YouTube SEO: How to Rank YouTube Videos

Do you have a YouTube channel and struggling to get enough views? Or are you planning to create a new YouTube channel?

It doesn’t matter what your plans for informative videos are, by opening this article, you have already struck the right chord. Understanding of YouTube and its SEO optimization technique is important, for your channel to rank on YouTube engine.

YouTube is not just a video-sharing platform, but also a search engine that allows you to search the videos, watch them, comment on them via your comfortable devices like laptop, mobile, tablet and many more.

It does not matter if you have fewer subscribers, or your channel is new in the current competition. What matters most is the application of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques used for your pages.

You may have a dip in your viewers or unable to increase the revenue for your channels. Whatever may be your problems, here we have come up with the strategy to get your channels ranking in 2020.

What is YouTube SEO?
YouTube SEO optimizes and proves high ranking to your videos, channels, and playlists for any given query. YouTube has its search engine that ranks your videos based on three factors.

1) Match Metadata and Content:
To search your video, YouTube matches the metadata and content of your video to the viewer’s query. The keywords in the title and description of your video are necessary to rank your video.

2) Match search intent for Query:
As viewers search for a video on YouTube, it selectively picks your video over others. It will match the search intent of your video to the viewer’s query, as it picks the right video from the given pool.

3) Match engaging videos for the query:
Since the highly engaging videos are pulled up by the ranking engine, your videos must engage your viewers.

YouTube SEO Techniques to Rank Your Video in 2020:
Once you know the working of the YouTube search engine, it is easy to set up a system that can bring up your videos despite fewer views or subscribers. We’ll discuss the exact steps and SEO optimizations required to rank your video

1) Know your Keywords:
Selecting the correct keyword is necessary for the ranking of your video. The right keyword in your video title, content, and the description is matched with the viewer’s query and ranked.

To know the keywords, you can research them on YouTube autosuggest or YouTube search bar. Search the keywords directly using the “&” or “*”. You can also search for keywords using third-party tools.

1) TubeBuddy:
TubeBuddy is the chrome extension to view the keywords. It displays the data on Youtube UI.

2) vidIQ:
VidIQ works similarly to TubeBuddy but also displays overall keyword score, search volume, related queries, SEO tags, etc. for any top ranking videos.

3) Morning Fame:
You can join Morning Fame using an invite. It gives you a month free tool for keyword research. Using the four-step process, it provides you the accurate suggestions for the title, descriptions, relevant tag to your videos.

4) Google Trends:
Google Trend is used to know the current trending keywords that are generally searched by viewers on Google. Type the keywords in Google Trends and select “YouTube search” for accurate results of keywords on YoutTube. Select the country or area, to know the keywords used by possible viewers.


A freemium tool suggests multiple keywords with questions, prepositions, and hashtags.

6) Ahref Keywords Explorer:
Use Ahref Keywords explorer to search for the related keywords. It explores country-specific search volume, includes analysis of clicks, and global volumes. Use these keywords to analyze the effects of them on the video ranking.

TubeBuddy and VidIQ are the best to search the keyword. You can have multiple combinations or ideas to create new keywords. Know the list of keywords that match your content and the topics of video. Have your keywords with hashtags and make sure these words match the queries that your viewers use to search the videos on YouTube.

2) Maximize your keywords on Google:
We discussed the keywords on YouTube search engine, but it is important to have your videos ranked on Google too? Google and YouTube have different search engines, and the Google search engine ranks the first position.

Google search also provides videos on a simple search. Now, we will see how a video gets search traffic from Google for certain keywords.

  1. Target Keyword:
    The easy way to know the keywords is to check it on Google itself. Know the target keyword used by the competitors listed on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP’s). Check the titles, length, keywords, and video length displayed by Google’s search engine.
  2. Know the popular content:
    Explore keywords or words and phrases using the Content Explorer. Analyze the relevant search results with SEO and social metrics.

3) User Intent:
This is also known as search intent or keyword intent. Know the reason why the user searches for the content on the search engine. May times the queries are simple that gives the relevant results, but you may have user intended queries that may not search for relevant videos.

For example, searching on “How to bake a cake?” displays multiple relevant search results on baking a cake. But a simple search like Daisy will retrieve results for Daisy as a flower instead of “Daisy Lowe”.

4) The goal for a high-Retention video:
A high-retention video satisfies your viewers. The more viewers enjoy your video, it is more likely that he will watch your video till the end. As you create engaging videos, aim to satisfy your viewers for a long time. Targeting the right audience is important to have a high-retention for your video. Here are a few tricks to make a high-retention video.

