YouTube Algorithm Update: Duration Out-pulls Clicks

YouTube update to its algorithm and analytics improves user experience

YouTube Update

Google is bang on refreshing its presence almost everywhere in the World Wide Web. One more addition to its existing list of algorithm updates, but this one to its video platform, YouTube. YouTube which functions entirely as yet another search engine in the video category, is still the leader among its peers. YouTube updated its search algorithm last Friday, adding a new factor to the existing list – “amount of time watched“.

In short, no more ranking to YouTube videos based on the clicks that they receive. A viewer to your video should watch it right from the start till the end, no matter the duration of the video, whether it is of 2 minutes or 2 hours. Videos will only be ranked if they have a spark to make the viewer stay, and should fall in line with the title. No misleading captions win! This move by YouTube should definitely get rid of scam affiliate links, at least to 50%.

YouTube announced its plans to change focus from clicks to time watched, back in August. Now, this update on Friday landed only a day later that YouTube announced on bringing changes to its analytics.

Analytics Update

The update mainly helps in identifying the number of people who got rid of ‘annotations’ and also the numbers who quit watching a particular video within a few seconds (bounce back). YouTube analytics launched a year back is capable of bringing to light how many people watched a video – full length, and how many quit half way, or the exact point they quit. The new update also includes a report named “estimated minutes watched”. Annotations, is considered a big update because, some of these can include links to other parts of a company’s profile or website. The new update helps the user to view the click-through rates for these annotations.

YouTube’s addition feature incorporation to its analytics, aims at helping the content creator to identify those videos that the viewers actually find interesting, valuate and rank performance. Helps them differentiate those that actually makes the visitor stay and those which make them lose interest.

Everyone doubts if the time spent on a particular video or the ratio of time spent is taken into account in Analytics. DigitalTrends shares the confirmation from YouTube spokesperson as – “the algorithm will in fact take into account the amount of time spent watching a video“.

Update to Copyright Algorithms

In addition to these updates, YouTube also managed to do an additional update to cut down on invalid copyright infringement claims. Thabet Alfishawi (Rights Management Product Manager) shared –

When the user files an appeal, a content owner has two options: release the claim or file a formal DMCA notification. This process prevents disputes that arise when content not owned by a partner inadvertently turns up in a reference file. Smarter claim detection minimizes unintentional mistakes. Of course, we take action in rare cases of intentional misuse, up to and including terminating Content ID access.”

This update filters potentially unjustified video claims, relieving users whose videos uploaded by the system was incorrectly reported as suspicious. The simple term for this update is “videos with claims of invalidity against them will be put in a queue to be manually reviewed”. Hence, this update proves effective against video piracy acts happening in the YouTube channel.

Tips to Grow Viewer-count

  • Regular use of Analytics to measure changes to the video structure, pace, format, and content
  • A best introduction to your video is essential and make sure to hook user from start of the video till the end
  • Strictly no brand building attempt right at the start that makes the video appear bad
  • Be creative and think out of the box
  • No misleading titles or thumbnails for your videos
  • Perfect Meta tags and compelling titles are key to viewership
  • SEO help could be sought for getting a stronger viewership
  • Edit your videos with good insight
  • Be a viewer yourself and test-drive your creation
  •  Make your videos feel interactive
  • Link one of your videos to another in the most appealing manner
  • Highlight your brand only in the spaces possible, and in an effective way
  • Respond to your viewer comments
  • Advertise your videos in your blogs and articles
  • Schedule your video releases in a systematic and professional manner

Google is king in the search world. It aims at YouTube attaining the king status in the video world. Online users are well engaged in viewing YouTube videos, very much equal to their engagement in social media networks. This ratio is likely to change if the efforts of YouTube continue as is. A better user experience drives in viewers whether it is television or social media or YouTube.

YouTube says that it has already received positive experimental results (“less clicking, more watching”) following the new update to its algorithm! This should be a start from their end, what do you think the next step will be?



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