Pro Tips for YouTube Watching

Education & Training with Tech Training for You!

So I hear you've been spending more time on YouTube than you used to.
(hahaha don't deny it! We all have! #newreality #covid19)

So in this post, I figured some YouTube pro level tips would be an excellent topic to cover. Let's make the best use of our time on YouTube! :) 


Pro Tip #1 - Open in New Tab

Whether you are on the YouTube home page with featured videos or on a YouTube search page where there is a whole list of search result videos to check out, you should be aware that a Control (Command) click will help you. When you  hold the Control key (Command key on Mac) as you click on the video links, each of the videos that you click on will open up in a new tab and you will then have set up a "what to watch next" sequence. When I do this in the Chrome browser, it is smart enough to know to NOT start each of the videos until you actually jump to that tab to view it. By the way, holding the control key down when you click on links also is a useful tip when you are on a plain old Google search results page or even on the home page of a site like ActiveRain where there are several posts that you want to go check out. By control clicking from the main page, you'll have your articles all lined up and ready to read!


Pro Tip #2 - Shortcut Keys

There are two keyboard shortcuts for YouTube that I highly recommend. Once you click on a video it will play. However, if you get interrupted while you are watching, just press the space bar and it will pause the video. When you are ready to resume, press the spacebar again. The second tip includes a reminder to not forget that full screen mode is an excellent option for watching videos. All you simply need to do is press the F key on your keyboard and it will jump to full screen mode (press F again to jump back to normal). Especially when you are watching tech how-to videos, it is helpful to see it big, so you can clearly see everything being demonstrated. Now a bonus tip in this category: When you are embedding videos in your ActiveRain blog posts, it is better to use the embed code from YouTube rather than to use the insert video toolbar button on the blog post editor. Doing the insert video button method, your embedded videos will not be enabled for full screen viewing so it is better to get the embed code for your YouTube videos. See my blog post for embedding videos if you want to learn more about that.

Pro Tip #3 - Change the Playback Speed

So many videos... so little time! There are so many videos with such great information and you are learning lots of new things, however what if it played faster? You can learn more in the same amount of time! Use the gear icon in the lower right of the video frame to pick the playback speed that you want. You can increase the speed to: 1.25x 1.5x, 1.75x or evern 2x! I find in my case, I'll playback most instructional videos at 1.5 or 1.75x and be able to get through the information substantially faster. You can always try out the various speeds and see which one works best for you.

Pro Tip #4 - Use the YouTube Sidebar

There are all kinds of 'right under your nose and easily overlooked' great tools in the left sidebar of the home page of YouTube. If you are looking for someting new to watch, go here! Subscriptions will show you a page full of the most recent content from all the channels that you have subscribed to. The Library page shows a combination of your history (in case you want to watch again, e.g. a recent tutorial) it also shows videos you've liked and it also shows your special playlist called 'watch later'. Any time that you see a video that you would like to check out, but just don't have time to do so at the moment, just add the video to your 'watch later' playlist and then you can circle back to it when you do have time. Your history and watch later items are also listed specifically on the left sidebar so you don't have to jump into Library if you want to go direct. At the bottom of the left nav pane is a listing of those you've subscribed to in order of those who have published new content most recently. If you see a blue dot, that indicates they have new content that you have not yet seen!

Pro Tip #5 - Support Your Favorite YouTubers with WLC

You've heard of TLC, but in the YouTube world we like to think of WLC!

WLC is watch + like + comment!

The YouTube algorithms like to promote videos that it thinks are the best for any given search. So if a video has good WATCH time and people are clicking the LIKE button and if people are inclined to leave COMMENTS or interact, then these are signals that it is good content that it should promote. So if you want to lend positive support to your favorite content creators, give them some WLC! It has been said that 30 seconds minimum is required for YouTube to count it as a view. Things change and I'm not sure if that is still true. However besides just a minimum watch time, even better is watching a video at least halfway through. This is an additional signal that a video not only has a 'view' but that it has 'value'. These signals are all part of what YouTube uses to rank the videos in results. If you are trying to support someone, especially if they are just starting their YouTube channel, these are things you can keep in mind. If you play a video but then change to a different tab, don't be so sure that YouTube is also aware that you did that and that you may be trying to 'game' the view metrics. So just keep it real!

You've no doubt discovered lots of interesting content on YouTube as you go explore this medium! I hope you leverage this to learn lots of new skills while we have the time to do so! I hope you learned one or two (or five) new things today. Thanks for stopping by Craig's Classroom :)

Leave me a like or comment below if you enjoyed!

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Craig Daniels
This blog is all about technology and helping you to use it smarter! Your digital footprint is your chance to attract new clients. What kind of impression are you making via your website, blog, and social media? We’ll be talking about that! Are you as productive as you can be? What apps might help you out? Do you know how to use all the best tools inside the apps? I enjoy photography and videography, you can expect to see those topics also on this blog.
Are you ready to learn?
Welcome to Craig’s Classroom!

