How to Optimise Your Youtube Videos for Viewers, SEO and Your Brand

23 Steps to Optimisation

I would like to share with you ‘How to optimise your Youtube videos for viewers, SEO, and your brand’.
This is the most exhaustive list I can find available, though it will not be the most detailed because other bloggers have written the detail on how to achieve each of these better than I. My aim is to enable you to be aware of what you can do to optimise your Youtube videos and then with a little further research will show you how.


Mind map with SEO written in the middle

Check out the below list for an exhaustive SEO list

Key SEO Steps: 1-8

  • Please install flash.
  • Speaking key phrases; Use the google keyword planner to identify key phrases and then use those in the voices of the video.
  • Closed caption translations; Translate the closed captions into other languages. If you can translate the closed captions into these 9 languages; Chinese mandarin, Spanish, English, Hindi, Portuguese, Bengali, Russian, Japanese, and German, you will cover half of the globe – 3 billion people.
  • Keyphrases in the description; Include key phrases in the description, where appropriate, ensuring that you do not ‘spam’ the description, but use appropriate key phrases throughout your description. The Youtube description field is vast and whilst not many people will read beyond the ‘more’, google will still trawl the text.
  • Keyphrases in the title; Include key phrases in the title, where appropriate, again, ensuring that the title is appropriate and you are avoiding cramming unnecessary words just to improve your SEO.
  • Use hyperlinking; You can enable the viewer to jump to a certain part of your video by adding a hyperlink to a later time in your video. Either in the description or in the video itself. Both are particularly useful if your video is long or if you know that you might ‘lose’ the audience, you can give them a shortcut to the ‘juicy bit’.
  • Description NAPW; Include the ‘NAPW’ in the description (Name, Address, Phone number and Web address) and ensure that it is 100% consistent throughout the web.
    Video NAPW; Include the ‘NAPW’ at the end of the video, known as the ‘slate’, so that customers can contact you and because google can trawl this text.
  • Engaging thumbnail; Use a Facial close-up as a thumbnail, rather than a shot of a person far away because as the viewer is presented with many videos, it is the thumbnail that will ultimately decide which one they watch. Imagine the books at Waterstone’s all vying for attention – This is the same.

Key SEO Steps: 9-15

  • The filename is key; Use key phrases in the raw file name, when uploading, because this is reported to help SEO.
  • Engaging video; It almost goes without saying that the video content needs to be clear, engaging, watchable. Not sidetracked by loud music, poor lighting, or too many pieces of animation.
  • CTA description; Add a ‘CTA’ in the description because you need to ask the customer for their details, the sale, or their contribution.
  • CTA video; Add a CTA in the video.
  • CTA voice; Add a CTA in the video voice.
  • Interlinking; Interlink videos by adding annotation within the video to other videos that you believe would interest the viewer. This can be done by using the editing tools within your Youtube account.
  • HD quality; Upload your videos directly from the source to Youtube to achieve High Definition (HD) quality. If you do not do this you will only achieve ‘SD’ quality (Standard Definition) and these will be less preferred by Youtube and Google.

Key SEO Steps: 16-20

  • Title truncation; Be aware that the title gets shortened on Youtube so your most engaging words need to be in the shortened version.
  • Engaging title; Use a title such as, ‘How do I…’ or ‘Top 10 tips to…’, because these are searched terms by viewers.
  • Add tags; Update the tags for each video within Youtube, using your google target key phrases and other appropriate tags to enable Youtube to find your video.
  • Add location; Update the location using your Google places location so that Google and Youtube can make a link between your videos and your business.
  • Add annotations; Within your Youtube account, you are provided with many editing tools, which are easy to use. Add appropriate annotations to increase the interest of the viewer, without bombarding them with animation.
SEO on wooden blocks with three words next to it

With our exhaustive list, your YouTube videos can be optimised fully.

Key SEO Steps: Final Three!

  • Add date; Youtube offers a very simple field for each video asking for the date. Include a date.
  • Website first; Put the website in the first paragraph of the description. This ensures that your viewers see where they can click for more information.
  • Caption certifications; Select one of the ‘caption certifications’ for each video, ensuring that every field provided by Youtube has been completed, ticked, or chosen. This is so that you are showing Youtube that you are optimising your video.

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