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You can easily optimize your YouTube videos. You can also effectively use YouTube in your marketing strategy as long as you don’t make your videos a dead end road.

Most likely, you already know that YouTube is a great way to connect with people. One of my new clients created just a handful of videos, and they already outrank her website and other profiles. People love watching videos. So if you’re using them as a strategy to meet new clients, great job. Definitely keep it up.

Just like any other content you publish, your YouTube videos need to be optimized. That just means that you need to improve and enhance the title, description, and tags so that your clients can easily find you, and so that there’s a way back to your website and profile. All too often, I see videos with no description, a poor title, and no tags. Because of that, the videos have no views. And even worse, there aren’t any links back to the business. If you do that, you’re missing an opportunity.

Optimize Your YouTube Videos

So how do you go about optimizing YouTube videos? Here’s my short and sweet, 4 step strategy, with examples from some of the most popular SEO and social media experts.

Short and sweet, 4 step strategy to optimize your YouTube videos Click To Tweet

1. Include all of your keywords in your description.

The description for a YouTube video is somewhat like the meta description for a webpage or blog post in a search engine results page. It’s that 2 line blurb that should tell people what the content is about. In YouTube, people are going to see a list of videos when searching. The search results will show a truncated description.

Where YouTube is a little different, though, is that it’s possible for someone with a less popular video, but all of the keywords in the description, to outrank you.

See below. I searched for “tucson personal trainer” in YouTube to see what might come up. The fourth video in the list is completely relevant. His video also has more views than the others. However, his description doesn’t include the word “Tucson.”

optimize your youtube videos

2. Include your URL in your description

Always include the link back to your website in your description. It’s best do add it naturally, in a sentence, like “Find more information on my website here” or to just begin the description with the URL.

It surprises me when small business owners forget to do this step. Think through your marketing funnel. Where do you want people to go after watching your YouTube video? What do you want them to do? The answer to that question should be very obvious to the person watching your video or reading the description.

3. Find and use “video keywords”

Video keywords, according to Brian Dean of, are keywords that “have YouTube results on the first page of Google.” These tend to be highly placed, showing Google’s love for video content. That’s why this is one of the strategies you should use to optimize your YouTube videos is to do keyword research.

Per Brian, there are certain types of keywords for which Google will prioritize videos (over text content). These include how-to keywords, reviews, tutorials, fitness, and funny videos.

Brian’s post was published back in Sep 2016, and I’ve noticed that Google doesn’t always put YouTube videos at the top of a search results page. Consider the below search for “how to bake bread.”

In this case, the YouTube video is way at the bottom of the search results page. When I went to YouTube and searched for the same keyword phrase, no videos that matched that exact phrase pulled up at all. When I put the phrase in quotes, one of the top videos included the phrase.

It’s possible that that particular phrase is a potential goldmine for a video and might rank higher on Google if it is quality and gets hits.

4. Optimize Your Title

The reason I left this part last is that it should be kind of obvious. Optimize the title of your video based on your target keyword. At the same time, make the title interesting enough that people will click on it. Because as much as I wish this was just about keywords, it’s also about clicks and views. However, as pointed out in the image above, clicks and views aren’t everything.


If you’re scratching your head and thinking, “well that’s easy,” you’re right. It IS easy and that’s why it pains me to see people fail at this. The good news is that it’s easy to get back on track and to optimize your videos after the fact.

Need help? Skyla is a Tucson SEO content company with great hourly rates for optimization, including optimizing YouTube videos.