Are You Optimizing Your YouTube Videos Properly?

Posted by Mark Thompson - August 11, 2010 - SEO - 11 Comments

YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine in the world, so why not leverage that.  As you probably know, video is becoming such a large part in every marketers strategy.  It is a great way to convey a marketing message and to tell a story, where plain text lacks.  However to maximize exposure on YouTube you need to remember a number of easy but crucial guidelines before submitting your videos.

Use Compelling Titles

Just like anything related to optimization, you need to have great titles.  This is your chance to capture the readers attention to get them to click on your video to want to view it.  Just like in organic SEO, where you want to entice the searcher to click on your link in the results, video optimization for YouTube is no different.  You want to be the video result that stands out from the rest of the crowd.

Add the Full URL to Your Descriptions

One of the biggest opportunities you have to drive visitors back to your site or blog is to insert your URL in the video description.  By doing this the user now has an easy way to access to your site from your YouTube channel.  It is important to add the “http://” or else the URL will not link.  You should also insert the URL as the top of the description, to make sure that the user can see it.  Try add something like “For more tips on Video Optimization, check out my blog at http://www.stayonsearch.com”.  Since this is your best time to keep the reader engaged, by adding the call to action and URL, you have a better chance of keeping the visitors engaged in YOUR content.

One more idea that you can try in your description area, is to provide a video transcript that people can read if they choose to.  Since everybody consumes information a little bit differently, it is always help to have your content in as many formats as possible.  Once you have the video transcribed you can also use that on your site or blog as well.

Use the YouTube Keyword Research Tool

No different that doing keyword research to optimize a website for organic search, you want to do keyword research for your YouTube videos.  There is a Keyword Tool for YouTube, that Google has created that provides you keyword data specific to people searching only YouTube.

Remove “Show Related Videos”

So Google has an option when you are uploading a new video to show other related videos from YouTube after the person is done watching your video.  If you allow YouTube to do this option, you are giving the viewer a reason to leave your channel, so it is important to uncheck that box when you are going through the upload process.

Keep Your Videos Short and Targeted

With video, you can easily lose your readers attention, so keep your videos short in length and focused to one specific topic.  If you have multiple items you want to cover on a certain topic, you may want to break it out into multiple videos and create a series on that topic.  Try to keep your videos under 5 minutes and get into your content right away.  A little tip to keep viewers watching your video until the end, it to tell them in the very beginning that you have a special offer or tip that you are going to tell them at the end.  This will make them want to watch all the way through so they can see what it is you are giving away.

About the Author

Mark Thompson

Mark is the creator of StayOnSearch and president of Search Creatively, a full-service Internet Marketing Company located in Raleigh, North Carolina. He also contributes to many industry related blogs including Search Engine Journal and is active on Facebook and Twitter. Follow Mark on Twitter