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YouTube SEO: 10 tools for keyword research and video optimization

Jason Roy

YouTube is the second biggest search engine — which means content creators have a lot of opportunities to drive organic traffic to their YouTube channels and videos.

However, when it comes to researching keywords and optimizing YouTube videos, things aren’t always as straightforward as they usually are when it comes to optimizing for websites.

First, not enough content marketers understand the intricacies of YouTube SEO algorithms. Second, there are not many keyword research and SEO tools available on the web.

To help you solve at least the second problem, we have compiled a list of 10 tools that can help you with YouTube keyword research and video optimization.

1. Ahrefs

Ahrefs is an extremely popular SEO tool, which is primarily used for keyword research and building backlinks. However, it is also very useful when it comes to finding the right content topics and keywords for YouTube videos.

Ahrefs pulls YouTube keyword data from up to 171 different countries, making it one of the most comprehensive keyword research tools available out there.

Unlike some of the other tools mentioned in this article, however, Ahrefs is not free. You can sign up for a 7-day trial for $7. The paid monthly plan then starts from $99 per month.

2. YouTube Autosuggestions

Just like Google, YouTube also auto-suggests related keywords that users can search for. While this makes things easier for searchers, it is also an extremely valuable tool for video publishers and SEO professionals.

That’s because the keywords that appear in the YouTube Autosuggest are generally some of the most popular keywords around that topic. If you see a keyword on that autosuggest list, It is safe to assume that that particular keyword does get at least some search traffic.

The YouTube Autosuggest tool is particularly helpful in finding long-tail keyword phrases.

3. Kparser

If you want even more suggestions based on your seed keyword, you should try Kparser. It takes the YouTube Autosuggest tool to a whole new level.

As you must have noticed in the above image, the YouTube Autosuggest tool only shows around 14 keyword ideas. Kparser, on the other hand, expands this list and suggests hundreds of keyword variations and ideas.

Simply select YouTube as your search engine, define your location and language settings, and enter your seed keyword. Kparser will do the rest of the work.

4. vidIQ

vidIQ is one of the most popular tools for YouTube SEO, keyword research, and video optimization. 

Unlike other tools, such as Kparser and Ahrefs, vidIQ is a browser-based extension. But don’t let that fool you; it is extremely powerful and offers a huge variety of valuable features.

Here are some of the many features that vidIQ offers:

  • Competitor Analysis for analyzing what’s working for your competitor channels.
  • Channel Audits to see what’s working for you and what to double down on.
  • Keyword Tools to view all the important keyword-related data, such as search terms, monthly search volume, keyword tags, and more.
  • Scorecard to see how well you have optimized your videos.

And much more.

5. TubeBuddy

TubeBuddy is a very similar tool to vidIQ and works as an excellent alternative. 

Starting from $7.20 per month, TubeBuddy offers a wide variety of features to help you increase productivity, optimize your videos for the YouTube search engine, and craft a winning YouTube strategy. For example:

  • End screen templates
  • Thumbnail generator
  • Tag lists
  • Keyword explorer
  • Best practices audit
  • Identifying the best time to publish your videos
  • Search insights
  • Demonetization audit

And more.

6. Google Trends

Google Trends is a popular tool for content creators and SEO professionals that helps them identify if a keyword is growing in popularity or tapering off. In addition, Google Trends is also very handy when it comes to selecting a keyword from multiple available options.

You don’t want to bet your horses on a keyword phrase or topic that is moving towards oblivion. Instead, you want to make videos on topics and use keywords that are growing in popularity, so your videos can stay relevant for a long time in the future.

Google Trends can help you identify the right keywords and topics for your videos. Just make sure to select the “YouTube” search engine when conducting your analysis.

7. Keyword Tool

Keywordtool.io is another tool similar to Ahref that can help you unearth plenty of keyword ideas for Youtube videos.

Just insert your seed keyword and let Keyword Tool do the rest.

That seed keyword could be your niche or a relatively bigger topic within your niche. That’s the best way to find long-tail keyword phrases as well as new content topics to make future videos.

For instance, if you search for “baby clothes”, you will be able to find new keyword ideas, such as “baby clothes DIY”, “baby clothes quilt” and “baby clothes hacks”. 

As you can guess, you can make separate videos for each of these keywords/ideas.

And did we mention that Keywordtool.io also shows search volume, trend, cost-per-click, and the degree of competitiveness for each keyword?

8. Keyword Keg

Keyword Keg is another tool that works fairly similarly to Keywordtool.io. It uses a seed keyword that you provide and then generates plenty of searches based on that keyword. For each keyword suggestion, it also shows the search volume for that keywords, the cost per click for gauging the competitiveness of the keyword, and a proprietary metric, known as Keyword Power.

9. Keyword Tool Dominator

If you don’t like Keyword Keg, Keyword Tool Dominator is another tool that you can use to get pretty much similar results, to an extent. Keyword Tool Dominator generates keyword ideas based on the seed keyword you provide. 

One good thing about Keyword Tool Dominator is that it allows you to add keywords to your custom list on the fly. In the end, you can export that keyword list to continue your keyword research and content creation process.

10. Keywords Everywhere

Keywords Everywhere is another popular tool among YouTube content creators. Unlike some of the YouTube SEO and keyword research tools we just discussed above, Keywords Everywhere is a browser-based extension for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.

The unique thing about Keywords Everywhere is that it does not necessarily suggest any new keyword ideas. Instead, it shows three metrics to help you gauge the effectiveness of a keyword. Those three metrics are:

  1. Monthly search volume
  2. Cost per click
  3. Competition, ranging from a score of 0 to 1, indicates how many advertisers are paying for that keyword.

Keywords Everywhere is a good tool when it comes to validating keyword ideas. For instance, if you have 5 keywords to choose from but only want to pick one, for now, Keywords Everywhere can help you identify which keyword you should prioritize.

Conclusion

YouTube keyword research and SEO optimization aren’t the easiest — because optimizing SEO videos involves many different factors, including engagement rate. However, having access to the right keyword and SEO tools can give you the much-needed competitive advantage.

Do you use any keyword research tool for YouTube videos and SEO? Did we mention your favorite tool or missed it? Let us know which YouTube SEO tool you use and is your favorite in the comment section below.

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