and ranking on YouTube’s search engine and beyond. It’s about making your videos more discoverable to those searching for content like yours.

How Does YouTube SEO Work?

When we publish a video on the platform, YouTube does not interpret what we say and show to determine the subject and the type of audience this content may interest. We must provide accurate information to help YouTube’s algorithm understand and deliver our content to interested people.

We do this through metadata, the information we add to the video at publication, such as Title, Description, Tags, and even Caption. All this together ensures that YouTube understands our content and values it when showing search results, thus ranking well within the YouTube search itself. 

In this way, when the user is going to type what they are searching for, an SEO-optimized channel with good engagement has more chances of appearing in the first positions and being accessed by them.

Basically, SEO for YouTube basically works through optimizing your page, your playlists, the description, and the videos of your channel. You can optimize your videos for the YouTube search engine and other search engines.

How YouTube Ranks Videos?

The algorithms have shown an increasing appreciation for video marketing content, placing them in the top positions of the SERP. Using good SEO practices, you can create audience reach strategies.

When you optimize your content, you should consider making it clearer and easier to understand both by the search engines themselves (whether Google or YouTube) and by users who may be searching for the subject you address.

The algorithm also uses video performance and optimization to rank videos on YouTube. Videos with more watch time likes and shares are placed above those with lower engagement (or high bounce rates). The more people watch your videos, the higher they will rank in search results.

Simple YouTube SEO Tips to Rank Higher in Search

Craft Compelling Titles

 The first metadata we will work on in our video is the title. It is recommended that you include the keyword of your strategy, preferably at the beginning. A YouTube title should also arouse curiosity and stimulate the audience to click on your content.

We could create the title: How to Make GOURMET MAC AND CHEESE Without Breaking the Bank. 

Try to put some words in uppercase to draw more attention from those scrolling through YouTube’s results and include an element relevant to the audience. In this case, the idea is to elevate a classic dish while keeping costs low.

Structure Descriptive Metadata Thoughtfully

After the title, we go to the description. In this metadata, many channels waste the opportunity to share information about their videos.

For a better user experience, we recommend dividing your description into blocks. The first block will have 4 or 5 paragraphs with information that you bring in the video itself. A summary for the audience to understand what the content is about with the keyword distributed throughout the text in the same way you would in a blog post, for example.

Another optimization point we recommend using is the chapters feature when you divide your video into topics, including the timing of each moment directly in the description. This feature makes the user experience more enjoyable and expands our points of contact with the platform, expanding the chances of YouTube and Google understanding in detail the content of that video.

Following, we recommend other blocks, such as related videos for the audience to watch, links to your social networks, and any other information you deem relevant to your strategy. In this video, you will be able to observe this model of description divided into blocks.

Strategically Use Tags

Even though many people insist that tags no longer make a difference within YouTube, they are metadata that continues to be relevant. Therefore, they need to be part of our publishing process.

YouTube tags work like labels and indicate to the platform which universe of subject the content belongs to. Thus, you should add the keywords of your strategy and other terms that represent the search intention of the users to the tags.

In my example of a video, we could include mac and cheese recipe, how to make mac and cheese, and cheap mac and cheese, among other terms.

Incorporate Captions for Broader Accessibility

Another point of video optimization is the captions. The recommendation is that you add them to your videos whenever possible. Always use YouTube captions, not those that are inserted in the video editing.

Besides allowing more people to watch you, considering accessibility and ease of translation into other languages, captions provide even more details to YouTube about the theme of your video, contributing to the SEO process.

Produce Longer Videos for Greater Impact

YouTube prioritizes longer videos. According to research on YouTube SEO, videos shorter than 2 minutes tend to be poorly positioned in the rankings. The average duration of the top positions is 10 minutes. So, try to produce more in-depth content.

Don’t worry too much about sticking to this rule; after all, what’s important is that your video has quality and adds value for the audience. It’s not worth making a long video if more than half the time is just filler.

Now that you have understood some basic SEO techniques for YouTube, you can start optimizing your channel. Remember, the platform’s focus is on improving the user experience. With that in mind, follow good SEO practices, but never forget to prioritize the production of valuable content. That’s the most important thing.

