I once said: “Why waste time on video SEO, while you can rank a website” It just didn’t make sense to me , Yet here I am… Ranking videos on a daily base. But back then… Things where different.
…Youtube had plenty of stars with a high budget and I thought that I must be stupid to compete with them… Hell I didn’t even had a high quality camera.
There was no way for me to compete… Or well, so I thought!
So there I was focussing on “just” SEO trying to rank free blogspot websites, and wasting my time.
You see, I had no budget for fancy hosting and free hosting wouldn’t cut it. This meant all my work would be for nothing… It made sense… People would visit my websites, but why would they buy something from a spammy looking website?
At this point I started to dislike SEO and eventually I quit — Why would I waste more time on something that wouldn’t benefit me right? So I got into CPA (Cost per action).
Here I started to learn how cruel and miserable the internet marketing world actually is. People were using blackhat methods just to bank, which didn’t make sense to me as It couldn’t be long term… But still… It made money.
This is where I learned how profitable youtube SEO actually could be… See it is not about competing with youtube stars… It is about reaching people, and in most cases even about building a brand.
The next thing I did was google the subject, and bother every “SEO Specialist” I knew back then — So I could learn what I could.
While I thought I had all the information necessary to dominate youtube and be the next Bill Gates, I decided to experiment.
The 5 most important ranking factors!
The goal of my experiment was to utilize the most important ranking factors in different ways, and with different I mean both blackhat and whitehat.
This is where most people struggle you see… A lot of people buy a lot of HQ views from a seoclerk vendor of some sorts and hope for the best… But actually they have no idea of what they’re doing.
They throw a lot of sticks at a wall with hope that something sticks. The thing is that this won’t work for every video… And when it stops working, they’re back at start.
Knowing the ranking factors however will help you to rank, and if you utilize those ranking factors in the right way… You’ll have a repeatable process.
1. High retention views — View time.
Views do help you rank, but it isn’t that easy. See, everyone can get 1000 views even for free… There are plenty of “youtube bots” out there, and it’ll take me only a few minutes to get 1000 views.
However 1000 low retention views won’t do anything good especially if they’re all from your IP.
The point is that youtube actually cares about the time people spend on your video, and see how long they watch it.
If someone watches your video till the end, it’ll obviously mean they liked it… And youtube will reward your for this. But if people check your video and leave almost instantly… Youtube will think your content might not be that HQ and won’t reward you.
Brian Dean even said:
Which makes sense… But is not entirely true, or well not since there are plenty of services selling HQ retention views, comments and likes… Everything to rank your video.
If it is worth all the money is for you to decide!
2. Comments on your video.
This is one of my favorites as I’ve seen the power of comments, and I absolutely loved it!
Youtube loves them too as they see it as engagement, and they’ll reward your video big time.
Now, the last thing you should do — Is make a bunch of accounts and spam your video with comments. Youtube will see you used the same IP, and yes when you use proxies it is possible… But still not recommended.
Why it is not recommended you may ask? Well, when you’re promoting your video… you should also care about your brand and your channel. When you spam your video with a bunch of fake accounts, viewers will notice.
When viewers see a bunch of fake accounts they’ll most of the time dislike and leave. — Eventually people will start commenting theirselves and absolutely wreck your channel.
What you should do however, is ask your viewers to comment… “Call to action”. If you ask your viewers to comment, like and subscribe… They actually might!
Other viewers will see those comments, and they might even comment theirselves or participate in a conversation in your comment section — This is good for you as youtube will see this as engagement… and yes, they’ll reward your video.
This is one that makes a lot of sense but I must admit, I ranked videos without having a lot of people subscribing after… Still it is a huge ranking factor, especially for the more competitive keywords.
The reason that it is a huge ranking factor is simple, It’ll tell youtube that they loved your content and they do want to see more of you.
Youtube WILL notice this, and will boost your rankings.
But… subscribers have multiple ways of usage! Not only will it help rank your video, It’ll also benefit you in the long run.
