Optimizing your channel for discoverability is just the beginning. Once you start adding videos, you’ll want to optimize them for search, which in turn helps users discover your video.
But this goes beyond giving your videos accurate, clear, and concise titles — though that is important. Below, we describe some of the most important things to optimize on YouTube. (For a fully comprehensive post on YouTube SEO, visit this post.)
When we search for videos, one of the first things that our eyes are drawn to is the title. That’s often what determines whether or not the viewer will click to watch your video, so the title should not only be
This should be limited to 1,000 characters — and remember that your viewer came here to watch a video, not to read a lot of text. Plus, YouTube only displays the first two or three lines of text, which comes to about 100 characters, so front-load the description with the most important information.
Using tags doesn’t just let viewers know what your video is about — they inform YouTube, too, which uses tags “to understand the content and context of your video,” according to Backlinko. That way, YouTube can associate your video with similar videos, which can broaden your content’s reach. But approach with caution — just as with your title, don’t use misleading tags because they might get you more views — in fact, Google might penalize you for that.
Choosing a category is another way to group your video with similar content on YouTube — but that might not be as simple as it sounds. YouTube’s Creator Academy suggests that marketers “think about what is working well for each category” you’re considering by answering questions like:
- Who are the top creators within the category? What are they known for, and what do they do well?
- Are there any patterns between the audiences of similar channels within a given category?
- Do the videos within a similar category have share qualities like production value, length, or format?