Unlock the Secrets of the YouTube Algorithm with Experts

Reading time

8 Min

Author

Polina Aleksina

Date

30 May 2024

How to hack YouTube algorithm

With millions of YouTube users uploading millions of videos daily, the competition to get your video recommended by YouTube's algorithm can be tough. So, many creators have been questioning the effectiveness of YouTube's algorithms, wondering if they can hack them. Let's take a look at what the experts have to say about it!

What Is the YouTube Algorithm?

YouTube already has over 113,9 million channels that produce content on topics ranging from kids' content, and entertainment to educational content. Creators upload around 500 hours of video every minute! 

Such numbers are staggering and the logical question arises, how do you compete with so much content? How to promote your video? That's why it's worth discussing YouTube's algorithms.

The platform uses the YouTube algorithm to determine which videos are recommended to users on the YouTube website or app. It’s powered by machine learning that uses data to improve the accuracy of predictions over time.

The algorithm takes such factors into account as:

  • Viewing history
  • Search history 
  • User location
  • Title, description, tags
  • Number of subscribers on the channel
  • Engagement metrics (comments, likes, watch time, average view duration, and others) 

What Is the Main Goal of the YouTube Algorithm?  

One of the key goals of the YouTube algorithm is to keep viewers engaged and stay on the platform for as long as possible. To achieve this, the algorithm prioritizes videos that are likely to keep viewers watching, whether recommending videos from the same channel or promoting content similar to what the user has already watched.

Another important aspect of YouTube's algorithm is its role in promoting new and emerging content creators. The algorithm analyzes the effectiveness and popularity of different types of content, identifies trends, and promotes such content.

To summarize, YouTube's algorithm is an important technology that plays a big role in promoting the content that users see on the platform. Therefore, creators must understand how the algorithm works and optimize their content accordingly to achieve maximum reach and results.

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How Does the YouTube Algorithm Work?

YouTube has undergone significant changes since its inception. Initially, the platform didn't have an algorithm; instead, the number of likes and clicks determined which videos appeared at the top. Eventually, YouTube introduced an algorithm that prioritized videos with the highest watch time, leading to many subsequent updates and refinements.

As of 2024, the YouTube algorithm is highly personalized, tailoring video suggestions for each user. For instance, if you search for insights from the VidCon Conference for Creators on YouTube, your recommended videos will differ from someone else's recommendations, even with the same search.

The current YouTube algorithm focuses more on the user than the video itself. Here are the main factors it considers when recommending videos to you:

  1. Interest Level: The algorithm assesses whether people are interested in a video. Before recommending it to you, YouTube reviews previous recommendation results to see if people watched the video, ignored it, or clicked "not interested."
  2. Engagement: Engagement is crucial, particularly watch time. The algorithm evaluates not only the total watch time but also the average percentage viewed to gauge the video’s popularity.
  3. Viewer Feedback: YouTube takes into account likes, dislikes, comments, and survey feedback from viewers after watching the video.

Overall, the algorithm selects videos based on their popularity and quality, while also considering what you, the viewer, typically watch and enjoy. This personalized approach ensures that each user receives the most relevant and engaging content possible. 

In essence, the YouTube algorithm is designed to enhance your viewing experience by continually learning from your interactions and preferences, delivering content that feels tailored just for you.

How to Hack YouTube Algorithm 

In 2024, there's one common question for creators on YouTube: how to hack YouTube's algorithm code. Thousands of our partners have asked that question, and the thing is, sometimes simple tweaks in SEO optimization can change the whole picture. You can opt for a professional channel audit here, and our experts will pinpoint the adjustments you should make so your videos get favored by the YouTube algorithm.

 

Experts from YouTube also have some insights to share about the algorithms. Let's go through the latest updates directly from people who work at YouTube.

YouTube Algorithm: What to Watch Out For

So what is important? Let's find out what the experts have to say about it! 

How to hack YouTube algorithm

The latest interview with Google's Senior Director of Product Management, Todd Beaupré, and YouTube's creator relations officer, Renee Ritchie, reveals what the algorithms prioritize. Here are the key takeaways from their conversation:

  1. YouTube's recommendation algorithm analyzes videos individually, rather than averaging the performance of the entire channel. This way, users get a personalized viewing experience and creators can try different video formats without compromising the channel's position in the recommendations.
    Beaupré emphasized that with this algorithm, one bad video won’t affect the overall performance and success of the channel. The algorithm helps unlock the potential of each video and protects creators from failure by allowing them to release a better video.
  2. Creators should not forget about the users and their preferences. The algorithm generates video recommendations when a user visits YouTube to show videos that are similar to the user's browsing history and match the viewer's preferences.
  3. Creators shouldn't stress too much if their recent uploads don't gain a lot of views right away. Videos can gain attention over time if a trend picks up and a larger audience becomes interested in the topic. So, creators need to stay open to opportunities beyond immediate metrics.
  4. While posting videos regularly is good, a break in video creation shouldn’t cause a disaster either. According to the expert, the algorithm aims to ensure that each viewer finds the right content, so they don’t overemphasize past data.
  5. Most importantly, creators should pay attention to audience response. How subscribers react to a format, what's the response, what's the effectiveness. The expert emphasized that sometimes it is difficult to understand why some formats are more successful than others. Viewers and their preferences can be unpredictable.

The algorithm adapts to what the users want to see, not the other way around. Meet your subs, interact with them, listen to what they want, see how they watch, mix and match your content, and add a personal touch. This is how you crack the YouTube algorithm and create loyal subscribers!

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