What are YouTube tags and how important are they?

YouTube – the world’s second-largest search engine – has gained massive popularity among content creators. AND due to this, keyword-optimizing your visual content for this platform is just as important as optimizing your content for Google.

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youtube tags

We all know that YouTube tagging is a common practice to keyword-optimize your videos, and it can be essential for finding new viewers. However, not everyone knows how to add YouTube tags to show up your content in search results.

Keeping this in mind, we have curated this essential pocket guide. Here, we will explore what YouTube tags are, how important they are, how to add them, and, last but not least, some best practices for YouTube tagging.

What Are YouTube Tags: Everything You Need To Know

A YouTube tag is a piece of words or phrases you can add to the description of your videos. This essential tag lets YouTube algorithms and viewers better understand what your video is about. Also, appropriate tagging helps your videos rank higher in YouTube’s search results whenever a user searches for your targeted keyword.

YouTube allows you to add multiple tags to your videos as long as the total number of characters does not exceed the limit of 500 characters. Accurate YouTube tagging primarily serves two purposes:

  • Helping YouTube algorithms determine your content’s relevancy to the search terms.
  • Allowing the platform to understand the applicability between different videos as similar videos might have the same tags.

Hashtags vs YouTube Tags

Most people get confused between hashtags and YouTube tags. REMEMBER: tags and hashtags seem similar, but they are entirely different from each other.

You can input hashtags in your video description box on the video page. In contrast, tags are added to the video page’s tag box. Furthermore, hashtags don’t have spaces, while tags can.

Here’s what a hashtag looks like:

  • #LearnAboutRoyaltyFreeMusic
  • #YouTubeAlgorithms
  • #LearnVideoProduction

Here’s what a YouTube tag looks like:

  • Learn About Royalty-Free Music
  • YouTube Algorithms
  • Learn Video Production

Now you’re well aware of what YouTube tags are, so let’s get into the importance of appropriate tagging.

youtube tags

Why is Appropriate YouTube Tagging Important?

YouTube tags are crucial for content creators as they help the platform algorithms determine what sort of videos are more relevant to the users’ searches. Appropriate Tagging and Effective Search Engine Optimization should be the primary focus if you want to improve the ranking of your YouTube videos.

Also, the proper use of YouTube tags is essential for the following reasons:

  • Using relevant tags helps YouTube algorithms better understand your videos and keep them at the top of the search rankings.
  • YouTube tags make it easier for viewers to find your videos when they search for your targeted keywords.
  • Adequate tagging lets the recommender system show the searchers the next relevant video through the use of YouTube tags.

You would be surprised to know that more than 2 billion monthly active users use YouTube to search videos of all sorts of niches. That means relevant video tags can help your content rank in the platform’s search results.

YouTube Tags And Ranking

The ranking of your YouTube videos and channel is directly associated with the tags. The tags you use determine which search results you show up on. Your channel and videos will get a higher ranking if they’re associated with specific keywords.

It is worth mentioning that YouTube does not count all of your tags in its algorithms, but let’s just assume that they do for the sake of simplicity. The first 3-5 tags you use are highly significant as they will be included in every search result for your targeted keywords.

So, you need to be creative with YouTube tags to make your videos stand out in search results. Also, it is good to add popular YouTube tags to improve the effectiveness of your first few tags.


Use your first target keyword as your first YouTube tag for best practice. Let’s say, someone wants to learn What is Royalty-Free Music and Why It Is Important. Then, your first keyword will be Royalty-Free Music, and you should use it as your first YouTube tag to achieve effective results.

How To Add Relevant Tags To Your YouTube Videos?

Follow the following simple steps for proper YouTube tagging:

Step 1: Sign in to your channel and go to your profile picture. Navigate to YouTube Studio from the dropdown menu.

youtube tags

Step 2: If you’ve already uploaded a video, select “Content” from the left menu and then navigate to the video.

