You've followed all the best practices, added the best Tags but your video still doesn't rank in search results for those Tags. Why not??

First off, we understand it's frustrating. Heck, it even happens to us sometimes. But the more you understand how search rankings work, the better you can manage expectations and prioritize your efforts. 

There are many "indicators" that factor into what YouTube displays when someone performs a search. 

EXAMPLE: If someone performs a search for "Best Running Shoes", how does YouTube decide which videos to show? 

Here are many of the factors that go into it as well as their weight or importance:

VERY Important

  • That the Title of the video contains "Best Running Shows" (or some form / arrangement of the words)
  • You have a visually appealing thumbnail that is driving a high click-through rate
  • The content of your video is keeping people on YouTube's website longer and they don't bail on your video early
  • If the video is less than 1 week old. YouTube will "test" a video by placing it in the results with a "New" tag next to it in order to see how it performs. 
  • The channel size of the video publisher (Subscriber Count). All things even, YouTube will put videos of channels with a larger audience in the results over smaller channels.


  • Add "Best Running Shoes" in the first few lines of your Description
  • Add "Best Running Shoes" as a Tag for the video
  • Recommended but not necessary - upload Closed Captions for your video (assuming that you say "Best Running Shoes" multiple times within the video)

There will be times that you've done all you can and you're still not ranking because some things are out of your immediate control (for example, your channel size). 

What now?

Typically the answer is to target more specific search phrases. If you're not ranking for "Best Running Shoes", it's likely because the big guys with hundreds of thousands or millions of subscribers are making videos about the topic. Instead, focus on ranking for "Best Running Shoes for Women" if that's what your video is about. Or get even more granular, "Best Nike Running Shoes for Women 2019"

Of course people aren't searching for "Best Nike Running Shoes for Women 2019" nearly as often as "Best Running Shoes" but until you have the audience and authority that larger channels have on YouTube, it's the best you can do. 

Above all else, focus on making great videos that people enjoy and watch all the way through as well high quality thumbnails to help drive more clicks to your videos. YouTube will reward you if they find that people are clicking your videos more often and watching them all the way through. As time goes on, it'll get easier to rank for the keywords you want to target - just stick with it!