When you upload videos to YouTube, you have to add a title. In most cases, the title of the video will play an important role. It’s crucial to use your titles smartly because they can get you more video views.
When somebody searches for something on YouTube, the system runs a complicated algorithm in the background that is based on hundreds of ranking factors, which then lists the search results. The power of the ranking factors (signals) can be very different. There are things that can strongly affect the search results and then there are much less important factors. The video title is one of the important ranking factors.
When you open a video on YouTube there will be other videos displayed as related videos. The list of these videos is influenced by several different things, however, in most cases, the videos shown are from three main groups:
1. Other videos from the uploader
2. Personalized videos based on your YouTube browsing history, like videos from the vloggers you follow, most played music videos, etc...
3. Relevant videos on the same topic
From the viewpoint of the video title, the third group is the most important. However, we must note that the role of the title can be totally different based on the number of relevant videos and the popularity of the topic. For highly popular and mainstream topics where you have to compete against videos with millions of views and YouTubers with millions of subscribers, there is no guarantee that a good title will help you to get featured as a related video.
For example, if there is a challenge video with 20 related videos, how will YouTube's algorithm know which videos should be displayed as related? Nowadays, highly trained artificial intelligence (AI) are responsible for this and they take into account a lot of factors.
The power of these factors can be different – the popularity of the uploader (how many subscribers they have) and the title can be much more important than the tags or video description. The title, the description, and the tags of a video are useful to the system because they are textual content that can be easily processed and examined by the related video algorithm. So, they can help the AI to understand what your video is about. From the title, description and tags trio, the video title is the most important ranking factor.
Good video titles can drive more viewers to your videos
A good title can increase the click-through rate of your videos, thereby it can help you increase your video views. If the title is interesting, people are more likely to open your video when they see it in the search results or related videos.
We already know that a well-composed title can help to get more video views and reach new potential subscribers. In the next part of this guide, we will list some common practices and tricks that are used by the most successful YouTubers.
Usually, people do this to take advantage of other famous channel’s popularity. In this case, a video with the YouTuber's name in the title can appear in the search results when people search for the name of the YouTuber whose name was placed in the title.
Furthermore, the fans of the other YouTuber are more likely to click the video. It’s very important to mention that there can be different connections between the YouTuber and the video title. It's quite common for vloggers who know each other to make videos together and upload those videos to their own channels. In this situation, it's normal that the guest vlogger's name is referenced in the title. Another popular case is when somebody records a reaction video. If the video is a reaction to another YouTuber's video, people usually put that channel's name into the title to reference the subject of the reaction. This doesn't really require the two YouTubers to know each other personally. People do this without knowing the other Youtuber at all. In essence, it can be said that this technique can be very efficient. There are YouTube channels that make a lot of video views by only reacting to hyped YouTuber’s videos.
When a video goes viral on YouTube and a lot of people start searching for it, YouTubers will try to profit from its popularity by using the same video title with a little modification. These videos are usually reaction videos. This trick works very easily. Since the actual viral videos get huge amounts of traffic from the search, certain people will directly or indirectly click on the cloned title. While this technique can absolutely work in action, it is also morally questionable.
Clickbait vs. Non-clickbait
In general, clickbait titles can work in certain situations. However, you should be careful when you utilize clickbait titles because a lot of users doesn't like them.
Using popular keywords
You can always find trending topics and popular keywords that can be used to drive traffic to your videos from the search results. A lot of extremely popular video creators consciously build their videos around these topics and use the popular keywords in their video titles.
It is always a good idea to write informative titles that you would open too. Nowadays there are tons of different popular topics and video categories on YouTube. Therefore, there are no common formulas that work for all types of videos and audiences. It can be said that different video categories require different titles. The title of a haul video should follow a different pattern than the title of a gameplay video or daily vlog. Vlogger Academy lists the most popular videos sorted by topics, thus, it's a good idea to browse the titles of the top videos and collect some inspiration if you are not sure what titles you should use.
This is something that can differ based on the topic of your video. Writing a title for a product review that features an exact product should follow a different concept than the title of a daily vlog video. When the video is about an exact topic - like a computer game, product review or music video - it's subservient to give a title which is related to the subject and contains the important keywords (name of the game, product, etc...).
It’s very important that you try to think of yourself as a potential viewer and place words in your title that similar YouTuber videos to yours are using for their searches. Using popular keywords is typically useful for videos that are about an exact topic. These can be makeup videos, gameplay videos, tutorials, etc... To find the right keywords you can collect ideas from other YouTubers' videos and tags. If you utilize keywords properly, you will be able to reach new viewers.
Tip: Always synchronize your video title, description and tags.