Add Information Cards to Videos

Have you noticed a round icon with the letter “i” in the upper corner of the screen while watching a video? Or a translucent bar asking you to subscribe to the channel?

These features, called cards, aim to promote your brand and other videos on the channel. They’re an excellent resource for encouraging users to browse through other videos and stay on your channel.

Create Playlists to Help With Navigation

Does your channel have several videos on different subjects? Then, it’s ideal to create playlists to help the user navigate more fluidly through your channel.

Playlists help the user navigate through the channel, functioning like a library. Remember to include playlist descriptions and titles.

Enable Video Embed

Want to increase user engagement and exposure on YouTube? Enable the Embed function on your videos and encourage people to publish them on blogs and websites, for example.

Enabling embedding helps even in the off-page SEO strategy, as the brand is echoed and shared across the Web, generating more reputation.

Follow Metrics on YouTube Analytics

Following the results is part of a good SEO strategy for YouTube. Analyzing the click-through rate of the videos, retention, the performance of the channel, and so on helps to observe what might be going wrong, what can be improved, and, mainly, to have insights to enhance the contents with each new publication.

Bet on the Diversity of Thumbs

Finally, remember the thumbs! They are essential for increasing the click-through rate of videos, so add diversified, eye-catching thumbs that match the channel’s identity.

What are the Main Metrics of YouTube?

A strategy that cannot be missed is to analyze the main metrics that YouTube provides with YouTube Analytics. 


The first metric relates to the views of your video; after all, if many people watch, it means that your content is interesting. Thus, when your video is viewed many times, YouTube’s algorithm understands that it is relevant.

You can also compare the performance of each video, checking if it is above or below the average views of your channel, which also helps to understand if the topic covered is or is not interesting for your audience.

Watch Time

Are your viewers watching your videos until the end? You can analyze this point with the watch time metric.

Research has pointed out that users spend more time on videos that last from 10

to 16 minutes. This can be explained by the fact that a longer duration allows for more in-depth content.

However, be careful not to stick too much to this idea because the topic discussed needs to be substantial enough to exceed 10 minutes, agree? Rambling about a topic will drive people away and harm your ranking.

The tip is to discover the ideal average watch time of your videos, that is, investigate which ones were watched until the last minute so that you have a reference for future productions. Also, improve the viewer’s experience with some strategies:

Unique and Recurrent Viewers

You can also find out how many people accessed your channel once or several times, which will help discover if you have a loyal audience.

With this metric, you can understand whether the content line adopted is attractive and even other aspects, such as whether viewers identify with the presenter or if the script is efficient.

3 SEO Tools for YouTube

Some tools can help you optimize your videos for better results. We have prepared a list with the main ones:

Google Keyword Planner: Essential for producing content for YouTube, it allows you to use keywords strategically. It’s a Google tool that lets you analyze the performance of terms and their variations so you can choose the most suitable keyword for your videos, especially in the title and description. This way, you can find the most important terms for your segment, helping to optimize videos and also giving content ideas.

YouTube Analytics: For your videos to rank well, don’t forget to use an official YouTube resource, YouTube Analytics. It easily provides real-time statistics of your channel, offering various metrics such as views, subscribers, watch time (in hours), recurrent viewers, when your viewers are on YouTube, most accessed locations (demographic data), and viewer age.

RankTracker: Useful for knowing which keywords make YouTube videos appear in Google’s organic searches. It’s a ranking tracking software that helps identify terms to optimize your videos. You insert the keyword, and it reveals which ones bring videos as results. Additionally, RankTracker allows you to monitor the ranking of your videos in search results.

Unlock Your YouTube Potential Now

By implementing the SEO strategies outlined above, you’re poised to captivate your audience, boost engagement, and ascend the ranks of YouTube search results. You can amplify your online presence, attract a broader audience, and establish yourself as a prominent creator in your niche through meticulous video content optimization.

As you embark on your journey to YouTube success, remember that Index365 is here to support you every step. Whether you’re seeking personalized guidance, advanced SEO techniques, or comprehensive analytics, our team of experts is ready to empower you to achieve your goals. Contact us today to unlock the full potential of your YouTube channel and propel your content to new heights of success. 


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