Youtube Keyword Research Tool for Video SEO

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Over the course of the past year, I have had at least 10 people ask me whether I was aware of any online keyword research tools that specifically focused on keyword suggestions for online video marketing.  Trust me, I’ve asked everyone I know…  I have even put in requests to some of the popular online keyword research companies with no indication that such a tool was being developed.

About a month ago, Youtube released its “YouTube Suggest” enhanced search functionality which doubles as an excellent video marketing keyword suggestion tool for doing keyword research on Youtube.   Essentially, this feature uses predictive text to display popular query suggestions (in order of search volume) in the Youtube search box.

The functionality is turned on by default but you can enable it and disable it via the Youtube advanced search settings link:


Here is a screenshot of the suggestion functionality in action:

youtube suggest

By using Youtube Suggest, you can gain insight into how users are searching on Youtube and which queries are most often performed.  These keyword suggestions can then be used to add to your video in order to increase the chances of targeting the largest possible relevant audience.

You will notice that this feature is very much the same thing that you see when using Google Suggest, which has been available on Google Labs for some time. In fact, Youtube is using the Google Suggest functionality to power the Youtube Suggestions.  Because this is the case, you can also get these same suggestions by using the following JSON call, where q=the term being searched: hl=en&ds=yt&json=t&jsonp=callbackfunction&q=orange+county+ca

This past week, I read an excellent post on this by Bryson Meunier, where he goes into depth about how to properly do keyword research, in particular, for Youtube.  Bryson does a great job of explaining how current keyword research tools are insufficient if you are looking to discover keyword suggestions specific to Youtube and online video.

“The problem with doing keyword research for videos this way is that the most popular queries in WordTracker, which takes its data from meta search engines, are not necessarily the most popular queries in YouTube. In fact, in most cases they’re probably entirely dissimilar.”

Bryson also goes into some very interesting research that he did using the youtube suggestions in order to determine the top query categories in youtube.

“By far the most popular category on YouTube was Arts & Entertainment, of which music searches made up the bulk. No real surprises here. Nonetheless, there are popular categories outside this category that brands looking to get into video SEO should consider. This is also a study of head queries, so the long tail of video SEO could vary…”


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