1) Plan Video:
Before recording your video, plan about the topic, ideas, words, and scripts. Work on your topic, words, and script before your record the video. This helps you to provide more information without stumbling upon words or phrases during recoding. Allow the usages of keywords in your videos that are one way YouTube ranks your videos.

2) Hook Readers:
Your first 15 seconds are important to hook your users. Know the right way to engage them. As an expert, you must understand the topics, keywords, and images or proofs that are needed to hook your audience. Try to discuss solutions to the problems that made you create this video. Try giving more than expected by the users.

3) Video Editing:
Edit your videos to engage your users. You can only have the scenes that the users what to see. Match your words with the effects so the audience follows your video.

4) Entertain your viewers to avoid drop-outs:
This is the best tip for longer videos. Although concepts are important but try and entertain your viewers to keep them with the workflow of your video. Reducing the dropouts of viewers is one of the major factors for ranking your video.

5) On-page and Off-page video optimization:
On-Page optimization influences your video and influences the clicks and views on your video. Consider these best practices for searchable and clickable videos.

1) Title:
Title of optimal length of 55 characters needs at least one of your relevant keywords on your title tag. Avoid using multiple targeted keywords in the title. 90% of the search videos have relevant searched keywords in the title. According to YouTube have your target keyword at the beginning of the title. This helps YouTube engine to pick your video when searched by your audience.

A short, concise, and crisp title will prevent loss of click due to truncation in suggested or search features.

To avoid loss of clicks due to truncation of title in suggested or search feature of YoutTube have a short, concise, and crisp title.

A catchy title invokes curiosity in the user. YouTube is getting competitive and you need to stand apart. An engaging title beginning with the right keywords is more likely to be clicked and viewed.

2) Description:

Descriptions are valuable as they share information on video and boost views with the right keywords. An optimal length of 160 characters and the right keywords will show your video in search results.

The keywords used in video descriptions are related to the keyword used in the title. The easiest way to know the related keyword is to view the descriptions of your competitions.

3) Tags:
These help your video to be in ranked, searched, and suggested videos.

4) Thumbnails:
Your audience needs a better user experience. Have subtitles for your viewers to help them understand your context. Your videos are watched worldwide. The chances that your language is not known to others are quite high. Having subtitles or closed captions increases the engagement of the viewer.

6) Adding Subtitles:
A picture is worth more than a hundred words. Allow your thumbnail to describe your video. Let the image speak for your content. Being creative and imaginative is best for your thumbnail design. You can also get ideas from Google Images and stock photos.

5) Cards and interactive elements:
Having cards or interactive elements at the end of your video encourages the viewers to subscribe to the other YouTube channels suggested by you. You can add these cards at the end of your video or promote your next video. This increases the viewership and improves your ranking.

6) End Screens:
Improve your subscribers and views using end screens. They increase the video by 20 to 25 seconds. It promotes your next videos in the series. This also increases the session time for your video.

7) Publish and promote your video:
Once you publish your video, an initial 48 hrs. are critical to promoting it. You can promote your videos by notifying your existing customers or on social media. It is essential to know your viewers and the social groups to reach them. Promote on social media like Linked-in, Quora, Facebook with relevant hashtags and relevant target keywords to increase your subscribers and viewership.
For Google rankings, ask your friends to backlink your site or videos. This will improve your ranking on Google.

8) YouTube Adds:

YouTube adds helps you to set ads based on the target keyword. This helps you to gain more subscribers for your channel.

9) Session watch time:
YouTube analytics ranks your engaging videos that hook the audience for a long time without changing the platform. To improve session time, create a series or playlist. This will improve your total session watch time as the audience is redirected to the next video in the series. To help viewers navigate to the next video, you can add the card at the end of the video.

10) Embed YouTube Videos:

As your channel grows you can then use the feature of embedded YouTube. This will help you to grow your channel or business for the better. The embed YouTube videos don’t affect your SEO ranking but enable visitors to engagements.

Take Away:
Ranking your video on the YouTube engine is now easy with YouTube SEO techniques.

Analyze the keywords and the right set of relevant words that allow SEO YouTube engines to rank your videos. Preplan your videos, scripts, keywords for your video. Adding these keywords or relevant keywords to your title, descriptions, content help you rank your video. The thumbnails, hashtags, and subtitles connect viewers to your video content. To increase session watch time, create playlist, series, this will help you to promote your next video and also increases the viewership to your channel. Creating a playlist or series playlist will give you more views on upcoming videos. Promoting your video on other social networking platforms will give you more clicks and views.

These are some of the major criteria that help your video to rank above your competitors. Above all it is important to have a high-retention video for your viewer that will not only impart information or knowledge but also engages them, to avoid dropout rates.

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