YouTube Traffic Generation

If creating videos is one of your favorite ways of making money online, you need to learn how to optimize your YouTube channel properly to make sure you aren’t wasting your time posting videos that no one will ever see.

What does YouTube channel optimization entail? How can you go about applying the necessary optimizations to your YouTube channel?


Many channels focus on creating funny cat videos or coming up with a creative name and things like that. But to really be successful, you’ll need to put in more of an effort with your optimization to achieve the biggest reach. And the best thing to know is that once you complete all of this work up front, you’ll sit back and begin to achieve consistent channel growth over time.

YouTube is an exciting platform because it actually gets more than 1 billion users visiting each month. The potential to grow a large audience is huge and every video that you upload gives you an opportunity to reach more and more people.

I also teach YouTube as a way to grow your affiliate marketing revenues in my Affiliate Rescue course.

So, we should spend time going over the best strategies to use to improve your channel and have your YouTube channel optimized for SEO.

10 YouTube Channel Optimization Strategies to Live by

  • Add keywords to descriptions and titles
  • Upload a transcript into the description field
  • Mention the main keyword in your video
  • Add Key Moments via hyperlinked citations
  • Impactful thumbnails creation
  • Add hashtags and related tags to videos
  • Use cards for cross promotion
  • Add calls to action to the end of videos
  • Create playlists for organizational purposes
  • Add closed captions with complete accuracy

Add Keywords to Descriptions and Titles

The title of your videos is of the utmost importance when it comes to Google searches. And as we all know; the search engines specifically care about keywords. Cute and funny video names are awesome, but they aren’t necessarily the greatest choices.

In your title, you should add keywords if your goal is to rank on Google. Produce an amazingly high-quality video, but if the title doesn’t have keywords in it, you may never get the maximum amount of views that you deserve. As long as you optimize the title of your video with keywords, and use ones that fit naturally, your viewers will know what it’s about and you’ll still get SEO benefits.

For individually produced videos, it’s best to chase after long tail keywords that are specific to the video itself. As an example, going after the long tail phrase “digital marketing for small businesses” is more targeted and narrowed down as opposed to optimizing your video for the keyword phrase “digital marketing.”

Adding descriptions to your videos is critical. Never forget to add keywords as well and make sure your description is about 250 words long. This is all necessary for YouTube SCO because people use the YouTube search engine the same way that they would search on Google, except they’re looking specifically for video content.

Also, by optimizing your descriptions will have a better chance at showing up in the suggested video sidebar, which can deliver a massive amount of views to your YouTube channel. If you had a transcript to your video, you should make it a part of the description as well. You should add other things to your description including links to your website, other YouTube channels, and anything else you might want to bring more traffic to.

Always remember: add your targeted keyword to the description, transcript, and title of your video.

Upload a Transcript into the Description Field

And staying on the topic of transcripts, it’s an absolute must to add one to your description field one possible. According to information shared by Google, using transcripts is an easy way to create captions. And if you have a keyword optimized transcript about your topic, it also helps to improve your overall YouTube SEO.

Enter the transcript into your description field manually, or if you prefer, use the steps Google provides to have a transcript file created. After the file is created, use the instructions to learn how to upload them to your video.

Mention the Main Keyword in Your Video

The keyword you target should be included in your tags, the description, and the title as well as your transcript. To get it in your transcript, just mention it in your video and it will become a part of the transcript as well.

Add Key Moments Via Hyperlinked Citations

According to experts on YouTube SEO, using the Key Moments feature is specifically helpful to those searching for content that they’d like to quickly discover within your video. These key moments are based on timestamps added to the description of the video.

As an example, if you decide to discuss a topic with 5 key points, you should add a timestamp at each key point and then share them in the description of your video. So, if you’re talking about microphones at the 2:32 second mark, the Key Moments feature can often highlight this for your viewers so they can jump directly to the section about microphones.

Impactful Thumbnails Creation

It’s definitely important to have possible viewers reading your descriptions and titles, but one of the most impactful things is creating vivacious thumbnails. Creating custom thumbnails is definitely the best way to go. YouTube will provide a couple of suggestions, but pulling a screenshot from a video and creating one on your own they upload as a thumbnail isn’t very difficult and it’s more than worth it.

Don Julio Ultima Reserva Tequila
This is an example of a very popular thumbnail on one of our own channels, Tequila Tales.

Even more important, the thumbnail and title of your video should mesh together to tell a vivid story.

Add Hashtags and Related Tags to Videos

It’s also incredibly important to add hashtags to your descriptions. Think about YouTube content that you’ve seen before. They usually have hashtags because this is a great strategy to find viewers for your channel.

You too hashtags are very similar to hashtags on any other social media platform like Facebook and twitter. Users can click on the hashtag and discover other videos using the same one.

Remember to put hashtags in your description and add them to the tag box as well as you upload your video. Consider different variations of your keyword with less competition to stand above the crowd even more.

Use Cards for Cross Promotion

Cross promote your videos using cards. YouTube allows you to add five different cards in the card deck to all of your videos. This will promote other videos or a YouTube playlist. It is a great strategy because it helps to entice viewers to watch more of your content and other videos on YouTube.

Add Calls to Action to the End of Videos

At the end of your videos on the end screen, you can add information to promote other things like your website, different playlists, other videos, merchandise, or anything else. This is valuable real estate and it makes a great place for a call to action.

Create Playlists for Organizational Purposes

Organizing your content with playlists is a good idea as long as you keep your content under specific themes that match. This helps provide users with an easy and pleasant experience and it makes them want to watch more of your content because it’s all discovered in a single location.

Even more, linking to other relevant videos on a single playlist will provide more SEO power and provide a clean look for your channel. YouTube can rearrange their playlists to create a more organized channel and even rank their videos by order of importance.

Add Closed Captions with Complete Accuracy

Adding accurate captions to your videos will make it easier to rank higher in the search engines as well. Why? Search engines actually crawl the caption text, so it’s a great way to gain additional exposure. You can use a professional video transcriptionist service to get easy close captions created on your behalf.

Other benefits of adding closed captions to your videos on YouTube include:

  • Additional engagement from users – closed caption videos get 4% more views than videos without them
  • Greater accessibility to your videos – people that are hard of hearing or deaf can I watch your video content and understand what you’re saying
  • Extra credibility – adding closed captions adds more credibility because it proves that your content isn’t spam

Testing out YouTube Optimization Tactics

I would never tell you how to promote videos on YouTube without testing out the tactics before sharing them with you. I tested out a number of these tactics and I can tell you the test went very well after I gave my YouTube channel a facelift.

After 90 days of channel optimization, I experienced incredible results.

My channel had more unique views and views, but the click through rate and impressions skyrocketed to the moon.

YouTube considers an impression whenever they show your video thumbnail to another viewer. They only count impressions when the viewer sees 50% of your thumbnail on-screen.

As far as click through rate goes, and YouTube Watch Time, when you improve these numbers you will experience additional rewards from YouTube.

How to Begin

These optimization tactics and techniques are fairly simple but can really help improve your video viewership on YouTube. Using these tactics will certainly deliver more traffic, and you’ll eventually end up with a greater number of YouTube subscribers.

This isn’t a set it and forget it strategy though. You have to remain consistent and keep up with a regular posting schedule to continue to improve your channel overall. And whenever you add new videos, make sure they are totally optimized using the tricks and tactics shared with you today.