Why I don’t target search traffic on YouTube [Ep. #132]

There’s a lot of emphasis placed on search traffic, which isn’t bad because it’s a powerful traffic driver for a lot of channels. However, YouTube has some other traffic sources that should not be overlooked and can be even more powerful than search itself for a lot of channels. So today I want to talk about why it’s been a few years since I’ve intentionally targeted search traffic and my approach that let’s me not only continue to get views from YouTube search, but also get traffic from other sources, as well.

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  1. Steven Reich August 7, 2018 at 7:44 pm - Reply

    I see you alluded to the “dog can’t be a cat” analogy in this one. I have a bit of a situation that I think flips that on its head. My channel covers a lot of music-related topics, and whenever the original song isn’t on YouTube, my unboxing video for the CD seems to get unintentional clicks from people who are quickly disappointed. I’ve gone through increasingly direct measures to indicate the video is an unboxing and not the music itself (I put “Unboxing” in brackets at the start of the video title and very prominently in the thumbnail), but I still seem to get a significant number of errant clicks, and I’m worried it’s harming my videos in some way. Short of not including the song name in the title, description, or tags, do you have any ideas how I can better deal with this? Also, I’d like to see you rewrite the dog/cat analogy to fit this case.

    • Tim Schmoyer August 7, 2018 at 8:42 pm - Reply

      Hey, Steven! I guess I don’t see how your case doesn’t fit the “dog can’t be a cat” analogy. It sounds like people are clicking your videos with a specific expectation, discover that the video won’t meet their expectation, and abandon the video. Are you thinking that YouTube will determine that your video’s metadata is misleading because of it? I don’t think that’s the case because YouTube’s systems are far more sophisticated than to be based on simply quick abandonment. I just used the dog/cat example to make a point, not necessarily to infer that that’s the whole system.

  2. Steven Reich August 7, 2018 at 11:39 pm - Reply

    Maybe it would be more accurate to say it’s not the typical “dog/cat” scenario. I’m not trying to be misleading, but it does feel a bit like I’m letting the audience down a bit.

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