One Year Later – Update on YouTube Cards

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YouTube cards

Introduced in March 2015, YouTube cards are slowly replacing annotations. Since writing about how YouTube cards help business growth a few months ago, there have been a few changes. No worries! There are now more subcategories.

YouTube cards come in six categories: channel cards, donation cards, fan funding, link cards, poll cards, and video or playlist cards.

That seems like a lot, but we’re going to focus on YouTube cards that work best for business growth and lead generation. These are link cards, poll cards, and video or playlist cards.

You can add up to five cards per video. Cards are an important step in OPTIMIZING YOUR YOUTUBE CHANNEL. Let’s get started!


Link Cards

Link cards send viewers to specific URLs. This is great to pair with UTM tracking. You can link directly to your website from your video with associated website cards. Make sure you’ve already associated a website to your YouTube account!

Another link card to generate leads and drive traffic to your website is merchandise cards. You can send viewers to your storefront or product. Format the URLs correctly or the links won’t work.

Merchandise cards send viewers where you want them to go – straight to the shopping cart or landing page to buy. With unique URLs and/or UTM tracking, YouTube cards can send your prospective customer to the right place at the right time in the purchase funnel.

What’s even better about YouTube cards is that they work on any device – tablet, smart phone, desktop. Plus, video viewers are 1.7 times more likely to buy than non-viewers. Viewers already are primed and ready to buy. Merchandise cards are the permission for them to hop over to your website and complete the transaction.


Poll Cards

No, you can’t vote for the president with polls cards. Well, not yet anyway. You can let your viewers participate in multiple-choice polls while watching your video. With up to five choices in a poll card, you can get a lot of information from your viewers. (We’re still firmly divided on the dress being black and blue or white and gold.)

Use poll cards to find out what products or services your viewers want. Have viewers vote on the content of your next video. No matter what you do, viewers engaging with your content boosts your YouTube authority, which helps your videos show up higher and more often in organic search results.


Video or Playlist YOUTUBE Cards

These cards let you link to any public YouTube video or playlist. PLAYLISTS are critical for building YouTube authority. Why? They keep viewers on your channel for longer.

Showing a new product? Send viewers to the playlist on how to use it. Want to link to a specific video? These cards do that as well. The longer people stay engaged with your content and channel, the higher your YouTube content will appear in organic search results.


There you have it! YouTube cards help generate leads and drive traffic to your website because viewers are directed where to go. A card paired with a verbal call to action of “Visit our website” is far more likely to get someone to click than rattling off your URL. Cards are here to stay, so use them to your advantage.

Questions? Drop us a line.

Video Insights

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