5 Tricks To Help You Optimize Your Video for YouTube

Fun fact: YouTube is the second largest search engine. For some reason, this absolutely blew  my mind. The more I contemplated this very fun fact, the more I realized that it does make sense. People search for music videos and funny videos on YouTube all the time, and I know that I use YouTube far more than search engines like Bing or Yahoo. As someone interested in business, I couldn’t help but wonder: Are businesses taking full advantage of the YouTube platform?

It would seem at first glance that no, businesses absolutely are not taking advantage of YouTube. This is most likely because YouTube appears to be entirely video based, and many companies do not think of themselves as being a company that produces videos. Although this may not work for every type of company, any company that has something to teach has an opportunity to benefit from YouTube. Creating a “How-To” video or a humorous video of people in your company is a great way to get people interested in a company through YouTube.

Once you brainstorm with your team brainstorm video ideas, shoot the video, and get it uploaded and ready to go, it’s time to start optimizing. Just as with any search engine, content on YouTube can also be optimized to help increase success.

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Just as with a search engine like Google, this process is also called search engine optimization (SEO). You can rank well with YouTube as a whole, meaning if someone types in a search query your page could potentially pop up. This is the ideal way to gain visibility on YouTube. You can also optimize the actual page where your video appears. When ranking in both cases, there are a few places you’ll want to include your keywords:

1. Title – This is arguably the most important place your keyword should appear. Just like when optimizing for Google, having this keyword at the beginning of the title adds a little bit of extra push for your video. In fact, many experts say that having your keyword at the front of the title is even more important when working with YouTube.

2. Description – Naturally, the description is the second most important place you want to put your keyword. This is one of the only opportunities you have to add content to your YouTube page, so you want to take advantage. You should also include a link back to your company website for those who want more information. Most companies choose to put this at the top of the description to make sure it doesn’t get cut off.

3. Tags – Tagging helps a search engine to classify a website correctly. YouTube also offers a place you can add tags, so you will want to make sure you don’t skip this opportunity to use your keyword for optimization.

4. Backlinks – Just as with Google, having other authoritative pages linking back to your website will help you rank well on YouTube. You can do this by linking back to your video in any piece of content you write (not necessarily on YouTube) and your video should gain some more visibility.

5. Transcriptions – Publishing the script of your video in your description works great for those who are hard of hearing or prefer to read along with a video. Not only is this user-friendly, but it’s a great way to improve the keyword density on your page. However, this usually only works for shorter videos.

YouTube doesn’t actually see the videos that you are posting, so it relies completely upon the content surrounding the video. This makes optimization very important. When you have a traditional piece of content, you have many opportunities to include your keyword; however this isn’t always the case with a YouTube video. Although YouTube does allow brands to buy an upgraded version of YouTube, most start out trying to optimize the page on their own.

Does your company have a presence on YouTube? How did you optimize your YouTube page?

Photo Credit: pandia.com

Amanda DiSilvestro gives small business and entrepreneurs SEO advice ranging from Google Analytics How-To’s to AdWords best practices. She works as a ghost writer and freelancer at amandadisilvestro.com and Coastal SEO Consulting, and works as the Marketing Manager for a Travel Company, Discover Corps, full-time. Visit her website to learn more!