How to Properly Optimize Your YouTube Videos

YouTube has only been around since 2005, yet is now the second biggest search engine on the internet. If you properly optimize your YouTube videos, you’ll monetize your sites, and all through the free services offered by YouTube.


If you have anything to do with writing or posting on the internet, you know that keywords and key phrases are the cyber-gospel that keeps search engines on track. Perhaps the most important task to complete before you post your video to YouTube is a good keyword search. There are many free keyword search sites on the internet that will give you X number of free searches. If you post frequently, they’ll be up to date. However, keep in mind that keywords and keyphrases morph over time, and the best keyword from last month may not even come up in searches this month. So, find out what the best keywords are, and be prepared to use them. There are, however, some things to keep in mind.

You may think that you want the MOST popular keyword in your market, so you’ll reach the MOST people. Before you take that move, type the keyword in, and see how many pages come up on Google and YouTube using that keyword. If it’s more than 3 pages, chances are you don’t stand a chance in competition. Your posting may show up on page 6 or 7, but no one will ever see it. Choose a keyword from the middle or top 2/3 of the list. This will be a commonly occurring enough keyword that it will be searched, but not so common that everybody else is using it.

For instance, if you’re promoting your roofing company, don’t use the keyword “roofer” or “roofing”. You’ll be bumped down below the sponsored keyword entries. If you key your video to your particular niche, such as San Antonio Roofers, it drastically reduces the number of videos with which you’re in competition. If you are posting how-to-videos on making jewelry, be more specific with your keywords. Use “handmade soldered jewelry” or “custom beaded jewelry” rather than just the word “jewelry”.

Consider, also, using permutations of words. In the example above, try “custom”, “customized”, and “handcrafted” in your keywords. Each of these will target your niche a little better and cut out some of your  competition.

Why Keywords?

You’re making videos so you won’t have to mess with keywords, right? Well, you’ve still got to work them in to get the views, which get you ranking, which brings you more views. Since this is a video, however, you don’t have to worry as much about keyword density as you would in writing an article.

Look at the title of your video. Say you’ve entitled it “Donna Makes a Necklace”. Now, the only really valuable word there is “necklace”, unless you want creepers looking up anyone named Donna. To move your video up in rankings, it needs to be, basically, filed in the right place. That’s done by the title. “Necklace” is so broad that other videos will cover it up. What if you name the video “How to Make a Necklace”. The term “how to” catches the spiders that do the work of the search engines. “How to” videos are the second most commonly types of videos viewed on YouTube. The first are viral videos, so good luck with that.

Now, let’s narrow it down further. Try “How to Make a Soldiered Necklace”. That word, “soldiered” will move you way past the videos showing people stringing beads and adding clasps. You’ve cut out 2/3 of your competition on the video market. In fact, the SEO, once it classifies this as a How-to article, will read the title as “jdkla;roeifvjknck;.qreoi Soldiered Necklace”. If you change it to “Soldiered Necklace, a How to Video” you now have an optimized title. Compare this to something like “Watch Donna Show You How To Make a Soldiered Necklace in 5 Minutes.” The SEO will read this as “ajsdkfoifjasdiojhewoisfj  jeioawisdhjfcoswi Soldiered Necklace jasieofijfslkdjhfoaweifh”. The spiders send this one right down to the bottom of the pile.

As you can see, this is done in the title. Your description is just as important. Boost youtube views love links. So, once you get your title optimized, start using related terms in your description, and include a link if you can. It’s kind of a mixed bag, here, though, because you want to talk people into watching your video, so you need the available characters for that, and links take up a lot of characters. Yes, you want the search engine to notice it, but people are not computers, and they need to be sold on the video.

“Soldiered Necklace, a How to Video”

See how to soldier charms smoothly, with pillowed sides and scalloped edges. See more on Donna’s site at…….”

This description, while not using keywords, per se, does use vocabulary that will catch the eye of anyone conversant with the subject—your niche—and includes two calls to action: “see” and “see more”. While you may not rule the jewelry video niche with these descriptors, you may very well be at or near the top in “soldiered jewelry”, and if you’re the top, you’re the top—YouTube notices. You move up in their rankings, and in Google ranking, too. So, the next time someone types in “jewelry” in YouTube or Google, you may be moved up in the pages, because of your high ranking.