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April 28, 2009

How to optimize YouTube Videos for top ranking

YouTube is an Internet marketer’s dream tool and it is so easy to use. YouTube videos are starting to show up on Google natural search engine results, surpassing the top spots. A YouTube video properly optimized can outrank sites such as Amazon and eBay. Here is how to optimize your YouTube videos for top ranking.

By guest writer Brandon Leibowitz

Getting started with your optimized video

Green screenPeople want instant gratification, so good starting point for YouTube optimization is to make videos that are short, sweet, and straight to the point.

Videos should be kept to a few minutes to reduce production time, upload time, and download times.

Checklist for catchy videos

  • Have a script prepared so you do not mutter or stumble upon your words.
  • Film the video in the highest quality format you can. Crisp, clean videos will receive more attention than grainy, hard to see videos.
  • Do not make videos private.
  • Always allow for comments. User interaction can help increase video views and move you up the YouTube video rankings.

Using annotations or text boxes in your video can help deliver your message or promote your website or company. Make sure not too over use annotations as they can become annoying and distracting from your videos main purpose.

Text is food for search engines

Since the search engine spiders cannot read or comprehend videos you must use the text fields to optimize your videos appropriately.

This means doing keyword research and making sure your keywords appear in the title, description, and tags of your video is imperative to a successful YouTube marketing campaign.

Maximize the amount of text you can have in these fields. More text means a better chance of someone finding and clicking into your video.

Make sure you use original titles and descriptions. Otherwise your video will get lost in the millions of videos with similar names. Original content is what YouTube visitors want to see. The more originality you add the better off you will be.

You also want to have a user name with your brand or website name so it is easily remembered.

Factors that affect your ranking

The average video only receives one hundred views annually. You want more than that.

According to YouTube guidelines there are many factors that influence rankings and can help optimize your videos. These include:

  • Video title
  • Description
  • Tags
  • Incoming links
  • Comments
  • Subscribers
  • Ratings
  • Playlist additions
  • Flagging
  • Embeds
  • Shares
  • Age of video
  • Channel views
  • Views
  • The number and quality of sites that host or point to your video

You should keep them all in mind when developing your YouTube strategy.

Contribute to the YouTube community

You want to interact on YouTube by watching other videos, commenting, subscribing, creating channels, and making friends in order to be seen as a valuable member of the YouTube community, and not a spammer.

Interaction and credibility helps with the viral marketing, where one person tells another person about the video. This person tells five others and so on. This will increase your video network and the number of views.

How to get external traffic

Each time your video is viewed from an outside source, i.e. a site other than YouTube, it still counts as a view, so keep posting your videos on blogs and other sites.

Consequently, you need links from outside pages leading to your YouTube videos. You want the links to have strong anchor text, meaning that the link leading to the video contains keywords related to your video.

If you embed your YouTube video on another website you want to make sure that the site is relevant and appropriate for your video.

3 steps to improve your YouTube ranking

You want to increase your videos views, subscriptions, and favorites to improve your YouTube Ranking.

To achieve this, you can:

  • Send out an email blasts to any targeted list you may have access to
  • Place your video on your website and other websites
  • Engage in the community, build a following, connect with other members, provide valuable content, participate in social networking sites.

Your ultimate goal should be to reach YouTube’s homepage under Spotlight, Most Viewed, Most Discussed, and Top Favorite Videos. Videos in these categories get lots of extra exposure.

Submission tools

You can submit your video to the major video sites at once using programs such as Tube Mogul and Traffic Geyser. These software programs submit your video to all the major video sharing sites for you, saving time and energy.

Simply enter the tile, description, and tags for your video and it will appear on all the major video sharing sites. They offer analytics and tracking for your videos in one place making it easy to analyze and tweak your videos.

There are programmes called video tube automators, which are designed to build hundreds of YouTube accounts so you can view, comment, subscribe, and vote on your own videos. This run into the black hat area of marketing and is seen as spam. This is unethical and can get your account permanently banned from YouTube.

Measure your success

The best analytics tool for YouTube would have to be the one given to you for free, YouTube Insight. This will give you all the stats and detailed information you could ever ask for.

With Insight you can see how many page views you have, how popular it is, where people found your video, what country people watching your video are from, what sections of your video are most watched and least watched, and so much more.

This statistical data should help optimize your current video and plan for future videos. There are many articles written about YouTube Insight and how to take advantage of it. I suggest reading up on these.

Monetizing YouTube videos

Once you have the traffic, monetizing your YouTube videos is quite easy. You can easily set up your Ad Sense account in combination with YouTube so you can start receiving money every time an ad is clicked next to your video.

The main source of income from YouTube comes from the fact that you can show product reviews and sell features that could not be described in words. Electronic gadgets are a perfect match for YouTube video reviews.

Brandon Leibowitz is a search engine optimization and marketing consultant with over five years of industry knowledge. To learn more about his consulting services visit his web site SeoOptimizers.com and read his SEO and SEM Blog.

YouTube keyword suggestion tool

Related articles on Pandia
How to succeed with online video content
Social media marketing strategies: Why and how

Creative Commons License photo credit: ZapTheDingbat

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