Before you get started…
So if you want to get more views than your competitors, here are some tips you should follow to maximize views and increase your chances to get more subscribers!
Keyword Research to Explore Search Intent
Before you turn on your camera and shout “Action!” or ask your viewers to “Subscribe to my channel!” you need to understand the importance of keywords. Just like many other things in SEO, video optimization starts with keyword research.
Keywords are basically a few words that help Youtube or Google or any other search engine understand what your video is about so it can rank your content. This is logical. If your channel is about cooking and one day you do a cooking video on vegan pancakes, people have to find you somehow. If a Youtube or Google searcher types “vegan pancakes” into the search, they should be able to find you, right?
But it’s not that simple I’m afraid. You need to be very specific with your keywords because there are just millions of videos out there with huge channels that will squeeze all the smaller channels down.
So how do we make sure, people can see us?
First, you need to find the most relevant keywords for your niche and keywords that users tend to use while searching for a product or service similar to yours.
One of the most reliable tools for this activity is Google Keyword Planner. This tool supplies you with tons of keyword variations along with their competitiveness rates based on the seed terms you type in. You need to go to “discover new keywords” options.
Analyze Search Trends
You need to find powerful target phrases to boost the visibility of your videos. This gives you an idea of search trends in your industry is to utilize YouTube’s autocomplete feature. This method is really helpful since it lets you collect keywords that people actually type into YouTube.
Let’s imagine my Youtube channel is about healthy foods. In my next couple of videos, I will use “veganism” as an example to explain how keyword optimization and search engines work to satisfy viewer satisfaction.
You can head over to the most popular videos that are similar to yours and copy the keywords they are optimized for. What’s more, with the help of YouTube’s autocomplete feature, you can collect a wealth of ideas for future videos.
I would also suggest taking a few glimpses at Google Trends. Why? Simply because it’s a brilliant tool for analyzing search trends and comparing keywords based on their popularity. To make the tool provide you with YouTube-specific data, you just need to switch from the Web Search option to YouTube Search.
Google Trends comes in very handy when you’ve come up with a list of keywords and want to compare them against each other popularity-wise. This gives us an understanding of what’s trending in your niche at the moment in a specific region. Once again I took the example of veganism and did a comparison between what is trending more: veganism, or vegetarianism.
As you can see, veganism is a more popular term in the US and has a higher monthly number of search changes over time.
Collect Video Keywords before Shooting
I’m sure you quite often notice YouTube videos appearing among Google’s result pages for particular keywords. In 2021, this trend will keep growing and you will see more videos. In fact, currently, about 20-40% of YouTube traffic is generated from organic search. That’s why collecting and optimizing videos for such keywords can significantly raise your videos’ chances of fighting for a place in Google’s organic search results, not only on Youtube’s. So you’ll have a chance to appear in two search engines.
By entering your target keywords into Rank Tracker or Ubersuggest and see if result pages include any videos, you can spot keywords that are more likely to bring about a video in organic search results. Rank Tracker has a 10-day free trial. Their basic plan starts at $8.
With Rank Tracker, you can set YouTube as a preferred search engine and track your rankings as well as monitor your video results in SERP features. The tool also allows you to collect keywords with 23 keyword research methods, including YouTube autocomplete, and then compare them according to the most important SEO indicators.
On the other hand, Ubersuggest has limited free search options to find the search volume, number of clicks, and competition around a specific keyword. Also, it’s very user-friendly and easy to understand. However, it is limited to a certain number of searchers. So after a few words, they’ll want you to sign up to their paid packages, which starts at $29.
Optimize Video Metadata
Your metadata consists of your title, description and tags. This used to be a vital part of searches, but since Google and YouTube implemented machine learning for object recognition, YouTube can now identify objects in your video while estimating its relevance to a particular search query. This made your metadata less relevant. But that doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t be optimized. And that is why we’ll go through each one of them to help you type in relevant keywords to help the algorithm target a specific audience.
Despite its decrease in its relevance, metadata is still important for your visitors because that is the first thing that they take into consideration when deciding whether to click or not on your video. So this remains more of a marketing factor for searchers.