Step 3: Hover over your video and click “Details.” Keep scrolling down and go to “Show More.”

youtube tags

Step 4: navigate to the “Tags” section and add multiple relevant tags up to 500 characters.

How to Find Relevant and Popular Tags for YouTube Videos?

Before starting YouTube tagging, you must spend some time researching relevant and popular YouTube tags. Needless to say, YouTube is the best platform for finding popular YouTube tags. YEP, you just need to go to YouTube and search for a video related to your topic.

For instance, if you’re making videos on how to take care of your hair at home. When you search for this topic, you will find several videos. Make sure to choose a video that fits your search query well, and check the YouTube suggestions on the right side of the screen.

YouTube shows these tags based on the relevant searches. So, you can pick the most relevant tags from these suggestions. Additionally, you can use YouTube tag generators or tag extractors to find even more popular and relevant tags for your content.

Here are some famous YouTube tag extractors and generators you can use:

Best Practices for YouTube Tagging

Check out the following tips to get the most out of your YouTube tags:

1. Use Trending Tags

The auto-suggest feature of YouTube is just impressive! It helps you check out the tags which are currently trending. For example, if you’re making a video on taking care of houseplants. Simply type your focused keyword into the YouTube search bar and draw inspiration from the auto-suggested tags.

2. Avoid Using Too Many Tags

Don’t use too many YouTube tags, as it can create confusion about your content. The platform’s algorithms are designed to show the most relevant results for each user. So, if your tags are not suitable or you’re going overboard when adding YouTube tags, the algorithms might relegate your videos to the bottom of search results.

3. Keep Your Tags Short

While you can use broad and long-tail keywords, YouTube prefers ranking short tags. According to Briggsby, make sure to keep your YouTube tags between 2 and 3 words to get the best-intended results. Furthermore, the analytics demonstrate that 31 to 40 relevant and trending tags are enough to make your YouTube videos appear at the top of the search results.

youtube tags

4. Don't Ignore Synonyms

When it comes to appropriate YouTube tagging, don’t underestimate the power of synonyms. Use synonyms related to your focused keyword to broaden the reach of your YouTube tags.

For instance, if you’re a food vlogger, some of your tags could be dishes, cuisines, cooking, and baking. Plus, it is wiser to consider how users might be searching for your videos.

5. Use the Main Keyword as Your First Tag

As mentioned earlier, the first few tags of your YouTube videos matter the most. So, use the focused keyword as your first tag to improve the ranking of your content.

Moreover, use some long-tail and broad keywords to help YouTube better understand the context of your videos.

6. Analyze Your Competitors' Videos

If the videos of your competitors are ranking higher, it’s because they’re using the proper YouTube tags. So, check out the tags your competitors use to get some great ideas.

To check the video tags of your competitors:

  • Open the video page on Firefox or Google Chrome
  • Right-click on the page and go to “View Source.”
  • Press “Control + F” and search for the word “Keywords”
  • Go to the source code to check the tags

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is a YouTube Tag?

Answer: A YouTube tag is a piece of words or phrases you can add to the description of your videos. It lets YouTube algorithms and viewers better understand what your video is about

Q: What are the Different Types of YouTube Tags?

Answer: General tags, error tags, and topic tags are some of the common types of YouTube tags you must use in your videos.

Q: Do you Need to Use YouTube Tags?

Answer: As a content creator, you must use appropriate tagging as it helps YouTube algorithms determine what sort of videos are more relevant to the users’ searches.

Q: Do YouTube Tags Work?

Answer: Yes, using trending and relevant tags can increase the ranking of your videos and attract new viewers.

Final Words: Would YouTube Tags Still Be Relevant in 2024?

The short answer is YES. Effective tagging is the best practice to improve the ranking of your YouTube videos and attract new viewers, and it will remain effective even in 2024. As a YouTuber, you must use relevant tags with proper thumbnails, titles, and video descriptions to get a massive edge over the competitors.

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