On your YouTube channel, watch time is just as important as your view count. Not only does higher watch time mean more ad revenue, but it also boosts your channel’s place in the platform’s video ranking algorithm
Here are a few simple ways to boost the watch time on your next video.
Make it five minutes longer than your last video.
Five minutes might not seem like a lot of time, but you might be surprised how quickly it adds up. Think of it in mathematical terms. Say, for example, that your last video was fifteen minutes long and got a hundred thousand viewers. If all of the viewers watched to the end, your total watch time would be twenty-five thousand hours.
However, under the same conditions, if your video was twenty minutes long, then your total watch time would be more than thirty-three thousand hours. That’s over eight thousand hours more watch time! Just a little bit of extra work would be a huge boost to your video’s total watch time score.
Stay on topic rather than getting sidetracked.
If a viewer skips through parts of your video or clicks out of it entirely, it lowers your watch time score. Viewers are more likely to fast-forward or stop watching a video if it doesn’t deliver what was promised in the title and thumbnail. This includes any off-topic comments or distracting dialogue on your part.
Therefore, when you’re filming, you need to stay on topic. To avoid getting sidetracked, you may find it beneficial to prepare a script or outline to guide you. If you do get a little sidetracked, don’t worry too much, though. You can always edit it out before you upload the finished video.
Create suspense by holding a “big reveal” until the end.
Think of the last movie you watched where you felt like you couldn’t look away from the screen. The feeling of suspense gripped you and held your attention until the credits rolled. If the ending was satisfying, you probably recommended the movie to your friends, too.
You can create a similar feeling in your videos —albeit to a lesser degree — by holding a “big reveal” until the very end. You could build the concept of your video around the reveal, such as the finished version of an art project or the way a viral challenge turns out. Alternatively, you could tease a special announcement or a surprise at the end, such as what your next series will be or who you’re filming a collab with soon.
A higher watch time score means that your viewers are enjoying your video all the way through instead of clicking out before it ends. Incorporate these simple strategies to boost your next video’s watch time.
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Kristen Harris enjoys listening to a wide range of music, from Taylor Swift to, on occasion, Celtic instrumental. She also spends her time writing, reading, and baking.