SEO for YouTube: How to Optimise YouTube videos

/ April 27, 2019 | 5 Mins Read

SEO for YouTube: How to Optimise YouTube videos

Billions of video are being posted on YouTube every day. Is your brand catching any of this traffic? Don't underestimate youtube video optimization like the content.

One of the most popular and followed channel on YouTube is #Sephora cosmetics. #Sephora’s YouTube channel boasts of over 8,35,000 followers. This is on par with some of the most followed beauty artists on YouTube. #Sephora has been able to successfully engage with its target audience through ‘how-to’ tutorials for achieving certain looks.

Simultaneously releasing and promoting their latest products on YouTube. #Sephora has made smarter use of the description box, following it with the video to promote its complementing beauty product. #Sephora is a classic example of a brand that has been successfully driving traffic not only to the YouTube page but also to its website, resulting in sales.

Another noteworthy example where YouTube was effectively used by a brand to actively engage with its audience is that of #Maybelline. In 2014, #Maybelline joined hands with 13 most influential YouTube vloggers (video bloggers) and promoted its Nudes Palette range. This campaign generated a whopping 1.4 clicks, making it the talk of the town.  

However, the master of this game is #Nike! Besides being known for its engaging videos, #Nike is also known by its sheer number of views (over 108 million on the last count!). In fact #Nike creates a separate set of videos, exclusively for its YouTube channel to complement their marketing efforts.

1. Why are these brands so gung-ho about YouTube?

These brands have learned a small secret! They have realized that video is the future of brand engagement and YouTube is the leader. They have realized that video is the simplest, yet the most powerful tool to create engagement with customers. According to a study, some facts about YouTube have emerged as follows:  

  • A video in an email causes the Click-through-rate (CTR) to jump by 200-300%.
  • If a video is included on a landing page, the conversion increases by 80%.
  • Whenever and wherever video is used as a marketing tool, 73% of the B2B marketers have experienced a significant improvement in their ROI.
  • It is predicted that by the end of 2019, as high as 80% of traffic will originate from videos.
  • When the consumer psyche was studied, it was found that after three days, just 10% of the information of what they hear was retained, compared to 65% of the videos they saw.
  • The intent to purchase increases by close to 67% after seeing the video.

What next?

You are not the only one who is impressed by this stellar performance from YouTube. YouTube is already a crowded space. The deluge is so high that every minute, close to 100 hours of videos are uploaded on YouTube.


The question now is, if YouTube is such a crowded place, how does a brand get its target audience to watch its videos rather than their competition?  Some of the immediate answers to achieve this are:

Recommended: How to Improve Your Blog Posts With YouTube Videos

  • Showcase aspirations rather than just selling your products.
  • Create meaningful stories that appeal rather than only sale dialogues.
  • Create opportunities what will make your audience discuss your video, i.e. “water-cooler” moments.
  • Make videos that are fun, enjoyable and worth remembering.
  • Connect with your web community.
  • Innovate your videos constantly.
  • Use social media for reactions on your YouTube efforts.
  • Optimize your YouTube of
  • ferings.

Remember that on YouTube, mere posting won’t do the job. Just like your website, your YouTube content also needs to be optimized. Given the fact that for any given topic under the sun, one can find millions of videos. It is imperative, that your brand video should be capable of cutting through this clutter and emerge as a winner. Finally, it comes down to a few crucial things that really matter.

In fact, these few crucial things are so strong and relevant that they can even be applied to your existing videos (and repost them).

2. The revamp ‘must-do’ list.


  • Write a description that is super long and explains your video articulately. Unlike websites, the ‘crawler’ cannot see your video. It has to necessarily depend on the description to understand the video content. The more detailed is your description, the more will the crawler knows about the video and hence higher will it rank the video in search. The keywords that are used in the description play a crucial role here.
  • While it is good to be ranked higher on the YouTube search, it is even better if the same can be replicated in the Google search. Though there is an inherent advantage for SERP in Google for YouTube, this is only restricted to certain keywords. These special keywords are called ‘video keywords’ and help achieve a higher ranking on page one of Google search.
  • Get a helping hand from online communities like LinkedIn, Quora, etc. for fuelling traffic to your YouTube channel. You may want to answer a question on such communities in the form of a video on YouTube. This builds a strong correlation between the video and the keywords in the crawler’s mind.
  • Always encourage the viewers to subscribe or link your YouTube video. Since YouTube ‘crawler’ does not use backlinks, the user experience becomes useful here. If the user has subscribed your video, it means that your video is liked and was found relevant, hence will rank higher in YouTube search.
  • Depending on YouTube videos alone will not suffice. If you have more than one videos, then it is important to organize these videos by creating a keyword ‘rich’ playlist. This gives the crawler a better idea about the video content, thereby influencing the traffic positively.
  • In the end, the video should leave your viewers wanting for more. While it makes sense to be relevant to the topic and leave the viewer satisfied, it is wiser if the user is left wanting for more. This could be done by encouraging the viewer to comment or click on the embedded link. This too signals the crawler about the relevance of the video, impacting the future traffic accordingly.

Remember, while making a good and relevant video is definitely as good as basic hygiene. Nevertheless, it is important that the viewer should be cajoled into liking, sharing, commenting on the video. This shows that the video was not only relevant for this one viewer but could also be relevant to a host of others.

Google analytics too could be effectively used to understand the demographics and behavior of such videos adding rich knowledge to your arsenal.

Remember, your video was not created for one-time consumption, it should have the potential of going viral not only due to its compelling content but other reasons as well.

Hiren Panchal is the Co-founder and Promoter of India based Branding Company Litmus. He sharps his views with analytical mindfulness. Just as his doer attitude wins over his believer attitude with a thin line, his thought leadership aims at making leaders and not followers in his team. His creative insights have created brands worldwide and he’s commanding in the industry for +20 years.