Is YouTube SEO Dead (Search vs Recommended) Which one get’s more views?

Since starting my YouTube channel in 2006, I’ve always been struggling to get my videos recommended by YouTube because my top traffic sources have always been YouTube and Google search.

Does that mean YouTube Search or YouTube SEO is dead?

In the video below, you’ll learn the pros and cons of creating videos with search-based titles versus creating compelling videos your audience really cares about that get recommended by YouTube.

How To Get 1000 Engaged YouTube Subscribers Quickly & Easily

Cons of search-based titles

Typically, the titles are boring and don’t grab the viewer’s attention. For example, I could have titled this video, how to get more recommended views from YouTube, which is somewhat boring compared to the title I used today, Is YouTube SEO Dead? which immediately grabs viewers’ attention. If you want to stand up from your competitors and get more views, create compelling video titles that grab viewers’ attention.

Another disadvantage of creating search-based titles is that you’re attracting subscribers but you’re not getting many views on your videos. Typically, search-based content is one and done. The viewer finds the information then moves on and doesn’t return to watch more of your videos. They subscribe because you gave them the information that they seek, but then they move on and don’t come back to watch more of your videos.

Search-based titles often get a low clickthrough rate and don’t get recommended by YouTube. The videos get discovered under search engines, but they don’t appear on the YouTube home screen or on the suggested videos that appear on the right side of the watch pages or the videos that come up next after the viewer has just watched a particular video.

Pros of creating search-based content

The pros of creating search-based titles is that they’re easy to research and easy to create. You simply type your main keyword into the YouTube search box, then create videos based upon the suggestions that YouTube gives you. If you target the long tail keyword phrases like how to train a German shepherd not to bite instead of how to train a dog not to bite, then it’ll be easy to rank for that particular long-tail keyword phrase.

Another benefit of a search-based strategy is that you’re creating evergreen content. You do the work once and reap the benefits month after month, year after year as long as the video ranks on the first page of YouTube search or Google. If the content appeals to a wider audience, it will also get recommended by YouTube. For example, this video initially attracted search traffic when it was first uploaded, but because the content appealed to a wider audience, it got recommended by YouTube. This resulted in a tremendous surge of traffic.

Hey, Herman, I’ve been struggling to grow my channel faster, how can I get YouTube to recommend my videos?

Did to know that 70% of all traffic from YouTube comes from recommended traffic?

These are videos that appear on the home screen at or on the YouTube app and also the videos that come up next from the videos that the viewers have just watched. Recommended traffic sources appear in YouTube analytics on the browse features, suggested videos, and channel pages. Your videos get recommended based upon a viewer’s browsing behavior, what they watched, what they didn’t watch, how long they watched, when they watched, et cetera.

Herman, how can I know what my audience likes and how do I make videos that they want to watch?

You have to know how to identify your target audience.

Here’s an action exercise to create your viewer persona breakdown….

  1. Make a list of your persona’s demographics, their age, gender, geographical location, income range, and relationship status. You can find this information under the audience tab in YouTube analytics. You’ll also find videos growing your audience, other channels your audience watches, other videos your audience watched, and when your viewers are on YouTube.
  2. List your persona’s psychographics. You can get this information by reading the comments under your videos and under your competitor’s videos, doing polls, asking questions, et cetera.
  3. List your viewers’ persona online behavior. Make a list of the types of media that they consume, the social media sites that they have, and the channels that they’ve subscribed to.
  4. Make a list of your persona’s offline behavior. This can be their buying behavior, their hobbies, and where they spend their time offline. A great way to get this information is to survey your audience. If you have an email list, survey your list. If you have a community tab, add a poll or ask a question. You can pin a question to the top of your comments or engage in conversations in the comments. If you have a Facebook group, add a poll or post questions in the group.

Is there any other type of research I can do to get more videos recommended by YouTube?

Absolutely. Make a list of the top 20 channels in your niche that you’re interested in. Click on the channels videos tab and then sort by the most popular videos. Watch the videos that attracted the most traffic in the past year, then do the same for the other channels. Pay particular attention to the videos that are suggested on the right side of the watch page of the video that you’re watching. These are related videos that are being recommended to you. Doing this exercise will give you a lot of ideas of future videos you can create for your channel.

What you want to ask yourself while you’re doing this exercise is, can I make something better or different than what already exists to stand out?

Instead of copying a competitor’s video, try to approach a topic from your own unique angle and make a better video. What you’re trying to do is look for similar patterns that appear across all the popular videos. Read the comments under these popular videos to see if there are any recurring questions you can make your videos about.

A question asked by a viewer in the comments may be the same question that thousands of people are asking. This is a great way to tap into the mind of your target audience and make videos that your audience cares about.

When you create videos that your audience cares about, it’s more likely that your videos will be recommended by YouTube. Other communities where your target audience might be hanging out online include Reddit, Facebook, Twitter, Medium, et cetera.

Observe the titles and thumbnails on popular videos that immediately grab your attention. When you watch a video, what motivates you to watch a video all the way through?

The main purpose of doing all this research is to attract new viewers and to keep viewers coming back to watch more of your content. When a large proportion of your viewers and subscribers return to watch more of your content, YouTube will surface more of your content to other viewers. This will result in rapid growth of YouTube channel, and you’ll no longer be relying on search-based content to get traffic to your channel.

What does YouTube say about getting your videos recommended on YouTube?
Watch this video how to get your videos recommended by YouTube

How To Get 1000 Engaged YouTube Subscribers Quickly & Easily

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