IMPORTANT! You should upload a video with its metadata already optimized rather than 48 hours after it went live, according to Searchengineland.com, because the algorithm will mark it as unworthy.
So here is how you can optimize your videos’ metadata to satisfy both searchers and YouTube.
Write a Keyword-Rich Title
A video’s title is the very first and sometimes the only thing searchers look at before clicking. When thinking of a title, you should include keywords that you want to rank for as well as summarize the topic of your video. Try to make it look interesting but avoid overhype promises that fall face-forward. People hate clickbait and will avoid your channel in the future.
Another good idea is to look at your competitors’ video titles for inspiration and try to copy their style (not their words.) Your titles shouldn’t exceed the limit of 60 characters because otherwise, it’s just dull and simply because they’ll be cut off.
Optimize your Video Description
A video description can be up to 1,000 characters long. But let’s be honest, we rarely read the entire description, unless we desperately search for something. But that doesn’t mean we should ignore the importance of Youtube descriptions entirely.
The fact is that a handful of people do read the first 2 to 3 lines of text. Therefore, the first 100 words are the most important. This is because if the first few words are interesting to a searcher, they have to click on “Show more”. That’s why it’s important to place your target keywords and links to your social accounts closer in the first 100 words, specifically in the 1st line.
Custom Thumbnails for First Impressions
Thumbnail is the very first thing that gets into searchers’ interest. A thumbnail is the first image, the first visual information perceived by searchers and it works a lot faster than text. Why is this more important than anything I’ve mentioned before? Simply because quite often people do judge a book by its cover and decide whether to watch or neglect your video based on the visual quality and aesthetical look of your thumbnail. That’s why I wouldn’t advise picking from a selection of thumbnails YouTube automatically generates.
Design Thumbnails with Canva
Canva is something I’d highly recommend for designing YouTube channel arts and thumbnails. It is a freemium graphic app, which offers a huge selection of templates for all sorts of visuals, including custom video thumbnails (and motion pictures if you want to implement them into your video). The app has a free version, which is slightly limited in terms of the number of templates and members.
However, if you decided to invest in a business-class account $9.95 per month.
How to get started with Canva?
Simply search for the term “Youtube” and you’ll get a ton of beautiful thumbnails prepared for you.
Before you decide to pop out thumbnails on your own, make sure it satisfies the below-listed technical requirements:
- 1280×720 pixels
- 16:9 ratio
- < 2 MB
- .jpg, .gif, .bmp, or .png format.
Thumbnails by Canva fit these requirements perfectly. But once again, I must highlight the importance of making eye-catching visuals to make the searcher want to click on your video. It’s also a good idea to add some text to your thumbnail to make it more informative.
Video Tags are a Must
Optimizing your video tags helps searchers discover your videos. How? They will appear as a “keyword” in your source code. The best way to get an idea of what tags do to your videos is to see what your competitors are using. I’d suggest installing TubeBuddy, to show you the exact tags a video is optimized with. Just don’t forget to include people featured in your video as well as your brand name in the tags.
TubeBuddy is a freeextension that eases the job with everything that comes to YouTube channel management. With the help of TubeBuddy, you can monitor live video stats, track social shares, as well as get video optimization tips.
The best thing about the tool is that you can see how your competitors optimize their videos and analyze how your videos stack against your competition.
When you get to optimization itself, it’s better to start with longer and more specific tags (such as “how to make delicious vegan food”) and then narrow them down to broader phrases (such as “vegan diet”).
In my case, when I had my first Tedx video, I wanted to upload it myself on my own channel and share it with the world. So I pumped the video with my own related tags that would encourage more views.
Using hashtags is another way to boost the searchability of your videos. All you need to do is add them to your video descriptions, and they’ll appear above the video’s title. Just be aware not make more than 15 hashtags, or Youtube will ignore all of them!
As always, it’s crucial that the hashtags you add reflect the content that users would expect to see. Misusing hashtags (hate speech, profanity for example,) will result in a penalty or removal.
