TikTok SEO is no joke.

If you’re looking to make your business stand out (and why wouldn’t you be), it’s time for you to take TikTok SEO seriously.

Don’t worry, we understand that it’s a bit of an intimidating landscape if you’re not already familiar with it.

That’s why we’ve written this article to give you everything you need to know. 

What is TikTok SEO?

TikTok SEO is another marketing avenue for businesses, similar to any other popular social media platform on the internet.

You see, according to Senior Vice President of Google Prabhakar Raghavan, 40% of 18 to 24 year olds are using social media apps such as TikTok and Instagram as search engines instead of Google. 

So, if you want to capture this significant portion of the youth market, regular Google SEO (read our 5,000+ word guide on how to do Google SEO here) is not going to cut it.

The aim of TikTok SEO is to optimise the content that you upload to TikTok, in order to increase visibility when users ‘search for content’ on the platform.

Performing TiktTok SEO will help your video content appear for keywords or search phrases that are relevant to your content/brand/products/services.

Of course, once you have users their attention, you can encourage them to go back to your website and convert them to emails lists & even sales.

How do I best implement TikTok SEO?

Search Engine Optimisation might not be the easiest concept to grasp, but the actions you take to implement it are actually relatively simple.

Follow these steps and you can’t go wrong:

1. TikTok keyword research: Figure out what keywords you want rank for in TikTok

With other forms of SEO, keyword research is a little easier because there are a range of tools you can use to obtain keyword volumes. These tools don’t exist yet for TikTok, so you need to use your intuition to help with keyword research for Tiktok.

a. Brainstorm
The first step is to brainstorm the keywords you want to rank for in TikTok. I like to think about main topics that relate to my business, product names, service names & the problems that your customers experience, into a brainstorm list.

For example, my business is a SEO and website design agency, so our list could look like:

  • website designer
  • website design
  • SEO
  • search engine optimization
  • don’t rank in TikTok search results
  • website is slow loading

b. Use TikTok keyword autosuggest

Taking one of the topics from our brainstorm list above, I like to enter the topic into the search bar within TikTok and see what the ‘autosuggest’ recommends to find specific ideas.

In the example below, this has identified other variations we could easily make content on related to SEO + “salary” + “tips” + “fashion” + “instead of google” + “course” etc.

c. Use Discover to get an idea around volume

If you access discover, it will give you details on your brainstormed or autosuggested keywords in terms of volume.

In the example below, you can see there has been 10.8m views across this hashtag. Which you would assume there is sufficient demand for content in this topic.

d. Create list of target keywords

We would repeat the autosuggest process for our other main topic keywords we brainstormed.

From that process we would create a list of target keywords we could go after with our video content.

2. Create interesting video content about your keyword

It sounds obvious, doesn’t it?

However, when you consider how easy it is for a potential customer to just swipe past one of your videos, the importance of making sure your content is engaging becomes all the more clear.

Your TikTok video content must:

  • Hook your audience within 2 seconds;
  • Give your videos production value;
  • Make your videos unique; and
  • Ensure that your videos are relevant (not clickbait)

Hook Your Audience Within Two Seconds

Engagement is a key factor in tiktok’s algorithm therefore you want to grab the attention of the user ASAP.

One of the best ways is to use an old copywriting framework known as AIDA (attention, interest, desire, action). 

Some great examples of “Attention” that we found from high traffic volume videos were built with the following frameworks:

  • Something you need to know about [TOPIC]
  • Tactics that should be illegal to [RESULT]
  • How to do [TOPIC], without [ANNOYING TASK]
  • 7 Reasons You Should do X 
  • The Secret Method to [TOPIC] you should know
  • How to save money on [TOPIC]
  • Watch me turn X into Y
  • I started to hate X, so I did Y
  • 3 things that don’t add any value to your home
  • Most days I get ask why I X, here’s what i tell them
  • Stop buying X from the shops, do this instead
  • Stop wasting money on X, do Y instead
  • One way we got X RESULT, was do Y
  • How to [TOPIC]
  • Moments before X happened
  • The cheapest way to [TOPIC]

3. Use the right hashtags to boost discoverability

Hashtags are not a new tech phenomenon, they’ve been used by social media platforms to understand content and help users find associated content.

They are easily the most important aspect of TikTok SEO that you need to nail if you want to succeed.

In recent months, Google has been indexing user-generated content posted to TikTok — including video clips uploaded directly into the app.

This means that now, when someone searches for something specific on Google, they could see TikTok videos about that topic pop up in the search results (see Google results below for “tiktok seo” are actually showing the TikTok Discover for “seo tips” – interesting!)

While this might seem like a good thing, there are some things you should keep in mind.

For one, it makes sense that people searching for something would want to find out more information about what they’re looking for. But, this doesn’t guarantee that your content is going to stand out, even if it matches their search intent. 

After all, many of those TikToks that appear aren’t just random clips; they’re often sponsored posts from brands trying to promote themselves. In fact, since Google began indexing TikTok, we’ve seen a lot of companies try to take advantage of the new opportunity. 

