Earlier this week on our weekly Reel Web video, Tim mentioned how YouTube's new Partner Product Bulletin announced the ability to link your website to your channel.  It said:  You now have the ability to officially link to a web domain to your Channel through IRDB.  After requesting to link the channel to the site, the site owner will have to authenticate the request before your channel will be officially linked.  We anticipate that this will boost search ranking, so recommend that you enable this feature.  It mentioned IRDB: what is that?  We still have no idea.

But, we looked at our account today and noticed an option through our channel settings that allowed us to do it.  It's supposed to help in search and help YouTube verify that your channel is the official representation of your brand.

How to Officially Link Your Website to Your YouTube Channel

The new feature is available only to partners.  For those who have achieved such high status at YouTube, the process is pretty simple.  All you have to do is to go to your YouTube channel settings.

How To Officially Link A Web Domain To Your YouTube Partner Channel youtube associated website 606x331

Put your website link into the field, then YouTube goes to verify it.  Get a "Success" and your channel and site are now linked.

How Does This Manifest and Will it Help with SEO?

We don't really know yet what this actually does and/or what it will end up looking like in terms of any indication within YouTube to users.

As for search, this could allow the YouTube to give more relevant results when people are looking for official channels to known brands.  Or it could help in regular search engines so that a brand's channel ranks higher in results.  We don't really know right now (and YouTube themselves used the words "we anticipate" when it comes to how it helps in search), but hey, the fact that it's available and it at least sounds useful makes this a nifty feature.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ray-Lane/1269020982 Ray Lane

    Anyone know where the Associate Website field went now? Used to be under 'Associated Website' then it was under 'Advanced' and now I can't find it.

    • Morten Haugum Hake

      I was wondering the exact same thing...

  • http://become-a-wealthy-affiliate.com/ Barry Livingstone

    My early returns from doing this aren't so good. Anyone else get a boost or penalty from trying this?

    • http://www.reelseo.com/ Mark Robertson

      Barry... I'd be very interested in what you've been experiencing. I am actually wondering something similar. Is your site doing worse in search since doing this and since panda 21?

      • http://become-a-wealthy-affiliate.com/ Barry Livingstone

        Made these changes only a day or two ago but the drop in traffic is like off a cliff... again... after previous poundings from other updates. Like many Google "improvements"... making me regret shaking Matt Cutt's hand.

        • https://mobile.twitter.com/MarkRRobertson Mark R. Robertson

          Interesting. I'm seeing the same thing. I wonder if others who did the association are seeing the same issues. Are you still seeing the problem? We're definitely affected by something related to dup content and I'm wondering if goo tube could be part of that, even though theoretically it should help.

  • https://mobile.twitter.com/chef_kendra Chef Kendra

    I have my website linked and it says success but in the features area the feature to link annotations to my website is grey, not green. Do you know why?

  • http://www.videoleadsonline.com/ videoleadsonline

    Know what...?This may be a method for YouTube to help establish Ownership of YouTube videos! What I mean is, this could be a way for YouTube to let us 'Embed" our own videos on our own 'associated website' and that tells Google/YouTube (GooTubePlus) that the video is ours (as opposed to someone else that embedded our video). This could be the way to allow our Embeds from YouTube to rank in our site's search results...Just a dream (maybe)?

  • Nick Hope

    I wonder what happens if you have 2 partner channels but only 1 website. Would it be possible to link them both? Might that "damage" the value of the link?

    • Jeff_Martin

      Nick Hope Not sure what you mean by "link". I don't think of this in SEO terms as a type of href to the site(s). Right now this looks to be an authentication system that might be a part of rel=me/author mix since Google Pages (for brands/companies) tethered to YouTube channels is still off and Google says "we anticipate" when it comes to a search boost.H/T to  Ronnie B. (http://www.livefyre.com/profile/3869125/)

      • http://www.bubblevision.com/ Nick Hope

        Jeff_Martin  Now I have set bubblevision.com as my associated website for my bubblevision youtube channel, so I expect I have done what Google want and hope to gain some future benefit by doing that. But what do I do about my 2nd youtube channel, underwaterfootage. It doesn't have its own dedicated associated website, and if anything it "belongs" with a subfolder of bubblevision.com. So if I also link it to bubblevision.com, might I mess things up, confuse Google, and potentially damage the nice neat linking of the first channel... That's what I was wondering. I'm sure lots of people have more than one partner channel, but only one website.

        • Jeff_Martin

          Nick Hope The way Google worded their blog post on Webmaster Central (the 2nd to last sentece) mentions multiple sites:"Through associates, webmasters can easily and safely allow others to
          associate their website with YouTube channels. We plan to support
          integration with additional Google products in the future.""YouTube chanels" seems support the idea of multiple channels belonging to a site. If you think how popular partners have 2 or more channels (Phil DeFranco, Mystery Guitarman, Howcast, etc.) this approach would make sense. Of course, however, not everything Google does makes perfect sense. : D

  • HowToBecomeTV

    Not working for me yet. No option for it. Perhaps this is only for "full" partners?

    • Chris Atkinson

      HowToBecomeTV Yeah, looks like it...they probably want to keep this "exclusive" for now.