YouTube was launched on Valentine’s day, 2005 and was purchased by Google one year later. This social video platform is mainly driven by content creators and viewers. A person who creates and uploads content on their channel is a YouTube creator while a person who watches these videos are the viewers.
Now, viewers can subscribe to a channel to receive notifications when a new video is uploaded. They can also like, post and share their opinion through the comment section. This is the main point of interaction between the creator and the watcher.
To access YouTube, all that is required is a desktop, laptop or mobile device with an active internet connection. Anyone can use the video platform to upload original content, whether you are someone looking for a creative outlet or an MNC with a large marketing budget for advertising campaigns.
Towards the second half of the previous decade, YouTube gained popularity among the younger generation. Many viewers have cancelled their traditional TV cable plans in favor of YouTube’s wide variety of free content. It is available in every country except China (they have they’re own version called bilibili.com) and contains videos on every topic imaginable, from tutorial videos to troubleshooting ones as well as music, web serials, podcasts and product reviews.
You do not require a Google account to watch videos on YouTube. However, some videos that contain sensitive or restricted content will be blocked until you sign in. Also, you cannot like, subscribe or comment without logging in.
How to Watch Videos on YouTube?
Navigating around YouTube’s vast watchable content is a relatively easy process. It is available in over 50 languages and can be setup according to the viewer’s personal interests.
- Once you open YouTube, the main page will consist of a list of thumbnails categorized according to the most viewed videos in your location or country.
- There will be a search bar present at the very top of the recommended videos. Type in a specific topic and the videos that match your description will be displayed.
- You can also watch YouTube videos, through downloading the mobile app available for both Android and iOS.
- Some webpages will embed YouTube videos directly onto their websites, you can watch the video on their page or get redirected to YouTube.
- You can also access YouTube by linking on links that are shared through texts, emails, social media messages, etc.
Why Should I Create a YouTube Account?
You do not require a YouTube account to access the video platform but if you login, you will get access to many more features such as subscribing to channels, adding videos to water later, creating playlists, access to the comment section, personalized video suggestions and more.
If you are looking to upload your own unique content, you will need to create an account. Some of the main benefits of having an active YouTube account are listed below.
- Viewers can interact and support their favorite creators by joining in live broadcasts or share their opinions in the comment section.
- Viewers can mark videos to watch later (this is saved in a separate section).
- Viewers can keep a track of their search history and the videos watched.
- Viewers can post YouTube links to other websites and on social media.
- Viewers can create their own playlists and set them to either public or private access.
- Viewers can subscribe to channels, this will personalize their ‘recommended for you’ section.
- Viewers will receive notifications when new videos are uploaded from the channels they have subscribed to.
- Viewers can customize their playback settings, set or silence channel notifications, add custom profile or banner pictures and more.
If you are looking to download videos from YouTube, you can do so directly from the mobile app. However, not all videos will be downloadable due to copyright issues or restricted content. You can search for YouTube video downloaders that are currently available online.
How Does YouTube’s Search Algorithm Work?
YouTube uses a very complex algorithm to find out what videos to recommend. Based on what videos have been watched and the channels that are subscribed to, the algorithm searches and discovers similar videos for the user. These results will be displayed on the homepage once the user logs in. The search algorithm will analyse the following information of the user:
- Video search results.
- Watched later videos.
- Trending streams.
- Subscriptions tab.
- Watch Time.
- Videos that were commented on.
The main factor that YouTube’s algorithm considers is watch time. This is the amount of time a user has spent watching a video and how many times that particular video is watched by them.
YouTube then ranks the subscribed channels based on watch time to further personalize the ‘recommended for you’ section.
If you are a creator looking to get your videos on to the recommended list, make sure that the content you upload is relevant and engaging. Uploading quality content can increase the watch time of your videos. This will enable YouTube’s algorithm to display your videos on users homepages or the ‘suggested for you’ section.
To ensure that your videos stand out among billions of others, download a good YouTube video editor software. These editing softwares can polish and fine tune your video effects. Choosing a ‘click bait’ thumbnail isn’t suggested as it can mislead your viewers. Your thumbnail can be something interesting but the video description and title should be accurate.