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YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google. Having a good SEO score on YouTube can help increase views and subscribers for your channel. Here are some best practices to optimize your YouTube videos and channel for better search visibility and ranking.How do I check my SEO score on YouTube?Use Relevant, Searchable Titles and Descriptions

  • Write titles and descriptions that use keywords people would search for and clearly explain what the video is about
  • Put the primary keyword close to the beginning of title so it catches attention
  • Include secondary keywords naturally in the title and description
  • Write titles that generate interest and get clicks
  • Use descriptions to provide additional details and keywords

Optimize with Tags

  • Include relevant tags that describe your content accurately
  • Prioritize tags that have higher search volumes and less competition
  • Separate single word tags with commas and use natural phrases
  • Research tag ideas with YouTube auto-complete search suggestions
  • Use a mix of popular and more specific tags

Create Quality Content

  • Produce videos that deliver value, useful information, entertainment etc. to keep viewers engaged
  • Cultivate trust by being transparent and avoiding misleading metadata
  • Structure content logically with good pacing and organization
  • Polish your videos with clear audio, professional editing etc.

Promote your Videos

  • Share videos on social networks and relevant online platforms
  • Encourage viewers to Like, Share and leave Comments – this signals to YouTube that a video resonates with audiences
  • Use video SEO best practices outlined here to rank higher in YouTube search results
  • Getting more Backlinks to your YouTube videos can also improve their ranking

Check YouTube Studio for Insights

YouTube Studio provides data on your videos and channel to help analyze performance.

Video-Level Metrics

  • Impressions – How many times a video thumbnail was shown
  • Click-through-rate – Percentage of impressions that resulted in a video click
  • Average View Duration – How long people engaged with the video on average
  • Traffic Source – Where views are coming from – YouTube Search, Suggested Videos, YouTube Channel etc.

Channel-Level Metrics

  • Subscriber Count – How many users have subscribed to your channel
  • View Count – Total views across all your videos
  • Watch Time – Total hours people have spent watching your videos
  • Traffic Sources – Breakdown of views by source – Search, Suggested, Direct etc.

Analyze metrics over time to identify high performing videos and opportunities to improve poorer performing ones.

Key Takeaways

  • Optimize video titles, descriptions and tags for keywords people search for
  • Produce quality content that engages audiences
  • Promote videos to signal relevancy and drive more views
  • Check metrics in YouTube Studio like impressions, CTR, traffic source etc. to guide optimization decisions

By implementing search and viewer-focused SEO strategies for your YouTube videos, you can rank better in YouTube search results and recommendations leading to more views and subscribers.

Conclusion

Optimizing your YouTube videos for search visibility is crucial to improve your viewership and grow an audience on the platform. By researching effective keywords, accurately describing your content, promoting videos to engage viewers, and studying performance metrics in YouTube Studio, you can continually refine your YouTube SEO approach for better results. Focusing on value and quality will keep audiences watching while ethical SEO tactics will earn you more exposure. Checking your YouTube SEO score and progress regularly allows you to track improvements over time as you apply video optimization best practices.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How do I find my YouTube SEO score?
    YouTube does not provide a direct SEO score for channels. But by analyzing metrics like impressions, CTR, traffic sources etc. in YouTube Studio you can evaluate whether your optimization efforts and ranking for key search terms is improving. 
  2. What is the best SEO title length for YouTube?
    Ideally between 60-70 characters is a good YouTube title length. This allows you to fit important keywords near the front while keeping titles concise enough to show fully in search results. 
  3. How many tags should I use for YouTube SEO?
    You can add up to 500 characters of tags per video. Include around 10-20 tags covering your main topic, keywords, locations, products etc. Mix specific tags with more popular ones. 
  4. What should my YouTube description include?
    The first 2 lines of a YouTube description are most prominent. Summarize the key topics covered and details people would search for. Then expand on the video topics and keywords so the full description entices clicks. 
  5. How do I check my YouTube click-through-rate?
    In YouTube Studio, click on Analytics and select an individual video. The Traffic Source Types section will display the video’s CTR from searches and suggested videos. 
  6. What is a good YouTube CTR %?
    On YouTube, a CTR or click-through-rate above 10% is considered excellent. From 5-10% is good. Aim to test different titles and thumbnails to drive your CTR higher over time. 
  7. How do I increase my YouTube watch time?
    Hook viewers quickly by structuring engaging videos. Cut out unnecessary fluff during editing. Use cards to promote related content. Ask viewers questions to spark discussion. All can increase chances of better audience retention. 
  8. Which YouTube traffic source is most valuable?
    YouTube Search is very valuable for visibility and finding new viewers. Videos that rank well for relevant keyword searches can gain significant traffic from YouTube Search. 
  9. What is the best day & time to upload YouTube videos?
    It varies by audience and niche, but mid-week days like Tuesday-Thursday tend to perform well. Early afternoons and evenings get good viewership. Test publishing times to see when your viewers are most active. 
  10. How important are custom thumbnails for YouTube success?
    Extremely important! Custom thumbnails personalized for your brand and video can substantially boost click-through-rates compared to default ones. Make yours brightly colored and descriptive of video topics. 
  11. What makes a good YouTube thumbnail?
    Effective YouTube thumbnails feature contrasting background colors, bright imagery representing video content, clear text headlines using strong keywords, branding consistency, high resolution quality with no pixelation etc. 
  12. Which types of YouTube videos get the most views?
    It varies heavily by audience interests, but DIY tutorials, entertainment, product reviews, how-to guidance, celebrity content, music videos, and humor tend to be very popular types of YouTube videos. Deliver what your niche viewers want. 
  13. What is the best length for a YouTube video?
    Depends on niche, but videos 3-5 minutes long tend perform very well in terms of engagement and viewer retention. Include a strong intro hook and pace videos well to maximize watch time. Shorter for simple topics and longer for complex explanations as needed. 
  14. What YouTube tools can help my SEO?
    Tube Buddy and VidIQ are the most popular browser tools that integrate with YouTube to analyze performance, benchmark competitors, research keywords, tag recommendations, bulk editing options and much more to improve YouTube SEO. 
  15. Should I do keyword research for my YouTube videos?
    Yes, researching which keywords have high search volume but low competition on YouTube can help you identify winning topics to create videos around. Keyword research is crucial for YouTube SEO success. 
  16. How can I see what keywords my YouTube video ranks for?
    YouTube Studio shows some of the top keywords driving traffic to individual videos under Reach > Discovery. Or use third party tools like Tube Buddy or VidIQ to reveal more ranked keywords and search rankings. 
  17. What is YouTube SEO and why is it important?
    YouTube SEO refers to optimizing YouTube videos for better visibility in YouTube and Google search results by using metadata like titles and descriptions with effective keywords so that each video can be easily found by target audiences. 
  18. Should I put my keyword in my video title?
    Yes, having your main keyword close to the start of the YouTube video title signals relevancy to search engines. Combine it appealing phrasing that piques viewer interest to optimize click-through-rate. 
  19. How can I rank #1 in YouTube for my focus keyword?
    Ranking #1 on YouTube involves thorough keyword research, creating quality content optimized around that keyword, promoting your videos to drive engagement signals like likes, comments and shares and analyzing how to improve based on your channel authority and competition ranking for that term. 
  20. Can YouTube videos rank in Google search?
    Yes. Optimizing your YouTube videos properly provides opportunities to rank in Google video carousel results for relevant search queries. Many people search for video content in Google, so pursuing both YouTube and Google SERP visibility is key. 

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