Releasing a new video on Youtube is a lot of work. Recording and editing are only the first steps in the process. When you have made an entire vlog, it can feel daunting to put in more time to write a good description for your Youtube video.
But a proper description for your video is critical to getting it seen by people and ranking higher on Youtube. Descriptions matter.
Writing a good Youtube description for your video is not hard when you have the right guide. We have made a template for you to craft the perfect descriptions for your videos!
Why YouTube Descriptions Matter
Youtube is a search engine and will use your description, among other things, to rank your videos in results. So what you put in there will be a big factor for the discoverability of your videos. Additionally, the first lines of your description also show up on search results and have an effect on whether you get clicks or not.
Merely leaving the description area empty or writing just one sentence is a waste of valuable real estate you can use to rank your videos higher. You get up to 5000 characters when you write a Youtube video description, that’s plenty of space for you to use. But you have to learn to use it effectively.
Benefits of a Good Description
Below, we list the main benefits of a good youtube description for your video:
Improves rankings and discoverability
The biggest benefit is the improved ranking and discoverability on the search engine. In the description, you can put the keywords you want to rank for on Youtube.
This gives youtube a better understanding of what the video is about and what audience to recommend it to. Later, we will show you how to use keywords in your descriptions.
Engages your viewers
The description is a great place to engage viewers, getting them to visit your social media or website if you have one. You could also add a call to action in your description, encouraging viewers to subscribe, donate, or comment on your video.
Informs your viewers
The primary goal for any video should be to give value to viewers, by entertaining, informing, or educating them. The description is a great place to write any helpful text connected to the video. It could be a table of contents, a bullet point list, recourses, or a simple summary.
What Should Be Included in a Good YouTube Description
A premise – Why should people watch that video? The description gives you a chance, other than the title, to tell people why your video matters and why they should click on it.
A good idea is to put the premise right in the beginning so that it shows up next to the thumbnail in search.
A quick summary of the video – It’s a good idea to include a quick summary of the video the viewer is about to watch.
Keywords – You should find about three keywords you want to rank for; Your primary keywords, as well as two other related search phrases. And sprinkle them throughout your video description.
To find keywords, you can use YouTubes auto-suggest feature or Google Keyword Planner.
Call to Action – If you want your viewers to take a particular action, it is always important to include that in the description. This could be getting them to subscribe, donate, enter a giveaway, or engage with your content in some other way.
Any relevant links – Always add any relevant links to the video in the description. This could be recourses, articles, or affiliate links.
Contact Info – Add your social media links, website, other contact info in the description.
Credits – Did you use any other work in your video? If so, make sure to credit the author in the end.
Youtube Video Description Template
Now let’s see how we can fit all of this together in a simple template you can when you write a Youtube video description.
1. First Paragraph
The first lines of your youtube description is a critical ranking factor. Always include the main keyword of your video here. You could do this in different ways:
- A quick summary of your video
- Transcript of the intro of your video
- Pose a question or set a premise for your video
2. Second Paragraph
The second paragraph should be used either as a quick description of the channel or as helpful text related to your video.
3. Links & Call to Action
List any resource links or affiliate links related to the video. Also, include your call-to-action in this section.
4. Contact Info
5. Credits (Affiliate disclaimer – If you have affiliate links)
If you have used somebody else’s work, you should always credit them. You can also list any sources you have used if you made an informational video.
Let’s do a deeper dive into each section to see how they fit together.
1st paragraph – The first part of the description should either be a summary of the video or a transcript of the first couple of seconds or minutes. This is done to inform your viewer what the video is about and gives you a chance to tell youtube what the video is about.
The first lines of this text also appear next to the thumbnail on a search for any social media. Arguably, its the most critical part of your description. It is very important that you include your main keyword in the description as early on as possible, ideally, within the first sentence. Then you would want to sprinkle other related keywords throughout the text.
2nd paragraph – In the second paragraph, you can put anything related to your videos, such as helpful text, bullet points, or timestamps. If you made a mistake when saying something in the video, you could write a correction in this section.
Suppose this does not apply to the kind of content you are making. In that case, you could write a few lines or about your channel or yourself.
Recourses / Affiliate links – Here is where you would put affiliate links if any. They must be relevant to your video and channel. You could also add any helpful recourses related to the video. Such as articles, playlists, or link to other videos.
Contact Links – In this section, link to your other social media, website, or additional contact info. You might also have a Patreon you could send your viewers to. This is the section where viewers can engage with you and potentially help you out as well.
Credit / Sources / Affiliate Disclosure – In the last section of the description, you could list sources of you that have an informational video. Or credit someone if you have used their work.
3 Tips For Writing Video Descriptions
1. Make it brief
Don’t make the description longer than it has to be. Include only what is relevant and makes sense for your channel. People are there to watch the video, after all.
2. Be personal
Use a friendly tone in your descriptions. Make yourself relatable to your audience.
3. Include the keywords early in the text
Always try to include your main keywords at the beginning of the text, ideally in the first couple of lines. Remember that the text should still feel natural to read.
Copy the Description Template to Every Video
Youtube has an excellent tool for you to set some default settings in your descriptions. Upload Defaults lets you add default tags, credits, and parts of your description.
Get the free PDF Version
To help you out, we have created a one-page PDF that shows you exactly how to write an optimized youtube description. You can find it here.
We hope you enjoyed our guide on how to write a good youtube description.
Writing a video or channel description can be a bit overwhelming. But remember that you will get better and better with practice. If you use this youtube description template above to get started, it will be a no brainer after a while.
Tweak the template as much as you like. Don’t be afraid to try out some new things as well. You can never know precisely what works and what doesn’t before you have tried everything. Good luck with your video!