If you have existing videos that are older may not be optimized with them. So I’d suggest you make sure to head over to them and fix it.
Improve User Retention and Engagement
Youtube watch time has been increased to 10 minutes since watch time and audience retention have become key ranking signals. YouTube rewards videos that keep people for a longer period of time because they meet their criteria for quality content better. In fact, according to Backlinko, the average length on the first page of YouTube is 14 minutes, 50 seconds.
In addition to that Likes and Comments also have a strong correlation with YouTube rankings. So here’s how you can boost watch time, user retention, and engagement of your videos.
Optimize for Watch Time
The best thing to start watch time optimization with is analyzing your Watch Time reports on your channel. This tool can give you priceless insights into average view duration, average percentage viewed, and audience retention. These metrics will help you understand how engaged your viewers are and identify the weak spots in your strategy.
If you see that viewers don’t get past your intro, it may signify it’s too long. If that’s the case, try to cut off all unnecessary context and jump straight to the point.
To increase your overall channel sessions, consider promoting your other videos straight in a video or description. It’s also a good idea to combine videos that cover similar topics in one playlist – they will be auto-played every time someone watched a video from the series.
You’ve probably noticed a lot of Youtubers asking you to like and share, or “Please subscribe” or “Make sure you give a Thumbs Up!” No wonder they this. They help their channel get a massive boost if people actually do these things. Just like watch time, likes, subscriptions, and comments have a very strong correlation with rankings. This can be the first step to encourage viewers to interact with your videos if you believe you provide the videos your audience deserves.
To encourage your viewers to comment, think of asking them a direct question at the end of your video. And of course, make sure to respond or give likes to them to provoke further discussion and make your audience feel heard.
Another way to do it is with the help of YouTube Analytics. It allows you to see your performance, what exact videos drive subscribes and unsubscribes as well as places where particular video content is the most popular.
Improve Your Channel
One of the best ways to improve your channel and add interactivity to your videos is by implementing Cards. YouTube cards are the interactive cards you see in YouTube videos that let creators share clickable links to relevant content throughout a video. You usually see these at the end of a video.
End screens can also help a lot if you want to direct viewers to some other videos. As you can see I have circled to the left, the video of a friend. I would recommend you to add end screens to the last 10 to 20 seconds before your video is over and encourage viewers to subscribe.
Millions of Youtube videos get shared across social media. Having 85% of Facebook videos with the volume off, adding subtitles and closed captions have become more a necessity rather than just a luxury. You can also expand your number of viewers with subtitles by providing your content for people with hearing impairment or those who have a difficult time speaking another language.
How to Promote Your Videos
We have gone through keyword research, metadata optimization, thumbnails, and improving user retention. But all these will hardly bring you any profit if your video is nowhere to be seen. So here’s how you can promote your videos and win extra views.
The first thing that comes to mind when we talk about content promotion is social networks. And it is a good way to start since social media channels can skyrocket your traffic, giving you instant gratification for your work. However, the views will decrease a few hours after you’ve shared your content.
According to Forbes, around 500 million people were watching videos on Facebook every day in 2018, whereas video Tweets are retweeted 6x times more often than photos or screenshots.
With that said, social networks are still a very powerful platform for video promotion. And if you want to track what sort of buzz your videos are surrounded with, consider using a social media monitoring tool like Awario or Brandwatch.
One of the best places to promote your videos are those where people are actively searching for answers. So think of placing your videos on Q&A sites like Quora. Search for a question that you think your video can cover and place it at the end of your answer. Be careful to avoid spammy content. Make sure you provide helpful content instead of promotional ones!
Create a Website to Double your Views
Another highly effective video promotion strategy is embedding videos in blog posts if you happen to own a website. This can nearly double your traffic! How? Because you open doors to Google’s enormous market.
With about 6.9 billion daily Google searches, it is a remarkable possibility to expand your audience. This is because Youtube is owned by Google, and nowadays video content is starting to get more visibility. For example, if I were to type into Google “Cooking vegan food” you will see many videos come from Youtube.
