You probably already know that click-through rate is an important YouTube ranking factor. If your video gets an above-average amount of clicks in the search results, YouTube’s going to give you a rankings bump. The question is, how you can get more clicks?
Use CTR Magnet Thumbnails
So, what are CTR magnet thumbnails? They’re thumbnails that are strategically designed to get more clicks from YouTube searchers. Use non-YouTube colors in your thumbnail. In other words, the main colors on YouTube's website are white, red, and black. So, if you use those same colors in your thumbnail, you’re going to blend in.
Instead, use colors that contrast with YouTube's color scheme like green, blue, purple, gray, and orange. Next, use big, bold text in your thumbnail. Thumbnails with text get more clicks than thumbnails without any text.
What’s In Description?
Write a lot of content for your video descriptions. From lots of testing I've found that long descriptions help videos rank better in YouTube because the longer descriptions help YouTube better understand what your video is all about. Make your descriptions between 100 and 200 words.
YouTube SEO is more than just ranking in the search results. In fact, you can get just as many views, if not more, by getting your video to appear as a suggested video. Suggested video is when your video shows up next to another video in the sidebar. So, if you can get your video to show up next to a really popular video, you'll steal some of their views. The best way to show up as a suggested video is to use the same tags that video uses. When YouTube sees that some of your tags match the tags from a popular video, they'll understand that your video is about the same topic. Which means they'll likely rank your video as a suggested video.
To see a video's tags, you need to look at the source code of the page. To do this with Google Chrome, just right-click on the page and click view page source. Then look at the keyword section of the page. The keywords that appear are the tags for that video. You can also use a tool like Tube Buddy or VidIQ which will show you a video's tags without needing to look through the source code.
Next, use a few of the tags that video uses on your video. Make sure to copy the tags exactly word for word. If your video is high-quality and closely related to the popular video, YouTube will start to rank you as a suggested video.