So what do you do if you’re a small business trying to reach potential customers on TikTok? Well, this is where hashtags come in.

The best way to make sure that your videos end up in the right place is to include relevant hashtags in your description. When someone types a keyword into the search bar, it’ll look for related terms based on the context of the question being asked. To find the best hashtags to use for your target keyword, research the top video content in Discover to check what hashtags are being used and replicate.

If you’re promoting a product, for example, you’d also want to include the hashtag #productname, to help spur customers to create user generated content as well!

As long as you’re consistent with your choice of hashtags, you’ll ensure that your videos show up where they belong.

And once you start getting discovered on TikTok, you’ll likely see your numbers rise too.

4. Text in description

Another opportunity you have to optimise your video content on TikTok is in the video description.

The text you use in the video description will help both users and TikTok (and even Google!) understand what your content is about.

Ensure that you include your target keyword and also research in Discover the top content to get a feel for what keywords they are including.

5. Text heading on video cover

We’ve noticed for a number of videos that rank towards the top of TikTok search, that they have included their keyword in the first words of both the video cover image and the first frame of the video.

Therefore, we think it is a good idea to add the keyword you want to rank for, into these spots as well.

See the below example that is ranking for “seo tips” and that keyword is mentioned both on the:

  • Video cover image; and
  • Within the first video frame!

6. Make a statement with your content…

We said earlier that your content should be unique. That’s not so much a recommendation as it is an essential part of creating engaging TikTok content.

The biggest challenge is that the majority of TikTok creators follow the same formula, repeating the same challenges and themes over and over again. While this might work for some, it’s not enough to stand out in the crowded market. To truly differentiate yourself, you need to do something different. You need to find your voice and tell a story that connects with your target audience.

When creating content for TikTok, keep in mind that the goal isn’t just to attract views; it’s to engage with your audience. If you want to become a successful creator, you must understand what motivates your audience and how to connect with them.

If your content ends up the same as every other TikTok creator, your audience has no reason not to swipe past anything you post.

7. Don’t forget to post regularly

Quality and quantity are what you should strive for.

If you spend too much time trying to create the perfect work of art for every time you post, you’ve already failed.

TikTok’s algorithm favours content creators who post multiple videos per day. So, if you’re not posting regularly, you’ll quickly be left in the dust.

Of course, your content needs to be of a high quality, you also need to focus on producing high volumes of content rather than just posting one video once a week.

Hey, nobody said TikTok SEO was supposed to be easy!

8. Redirect your TikTok audiences to your website

TikTok users want to see something besides videos of cats and dogs. They’re looking for real businesses, brands, and products. After all, you wouldn’t be here if they weren’t.

If you haven’t been able to figure out how to take advantage of this trend, it might be because you haven’t redirected your TikTok followers to your website. If you do redirect them, you’ll be increasing traffic to your site. You’ll also be building trust with your audience, and that’s important.

When you redirect your TikTok followers, you give them a reason to follow you on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. This helps your brand grow and become more credible. When you redirect your TikTok users, you’re giving them a reason to come to your website. And once they land on your website, you’re giving them another reason to stick around.

You can use tools like LeadPages to help you redirect your TikTok audience to a landing page. Once your potential customer lands on your website, you can send them down a path towards conversion.

9. Collaborate with other creators for marketing campaigns

TikTok, like any social media platform, offers a great opportunity for collaboration. Whether that means reaching out to influencers who might be interested in your product, or even competitors who might mutually benefit from making content with you; don’t box yourself in when it comes to content. 

10. Use TikTok Ads

TikTok ads are one of the best ways to promote your brand online. They’re very effective because they allow businesses to connect directly with customers, and unlike most social media platforms, there’s no limit on how many times a business can run an ad.

You can start an ad campaign for free, and once it reaches 10 impressions per day, you pay $0.01 per impression. If you want to increase your budget, you can buy impressions for $0.05 each.

Another aspect of TikTok advertising that makes it more accessible for businesses compared to other social media platforms is that you don’t have to build an audience to advertise on TikTok. You simply post a video and wait for people to watch it. Once someone watches your video, they see your ad.

If you use branded hashtags, you can even reach your target audience without paying anything. For example, if you sell outdoor equipment, you could create a hashtag like #outdoorlife and upload videos about hiking and camping. Then, whenever someone uses the hashtag, they see your ad in their feed.

11. Make use of TikTok Marketing Analytics Data

This is absolutely a no-brainer. Under any context, knowledge is your best asset. Once you have a TikTok pro account, TikTok gives you easy access to all kinds of statistics that you can use to further inform your marketing strategies going forward. Examples include:

  • Number of views
  • Number of followers
  • How many videos end up in the trending section
  • How much traffic you get from different sources (i.e. for you page, follows, profile visits)
  • Where your audience is located, etc.

12. Create TikTok user funnels

If you gather your TikTok marketing data and think “now what am I supposed to do?”, the answer is this.