PS - get ready for some homework… :) 

Comments (25)

Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

This is the first time I’ve seen YouTube watching tips on this blog in the basics all work. I can attest to this!

Apr 25, 2020 11:13 PM
Bruce Hicks
Best Homes Hawaii - Honolulu, HI
Your Best Hawaii Realtor!

Very good Craig Daniels .  Thanks for the tips.  I most frequently use the playback speed!

Apr 25, 2020 11:22 PM
Peter Mohylsky, Beach Expert
PMI. Destin - Miramar Beach, FL
Call me at 850-517-7098

thanks for sharing,  yes, i have been watching too much tv these days.  

Apr 26, 2020 05:58 AM
Debbie Gartner
The Flooring Girl - White Plains, NY
The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers

Thx for the tips. I use some of those, but not all.I really need to remember to increase the playback speed on some. It would really save some time.

Apr 26, 2020 08:25 AM
Mimi Foster
Falcon Property Company - Colorado Springs, CO
Voted Colorado Springs Best Realtor

I always learn so much from you. These are all brilliant suggestions, and I didn't know four of them. I have now gotten a lot of use out of the 1.75 speed! 

Apr 26, 2020 09:48 AM
Janice Zaltman
United Realty Group - Boca Raton, FL
Energy Efficient And Eco-Friendly Homes in Florida

Thank you so much Craig! Yes, we have been spending more time on You Tube. What has been annoying is when it scolls automatically to another video that I don't want to watch. Will try your suggestions. 

Apr 26, 2020 11:24 AM
Myrl Jeffcoat
Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Realtor - Retired

That is valuable information, Craig.  I find myself spending more and more time on Youtube.  Especially lately!

Apr 26, 2020 12:35 PM
Myrl Jeffcoat
Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Realtor - Retired

CONGRATULATIONS Craig, on having this blog FEATURED in the Old Farts Club group!  

Apr 26, 2020 12:35 PM
Kris Collis, Associate Broker
Smart Way America Realty - East Stroudsburg, PA
Professional Results you Expect 570-801-5525

Craig, valuable and useful for sure.  Technology is a never ending learning process, thanks for sharing.  I will definirely be using these tips.

Apr 26, 2020 03:57 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

wow, Craig, this is great stuff, thanks!

I actually don't watch all that much on YouTube, even these days but I may have to practice using these tips. Bookmarked!



Apr 26, 2020 04:13 PM
Craig Daniels
Tech Training for You! - Staten Island, NY
Technology Instructor/Project Consultant

Janice Zaltman - another pro tip: you can turn off the autoplay next video, look for this setting

Apr 26, 2020 05:15 PM
Mimi Foster

I HATE it when videos autoplay. Good to know!

Apr 26, 2020 07:30 PM
Janice Zaltman

Craig, Thank you so much.  Quarantined and learning. It's a beautiful thing. And I can stop the video from my keypad. Yay!

Apr 27, 2020 06:35 PM
Realty Pack
Realty Pack - Bel Air, CA
Real Estate Blog

Great tips, Craig Daniels. Thanks for sharing.

Apr 27, 2020 03:03 AM
Laura Filip
Laura Filip Broker , Opening doors for All Seasons of Life - Whitesboro, TX
What can we do for you today?

Beautiful tips and great ideas to venture into as we watch videos. Have a great day. 

Apr 27, 2020 04:35 PM
Jill Watts
Realty Pro, Inc. - Vancouver, WA
A Luxury Experience at Every Price Point!

Thanks!  I watch a lot of webinars on YouTube...but I can say the younger generation uses YouTube like we used encyclopedias! You can pretty much learn anything on there!!


Apr 28, 2020 09:48 AM
Debe Maxwell, CRS
Savvy + Company (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC

WOW! What great tips you've shared, Craig! Like everyone else, we're spending more time on YouTube - either for classes or watching dog/cat videos!

Apr 28, 2020 01:40 PM
Lyn Sims
Schaumburg, IL
Real Estate Broker Retired

Great tutorial as always Craig. Will remember those easy tips. You are right that I've been spending more time there looking for things to watch.

May 02, 2020 11:02 AM
Joe Manausa - Tallahassee, FL
Joe Manausa Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Tallahassee Real Estate

I love tip #3 Craig Daniels , I watch a lot of tutorials and this will be a huge time-saver

May 07, 2020 12:35 PM
Craig Daniels

I love to hear quite a few mentioning it was a discovery. Enjoy your new superpowers :)

May 07, 2020 04:09 PM
Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
CEO of Vision Drive Realty - Coastal San Diego

I watch more YouTube than TV. Great tips thank you!

Jun 18, 2020 10:21 PM
Scott Seaton Jr. SLS Home Insp
SLS Home Inspections-Kankakee Will Iroquois Grundy Counties - Bourbonnais, IL
The Home Inspector With a Heart!

so glad I followed your page. Thanks for the great info. 

Jun 22, 2020 10:24 AM
Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

I find the speed control very useful every time I use it and I can get to a lot of good lectures that way. So many people talk at different speeds when I watch a Ted talk or something.

Jul 18, 2020 11:15 PM