1. Have a meaningful channel name with target keywords. Use capitalization in the channel name so that it is clear. If you are starting a YouTube channel about cats, CuteCatsDaily is a better channel name than catschannel1987
2. Enter a title for the channel. By default your channel name is also the title of the channel but you can edit it in channel settings. Have your keywords in this channel for search optimization. Note that this channel title is in H1 tag – good for SEO.
3. Enter a link to your website in your channel. YouTube allows adding more than one link in your channel’s sidebar.
4. When uploading videos, enter the tags carefully. Enter low competition keywords. These keywords can be found out from AdWords Keyword tool. You can also enter tags from competing videos so that your videos will appear as related videos when those videos are watched.
5. If you are creating infomovies (videos with slides and voiceover) using PowerPoint or Keynote, make sure that you have a custom unique background for your slides. This custom background can contain your website’s URL on the top right corner or bottom right corner. With this technique you can gain visitors even if your video is embedded on other sites in which case your description and the link in it will not appear.
6. If you are making screencast videos, try to record the screen at 640×360 (16:9) so that the videos do not appear fuzzy. If you can’t do it in 360p, you can make it at 480p (854×480). Do not upload screencast videos in 720p unless you have no other option.
7. Use annotations in your video. Have a specific call to action in the annotation. You can link to subscribe page, channel page, another YouTube video or just ask the visitor to visit your URL for more information. Note that you can use only YouTube internal links in annotations, external linking is not allowed.
8. Make use of YouTube trends. You can create videos for your niche related to the trending videos and get a good number of eyeballs on your videos. Visit YouTube-trends.Blogspot.com (YouTube’s official blog) to see the latest trending videos.
9. Upload high quality videos consistently to keep your users engaged and YouTube happy.
10. Do not be too aggressive with marketing on YouTube. If you upload a sales video and wonder why it hasn’t gone viral, it is time to understand that YouTube is a content website. Deliver good content and then ask people to visit your website.
11. Try to get your face on the camera as much as possible. You can create talking head videos in a batch. Allot 1 or 2 days in a month for video creation and create 5-10 videos in 1 go. You may want to shoot those videos in different costume each time.
12. Do not upload 10 minute long videos. Attention span of users in YouTube is very low. In my experience 1-2 minute videos work best for YouTube. Deliver a short but powerful message. If you have something significant to say, break up the video into 2-5 parts and upload them with unique Keyword rich titles. This way you will get more viewers to your video and viewers can skip parts of your video if not interested. Make sure to link these parts of the video using annotations. However please keep in mind that this is recommended but not a rule. There are exceptions. I have 10-15 minute video going well on YouTube and a lot of others have too.
13. Controversial videos attract a lot of attention on YouTube. However make sure to provide some quality content after you attract the viewers using you controversial title.
14. Spend some time everyday on leaving useful comments in related videos. If your comments are liked, it will be on top and a lot of visitors will click on your username and land on your channel.
15. Every video you upload is eligible to be a video response to some video. Find some related videos in your niche and if appropriate, post a video response using one of your videos.
16. Have a separate Google account for your YouTube channel so that even if your account gets banned, your other services are not affected.