YouTube Optimization – Best practices for SEO

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From Google:

Like Google’s search engine, YouTube search strives to surface the most relevant results according to keyword searches. Videos are ranked based on the following factors:

  • How well the title, description, and video content match the viewer’s search. 
  • What videos drive the most engagement for a search?

Note: Search results are not a list of the most-viewed videos for a given search.


Use a Keyword search tool. Search tool specific to YouTube here.


Use keywords in the title, description, and the video file name.

Say the keyword in the video


Description area

Use this area for keywords, links, and other CTAs. Be mindful of what goes above the “show more” area. 



Add captions to your videos

Add captions to your videos for people viewing without the sound on.  Supported formats:


Add custom thumbnails



Tags are descriptive keywords you can add to your video to help viewers find your content

Add tags to your videos


Video Chapters/Timestamps

Video Chapters break up a video into sections, each with an individual preview. Video chapters add info and context to each portion of the video and let you easily rewatch different parts of the video

Add video chapters


Video Cards

Use cards to make your videos more interactive. Cards can feature a video, playlist, link to a download, or other asset link.

Add cards to your videos


Utilize end screens as CTAs


What are your video Goals?


Employee Videos


Understand your audience and reach with analytics


Measure engagement

Grow Subscribers

Ask people to subscribe with a card or end screen CTA

Give people a reason to subscribe

Put the YouTube link in email signatures

Create quality content

Put link to YouTube (and other social) prominently on the website

Find the right keywords for your audience