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YouTube Video Optimization Best Practices

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Step by Step Guide to YouTube Video Optimization


Why Is Video Optimization Important?

Ten years ago, people began switching from newsprint and television to the Internet as their main source of news. Now video is the primary source of news for the public. Anyone can go online at any time to watch the highlights of the big game. At the same time, a person can learn how to knit a new scarf with video. Why is video important to the Internet marketing community?

YouTube is one of the most powerful marketing tools at the disposal of businesses. Since its acquisition by Google, YouTube has become the second most powerful search engine in the world. Best of all, Google indexes YouTube videos instantly. A fully optimized YouTube Channel containing engaging video content will not only provide a powerful, followable link to your website, but it will also greatly increase views, which will drive more traffic to your website.

Optimizing Your YouTube Channel:

  1. Channel Settings
    1. Title – Include your company name in the title
    2. Visibility – Check the blip to make your channel visible
    3. E-Mail Location – Check the box so others can find your channel via e-mail
    4. Channel Tags – This is the most important part of channel optimization
      1. Choose 3-5 keywords you want to target for your channel. Make sure these keywords are the same ones you use on your website and that they are relevant to your business
      2. Separate each keyword using quotation marks. It should look like this:
        1. “chicago internet marketing” “chicago web design” “chicago seo”
  2. Channel Themes and Colors
    1. This has no real bearing on the optimization
    2. Choose a theme and colors that are similar to your website
      1. Ex: http://www.youtube.com/user/StraightNorthAgency
      2. This YouTube channel was modeled after our old website at http://www.straightnorth.com
  3. Modules – Any other modules are fine, but these three are necessary for optimization
    1. Commenting
    2. Subscriptions
    3. Friends
  4. Videos and Playlists
    1. Always select the “My Uploaded Videos” option in the featured content box
    2. Always set one of your videos as the featured video
    3. Check the box to play your featured video automatically
  5. Profile
    1. Use your business name for the name
    2. Use the exact URL to your website under the website section — this will be the only followable link you can obtain through YouTube
    3. In your channel description, summarize the content of the channel, and include a link to your company’s Facebook or Twitter page (these will be nofollow links)
    4. In the About Me section, it is important to give a brief description of the company using the targeted keywords
    5. All other sections of the profile are great to have, but they will not help optimize the channel in any way

Optimizing Your YouTube Videos:

  1. Content
    1. Create high-quality, engaging video content
    2. Choose video content related to the targeted keywords
    3. Mention the targeted keywords in the script
  2. Info and Settings
    1. Video Title
      1. Always include the word “video” at the end of the title
      2. Include your company name in the title
    2. Description
      1. Include the company website URL at the beginning of the description
        1. This will be a nofollow link
        2. When users click on the video, the company URL will still show up in the video description without the expanded view
      2. Mention the company name after the company URL
      3. Include 3-5 keywords in the video description
      4. Include links to the company Facebook and Twitter pages at the end of the video description
  3. Tags – Very important for search engine optimization of videos
    1. Choose 3-5 keywords you want to target.
    2. Separate each keyword using quotation marks. It should look like this:
      1. “chicago internet marketing” “chicago web design” “chicago seo”
  4. Thumbnail
    1. Choose a visually appealing thumbnail
    2. This will make the video more inviting to viewers
  5. Broadcasting and Sharing Options
    1. Privacy – Set to public
    2. License – Select the standard YouTube license
    3. Comments – Allow
    4. Comment Voting – Allow
    5. Video Responses – Allow
    6. Ratings – Allow
    7. Embedding – Allow
    8. Syndication – Allow
  6. Captions and Subtitles – YouTube videos are converted into Java, which makes the content unable to be crawled by search engines. By uploading a caption file, you are giving Google a giant copy block to read.
    1. Transcribe the video to a .txt file
    2. Use periods and commas to signify breaks in speech
      1. This will help Google’s voice recognition service to time the captions properly
    3. If the video contains no speech, use the annotations feature to create a caption with a call to action for the company website or social networking page.
      1. Make sure the timing is set on the annotation to give ample display time for the caption
    4. Upload the transcript or caption file (processing can take several minutes)
  7. Date and Map
    1. Set the location to the company address

Promoting Your YouTube Videos:

  1. Embed the videos in the company blog
    1. Include a link to the YouTube URL
  2. Embed the videos on the company website
    1. Include a link to the YouTube URL
  3. Syndicate the videos via social networking websites
  4. Distribute the videos using http://www.tubemogul.com
  5. Find linking partners for the videos
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2 Responses to YouTube Video Optimization Best Practices

  1. Great article, nicely written step by step procedure to optimize youtube videos. I appreciate your effort. It is really helpful.

  2. I’ve seen adding the word “video” in the title recommended in a couple different places. You’d never add the word “book” at the end of a book title and Google et al don’t need the word ‘video’ to tell it that the content is a video. I don’t know if or how it would actually affect page rank, but how this practice is justified…?

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