With the help of Tiktok Analytics, you can now find out exactly what types of videos your target audience likes best. This helps you create better content that appeals to them. You can also learn about the demographics of your audience, including age, gender, location, language, and interests.

You can also use the Tiktok Pixel to measure the performance of your ads and optimise them accordingly. For example, you can set up campaigns based on keywords, locations, interest categories, or even device usage.

How to Rank Your TikTok in Google?

Have you noticed nowadays that, when you search the phrase “TikTok” + “KEYWORD”, your Google results will include a reel of TikTok videos?

This is not an accident. Google has implemented this function because they’re aware of how prominent TikTok is becoming as an alternative for search engines (how does the old saying go? If you can’t beat them, join them).


  • How do you make this work for you? 
  • How do you ensure that your TikToks are the ones curated into this reel? 
  • How do you guarantee that your TikToks will correspond with the right keywords?

The answer is similar to the kind of SEO you’d perform for Google, involving the following.

  • Making your TikTok short form video content unique and engaging
  • Adding relevant hashtags
    • You can find relevant hashtags through tools, or by observing the hashtags of your high-ranking competitors
  • Conducting keyword research for your posts to make sure they are ranking well for searches people conduct every day
  • Coordinating your other social media platforms (e.g. Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, etc.) to drive traffic towards your TikTok

Keep in mind that SEO is a marathon, not a sprint. Nobody instantly ranks on Google. It’s a process that takes time and constant refinement. Don’t think of the above list as a checklist, but a guideline that should inform your process going forward.

What is TikTok?

TikTok started as a rebrand of a Chinese social media app called Musical.ly, and it has since gone on to become one of the most popular social media apps circulating the market, with over a billion active monthly users worldwide.

Its success can be attributed to many factors, such as it’s:

  • easily consumable short form video content;
  • easy to use content creation tools; and
  • advanced content curation.

Essentially, users are greeted with a never ending conveyor belt of minute-long videos whose contents are curated based on the interests of the user.

The end result is an app that is easy to use and incredibly addictive as you’re constantly being surved content based on your interests. (a.k.a. The perfect place for your business to reach new users!).

Why should I care about TikTok SEO?

Did we mention that TikTok is expected to reach 1.8 billion monthly users by the end of 2022? The app alone has been downloaded over 3 billion times. In 2021, TikTok generated $4.6 billion in revenue.

Sure, you technically don’t need to engage with TikTok. But, looking at the above statistics makes it perfectly clear that your target audience probably is. If you want to engage with your target audience, TikTok gives you the perfect opportunity to do it.

What is the best type of content on TikTok?

One of the major benefits of TikTok is that its easy to use platform allows for a lot of flexibility when it comes to styles of content. However, if you want to promote your business, it’s probably a good idea to stick to the following content types:


The vast majority of TikTok content is light hearted, playing perfectly into its fun. easy to consume ethos. What better way to connect with your audience and establish a relationship than to make content that tickles their funny bone?


The thing about Tiktok’s short form video content is that it allows for engaging educational content. In a minute long video, you can teach your customers about your business’ history, or troubleshoot any problems a customer may have with your product. You can even answer their questions directly.


If done correctly, responding to trends is a great way to boost visibility. Whether it’s a hashtag, a song, a challenge – if it matches your content intent and makes sense for your product or service, this kind of content convinces TikTok that you are relevant, making you more visible for users.

Influencer Collaborations/Sponsorships

TikTok is known for elevating many content creators and giving them a massive audience. If you can get them to review your product, promote your business, or showcase your service, you will likely find new customers in their expansive list of followers.

Localised Content

Just because you’re on a global platform, does not mean you can’t also cater to your local customers as well. Sure, make that broader content to draw in a new audience, but you can do all kinds of things for your local customers as well, such as personalised sales, responses to current events, etc.

In Summary…

Tiktok SEO is important, and you need to take it seriously if you want your business to succeed. This is because a significant portion of people are using TikTok as an alternative to search engines. You therefore need to implement TikTok SEO the way you use Google SEO.

You do this by:

  • Creating engaging content
  • Using hashtags effectively
  • Redirecting your Tiktok audiences to your website
  • Collaborating with popular TikTok creators
  • Taking advantage of TikTok’s ad capabilities
  • Using TikTok’s marketing analytics

Because TikTok is such a powerful platform, projected to reach 1.8 billion monthly users after successfully gaining 3 billion downloads and $4.6 billion in revenue in 2022 alone, you can’t afford to overlook TikTok if you’re looking to promote your business.

There are various sub-genres of TikTok content that you can pivot towards, such as:

  • Humorous
  • Educational
  • Trend-following
  • Influencer-collaborative/sponsoring
  • Localised

Using TikTok SEO means that your TikTok content will appear in Google’s SERP, netting you an avenue with which you can connect to a whole new audience.

Let us know what you think of our TikTok SEO guide, by leaving a comment below!