Short, witty videos have increased in popularity, thanks to TikTok and Reels on Instagram. However, there’s still arguably a strong spot carved out in the video content world for YouTube videos. In fact, YouTube has 122 million active users every day, with each visitor spending an average of 14 minutes and 21 seconds viewing its content.
Still, this doesn’t mean that your videos will automatically get views with little to no work on your part. On the contrary, it takes dedication and a solid strategy to increase YouTube views, which can, in turn, boost your presence on the platform.
This guide offers 50 ways to increase YouTube views based on optimization, audience engagement, promotion, and content tweaks. We’ve split the tips into these four categories to help you find those that you’re most interested in.
1. Make your channel highly searchable. First, optimize your channel to target keywords that people might use to find you. Once they find your channel and start browsing your videos, you could pull in more views. Make your channel searchable by adding a keyword into your channel’s name, filling out your channel’s description, and including a keyword within the first 48 hours characters of your About page.
2. Write catchy video titles. Make sure all your video titles are also optimized for searches. Do this by making them fun and engaging but not click-baity. Include keywords whenever possible to draw in viewers based on relevant search terms.
3. Write keyword-rich descriptions. Every video on your channel should have a keyword-rich description that accurately states what the video is about. Don’t go overboard with keywords, but be sure to sprinkle in a few target phrases or terms that people will likely search to find your video.
4. Use keywords strategically. Treat your YouTube videos as you would a blog post by optimizing them for searches. In addition to fine-tuning your titles and descriptions for searches, you can also say keywords in your videos, tag your videos with keywords, and work toward increased engagement on your channel.
5. Create click-worthy thumbnails. Your videos’ thumbnails get them noticed and can be the one thing that causes someone to click and watch. Try to have a theme for all your thumbnails, but make each one stand out and clearly state what the video is about.
6. Organize your content with playlists. Playlists help you organize your YouTube content. They can be great for leading viewers of one video into another related video of yours. Keep relevant videos together in playlists on your channel to create viewing loops.
7. Add cards and end screens. Cards are pop-ups on YouTube videos. Creators typically use them to recommend other videos on their channels that viewers of one video might find interesting. An end screen is your video’s ending image or clip that directs viewers on what to do next, like comment on your video or subscribe to your channel. Using both together can increase engagement and views.
8. Consider search intent. When considering the keywords you’ll add to your titles and descriptions, keep in mind what people on Google and YouTube are searching for and the intent behind those searches, rather than merely the words they’re searching for. Use keywords that are relevant to your content, and make sure your video content is aligned with users’ search intent.
9. Use YouTube tags. Tags further categorize your videos. Add a few relevant ones to each video to help viewers find them. Look for similar videos in your niche to see what tags they’re using for inspiration.
10. Include closed captions for accessibility. Make your videos as accessible to all as possible by adding closed captions. Not only can this feature provide better access to individuals with hearing impairments, but it also allows people to watch without sound if they prefer. YouTube also offers automatic transcription and automatic captions for livestreams.
11. Make videos look professional. Low-quality videos that look pieced or thrown together will likely suffer in views. While you don’t necessarily need professional studio equipment, you do want to get the lighting and composition right, avoid shaky footage, and record clear audio. And, of course, you want engaging subjects and presenters on camera. Experiment with camera angles that allow people to see everything that’s happening. There are also many video editing software tools you can use to give your videos a polished look and feel.
12. Add watermarks to videos. Place a watermark image in your videos to encourage people to subscribe to your channel and, in turn, increase your views. Although you can use the YouTube watermark feature to add your logo to videos, many creators make the image a subscribe button. When you hover over the watermark, YouTube offers an easy pop-up button to subscribe.
13. Autoplay embedded video. In your YouTube settings, enable the autoplay feature on embedded videos. This feature triggers embedded videos to play automatically, effectively increasing views.
14. Include pattern breaks. Add breaks in the pattern of your videos, such as occasional angle switches, to keep viewers engaged. Although these breaks shouldn’t distract viewers from the video, they can be a good way to refocus their attention back to your video to hold interest.
