You Tube Videos & SEO

you tube logoVideo Production Tips is pleased to present this guest-written article on getting good SEO results with your YouTube videos. It’s written by Jeff Gilden of EVM Web Design in Greenville, South Carolina. Jeff’s company helps clients with video optimized websites that act like a personalized online video channel. Sites that combine video marketing with targeted traffic get results!

Here is Jeff’s checklist for best Video SEO results on You Tube.

Tips For YouTube Search Engine Optimization

By Jeff Gilden, EVM, Inc.

Google owns YouTube. Therefore, Google will watch YouTube carefully. Google looks at YouTube for videos to list in the search engines. How do you get your video production on the homepage of Google? Using the steps below will help you increase your visibility in YouTube and Google using some simple tweaks. Youtube is an ever-changing platform, therefore some people say that it is too risky building a following for specific content on youtube alone because you are never too sure when Youtube will decide if a video or channel is suitable for adverts in their videos. Therefore most You Tubers find ways of generating an income outside of Youtube, tending to use services like Patreon, twitch or by making their own website, often using services such as those here to help funnel people towards this content. Making a website successful and earn substantial revenue is a challenge in itself. However by White-hat SEO it is pretty easy to build a following on a website, especially if you already have a large Youtube and social media presence. There is obviously a difference though between getting SEO for your business’s website and optimizing your videos in youtube. However, if you are interested in learning more about SEO for your website then click here.

Here’s a checklist you can follow to optimize your videos in YouTube:

  • Title text: You have 99 characters to optimize your title text. Make the title descriptive and accurate using the best keyword phrases. Generally, use the keyword phrase first, followed by other good descriptors. Remember that if you don’t get ranked number one, related videos also get lots of views.
  • Description: You have 5,000 characters. You will want to use all of the space provided to write as much about your video as possible. Remember: User ratings and views play a factor in your search rankings within YouTube and Google so make sure to ask for people to rank your video and also to share and embed your video onto their site and other places on the web.
  • Tags: Useful for search terms you used in your title text and description. For example, if a flower shop were trying to optimize, they might list the keywords Flowers, Roses, Arrangements, Bouquets, and other important keywords here that might help Google and YouTube decipher what your video is about. Many people leave tags off completely. That is a huge mistake.

Broadcasting and sharing options:

  • Privacy: Remember to set this to public when you are ready to go live so that Google and YouTube can “see” your video.
  • Comments: Allows other people to talk about your video and add more text for discussion and the search engines.
  • Video responses: These help you get more video views because the video responses of others are automatically linked to your original video.
  • Ratings: Set this to “Yes”. Ratings are important to rankings.
  • Embedding: Blogs and social media shares really boost views. Allowing people to share your video helps your message get to new audiences outside of YouTube. I recommend keeping this enabled.
  • Syndication: Keep this enabled.

Getting views:

  • YouTube considers a video “viewed” after eight seconds of runtime. Make sure your video is interesting enough to get you past that point.
  • Embedding it in your company blog or on product pages can boost video views and encourage discovery from new viewers.
  • Post your videos to your Facebook channel.
  • Encourage others to share your video on social media platforms within the video itself by asking people to share it in your video itself and in the description.
  • Seed your videos on bookmarking and listing sites.
  • Distribute links to your videos in press releases and embed them in social media releases.
  • Promote views of your video by buying them through Google AdWords.
  • Chunk your videos into smaller parts and link them all together using playlists.

Getting ratings:

  • Rank your own video.
  • Encourage others to rank your video by asking for it within your video, description, etc.

Video Quality:

  • YouTube recommends using the MPEG4 (Divx, Xvid) format at 640×480 resolution with MP3 Audio. Resizing your video to these specifications before uploading will help your clips look better on YouTube.


YouTube is the best way to get great SEO results for your video. Even if it is just a 30 second TV Spot, if optimized and positioned correctly, your video will gain more views than you thought possible through television media.

Jeff Gilden, EVM, Inc.

EVM Web Design, Greenville, SC

I appreciate Jeff taking the time to write this article for Video Production Tips readers. You Tube is such a humongous force in the online video world. The vast majority of online video is on YouTube. Success on You Tube brings many benefits.

Lorraine Grula, Video Production Tips

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Lorraine Grula

Lorraine Grula enjoyed a fast-paced, multifaceted career in the television and video business, producing, shooting, writing, and editing documentary-style videos in both news and corporate settings. Later, she got to teach media and video production in two high schools, which then morphed into instructional design and corporate training. Lorraine is now dedicated to sharing her vast knowledge with others who wish to learn the art of video making, with an emphasis on storytelling and creating professional-quality videos for the internet as simply, yet creatively as possible.

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  1. I try to respond to each video comment (with the exception of the ones that have nothing to do with the topic). I also try to include my keywords in my replies. Not sure if that actually does anything for SEO, but it may at some point, and I guess it can’t hurt. Do you know the ‘official’ line on this?

  2. Hi,

    I created a video through Animoto and after I uploaded it to YouTube it looked horrible (still does). If I use your suggestions here will that improve the quality? I know there’s a $5 charge to get better quality from Animoto and I will try that option as well. Just curious if there are other ways to get better quality once uploaded.


  3. Hi Brett.
    Comments are given a lot of weight by Google. Keywords sprinkled into replies makes sense to me. I think even if little things like that do not necessarily help yet, given the current state of things, in the not-so-distant future those things will be read into it. I always make sure all the bases are covered because it certainly isn’t going to hurt.

  4. Hi Wayne.
    Sorry to hear your Animoto video looked horrible. Horrible in what way? Grainy with poor resolution? That is what I usually equate horrible with. None of these tips here will really help that. Paying for the extra Animoto quality would help that. What was the quality of the original images you used on Animoto? I hope this helps.

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