Should You List Tags in Your YouTube Description?

Sep 21, 2020


In the past, a popular tactic to get an SEO boost for a YouTube video was to list tags at the bottom of video descriptions. But should you list tags in your YouTube description? Or, should you avoid doing so? After all, while having optimized videos is important, making sure your videos aren't over-optimized is equally as important.

While it was an effective tactic in the past, listing tags at the bottom of a YouTube description should now be avoided. The best way to include keywords in your descriptions is to include them naturally. Putting a list of tags in the description box of a video is against YouTube Terms of Service and will get you into trouble if you achieve any notable success.

As you'll learn on your YouTube journey, many tactics that were effective in the past are no longer effective. Many things that YouTube creators did in the past were done to manipulate the YouTube algorithm. Nowadays, the YouTube algorithm is too smart. This is why you should focus on following best practices, and not on trying to manipulate the system.

Should I Put YouTube Tags in My Description


Chances are, you've come across some videos on YouTube that has had tags listed in their video descriptions. I would imagine you probably have then asked yourself: "Should I put YouTube tags in my description?" While you should put tags (keywords) in your descriptions, you should not paste a list of tags in your descriptions, as this will lead to issues down the road.

The best way to include tags in the description of a video is to do so in a natural manner. This means writing out paragraphs and sentences and including your tags in those blocks of text. You should never try and place your tags in your description in an unnatural manner. If you cannot find a way to place a tag in your description in a natural manner, don't place it.

As I mentioned earlier, there is such a thing as over-optimization. When you place tags in descriptions in an unnatural manner, you run the risk of receiving an over-optimization penalty. When YouTube sees that your video is over-optimized, they will show your video less, leading to fewer views.

While it is important to put keywords in YouTube descriptions, it's important not to "stuff" them in. Tags should be included in the written content of a description naturally. Remember, you're much better off not including as many tags but having a naturally written description, as this will help you avoid getting an over-optimization penalty.

Putting Tags in YouTube Description


As I mentioned, the best way to go about putting tags in YouTube description boxes is to do so in a natural manner. This means placing tags in paragraphs and sentences where they fit. Often, the best thing to do is to simply write, and see if you end up including tags without even trying to. When this happens, you know things were done naturally.

Something I find helpful when including video tags in video descriptions is to "fill in the gaps." What I mean by this is, I like to form sentences around tags. Of course, this needs to be done naturally, so just placing a random sentence in your description boxes is not recommended.

If I had a tag such as, "how to walk a dog" then I would attempt to form a sentence around this keyword. Something like: "So, you want to learn how to walk a dog? You've found the right place!" would work well in an introduction paragraph. As you can see, this sentence looks completely natural, and it includes the tag.

Overall, it can be difficult to include tags in description boxes naturally. However, as you write more descriptions, you will find that the process becomes easier. Take it from me- I've written over 1000 individual video descriptions, and including tags in all of them became much easier after the first few.

How to Add Tags in YouTube Description


Learning how to add tags in YouTube description boxes is important for any content creator looking to get more views. Obviously, inputting tags as I described above is a pretty simple process. A big mistake content creators make, however, is that they do not include the right tags in their descriptions.

Different tags (also known as keywords) have different levels of competitiveness. Ideally, you should place tags with a low level of competition in your descriptions, as they will be easier to rank for. At the end of the day, the whole reason why you're putting tags in your descriptions is so your videos can be better optimized, which can lead to higher rankings.

Typically, tags that contain more words are low competition tags. For example, "how to walk a dog with a front clip harness" would be less competitive of a term than "how to walk a dog", as it contains more words. These are the types of tags you should try to include in the descriptions of your videos.

Another way to ensure that your tags are low competition is to use a tool like TubeRanker. TubeRanker will allow you to check the competitiveness level of different tags (keywords). This can help you determine what tags you should and shouldn't include in the description boxes of your videos.


Including tags in the description boxes of your YouTube videos is important for SEO purposes. But should you list tags in your YouTube description? As you now know, you should include tags in your descriptions in a natural manner. Write sentences and paragraphs, and include tags in the content you write.

Daniel James
Hi there! I’m Daniel, the founder, and CEO of Tubefluence. I help businesses and influencers utilize the power of YouTube marketing to grow an audience and generate leads.
TubeRanker offers the ultimate toolset for Creators & Marketers to optimize their videos against the YouTube algorithm and rank higher in YouTube & Google searches and recommendation engines.
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