15. Monitor and analyze your YouTube performance. Continuously monitor your YouTube engagement to make sure the tactics you’re using are working. YouTube’s analytics will let you see the most popular videos, how long people are watching them, etc., giving you some insight into your content creation and how to improve.
16. Make the first 30 seconds the best. YouTube counts it as a view when someone watches at least the first 30 seconds. Prioritize capturing a viewer’s attention by making the first several seconds of your video highly engaging.
17. Focus on your audio. High-quality video without audio of matching quality is sure to make viewers bounce from your video. Check your audio setup before recording, and invest in equipment upgrades when possible.
18. Translate your videos. YouTube is popular all over the world. Make your videos accessible to people across the globe by translating them into other languages. To make it easier on yourself, simply use YouTube’s automated translation tool.
Audience Engagement Tips
19. Create a trailer for new viewers. Introduce your channel to people who are new to your content with a short trailer video. Keep it under a minute long and let visitors know what kind of content you create. Don’t forget to add a quick CTA to encourage more subscribers.
20. Learn more about your audience. The more you know about your subscribers and new viewers, the better you can tailor your content to them. Use YouTube Analytics to get insight into demographics, top views, engagement, etc. At the end of your videos, ask viewers to leave a comment letting you know what they liked or didn’t like.
21. Ask subscribers what they want to see. Create occasional videos asking viewers what they want to see more of on your channel. Giving subscribers more of what they want and like is a sure way to increase views.
22. Give clear CTAs. Don’t forget to add CTAs to your video, whether they’re verbal or written on your end screen. A CTA should remind people to subscribe, like your video, and/or turn on notifications for your videos.
23. Work on boosting your subscriber count. When you get more subscribers, you can also get more views. Try adding a visual reminder to subscribe at the end of every video.
24. Understand the best posting days and times. Another way to make sure your subscribers get what they want from your channel is by posting at the ideal times and days. You can find out more about your channel’s most active days and times via YouTube Analytics. When you post new content when your subscribers use YouTube most, they’ll already be active when they get a notification and can view your video immediately.
25. Build a YouTube community. YouTube is an excellent platform for building a strong community of fans. Work on doing that to increase your views from people who love your content. Respond to and like viewer comments and ask questions in the comments to spark engagement. YouTube tends to reward videos with lots of engagement in its algorithm.
26. Allow fans to embed your videos. Enable embedding in your settings to let other people embed your videos on their websites. Don’t forget to allow embedding for playlists, too.
27. Use the Community tab. If you have more than 500 subscribers, you’ll have access to the Community tab, which lets you interact more deeply with your community by posting polls, images, GIFs, and more. Subscribers will receive some notifications for your community if they have notifications turned on for your channel.
28. Avoid making videos too long. There are no precise rules on how long to make a YouTube video. It depends on your niche, the type of video (a tutorial, unboxing, etc.), your audience, and your competition, as well as other factors. The best rule is to use only as much time as you need to keep viewers engaged and watching your video in its entirety.
29. Offer video suggestions. When you add an end screen to your videos, you can include videos from your channel. Use this feature to suggest other videos for your viewers to watch, which keeps them on your channel longer and could boost your views. To have YouTube automatically update your suggestion with your latest video, choose ‘Most Recent Upload’ from the Video Element options.
30. Cross-promote your content on social media. Share your videos or shorter video clips on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc. You’ll tap into other audiences you already have to increase your views.
31. Focus on your best sources of traffic. Are you already a hit on TikTok or Instagram? Use your best traffic sources to drive more traffic to your YouTube channel rather than trying to draw in more viewers from places with a less-active audience.
32. Add your videos to blog posts. Create blog content that aligns with your YouTube videos. Then, you can embed your videos in your blog posts as extra resources for your readers.
