In this detailed blog post, you’ll learn how to increase YouTube views organically and improve your channel traffic and growth.
YouTube is the second largest search engine standing next to Google and every minute 300 hours of videos are pumped to YouTube.
There is no doubt that YouTube is quite easy to optimize and get traffic compared to blogs/websites which take several months to a year to optimize.
That’s why even small start-ups started producing video content for lead generation.
Without further ado, let’s see how to increase YouTube views with white hat SEO techniques.
Table of Contents
1. Identify Focus Keyword
Focus keyword or target keyword is the very first step of your YouTube SEO. You should focus on the video content only after identifying the target keyword- search volume and competition.
Search volume and competition are a crucial element in the keyword research process.
If you pick the low search volume keyword you can’t increase YouTube views. Likewise, if you pick the high competition keyword you aren’t likely to get views due to high competition.
So, your target should find a sweet-pot of medium search volume with low competition keywords.
I use this plugin for finding the competition and search volume. Start with seed keywords then rinse and repeat the process until you find the desired keyword.
That’s it you have the golden keyword ready in a few minutes. Now you can start making a video for the target keyword.
2. Create High Quality Videos
Video content is the real king. Your video content just sells the products that you’re promoting. Just keep that in mind and start making a top-notch video with high quality.
If the content is not good then there is no use of optimizing other metadata information.
If the content is great you can easily increase YouTube views with very minimal effort.
I suggest having a video script ready before shooting. It eases the video-making process and you can deliver the content seamlessly well.
While making a video, you should put yourself in the viewer’s shoes and think about all the aspects of how to keep them engaged throughout the video.
If you are able to keep them watching your video, your audience watch-time increases and it’s a great ranking factor in the YouTube search algorithm.
Make sure that you said the target keyword at least twice in the video because the YouTube search engine can read through the closed caption and optimize it further for the keyword.
3. Optimize Thumbnail Images
YouTube thumbnail is the very first thing that catches viewers’ eyes in the YouTube search results.
Make sure that your YouTube video thumbnail stands out from the crowd to receive a click.
To increase YouTube views, you must have a killer YouTube thumbnail image.Here are some recommendations from YouTube creator academy for creating YouTube thumbnail.
You can also do thumbnail A/B test to find the best performing thumbnail.
I use online tool called Snappa for creating thumbnail images.
Here are the few tips to create a great YouTube thumbnail
- Strictly Avoid clickbait.
- Add Focus keyword in a big font in the thumbnail image
- Use PNG format since the YouTube search engine can easily read text from PNG
- Use high-resolution thumbnail 1280*720 px
- Use your picture if you want to create a brand for your channel
- In the playlist, follow the same pattern of thumbnail template
- Use Green, Yellow, and Orange color in the thumbnail since YouTube is full of red and white.
- Put the keyword in the thumbnail filename.
4. Write Catchy YouTube Video Title
YouTube video title is an important SEO element in the YouTube algorithm. Let’s see how to increase YouTube views with video titles.
YouTube video title stands next to the video thumbnail to boost video CTR %.
So, here is the action list to increase the CTR which in turn increases the views.
- Put your focus keyword at the beginning of the title
- Include number if possible
- Include year such as 2020 to show the video relevancy
- Use “How to” + keywords to rank your video on the google search results
- Limit the video title to 70 characters for better readability and make it visible in all devices
- Use Emojis
- Avoid clickbait
5. Write Powerful Video Description
YouTube description should summarize your video content. It should be easily readable by the search engine as well as viewers.
So you need to optimize it for both.
The first 150 characters are most important because the text is visible as a snippet in the search results. So, you must include your focus keyword in the first 150 characters.
And include your focus keyword once in every 250 characters.
YouTube video description textbox allows 5000 characters. I would suggest writing a description of at least 800-1000 characters.
The description is the best place where you can sprinkle the relative keywords or LSI to increase YouTube views.
Also, in the description, you can add popular playlists links and related video links. Ask your viewers to check out that at the end of the video which in turn increases YouTube views.
When you add a playlist in the description you are likely to get more views than adding videos in the description.
6. Optimize YouTube Tags
YouTube tags give context about your video to the YouTube search engine. YouTube allows tags up to 500 characters.
You must learn how to optimize YouTube tags to increase YouTube views.
You can use TubeBuddy for tag suggestions while uploading videos.It recommend the user searched keywords in the special Tag suggestion box while uploading video.
7. Display YouTube Cards
YouTube cards are the interactive elements that pop out from the top right corner while the video is playing. Users can also click on the “i” icon at the top right to see the list of cards associated with the video.
