Your video description is just as important as your video title. It is the text that appears with the video in your YouTube account, and the snippet of text that appears as the Meta description in the SERP. This is also where you can strategically add a backlink to your website.
YouTube first looks at your title to determine how to rank your video. It then looks at your description to see if it matches up to your title. Your video description should expand upon your title and provide people with a clear and detailed understanding of what your video is about. If your title matches up with your description, YouTube will rank your video accordingly.
YоuTubе аllоwѕ uр tо 5,000 сhаrасtеrѕ of text іn а vіdео dеѕсrірtіоn, so unlike the title, there’s much more room for keywords to help get your video found in searches. It is important to note however, that only the first 145 characters are actually displayed in search results.
The description will be truncated and the rest will be cut off and seen only by people who expand on the description. This is why it is important to make sure that your most important keyword phrases are close to the beginning of your description because the text that is visible on your video’s page (above the “Show More” button ) is given more weighting by the search engines than truncated text. This initial snippet of description text is also what will appear in the universal search results.
YouTube will pick up on keywords in the description to figure out how to rank you. It is therefore important that you include the most important keywords and terms that you would expect searchers to use in the first 20 words of your description because they’ll appear in bold.
How to Write a Good Video Description
Your description should be a detailed and keyword-rich narrative with complete sentences that will allow users to get a better understanding of your video before viewing it. Both Google and YouTube will be using the description to check that your video is relevant to the searches that are being made on either search engine.
It is what the user will see before viewing your video so write it for the user and not for the search engine. That way, you’ll improve the user experience as well as your video search rankings. In addition, include the same keywords used to optimize your title so search engines and people will see a correlation between the two.
Informational descriptions tend to be searched for more often and returned in universal search results (SERPs). If your video is educational or informative in nature, then try as much as possible to begin your description with the following text:
Learn how to…
What is or what are…
On most browsers (mobile included) you can see the first 2 or 3 lines of the video description. This presents an opportunity for you to include your website’s URL, your main social media channels – Facebook, Twitter and links to subscribe, playlists, and channel.
Includіng уоur wеb аddrеѕѕ аt оr nеаr thе bеgіnnіng оf уоur dеѕсrірtіоn wіll mаkе іt еаѕу fоr thе ѕеаrсh еngіnеѕ tо fіnd уоur URL, аnd wіll аlѕо gіvе уоur uѕеrѕ сlеаr dіrесtіоn оn whеrе thеу саn gо tо fіnd mоrе іnfоrmаtіоn without them having to expand the description. Make sure you include the http:// to make your link clickable.
The description should also include a summary of the video where viewers can receive more information, along with a link to a resource, like your website. Note that including links in the first 120 characters of your description is the best way to drive traffic to a non-YouTube site. Use several “related” terms that are highly relevant to your main keywords. Don’t keyword stuff, and make sure to write the content in a compelling manner that drives the user to take action.
What to include in your description
- If you are interested in finding your dream job, Subscribe – link to subscription):
- Your title should be repeated as the first paragraph of the description. This means that the most important keywords will be in the first paragraph.
- Add links to your social media channels.
- You must have links to other videos and your social channels that are related to the content of the video. Include links that provides more information about the topic. The more links you have, the more Google will trust you. Have up to 20 links in the description.
- What/who the video is about.
- The purpose of the video.
- What format was the video filmed in (eg. Super8, video, B&W or colour).
- The longer and more detailed the description, the better results you’ll get.
- What kind of category or genre (eg. animation–computer, advertisement, tutorial, stop motion, scratch, classical or visual effects animation, comedy, PSA, narrative, digital video effects, music video, sound design). Your video may fit into more than one of these categories.
Bear the following points in mind when optimizing your video description:
Your description should be descriptive, clear and specific.
In order to come up with a powerful and compelling description, your video should be original, unique and stand out from other videos in your target market. Use descriptive language to tell the story of your video in a way that will make it compelling to watch.
Use the same target keywords used in the title.
Be sure to include the most important keywords you used in the title to continue the engagement created by your title. Be creative in your wording by using variations so that you are not repeating the title word for word. However, make sure that the content of the description is accurate and relevant to the content of the video.
Give credit when appropriate.
If you use Creative Commons material or copyrighted material that you have obtained permission to use, be sure to include the attribution information in the the lower half of the description.
Transcribe your video and adding text to the description.
If your video is a tutorial or how-to, this would be a great way to describe exactly what is in the video. In addition, you can edit the caption that YouTube’s voice recognition software produces.
Categorize your video correctly.
Place your video into the correct, relevant category to increase the frequency of people finding and watching the video.
- Go to the My Videos page.
- Click the Edit Video Info button next to your video.
- Choose the radio button for your new category within the Video Category section.
- Click the Update Video Info button to save your video information.
Make sure that the tags only contain keywords that are in the title and description. If you add tags that are not in the title or description, it will be considered spamming. Be sure to look at your competitors’ tags to see what they are using so you can get inspiration for what tags you might be missing out.