4 Ways To Optimize Your Videos Before Uploading to YouTube
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Content creation is a major priority for a YouTube publisher. However, it's just the first step in a long string of duties that go into creating a well-curated channel.

Competition is fierce, and the platform receives hundreds of hours of fresh content every minute.

If you're posting on YouTube regularly, it's important to come up with an optimization strategy to take full advantage of YouTube's functionalities and avoid common mistakes. Here are a few steps that you can take before you upload new content to ensure that every video is ideally optimized as soon as it hits the platform.

1. Perfect the Content Itself

This may sound obvious. After all, you're the professional in your field. Of course, you'll know what to include in your content.

Nevertheless, it's important to consider your content in the context of optimization, as well. This is a critical first step, as you want to have this in mind as you're scripting, recording, and editing. 

There are several aspects of your content that can impact how well your viewers receive your videos. For example, the length of your video can make a difference. In 2020, the average ideal social media video length was 2 minutes

However, for a video-focused platform such as YouTube, the numbers were a bit different. In the case of Google's visual platform, videos should be either under three minutes or over ten minutes. Along with knowing these basic platform parameters, it's wise to figure out the length that resonates the most with your audience.

In the same vein, you want to conduct thorough research on each topic and ensure that you're staying informative and engaging throughout each video. That way your viewers will stay on your videos longer, and you won't have them bouncing to other channels as often.

2. Make Sure You're in the Right Format

As technology has continued to increase in complexity, companies have responded by doing everything in their power to make their products user-friendly. One way that YouTube is doing so is by offering algorithmic re-configuration for uploaded videos. This service re-configures a video if it isn't uploaded in a format that adheres to YouTube's formatting guidelines.

This is a great perk that can make sure YouTube is able to publish your video. But if you're concerned about achieving a specific level of quality, it can also throw things off.

The re-configuration perk is an automated process. This has the potential to result in a video that, while publishable, no longer adheres to the preferences that you want to have.

One way to avoid this issue is by using Dolby.io's Transcode API. The third-party tool is a great way to convert a video into a YouTube-friendly format without sacrificing quality along the way.

3. Take Time for the SEO Bells and Whistles

Once you've put all of the hard work into creating and editing your video, it's tempting to do whatever it takes to publish it as quickly as possible. This can make it easy to skim over things like video titles, file names, and thumbnails.

However, those are critical steps if you want to optimize your video for YouTube search. Give each uploaded clip all of the proper SEO attributes. That ensures that your intended audience can find your videos when they search for related content.

Start this process by filling out basic video elements with thorough, informative, keyword-focused content. This includes your:

  • Video title;

  • File name;

  • Description;

  • Thumbnail;

  • Location;

  • Video category;

  • Tags.

Filling out all of this information in a thoughtful manner will put your video is in the best position to show up in applicable search results. 

This attention to SEO may feel like a bother. When done right, though, the upfront effort will continue to pay dividends far into the future.

4. Clean Up and Organize Everything

At this point, you've made sure that YouTube is happy with your video format and that its search engine can find your videos. You've also considered how your viewers will benefit from the content itself.

As a final optimization step, take some time to make your video as user-friendly as possible. You can do this in a few different ways:

  • Clean up the auto-generated YouTube captions to accurately reflect the spoken words.

  • Create playlists and use cards as calls to action to point to your related content.

  • For longer videos, consider adding in chapters to help viewers find the part of the video that they are looking for.

Little details such as these can set the stage for a high-performing video. It shows that you're invested in helping your viewers find what they need without getting frustrated in the process.

Creating content for YouTube can feel like a lot of work. Even so, the last thing that you want to do is squander that initial effort by failing to put in the work to make it thrive on the platform itself.

So, consider the recommendations above and then come up with your own optimization checklist. That way you can run over a quick set of steps to ensure that each and every video you create is able to shine once it goes live.

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