33. Share your videos in other places. Don’t forget about other places besides your social media channels where sharing videos can help you increase your views. For example, you might be a member of relevant Reddit subreddits where your videos could be helpful for members, or you could link to relevant videos in your answers to questions on Quora. You could also include a relevant and useful video in Facebook groups you’re active in. The key is to avoid being too self-promotional and ensuring that you’re actually adding value to the discussion.
34. Send email blasts to subscribers. When you upload a new video, send an email to your YouTube subscribers to let them know. To build a list with your subscribers, include a link to your sign-up form in video captions or add a quick message on your end screen directing viewers to sign up. Another perk: Adding video to your emails can boost email engagement, too.
35. Add snippets to pins. Pinterest is meant to be a discovery platform, so it’s a great place to promote your YouTube videos. Place a video snippet into a Pinterest pin to give people a preview of your video and entice them to click through to watch it.
36. Create content for brands. Reach out to some of your favorite brands to ask about content creation. You can make a video focused on their brand, product, or service, and they can cross-promote it on their social media platforms to increase your views.
37. Add a subscribe button on your website. Let website visitors know you have a YouTube channel by adding a YouTube subscribe button where people can easily see it, like the header, sidebar, or footer of your site. The more subscribers you have, the higher your potential for lots of video views.
Photo by Ivan Samkov via Pexels
38. Work with other YouTube creators. Invite other YouTube creators to be in your videos or reach out to a few in your niche to see if they’re interested in collaborating. You both can draw in your audiences, potentially resulting in more views.
39. Follow a content calendar. You can create a more organized channel with a clear posting schedule with planned-out content using a YouTube content calendar. Plus, your subscribers will know when to expect new content from you, which could lead to a more engaged audience.
40. Make a YouTube series. Break a big topic down into several videos in a series rather than one or two longer videos. Add them to a playlist and encourage your viewers to check out the next video in the series.
41. Create a contest. Contests and giveaways can increase follower counts on almost any social media platform, and they’re excellent for bringing more views to your YouTube videos. Host a giveaway on your website or your top social media platform and make YouTube subscriptions one entry option. You can also add extra entries for video views. Or, host the giveaway right on YouTube and share a video to promote it. Just be sure to follow YouTube’s guidelines for hosting contests.
42. Be unique in your niche. It’s challenging to create an entire new niche on YouTube nowadays, but you can always find ways to be unique and stand out in your niche. What sets you apart that keeps people coming back to your videos? Do more of that to continue attracting new viewers.
43. Create seasonal content. Sprinkling seasonal content into your regular content calendar can help you become part of limited-time trends and could lead to lots of views. Think of unique content to create around holidays, current events, shopping sales, challenges, and other potentially trending subjects.
44. Run paid ads. Advertise your channel on other YouTube channels in relevant niches or with similar audiences to increase your views.
45. Encourage your followers to keep watching. Even if you use end screens and playlists to guide viewers toward your other videos, it’s still a good idea to verbally encourage them to check out your other videos, too.
46. Create or participate in a challenge. Take part in challenges — or, create your own! — to hop on already trending YouTube content. Look for challenges that others in your niche are doing, and be sure to give credit to the original creator. It’s a great way to create content around a topic people already love and to build your YouTube community with other creators.
47. Create YouTube Shorts. YouTube Shorts are similar to Instagram Reels and other quick-consumption videos. They’re great for funny skits or sharing quick tips as they’re less than 60 seconds long, but they’re helpful for discovery on the platform.
48. Stream live. Do you have something interesting to share with your audience? Try a livestream on YouTube. Livestreaming is ideal for connecting with your viewers. Try a Q&A or live tutorial where you can really interact with people who tune in.
49. Follow trends. See what’s trending on YouTube to get inspired to create your own trending content. YouTube’s Trending feed is a good place to start, and you can also utilize resources like Google Trends for YouTube and other tracking tools.
50. Make video premieres. Are you releasing a video that your subscribers have looked forward to for a long time? Get lots of views right out of the gate by hosting a video premiere. This adds a shareable public watch page to your channel where people can visit to countdown to the big premiere. You can also live chat with your audience during the premiere to increase engagement.