YouTube’s launching a new test which will see search hyperlinks added to certain keywords within YouTube comments, as a means to drive improved discovery, and connect users to related content.
Which sounds a little unnecessary, but…
As explained by YouTube:
“Currently, if a viewer wants to learn more about a topic or product they find in a comment, they have to navigate away from the video they're watching to learn more. We're experimenting with new hyperlinked keywords in comments to reduce friction for viewers looking to discover new and relevant content on the platform.”
So it’s designed to keep your search activity in-stream, as opposed to you having to go looking for yourself.
YouTube says that phrases, or single words in comments ‘that encourage exploration’ will be hyperlinked within the test.
“Clicking on a link will initiate a new YouTube search with that term, navigating users to the search results page. To avoid interruption, the video will stay playing in the miniplayer. Linked keywords are determined by YouTube, based on what users are likely to want to explore further. The links cannot be added or modified by the commenter, though creators can remove links on their video comments if they'd like.”
Viewers will also be able to opt out of the experiment if they prefer their comments not to be hyperlinked.
It’s an interesting experiment, though I’m not sure it’ll have a heap of practical value. I mean, random searches based on keywords is maybe not likely to come up with targeted results – but then again, maybe it’s helpful, and it helps drive more discovery in the app.
I guess it’s worth a test at least.
In addition to this, YouTube’s also making community posts viewable on tablets, while it’s also adding a new metric in YouTube Analytics that will show how many users have opted into reminders for your upcoming live-streams or Premieres.
Finally, YouTube’s also updating its Channel Memberships functionality, with managers now able to manage Channel Memberships in the Studio mobile app. This was previously only available on desktop.
These are relatively small updates in comparison to hyperlinks in comments, but each will have its own value and purpose for YouTube managers.
You can learn more about YouTube’s latest updates here.