Best practices for metadata

Metadata is information about your video, such as the video title, description, tags and annotations. Metadata helps users find your video when they search for something on YouTube. To have the best possible experience on YouTube, be sure to follow these guidelines.

Don't use misleading metadata

Do not include metadata in your video that is not directly related to your video. It may be tempting to use popular terms or names in the description or tags to increase views, but if your metadata includes names or words unrelated to your video, you may receive a strike and your video will be removed.

Example: If you make a video about baking a cake and your video is not at all related to a popular singer, you should not include that popular singer's name in your tags or description. Doing so may cause your video to be removed and given a strike if it is flagged.

Don't put tags in descriptions (tag-stuffing)

Tags are single words or short phrases meant to help categorise your video. YouTube gives you an opportunity to include these in the tags section of your upload. This is the only place you should put them. Tags are not meant to be placed in the description. Placing tags in your description or title is called tag-stuffing and this may cause your video to be removed.

While tags can occasionally be helpful for your audience to search for and find your videos, we recommend that you spend most of your time optimising your thumbnails, titles and descriptions for the best SEO (search engine optimisation) results.

Use metadata to provide context

It is a good idea to tell your viewers why your video is important to watch, especially if the content is difficult to watch or controversial. Be sure to include who, what, when, where and why the video is important to watch. This will help our users understand why your video is important and it will help our review team make the best possible decision if your video is ever flagged. Read more about why context is important.

Note: Links on your YouTube Content to external websites that include pornography, malware or other content that doesn't meet our Community Guidelines are not allowed on YouTube. Learn more about the policy for links in your content.

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