Why Is My YouTube Video Not Showing up in Search Results?

Nov 13, 2020


I talk a lot about the importance of YouTube search engine optimization (SEO) in my articles. Due to this, I'm often asked the question: "Why is my YouTube video not showing up in search results?" Almost every single time I am asked this question, I end up giving the same response after looking at the video in question.

Your YouTube video is not showing up in search results because your keyword selection and metadata optimization need to be improved. A video will struggle to rank for keywords that are too competitive. Along with this, if the metadata of your video is not optimized properly, videos with properly optimized metadata will typically rank higher than yours.

Getting your videos to show up in the YouTube search results should be one of your main priorities. The YouTube search engine can provide you with a large number of organic views, leading to increased channel growth. You will not be doing yourself any favors by not taking the time to do the things necessary to get your videos to show up in the search results.

Why Is My Video Not Showing on YouTube Search


As I mentioned above, videos typically don't show up in the YouTube search results when they target poor keywords or are poorly optimized. Since this is the case, it would be in your best interest to do the opposite- target good keywords and properly optimize your videos. With this said, there are 3 aspects of video SEO that many creators struggle with.

These 3 aspects that many creators struggle with are:

  • Keyword selection
  • Title optimization
  • Description optimization

Let's discuss each of these 3 things in more detail.

Keyword Selection

The biggest contributing factor to a video's ability to show up in the YouTube search results is keyword selection. If the keywords selected for a video are too competitive, the video will have a difficult time ranking high in the search results. This will lead to lower rankings and fewer views for the video.

Often, content creators target the most competitive keywords possible in hopes of getting more views. In reality, what they should be doing (especially if their channel is small) is targeting less competitive keywords with lower search volume. This way, their videos have a greater chance of showing up high in the search results.

Title Optimization

Many content creators look to large channels for guidance on how they should title their videos. The problem with this is, many large channels optimize their titles poorly for search. Meaning, many large channels are more focused on enticing people to click on their videos- not on ranking their videos in the search results.

When the title of a video is optimized poorly, it lowers the SEO score of the video at hand. This leads to a lower ranking for the video in the search results. As you might imagine, your goal should be to put your video in the best position to rank high in the search results. Having a poorly optimized title will not help with this.

Description Optimization

A lot of content creators do not know about the importance of having a properly optimized video description. Most content creators simply put links to their social media profiles and a line or two of text in their descriptions and that's it. Of course, this is not how descriptions should be written.

Descriptions exist to describe videos. But how can you describe videos in a way that YouTube's algorithms will understand? Place keywords in your descriptions! Don't just write a line or two of text. Take the time to fill out your descriptions with paragraphs and relevant keywords.

How Do I Get My YouTube Video to Show up in Search


At this point, you might be asking yourself: "How do I get my YouTube video to show up in search?" After all, many creators are vocal about their difficulties with getting their videos to show up in the search results. But is getting your YouTube video to rank in search as difficult as many creators make it seem?

Believe it or not, getting your video to show up high in search isn't as difficult as it seems. Focusing on 2 things will be enough to put your video in the position to rank higher than most videos. What are these 2 things? These 2 things are:

  • Video keyword selection
  • Video metadata optimization

Let's break down these 2 important things in more detail.

Video Keyword Selection

Keyword selection is incredibly important. Selected keywords can make-or-break the performance of a video. If the wrong keywords are selected, a video will not perform as well as it could have. Since this is the case, it's in the best interest of every content creator to learn how to find the best YouTube keywords.

Video Metadata Optimization

Selecting the best keywords is important, but using them properly is equally as important. Optimizing the metadata of a video will help YouTube's algorithms determine what a video is about. This way, the video can be ranked and promoted to users that might be interested in the video.

How Long Does It Take for YouTube Videos to Show up in Search


So, you've taken the time to select the best keywords and optimize the metadata of your videos. Great! But this leads us to the question- how long does it take for YouTube videos to show up in search? After all, putting in the time and effort to properly optimize your videos should lead to quick search engine rankings.

Upon being published, a video will show up in the search results. Where the video shows up will depend on how well it was optimized, the targeted keywords, and the authority of the channel that uploaded the video. If the video is poorly optimized, targets competitive keywords, and is uploaded by a low authority channel, it will rank low.

When a video is published, it will most likely move around in the search results. Meaning, for a few hours, it might rank in the first position for a particular keyword. Then, the video might rank in the third position for the next few hours. Eventually, the ranking of a video will begin to solidify based on how the video performs.

Upon publishing a video, do not expect it to rank in the first position for your target keyword right away. It is very rare for this to happen, and it typically only happens when a video is published by a channel with high authority. Select good keywords, optimize your video metadata and be patient.


As a small channel, it can be difficult to get your videos (and channel) to show up in a high position in the search results. In fact, large channels struggle with this as well. By selecting the best keywords for your channel authority and optimizing your video metadata data properly, you can help your videos show up higher in the YouTube search results.

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.
Learn More