How to Spot Bad YouTube Views

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Not all paid views are created equal, but how can you tell which ones are bad quality? This question has been raised consistently, so we decided to break it down. There are many different factors that play into the value of paid views, and it is important you understand them all. Without the proper knowledge, buying views can be a major headache and a waste of money. Don’t get burned by bad views, learn the ropes first!

Key factors to buying views

There are five main things to look for when judging the quality of paid views: playback location, relevance over time, retention, traffic sources, and engagement. Playback location is simple; this specifies where the views are coming from. Generally, you want views from all around the world, not just one country that isn’t even close to you. Relevance over time pertains to how the views trickle in over time. It appears much more natural if a large amount of views come in at first, and then continue to come in at a slower rate as time goes on.

Retention is very important to look at, as it can have a great impact on the overall value of your views. The retention rate is the average percentage length of the video that the viewer watched before closing the video. For example, if you have a 5-minute video and a viewer watches 3 minutes of that video, you’d have a 60% retention rate. Traffic sources determine how the user found the video and what device they’re watching it on. This will tell you if people are watching on a phone, tablet, or PC, as well as if they found the video organically or through a link.

Engagement is another crucial part of buying views, but in a different way from the rest of these factors. All the likes, dislikes, comments, and shares on your video also greatly impact the value of your views. The reason for this is that a video with 50,000 views loses the majority of its legitimacy if it has no other metrics (likes, comments, etc.) to back up those views. Your view provider usually won’t provide these with a standard views package, but most of them offer these services separately.

Understanding analytics

In order to know for sure whether you’re getting high quality views, you need to look at the YouTube analytics page. This is going to tell you all of the information we just went over, so that you can decide if you want to stick with your current view provider. YouTube analytics are tremendously important not just for buying views, but for all facets of advertising your YouTube content. With just a few clicks, you can pull up extremely detailed information about your videos and the people who are watching them.

Keep an eye out for low retention rates, and work on increasing them through higher quality views or by uploading more attention holding content. When buying views, also remember to make sure they aren’t 99% mobile devices from a foreign country. Remember, you want your views to be circulating from across the globe. If your view provider isn’t able to do this for you, start looking elsewhere.

Engagement can be a tricky thing to measure if you’ve never really thought about it. Although, it is easy enough to find a popular video in your niche and use their numbers as a starting point. You’ll notice that the ratio of likes to views is never going to be a simple 1:1 ratio. Having a ratio that is too high or too low will draw red flags, and people will start to question the legitimacy of your YouTube following. This is a very important part of analytics and buying views, but it’s also one of the easiest factors to manage.

Let’s take a look at a re-upload of the popular Damn Daniel video that began circulating a few weeks ago. You can see this video has over 10 million views – and right now, it has 115K likes, 9K dislikes, and almost 18K comments. Those are perfect metrics for a viral video, and they appear completely legitimate to the naked eye. Is it possible that the user bought a small or even large portion of these views, comments, likes, and dislikes? Of course, but there’s not really any way you could tell just by looking at it.

One last thing to note is the consequences of just ignoring the fact you’re buying low quality views. If you repeatedly buy low-quality views, YouTube may take action against your account. They have very specific rules about using paid services to incentivize traffic. So long as you follow these guidelines and stick to verified, reputable providers – you shouldn’t have any issues with YouTube taking action against your account.

Quick recap

In a nutshell, high quality views are going to come from multiple countries, as well as multiple sources. They’re going to have good retention rates, and it’s up to you to make sure they have an appropriate amount of comments and likes. A video with good-quality views mimics a typical human interaction with random unexplainable variables. Because of this, you just need to do a small amount of manual work to make it all worthwhile.

Date: April 2, 2016 / Categories: Analytics, Explainer, Tips, YouTube, / Author: Rich Drees


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