YouTube Ranking Guide (7 Tips to Get Your Video Ranked #1)

May 29, 2023

YouTube is the #1 way to get your business video seen front-and-center in today’s multimedia landscape, it’s also actually the world's second largest search engine right behind Google. It could also be the most daunting, as you read about the many ways to gain traction and views for your content and business.

You have tried everything to get your YouTube videos to rank, and no amount of optimization is translating to higher ranking results! You're frustrated, and you should be. Your videos should be ranking on the first page of search. Not only should they rank on the first page, they should, and can, be ranked #1 with my YouTube Ranking Guide in 2021. 

Today, I’m going to break down the top 7 ways to rank your YouTube videos for free, so that you can reach and engage a wider audience. Here, you’re going to learn about my YouTube Ranking Guide in 2021 essentials, and pick up a few of Tasca Studio’s secret tips along the way! 

For a private 1:1 consultation to deep dive into your business's SEO strategy, click here

Step #1: Add Brackets and Parentheses to Headlines and Titles to Increase Click-Through Rate (CTR)

Your Click-Through Rate is an important metric to track and understand how much engagement you are generating from your content. With YouTube, your Click-Through Rate (CTR) is going to be determined by how many unique thumbnail impressions your video gets that turn into views.

Assuming that you are already using high quality thumbnails, (and if you’re not, check out these tips here), you may still be seeing low CTR’s week after week and it’s leaving you confused. You may need to change the way you are presenting your Headlines accompanying your thumbnails with this new, innovative approach to YouTube Titles.

According to a study conducted by HubSpot, “Why Headlines Matter”, there is a surprising way to increase your video’s Click-Through Rate by up to +38%!  

Add brackets and parentheses to your headlines. The point of including brackets and parentheses in your YouTube video title is to further clarify what your video is presenting.

For example: YouTube Ranking Guide in 2021 ( 7 Tips to Get Your Video Ranked #1)

Step #2: Increase Your Engagement Signals Like Likes, Dislikes, and Comments

To rank high on YouTube, you have to signal to the algorithm that your videos are producing audience engagement. In the earlier days of YouTube, engagement mostly consisted of thumbnail clicks and watch time. These days, there are numerous ways to signal to the algorithm that your video is worth watching and worth ranking at the top of the first page of video search results.

The important engagement metrics to focus on are:

Likes, Dislikes - Likes and dislikes are both held in positive regard as they both count towards your engagement metrics! By creating content with controversial topics or by providing extraordinary value that your audience wants to see, your likes and dislikes will be boosted.

You can also simply ask your audience to “like” your video while they are watching along with subscribing to your channel if they enjoyed the content. 

Comments - Having an active stream of comments on your video signals to YouTube that your video is worth watching and displaying to a wider search audience.  You can create an active comment section in your videos by asking your audience a multi-choice question for them to answer in the comments. Make sure to reply to every comment and engage with your fanbase as this will excite your audience and further incentivize them to keep watching.

The total amount of time viewers have watched your videos is called watch time. It is a key metric because it shows that videos and channels with higher watch times are featured in the search results. The more watch time a video has, the more likely it is to be engaging in nature.

Check out Hubspots YouTube Analytics: The 15 Metrics That Actually Matter for a deeper dive.

Step #3: Embed Your Video in Relevant Websites

Since YouTube is owned by Google, it is really easy for video embeds to help rank your website for “search terms” even though that happens off of YouTube. Videos will rank significantly higher on Youtube when the algorithm realizes your video is being embedded elsewhere and driving traffic to the platform.  

You can embed your videos by first embedding them on your own website, and then having your video embedded on other relevant websites. 

Step #4: Optimize Your SEO Tags Using The T-S-C Formula

Here’s a SEO tip for you! When you are creating tags for your YouTube video, you want to use what is called the T-S-C Formula. This stands for the Target - Synonym - Category Formula. 

YouTube needs to see just the right amount of tags, with a clear detailing of what your video is about. To do this, use almost identical variations of what your video is about in your tags. For example, you could use your target keyword as “root canal treatment”, then follow it with “root canal procedure” and “root canal therapy”.

After creating your “identical” keywords, you want to add in some synonymous keywords, such as “root canal symptoms”, or “root canal pain”. Lastly, you want to include keywords that signal the general topic such as “dentistry” or “tooth pain”. 


Step #5: Get Your YouTube Video Featured on “Suggested Videos” Sidebars

To get featured in a “Suggested Videos” sidebar on YouTube, you have to engage with similar content on your own channel.
Try watching and engaging with videos in your current niche and incorporate some of their keywords into your Synonym and Category hashtags. 

 A great tool for this is VidIQ or TubeBuddy as you can break down your competitors tags and performance. We use VidIQ for all the videos we upload here at Tasca Studios.

Step #6: Increase Your Watch Time From Viewers

Watch time is an important indicator of engagement because it signals to YouTube that your viewers enjoyed watching your content. The more time that viewers stay watching your YouTube videos, the more that the algorithm will be alerted to drive more traffic to watch your videos.

By spending more time in the pre-production phase, you can better plan out your content, script and storyboard for a well-developed video. By adding in unique editing, angles and sound effects your video will keep the viewer engaged, increasing watch time.

Step #7: Really Optimize Your Video Description (We Mean Really)

Creating the perfect YouTube description is in itself, an art form. This is incredibly important because YouTube analyzes your description to see what your video is about and in what context. A strong description will increase your YouTube video rankings. Create your strong YouTube video description with the following tips: 

  • Aim for at least 300-400+ words
  • Use your top 3 keywords in the first 2-3 sentences of your video 
  • Use the first sentence of your description to tell the viewer the BENEFIT of what they will get when they watch your video 
  • Towards the middle or end of your video description, repeat your important keywords. 
  • Scatter related keywords throughout your description text, such as your Synonym and Category keywords. 
  • If you’re at a loss, try this helpful template


Check Out These Extra YouTube Ranking Guide in 2021 Exclusive Tasca Studios Tips: 

Tip #1: Promote Your Video Outside of YouTube

- Promote your channel outside of YouTube by sharing it on your website, social platforms, and other relevant websites (and ask people in your circle to watch, like, subscribe and comment.)

  • Sprizzy is another great affordable way to get additional eyeballs on your video. 

 Tip #2: Find Untapped Competitor Keywords

  • Find which keywords your competitors are ranking for, but your channel is not currently ranking for. You can find untapped keywords by using keyword research tool sites such as This type of site helps you find the gap in which other YouTube videos have a competitive edge over you, and help you close that gap and rank higher on YouTube. 

If you follow these 7 tips for ranking your YouTube videos, you will absolutely see an increase in engagement and find favor in the YouTube algorithm. I hope you found these tips helpful and are feeling ready to tackle your YouTube ranking transformation! Thank you for reading, and subscribe to my YouTube Channel to get fresh tips and tricks for increasing your YouTube videos content and engagement.