YouTube Video Keyword Research and Characteristics of Popular YouTube Queries

Update: Since this article was written, Google has released a YouTube Keyword Suggestion Tool.

Currently the first
result in Google for “youtube keywords” is a video
claiming to do video keyword research using WordTracker. 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.
Fortunately for video SEOs, last week brought a better video keyword
tool for YouTube queries: YouTube itself.

Using the new YouTube Suggest tool I discovered some of the most popular YouTube queries and categories. The results aren’t entirely surprising, but can be used to justify Arts & Entertainment spend in YouTube, or to find alternative subjects that still bring in a lot of search volume.

YouTube Suggest,
like Google Suggest, is a user interface improvement that uses
popular search queries to predict what the searcher will type next
.
Predictive text is good for the user because it means less typing to
get to the result, and it’s good for the marketers who want to
connect their content to queries because it gives them a glimpse
into the typical user’s search behavior. These queries can then
be added to relevant fields in the video to put the video in front of
the largest possible relevant audience when the user is looking for
it.

To opt into YouTube
Suggest, follow the “advanced” link to the right of the
search box.

Next, select the box
that reads Display Query Suggestions as I Type.




That’s it.
From now on, the predictive text system will show you popular queries
with every character you input.




When researching a
particular topic, this tool will show you popular queries, most
likely in order of relative search volume. Incorporating these
keywords into your relevant video can help increase visibility of
that video.

Characteristics
of Popular YouTube Queries

Unlike Yahoo
Suggest, which won’t predict the next query without 3
characters inputted, Google Suggest (and this YouTube version) starts
predicting when a single character is entered. It is therefore
possible to get a good sense of the most popular queries on YouTube
by entering the alphabet one character at a time and transcribing
what comes up. When I did this, I discovered some of the most popular YouTube queries and categories.

Category

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. Category breakdown is
below.

Top 100 YouTube Suggest Queries by MSN
April Search Volume

For the same reason
that it doesn’t make sense to use WordTracker for YouTube
keyword research, it doesn’t make much sense to give MSN search
volume for YouTube queries. It’s unlikely, for example, that
YouTube would be the most popular query since the users are already
within YouTube. The fact that YouTube even shows up in the suggest
tool is kind of astonishing for that fact. Nonetheless, to give my
readers a sense of the most popular queries in YouTube as reported by
this predictive text tool, this is a list of the top 100, sorted by
MSN search volume for April. Find the full list, along with
categorization data here
.

1

youtube

2

mariah carey

3

miley cyrus

4

american idol

5

wwe

6

lil wayne

7

runescape

8

chris brown

9

naruto

10

alicia keys

11

my

12

love

13

beyonce

14

nba

15

funny

16

pokemon

17

video

18

leona lewis

19

hannah montana

20

funny cats

21

obama

22

juno

23

christina aguilera

24

family guy

25

shakira

26

taylor swift

27

michael jackson

28

jonas brothers

29

ufc

30

janet jackson

31

rihanna

32

soulja boy

33

emo

34

hilary duff

35

avril lavigne

36

vanessa hudgens

37

you

38

kiss

39

eminem

40

ashley tisdale

41

titanic

42

zac efron

43

usher

44

harry potter

45

panda

46

akon

47

kelly clarkson

48

high school musical

49

fergie

50

wow

51

cristiano ronaldo

52

iron man

53

halo

54

lost

55

mario

56

alvin and the chipmunks

57

south park

58

ufo

59

bob marley

60

iphone

61

ghost

62

pitbull

63

plies

64

ciara

65

world of warcraft

66

ronaldinho

67

rbd

68

whitney houston

69

snoop dogg

70

celine dion

71

david archuleta

72

nelly

73

wisin y yandel

74

lollipop

75

undertaker

76

xbox

77

ronaldo

78

david cook

79

ashanti

80

xxl

81

slipknot

82

metallica

83

linkin park

84

halo 3

85

dance

86

kobe bryant

87

elvis

88

daddy yankee

89

bon jovi

90

one tree hill

91

aventura

92

kanye west

93

xbox 360

94

jesse mccartney

95

guitar

96

jeff dunham

97

ironman

98

jojo

99

enrique iglesias

100

don omar




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