How to Track YouTube Progress on Your Channel

If you are looking at views and subscribers to monitor your success on YouTube and have less than 100 videos on your channel- you are focused on the wrong things.

Don’t get me wrong, if you are serious and want users to like, follow and respond to your video production effort, you want to track results.

But what to track first is critical to what to track later.

Views and Subscribers are great- but for those to increase, some other metrics need to be dialed in first. It’s an absolute must. When we help our clients track their progress, just look at what happens!

So, how do you in fact track your YouTube video progress? The fact of the matter is that it is relatively easy when you keep tabs on the three most important metrics. The metrics include watchtime, clickthrough rate (CTR) and traffic sources. Let’s explore what these mean and how you can properly track your progress.


This is perhaps the most important metric to track. Watchtime refers to the amount of time someone sits and watches your video and is reported as an aggregate of all users watching your video. In addition, watchtime also accounts for people binge-watching your channel.

The goal to hit for watchtime is 50-60%. This goal is near impossible to hit without a solid structure and format to your videos. Keep in mind, someone must watch your video for at least 30 seconds in order to even be counted as ‘watched.’

When you look at the analytics, you can tell where people left your video. This is important because you can then determine at which point your video became boring or not valuable anymore. Basically, wherever people left off watching your video, stop doing that. You might also notice upswings in your metrics, so be mindful of that and do more of it!

Clickthrough Rate (CTR)

The CTR is also going to be very valuable to understanding the success of your video.

To understand the CTR you must understand what impressions are. An impression is counted when your video comes across the eyes of a viewer via scrolling through YouTube, Facebook, email or other platforms. Now when your YouTube video thumbnail is actually clicked, this is called the clickthrough rate.

A CTR of 3-4% is on the low side of normal. You want to be shooting for 10% or higher. CTR lets you know how good your video title and thumbnail was. Furthermore, it is a direct correlation to how relevant your content was to your audience. The higher your CTR is, the more your audience is actually interested in what you are putting out.

Lastly, the longer people watch your video, the more likely YouTube will suggest your video to other users. As your watchtime increases, so will your impressions. If you have poor watchtime, YouTube will be far less likely to suggest it to more viewers because of its poor performance.

Traffic Sources

It is also important to track where your traffic comes from. Did more people watch your video from an external source like an email? Did more traffic come from within YouTube itself? When a video is offered up to a user within YouTube, this is called the YouTube Suggested Algorithm. This can help you determine which method of transmission works best for your videos and where you could improve.

Just remember, your traffic sources will change over the lifetime of your video. The numbers can look very different from day 2 to week 2.

Ready to improve your CTR and Watchtime so that you can start increasing views and subscribers for next steps?

Join our next full-day YouTube Visibility Workshop and also get Lifetime membership to The Video Marketing School.

This is a Full-Day Workshop with 4 Sessions that Include training, workshop time, and feedback!

-Clickable Topic and Title Strategy (CTR)
-Clickable Thumbnail Strategy (CTR)
-Engaging Video Structure and Framework (Watchtime)
-Production Workflows and YouTube Optimization Strategies (CTR and Views)

Plus- the lifetime membership to The Video Marketing School which gives you access to our monthly coaching call as long as you need to attend, all our pre-recorded trainings to go through on your own time and focused on YouTube, Live stream, video-based funnels, and more!


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