What is YouTube SEO?

Ben Tippet

Did you know that YouTube is the second most visited online platform in the world? It also has the highest average visit duration which makes it one of the best marketing platforms in the universe.

YouTube SEO is a competitive market. If you’re planning to join the competition or you want to be the top YouTube ranker, make sure to equip yourself with the skills and knowledge that can help your way up to the first page of search results.

In this article, we will dig deeper into the world of YouTube video SEO, its importance, and how it can boost the overall performance of your business.

YouTube SEO 101

YouTube SEO is the process of optimising your videos for YouTube search results. It comprises different techniques that are aimed at increasing the number of views on your YouTube page.

In YouTube marketing, descriptions are the key to driving traffic to your page. There are two types of descriptions which are YouTube channel description and YouTube video description.

The YouTube channel description shows the name of your channel or page. It informs the viewers what to expect on your page.

On the other hand, YouTube video descriptions are the texts viewers use to look for your content. It can also be found at the bottom of the videos posted on your YouTube page.

Why is it important?

YouTube descriptions can boost rankings and increase subscriptions, views, and watch time. Descriptions are important as it helps the algorithm determine where to rank your content in the search engine result page (SERP).

If you employ YouTube SEO as your marketing tactic, your videos will be displayed on the “suggested search” function of YouTube.

Here’s the deal:

Once your keyword is matched on another video description, you’ll have the chance to be added to the “suggested search” column.

As mentioned earlier, YouTube is a very competitive market. It can be hard to convince viewers to stay longer on the page.

It sounds weird but there are circumstances whereby viewers scroll down to the description while viewing the video.

In theory, if you have a well-written description, a viewer will likely to finish watching the video on your page andmay also share it with social media friends.

By now, your watch time will increase plus the algorithm will recognise your video as entertaining and interesting more than your competitors!

One more thing…

You can also add links to your website and social media accounts on the descriptions.  It gives you the opportunity to promote your brand and gain new viewers.

How to Write Effective YouTube Video Descriptions

So, how can you create an effective title and description for YouTube? Here are some strategies that could work:

Write naturally.

 You don’t have to be a wordsmith to create a unique YouTube description! Use keywords naturally. Keyword stuffing is a no-no in YouTube SEO. It can hurt your rank and may also lead to having your videos taken down. If you need tutorials, there are heaps of resources that can be found online. Check it out!

Use relevant keywords.

 Use 1 or 2 main keywords to describe your content and increase search traffic to your video – the same goes for your YouTube channel description. YouTube algorithm emphasises the use of keywords on the “About” page. If you’re not sure of what keyword to use, Google Trends and Google Ad Keyword Planner are helpful tools.

Important: Do not repeat keywords more than thrice – it may be flagged as keyword stuffing. So, use your keywords wisely!

Let the viewers know what to expect.

Avoid using deceptive descriptions as it misrepresents your videos. It can affect your rank negatively, and worst-case scenario, it can hurt your reputation! I know what you’re thinking… clickbait titles and irrelevant keywords could work, but not for long. The YouTube algorithm will find out soon!

Add links and metadata.

Adding links and metadata to your descriptions is a great way of promoting your brand. It is best to add social media links, relevant product links, and metadata for an SEO boost.

Do not forget the CTA.

You’ve got the viewer’s attention! Use it to your advantage. Include a call-to-action (CTA) phrase on your video descriptions and channels. Your CTAs should be clear, urgent, and beneficial to the viewers. If you do it right, subscriptions, engagement, and more will surge!v

Create a unique description.

There’s nothing wrong with default descriptions! Default descriptions are the quickest way to add contact info and metadata to your videos. On the other hand, unique and original descriptions generate more traffic, plus they sound fresh and more interesting to the viewers.

Preview your videos.

Test your descriptions by previewing the videos on different devices. Make sure that it is visible and compelling on all screens. If you think it’s all good, then you’re set!

 Add hashtags.

 Hashtags are used for discoverability. Adding a few hashtags can help your viewers find your content. Use 15 or fewer hashtags to meet the YouTube algorithm requirements.

Again, hashtags should be relevant to the content and should not mislead the viewers.

Always credit your sources.

It is fair and just to credit sources! If you grab images and footage from other sources, credit them! You can list each one of them below the fold in your video descriptions, including links to their accounts and websites.


Optimise your video for search results now. You can make a start by creating unique descriptions!

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