Make your YouTube channel pay off

Mar 06, 2020

Do you want to be on top of YouTube, but can't even get 100 views? Have you already done 10 videos, but the result is zero? Take it easy and remember one simple rule: There are no quick results on YouTube.

The specificity of YouTube requires a lot of dedicated work in advance. With or without investment, your channel will be developing for at least six months, and on average closer to a year. You need to add not 10 but 100 videos to see the dynamics of the views. Work on each video for at least 3-4 hours—or, even better, all day. Previews, optimization, analytics, negotiations, scripting: all of these affect whether you go up to the top of the YouTube charts or not. Let's figure out why you need it and how to do it.

Why bother?

As soon as a video hits the top YouTube results, you begin to receive organic video views. The longer it stays there, the more money you can save on having to promote your video.

For entrepreneurs, YouTube is an additional sales channel, the ability to build visual and confidential communication with the client. If you don't aim to monetize your videos, do everything possible to "close" the viewer to purchase.

Key YouTube video ranking factors

We all know that YouTube has ranking algorithms—indicators that control how a video gets to the top, on the main page, and in related videos.

All authors know about this algorithm, but no one understands how it works. That’s YouTube’s secret, and it changes regularly, too. Video creators have to make their own guesses about how the algorithm works based on their observations about how their own videos perform and where they land in YouTube search results.

Leading SEO specialist Brian Dean conducted his own analysis of YouTube’s algorithm. He explored 1.3 million videos to understand the relationship between the video and its delivery to YouTube. Of the factors he found that influence how videos are ranked, these are ones you can use to give your videos a boost:

  1. Length. Long-running videos are higher-listed than short ones. The average duration of a video on page 1 is 14 minutes and 50 seconds.
  2. Social media distribution. The fact that people share your video speaks to its value. The more reposts a video has, the higher it is in the SERP. Ask a question and encourage people to share it on their social media to drive this number up and get more people talking about your work.
  3. Subscribers generated. A video that inspires people to become subscribers is a sign of quality. Be sure to remind your viewers to subscribe to your channel in every video.
  4. Resolution. Video in HD quality is three times more likely to be at the top of the list than a video with standard resolution.

And these are ones that don’t matter:

  1. Tag and heading optimization. Targeted "keys" in the tags will help with sorting the content but will hardly affect delivery. Same with headings; the algorithm doesn’t reward you doing too much work here.
  2. Subscribers. New and small channels can get around big brands in the rankings here; the number of channel subscribers you have has a minimal effect on your overall rating.

To get your video to the top of the YouTube, you’ll need to put in time, effort, and attention. It’s always a good idea to test different formats and see which videos best hold your user's attention—remember, you’ve got a year to figure it out as you build up your channel. And compare the quality and content of your videos with your competitors’ videos.

Your task: Make it even better.

This is a post from a member of the Freelancers Union community. If you’re interested in sharing your expertise, your story, or some advice you think will help a fellow freelancer out, feel free to send us your blog post.

Megan Green

Megan has been the editor of a fashion magazine, and is also an educator, mom, and a baker. She loves working with brands and lifestyle products, and being outdoors.