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Optimize YouTube videos
for better rankings

By Jonathan Leger*

video marketing
YouTube is one of the most effective tools for Internet marketers if it is used effectively. Around half of all Internet users have used the website in the past and the site boasts in excess of 800 million unique visitors every month. But users hoping to get the most out of YouTube face fierce competition when it comes to ranking their videos, with almost half a million hours worth of video being added to the site every single day. Knowing how to optimize your video is essential if you want to grab a share of the pageviews.

YouTube takes a broad view when it comes to ranking videos, with no one factor being predominantly used to determine the rankings. This is good news for people using the site to search for interesting content as it raises the chances of finding a video which is both relevant and high quality, but it can be intimidating to marketers who are new to the website. Fortunately, although there are several key points to remember, the principles are simple.

One of the first considerations when uploading a new video is the file name. Many marketers do not think that this field is important because it is neither visible to the user or included in the URL. However, YouTube s search algorithm does take the file name into account when it is determining relevancy. You should therefore ensure that your file name contains the keywords that you want to rank for.

Your video title should also contain the keyword that you are trying to get ranked for as well. So what makes a good video title? This field deserves careful consideration because you also want it to appeal to YouTube s users. People need to instantly understand what the video is about and be intrigued enough to click on the link, otherwise they are going to opt for another video with a more attention grabbing tag line. The more clicks you get, the more the videos rank will improve.

In addition to this, a video title needs good keywords if you want search algorithms to award you with good rankings. As briefly alluded to with the file name, YouTube wants to deliver relevant search results. Keywords are the one of the best ways to do this since there are few other ways for the search engine s code to figure out the content of a visual medium. Placing your keyword in the title is essential because meta tags and title tags have more prominence than keywords contained in the body of the text.

The video description should also contain your keyword if you want it to rank well, but try to avoid to avoid the temptation to keyword stuff because sophisticated modern algorithms now focus more on latent semantic indexing. Concentrate on making your description as detailed as possible since this should naturally encourage the use of synonyms and related phrases. If you are linking to a website, add this link before any long chunks of descriptive text.

In addition to keywords, video relevancy is also assessed in accordance with the tags and category you have chosen. Well targeted tags do not have the same power as your keyword when it comes to ranking highly in search results, but they will raise the likelihood of your video displaying in the sidebar when people are watching another video which contains similar tags. As a result, you can expect to boost your number of pageviews.

video and laptop
Another good tactic for increasing pageviews is to add interactive elements such as annotations or cards to a video, which allow you to include a link to other useful content such as a relevant video, a playlist or your website. These features require the additional step of verifying your channel, but it is well worth the extra effort to increase the number of clicks and "likes" on your content.

Finally, you should fill out all the details for you channel and add channel art in order to build your brand and create a relationship with your audience. When a user subscribes to your channel they will receive a notification every time you upload new content. Loyal subscribers are also more likely to share your videos with their own followers (which will raise the profile and popularity of your videos), and to click the "like" button. Since liking denotes popularity, YouTube will place the videos higher in the search results.

Ranking well on YouTube is a matter of creating content which is deemed relevant and interesting. Make sure that you put the necessary forethought into creating titles and descriptions in order to be identified as relevant. Additional steps such as creating channel art and filling out as much information as possible about your channel will boost "likes" and brand loyalty, which will help your videos rise in popularity.

*Author Bio: Jonathan Leger has been a successful Internet Marketer for over 11 years. He owns an SEO Tools suite at

17 February 2016