Now you’re probaly wondering how it is going to benefit you in the long run? Well fairly simple… Imagine having 100 subscribers and you’re posting a new video… This would mean you have a potential of 100 viewers who might share and like your video, which will get you more views and will help you rank.
This is also one of the reasons why you SHOULDN’T buy subscribers. A lot of people see these youtube stars with millions of subscribers and want the same thing… so they think when they buy for example 1000 subscribers, they’ll get going and eventually be there in no time.
Here is the thing right… If you have 1000 subscribers but no engagement… most of the time they’ll prove to be worthless.
How can you get subscribers?
Post quality content and ask people to subscribe. Did you ever watched Logan paul, or hell even Neil Patel? They all ask you to subscribe, and a lot of people actually DO subscribe.
4. Shares & embeds!
Shares are also very important just as embeds are… even though embeds are considered as a share I’ll call them embeds as It is easier to explain.
They’re important because It’ll tell google people are linking your video’s so much they’re actually recommending the video to others… So youtube will eventually do the same.
How do you embed videos you may wonder? Well to embed videos we need a code, this code contains an Iframe with your video in it.
In order to get this code you need to go to the video you’d like to embed… Underneath the video you’ll see the thumbs up and thumbs down buttons, and next to those buttons you’ll see the share button… Click it.
When you click the share button a bunch of options will appear, but what you’re looking for is the coding tag: <>.
Now you’re almost done, all you need to do now… Is copy the code that appears and place it as an html code on the website you plan to share it on.
Copy this code, or well the code that appears on YOUR screen — and paste it as code on your website.
When everything is done correctly, you now succesfully placed your video on that website.
Now your video WILL rank when people do this, but not only that! Appearing on multiple sites and social media will increase your views, comments, likes and even subscribers… Which will then share… And well the loop keeps going (hopefully!).
5. Thumbs up!
This is one of the most self explanatory ranking factors I’ve ever seen, but It is also one of the most abused one… See, people buy a lot of likes and not only for their videos!
It used to be a trend, and I believe people still do this, to comment on niche related videos with spammy CPA links — And they would upvote their comment so their comment would be on top, visible for thousands of people.
Youtube noticed this, and now it has gotten very hard to comment with a lot of different spammy words. You’d see these comments especially in black hat niches.
But not only would they use this with youtube comments… No, people would actually buy theirselves tons of likes!
I myself, I am not a great fan of this… Because a lot of likes without any comments or subscribers doesn’t make sense. Viewers, and yes youtube will notice.
Get your likes naturally! It might take more time… But then It’ll be long term! Any business, any starting youtube channel takes time to build. It would help though if you had a big audience already, as you could promote your video to them.
The best formula?
See the problem is, people are always looking for easy wins. They simply refuse to put in effort, and when shit is not working… they blame the method.
Yet it is not the method to blame, but the person trying to rank is. You can’t expect to win without effort.
There are plenty of people promoting magic button methods and softwares, but believe me they don’t work…
…Or well they actually do!
Don’t get me wrong, you won’t benefit from them — But they often do what they promise, they help you rank… But, they don’t help you rank for keywords that matter.
Sounds ironic, doesn’t it? “Keywords that matter” — Every keyword matters right? I know… I believed the same crap myself.
The truth is… not every keyword matters. If your keyword has 0 people searching for it, then it won’t do you any good.
So, no… There realy is no magic button to push and rank.
The only way to actually rank is to work your ass off. Make sure your content is high quality, this is often the best way to gain the signals you need… But the best way doesn’t mean it is the only way!
Yes, there are blackhat ways of buying comments, and buying views… They do actually work — Yet I don’t recommend to do that for any whitehat niche.
Especially if what you’re doing is long term.
Youtube is an awesome way of getting traffic, but you need to put in the work, the hours and hours of work!
Try to understand the process, is something not working try something else. Try different methods, and see what works for you… Create something that you can replicate easily.
If you have something that you can replicate, you’ll always have something to get back to — The best way to rank however, is building quality content on a consistent basis.