The YouTube SEO Optimization Checklist 2021 - Here's how!

When it comes to SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION, many webmasters think first and foremost of Google and focus on improving the content on their own website. But if you want to be findable on the Internet, you also have to deal with YouTube SEO.

The targeted optimization of visibility on YouTube is very important - after all, it is the second largest search engine in the world after Google. In addition, the most relevant videos for a search query are often also played out in Google search, so that a combined effect can occur here.

However, you need to know that YOUTUBE SEO works differently than Google SEO. A YouTube video cannot be optimized continuously, as is the case with your own website. Instead, there are a number of other factors that determine success or failure. I have put together a checklist for you.

Table of contents

Youtube SEO Ranking Factors 2022

The RANKING FACTORS for YouTube videos can basically be divided into two groups: Content Factors and Engagement Factors. While you can influence the content factors yourself, it's a bit more difficult with the engagement factors:


The most important content factors are:

In fact, YouTube is getting better at analyzing the spoken text in your video and understanding the content based on that. You can help YouTube do this by uploading subtitles.

In any case, you need to make the most of all the content areas that YouTube offers you. For targeted YouTube SEO, you should make it clear to the user and the algorithm what the video is about.


The key engagement factors are:

Unlike the content factors, you can't simply customize the engagement factors to your liking. Instead, it's important that you promote the engagement factors through good content.

The golden YouTube SEO rule for you should be: "Produce good videos for content that users are looking for on the platform". You won't get anything out of it if your title promises a lot and the video can't fulfill these expectations in the end. Conversely, it is also of no use to you if your video is great, but does not have a meaningful title.

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The 3 phases of Youtube SEO optimization

I will now show you which 3 phases you should and will go through when creating videos that will achieve a high reach on YouTube. In each phase you need to work through a small checklist.

Phase 1: Keyword research & production

First of all, you need to think about what kind of video you want to produce and who should find this video in the first place. Similar to search engine optimization for Google, you need to research keywords for this.

Important! Search behavior on Google is somewhat different than on YouTube. Common keyword tools for Google are still suitable to get a first impression. But you should also look directly on YouTube, which Auto Suggestions are suggested to you in the search window. In addition, there are now various programs that can explicitly handle YouTube keyword research.

After you have researched the essential keywords, you now have to make sure that someone searching for them will find the optimal solution in your video. Be sure to meet the user right at the beginning and make it clear to him that he is in the right place.

When producing the video, you also need to directly consider promoting engagement. For example, encourage your viewers to ask questions in the comments. The "begging" for subscriptions and likes is also something you see a lot. It's somewhat questionable whether this method is really successful, as it could also annoy viewers. At the end of the video, however, there is nothing to say against it.

Tip: At the end of the video you should allow a few seconds for an "outro". This can simply be a black background that fades in for a while. Here you can, for example, link other videos and thus improve the overall playback time of your channel.

Your to-do's at a glance:

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Phase 2: Upload video & wait 14 days

First of all, you need to think about what kind of video you want to produce and who should find this video in the first place. Similar to search engine optimization for Google, you need to research keywords for this.

Important! Search behavior on Google is somewhat different than on YouTube. Common keyword tools for Google are still suitable to get a first impression. But you should also look directly on YouTube, which Auto Suggestions are suggested to you in the search window. In addition, there are now various programs that can explicitly handle YouTube keyword research.

After you have researched the essential keywords, you now have to make sure that someone searching for them will find the optimal solution in your video. Be sure to meet the user right at the beginning and make it clear to him that he is in the right place.

When producing the video, you also need to directly consider promoting engagement. For example, encourage your viewers to ask questions in the comments. The "begging" for subscriptions and likes is also something you see a lot. It's somewhat questionable whether this method is really successful, as it could also annoy viewers. At the end of the video, however, there is nothing to say against it.

Tip: At the end of the video you should allow a few seconds for an "outro". This can simply be a black background that fades in for a while. Here you can, for example, link other videos and thus improve the overall playback time of your channel.

Phase 3: Keeping an eye on your video

Of course, it is always possible to customize your content. However, it has been shown that this does not have a big impact on the ranking after the video is published. Instead, in phase 3, you should just keep an eye on your videos and make sure to reply to comments and increase your watch time.

Note: You may notice afterwards that you made a mistake in the video. Then you can also integrate comments in the video to correct them. Alternatively, you can also use the comment column for this.

Your to-do's at a glance:

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