When you think of SEO, you probably think of Google.
It’s easy to understand why–Google is the most powerful search engine, period.
However, Google isn’t the only search engine, not by a long shot.
I’ll even go on record saying that some search engines can be more powerful than Google. (Gasp!) Not as big, no. Not as popular. But if you tap into other search engines, you can boost your search presence and conversions.
Here’s the thing: less popular search engines fill specific roles. For example, if you do Bing SEO, you can reach an audience you can’t reach on Google.
If you ignore other search engines, you’re doing your business a disservice.
Today, I want to talk about YouTube, and more specifically, YouTube SEO.
The entire site is driven by a search bar that’s smack dab in the middle of the page. It’s similar to Google’s video search results.
Because YouTube is its own search engine, it has its own SEO best practices.
Just like you want to get your site high up on the SERPs, you want to get your videos high up on the YouTube SERPs.
YouTube SEO is a bit different from regular SEO, and it might take a little while to get used to.
To help make it easy for you, I’ve created a list of techniques that will provide you with the visibility you need on YouTube.
1. Find Video Keywords to Improve YouTube SEO
Keywords for YouTube are a bit different from keywords that appear on search engines like Google or Bing.
For example, you’ll often see YouTube keywords that start with “how to.”
Brian Dean recommends using Google to search for different keywords in your niche. Then, see if any keywords bring up video results.
For example, if you search for “how to make apple pie,” you’ll see a ton of video results, and at least one is from YouTube.
You can use Ubersuggest to check how many monthly searches those keywords get.
Step #1: Enter Your Keyword and Click Search
Step #2: Click Keyword Ideas in the Left Sidebar
Step #3: Review Keyword Results
For this particular search, you’re given 296 keywords, one of which is the term you searched. Along with a keyword list, there is data for:
Volume: Number of searches the keyword gets on Google each month.
Cost per click: Average cost per click for the term on Google Ads.
PD: Paid difficulty, which is the estimated competition in paid search.
SD: Search difficulty, which is the estimated competition in organic search.
As a general rule of thumb, your selected video keywords should get several hundred monthly searches. For example, if you decide that you want keywords with no less than 800 searches, you can use the filter function to narrow your results:
Even though you’re left with only six keywords, you know you’re focusing on those that have a meaningful number of searches each month.
One of the things that have helped fuel my personal brand growth is doing interviews, like this one on Evan Carmichael’s channel.
Since Evan has 726k subscribers to his channel, it gives me visibility in front of an audience that I may not have.
25. Find Your Optimal Video Length
You’ve probably asked yourself this at some point: “What’s the perfect length for a YouTube video?”
There’s no single right answer here.
Minimatters found that the average length of the top ten most popular YouTube videos is 4 minutes and 20 seconds.
However, that might not be best for the type of videos you’re making. Even more importantly, you should focus on what users want, not just YouTube SEO best practices.
If TED talks were that short, viewers would feel ripped off.
So it depends on the kind of content you’re making. If it deserves depth, go with a longer video.
At the same time, don’t make super long (or super short) videos just because.
26. Improve Your YouTube Content
I have to finish the list with this piece of advice.
No amount of SEO hacks will keep people coming back for more. That responsibility rests solely on your content.
At the end of the day, your content is the foundation of all your YouTube SEO, so make sure it’s better than everyone else’s. For tips on improving your content, check out this guide to video marketing.
YouTube isn’t just for uber-famous superstars.
You can get in on the action too.
Surprisingly, it is not that difficult. If you work hard to make videos that really help people, you’ll watch the views roll in.