Just remember, Youtube is extremely competitive, with 1.3 billion videos! So you must take every measure in order to succeed, especially if you are starting out small.
So if you want to launch your website to promote more videos, simply go to Bluehost.
Follow the steps and you’ll have your own domain in less than an hour. Videos + content is a win-win. But it might require some additional work and writing. But the pay off is tremendous and will be worth it over time!
With a website, you can get more eyes on your videos by creating an email subscription with Mailchimp and attaching your videos to your newsletter before sending them out. The thing is, such people are already your paying customers and are more likely to at least click on a link to your video. If you want to inform them about an upcoming sale, you may add a video on how to use your product or why it’s better than one of your competitors, for instance.
Choose your plan
First, you’ll select a hosting plan (inputting your website’s domain name comes next). Personally, I would recommend choosing the Choice Plus plan because it comes with multiple perks like “Domain Privacy,” which will protect your personal information (your full name, email address, phone number, and home address) from being published anywhere online.
Choosing your plan will look like this right here. Just click the green “Select” button on your plan of choice:
As I said above, I recommend choosing the Choice Plus plan, so that you’re getting the Domain Privacy feature that’ll protect your personal information online, but any of these plans will do as you’re starting your website. You can add the domain privacy in later during the checkout process for around $1/mo.
Pick your website’s name
Next, you’ll get to the page where it’s time to choose your blog’s domain name if no one has taken it before:
Once you get to this step in the checkout process, just type in the name of the domain name that you’d like your blog to have (mine is robertkormoczi.com).
If your domain name of choice isn’t available, you can either try another option that comes to mind—or select different domain registries such as .com or .net or .org. It is up to you, but my recommendation is always to go with .com if you want to run a business. You can always choose I’ll select my domain name later after getting the rest of your account squared away and taking a little more time to think of the name.
Here’s where you can click to choose your domain later (it’s a popup that will appear if you hover on this page for long enough or move your mouse up toward the top of the page):
After either choosing your domain name or opting to select it later, you’ll be taken to the final step in the signup process—creating your account.
Launching your Bluehost account
Start by filling in your account details like your name, email address. It’s VERY IMPORTANT to use an up-to-date email address because this is where your login details and account information will be sent. If you don’t want to enter your information manually, you can connect your Bluehost account with your Google account.
Select the right hosting package
This is where you’ll choose an account plan based on the price you want to lock in and how far in advance you’ll pay.
Note that (as mentioned before) Bluehost only offers options for you to pay 1, 2, or 3 years upfront. They don’t offer a monthly payment option. Why? Simply because most hosting companies that do offer monthly payments tend to charge a bit more. Even still, with whichever plan you choose, the price works out to be a great investment for starting your own website and getting it online today!
Which pricing plan would suit my website best?
Personally, I recommend choosing the “Prime 36 Month Price” if you want to lock in the lowest possible price for your hosting for the next 3 years. This low pricing for new customers only applies to the first payment you make. If you were to choose the 1-year plan, your pricing might go up after that first year.
That’s why if you choose the 36-month plan, your pricing will be locked in at this rate for 3 years. For that reason, I recommend going with the longest duration plan that your budget can spring for.
And that’s it. That is all the money you will need to spend to launch an online business. Fingers-crossed 🤞
Which package extras should you choose?
Like many others, I’d also recommend keeping the Sitelock Security Extras extra, but you can get away with skipping the rest. Sitelock basically helps you protect your website from malware and malicious attacks.
Bluehost SEO Tools provides insights into your performance. I would say this might not be necessary because there are other ways such as Google Analytics or Monsterinsights.
As I mentioned earlier though, having the domain privacy keeps all of your personal contact information (your name, email, phone number and address) private. Now, if you chose the Choice Plus Plan on the previous screen, then your Domain Privacy Protection will be listed as “Free” just like this screenshot above shows—it’s included in that plan.
The total you’ll now see is the amount you’re going to pay today. Remember though, you won’t have to pay again for 1, 2 or 3 years depending on the package you chose.
There’s a 30-day money-back guarantee in case things don’t go as planned with your blog.