You can add up to 5 cards/videos. You can add videos, playlist, websites as cards.
Get the list of old videos that are performing well to date. Go to that videos, add your recent videos as YouTube cards on that to increase YouTube views.
Rinse and repeat the same process when you’re publishing a new video.
8. Increase Engagement With End Screen
YouTube end screen is the visual element that can be added at 20 seconds before the video ends.
Users can click and watch the end screen elements. It’s another great way to keep them engaged on your channel for a longer time.
Use the most recommended 2 videos + 1 subscription or 1 Video + 1 subscription end screen template button. Also, you can bulk update your end screen template to improve productivity.
To add an end screen your video should be at least 25 seconds long.
You can add videos, subscribe button, and playlist as end screen. To increase YouTube views with the end screen, follow the same strategy as mentioned in the YouTube cards.
9. Create Playlists
YouTube playlist is one of my secret weapons to increase YouTube views but it’s still the most underrated weapon by many YouTubers.
You don’t necessarily create playlists only from sequential videos. Popular videos can be grouped as a playlist. Most watched videos can also be grouped as a playlist. Related videos can also be grouped as a playlist.
When your viewers watched the first video on your playlist and liked it then he’s not gonna stop at it. He continues to watch your other videos that autoplay one after another only if you create a playlist.
Here’s a blog post on how to create and optimize the YouTube playlist.
So, by doing this you’re increasing the YouTube views as well as audience retention rates & watch-time.
10. Add Closed Caption
By adding custom closed caption, you’re letting the search engine read the video content. YouTube search engines can easily index more keywords from the CC or your transcript and list your videos for those keywords.
So, your video impression will be increased, and subtly increase YouTube views.
11. Share Videos On Forums
If your video answers a specific question from the niche forums then there is a good chance to increase YouTube views and audience retention rates.
Because people discussed in forums are desperately looking for a solution. If you feel that your video contains a solution to their problem then go ahead and post your videos on the forum.
When they found it useful, you gonna be a superstar in the discussion thread and you easily increase YouTube views and gain some subscribers.
All you need to do is to spend a little more time to organically promote your existing videos on niche forums like Quora, Reddit, and WarriorForum.
If only a portion of your video answers a forum question then you should embed it by adjusting the start time and end time in the embed code rather than embedding the full video.
12. Optimize Existing Videos
The quickest way to increase YouTube views is by optimizing the existing videos. It takes less time compared to creating and uploading videos from scratch.
Get the list of underperforming videos. Look at the video analytics and check what optimization you can do to increase the video views.
Go to individual video analytics tab.
If the video impression is low add keyword-rich descriptions and tags.
If the CTR is low try changing the thumbnail and title.
If the video had a bad watch time look at the audience retention time to find out at the exact point where the maximum drop happened.
Go back and watch your video at the dropping point and analyze why they’re leaving and think about how to fix it.
Here are the common reasons for bad watch-time
- Fail to convey the video purpose
- Talking too fast or slow
- Poor video/audio quality.
- Fail to keep them engaged
- Not convinced with your summary
- Poor content delivery
- Bad call to action
13. Rank Videos On Google Search
By ranking your videos on the Google search you’re unlocking the extra potential to tap more views.
How do you rank videos on Google search?
Normally Google tends to list videos only for video keywords such as how to, tutorials or any keyword need video demonstration. For e.g “ How to make a kite”, “how to tie a tie” etc.
When you identify the focus keyword, search the focus keyword on Google, and make sure that at least 1 video is listed in the search results. When you get traffic from Google, you can drastically increase YouTube views.
If not then that keyword is not a video keyword and quite hard to rank it on Google.
14. Share Videos On Social Media
After you hit the publish button, you should start doing self-promotion for your videos by embedding it on your blog/website. Send personalized emails to your list. Ask them to bookmark your videos to watch later if they are super busy.
Share it across your social media profiles. By doing this you’re consistently creating a backlink for your channel which is an important YouTube ranking factor and other way to increase YouTube views.
Want To Take Your Channel To Next Level?
If you work hard it takes years to taste the success. If you work smart you can reduce it by half.
I recommend the TubeBuddy for all YouTubers who want more traffic, subscribers and views. It improves your productivity, organically optimize your videos, help you with the keyword research, do A/B test and much more.
That’s it for this blog post. I hope you learned how to increase YouTube views and enjoyed reading this article.
If you have any other ideas to increase YouTube views and traffic please feel free to share it in the comment sections.
Also, please do share it with your friends who struggle to get traffic and views and help them succeed.