YouTube Algorithm: What the Algo is and How it Works

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The first step to increasing your YouTube video views is to understand the platform’s algorithm. 

Over 70 percent of the time spent on YouTube is consumed by watching what the platform’s algorithm recommends. This is according to YouTube’s CPO Neal Mohan. He also added that the algorithm is advantageous when it comes to finding out what people want. According to him, a person’s average mobile viewing session lasts 60 minutes. 

YouTube Algorithm: What it is and How it Works

The algorithm of YouTube guides viewers’ behavior. On top of that, it also has a significant impact on content creators. 

Several factors impact how YouTube’s algorithm reads a creator’s content. The topic of your video, its length, and the time when you published it play a significant role in ranking your video. The keywords you used in your title and description, as well as your call to actions, can also affect not just your videos, but also your overall YouTube marketing success. 

For the reasons mentioned above, it is crucial to understand the algorithm of YouTube

Below are the things that you need to know about the algorithm of YouTube for the success of your YouTube marketing tactic.

What is YouTube’s Algorithm?

YouTube’s algorithm is a system that serves to render personalized content to the platform’s users. YouTube analyzes the behavior of viewers based on the videos they watched, average time spent, click-through rates, and engagements. A YouTube user’s likes, dislikes, comments, and feedback are also included in the factors that YouTube’s algorithm uses for recommending a personalized list of content to users. 

For instance, if the platform’s algorithm noticed that you have been watching some cooking videos, it will start recommending videos that are similar to what you have been watching.

So, the platform’s algorithm is basically like a tool that helps YouTube users to find content that they might be interested in.

How Does YouTube’s Algorithm Works?

According to YouTube, the goal of its platform’s search and discovery system are twofold. The first goal is to aid viewers in finding the videos that they want to watch. On the other hand, the second goal is to maximize long-term viewer satisfaction and engagement. 

There are six different areas that the algorithm can affect in terms of displaying your content:

  • In the recommended video list
  • In search results
  • On the homepage of YouTube
  • In channel subscriptions
  • Top trending streams
  • In notifications

Moreover, the algorithm of YouTube works by filtering recommendations. It also tracks the perceived satisfaction of viewers to create a personalized stream of requests. 

Essentially, there is a neural network that filters videos. This network is responsible for seeing whether a video is the right candidate for the viewer’s next video selection. Moreover, this network bases its choices on the user’s history as well as what similar users have watched. This is what drives organic views to your videos.

YouTube Algorithm: What it is and How it Works

Besides, the second neural network is responsible for ranking videos. This network assigns a score for every video that the first neural network has chosen. The scores are based on factors that YouTube has not revealed entirely. However, the newness of the video and the frequency of uploads of a channel are both included in the scoring elements.

The idea of YouTube’s algorithm is not to identify good videos. Instead, it aims to match viewers with the content that they want to watch. The end goal of this is to make viewers spend as much time as possible on YouTube. Thus, the longer the time viewers spend watching YouTube content, The more ads the platform will be able to display. 

Furthermore, the platform’s algorithm also ranks search results. These search results are based on two main factors. The first one is how well a video’s metadata is, while the second one is how it engages users. Still, YouTube emphasized that search results are not a list of videos that have most viewed for the given query.

How YouTube Determines Algorithm

YouTube said that several user behaviors guide the choices of the platform’s algorithm. This includes what viewers watch and do not watch, the time they spend watching your videos, the video’s rate of growth, and the frequency of new uploads in a channel. The viewers’ session time, engagement, and not interested feedback are also a factor.

That being said, there is no denying that YouTube’s algorithm is complicated, continuously changing, ad unknowable in many ways. However, why no guarantee making valuable and entertaining content will make the algorithm notice your channel? Some practices can help your YouTube marketing succeed.

Tips to Improve Your Reach on YouTube

Use relevant keywords

Using keywords goes to all of your metadata. Meaning, your video description, tags, title, and captions must contain keywords that are relevant to your content.

Make the most out of your content’s description.

It would be nice to keep the first few lines of your descriptions intriguing and accurate. Still, you need to pay attention to your keywords. YouTube encourages content creators to use long, robust reports. However, everything after the first few lines will not be seen by your viewers unless they click “Show More.”

YouTube Algorithm: What it is and How it Works

Include subtitles

Muted viewing is very common, especially to viewers who are watching on mobile. To keep this type of viewers watching your videos, it would be best to include subtitles. 

True enough, YouTube offers auto-generated subtitles that are available in many languages. However, uploading your subtitles for your videos will help them to be indexed for search, thus improving your search ranking. 

Create custom thumbnails

Apart from an attention-grabbing title, a unique thumbnail also plays a massive role in attracting viewers. Ninety percent of top-performing videos on the platform use a custom thumbnail instead of an auto-generated one. Besides, make sure that your thumbnail showcases the highlight of your video. The thumbnail must show how you will be discussing your topic within your video.

Date: September 1, 2020 / Categories: Explainer, / Author: Joy P


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