Enter your billing information
Now you’ll input your billing information, check the box that you agree to Bluehost’s Terms of Service, and then hit the green “Submit” button.
You’ve officially completed the first major step in starting a website.
With the initial signup process complete, it’s time to move into the next stage of getting your website running and fully optimized.
On the next page, you’ll be guided step-by-step through the process of getting WordPress installed on your blog through Bluehost—and later on, in this guide, I’ve got a ton of helpful tips for optimizing your blog, free and cheap plugins you can install to help get your blog looking great, and more.
Launch WordPress to Publish your Videos
At the point in this guide, we will continue under the assumption that you’ve already registered your domain name and chosen the right hosting plan. So if you haven’t done so already, take just a few minutes to quickly launch your domain.
Once you’ve made the payment, you will get a verification email along with payment verification. You need to verify your email first.
The following steps are very easy. You just need to enter your password and log in. You will be taken to a new page where you can select your theme, or simply scroll down and click on “skip this step.” You can always pick a new theme and the ones I recommend will come for free. So you don’t need to worry about these.
(What is a theme? A theme is basically the overall appearance of your website. With WordPress, you’ll have thousands of themes to choose from, to decide what the outline of your website is going to look like. There are many paid themes, however, I will show you only the best looking ones for free!)
If you’ve never worked with WordPress it will be super easy, I can promise you, this won’t get too technical.
How to install WordPress and get friendly with its Dashboard
Once you’ve created your password you will be taken to Bluehost’s dashboard where you can click on “Log in to WordPress” and be automatically taken to your WordPress Dashboard.
Once you get to this point, you can officially start the design of your website. This is where the fun begins. Below is your WordPress dashboard where you will be able create pages, write and publish new content, upload extensions, create your webshop and much more.
When you’re just getting started, I don’t usually recommend buying a paid WordPress theme right away. Once you have some traffic and can justify the investment, then it’s smart to choose a premium, paid theme with more features and options. For the time being, a complex theme will be a distraction from your most important priority of actually bringing readers to your new blog.
WordPress comes with a ton of free themes to choose from, so start with one of the options you like in Appearance > Themes > Add New Theme and lick on Popular on the top. You can get a ton of themes without spending much time for now. You can always come back and change it later with 2 clicks. In the top right “search” you will be able to find any theme you’d like.
I like these two WordPress themes because they’re both easy, clean, free to use, simple and will get you to a great starting point without needing to invest in a paid theme as you’re starting out. There are thousands of themes to choose from, so you can change them whenever you want to.
Once you have Astra as a theme, you can go to Appearance and then Starter Templates, where you can select your own outlook on your website. You can change these any time in the future.
Publish your Video in your Posts
Alright! So we are nearly done! But let’s leave the best for last. You will insert your videos in your posts, where you can publish save and publish everything. Is it hard? Hell no!
It’s just a simple copy-paste of your youtube video’s URL. However, you do have to put in some work into your post, like explaining what your video or the message of the video is about. After all, you want people to click and stay on your content. So it’s advisable to write about the topic.
How to get started?
Once you’ve decided on the first article you want to write, you’ll navigate to the “Add New Post” section from your WordPress Dashboard.
Go to Posts > Add New which will look like this right here:
Next, you’ll be taken to a brand new article page where you can start working on your content:
It’s important to write an article headline that encourages readers to click. You need to some time and effort into writing headlines and content that’ll be interesting and engaging. But most importantly it must deliver on the promise of what your article and video is actually helping the visitor with the info he/she needs.
So let’s say for example that your video was about travel. After doing some keyword research, you can basically write down what you’ve told your audience in your video or give them an idea and let the video do all the work.
Youtube can be a powerful tool for reaching your target audience, building an enormous fan base, and making a huge profit in various ways. If everything is done right, you can crawl through the barriers of competition, where millions of other videos are uploaded daily.
Not many people create Youtube videos and websites. So by doing both and optimizing your keywords for Google and Youtube, you’ll be two steps ahead of your competitors.
Do you have any other YouTube marketing tips or tools you could share? Leave them below in the comments. 😊