Wouldn’t it be great if you had your very own AI assistant that gave you personalized recommendations based on the things you have enjoyed in the past? While it is not exactly an AI assistant, YouTube has something similar that gives you recommendations based on your tastes.
Known as the Browse Features, this works wonderfully in helping you discover new channels and videos. Let’s learn what it is and how it works!
What Are The Browse Features on YouTube?
YouTube Browse Features are a set of features that work on delivering personalized video recommendations to users. The YouTube algorithm tracks a user’s past viewing history and recommends other videos that they are likely to watch.
The video recommendations are calculated based on:
- Past viewing history
- Past search history
- Types of channels the user prefers watching
- Length of videos preferred by the user
- Videos that have done well
- Your Google searches
For YouTube content creators, the Browse Features provide a way to get more potential viewers and subscribers for their channel. In short, it is a recommendation tool as well as a traffic source.
What Are The Different Types of YouTube Browse Features? How Can They Help You Discover New Videos And Channels?
Here are 8 different types of YouTube browse features to help you discover new channels!
#1 YouTube Home Screen
The home page is the first thing you see when you open YouTube. This page is different for each user and is filled with videos that you are most likely to enjoy – even from channels that you haven’t subscribed to.
Let’s say you watched a few vegan recipe videos from creator X. The YouTube algorithm will conclude that you are interested in similar stuff, so it will look at other vegan/ cooking videos (say, from creator Y) and analyze if other users who watched creator X’s videos were also interested in creator Y’s videos. If yes, it will fill your home page with creator Y’s videos.
The home page is separated by different categories which you can view at the top. So, if you only want to explore new videos under a certain topic, you can click on that topic and explore away!
#2 Watch Later
When there is a video you want to watch later, you can click on the three dots beside the video, select “add to playlist” and click on “watch later.” When you have time for it, you can come back to this playlist and watch the videos.
The content you add to your watch later playlist also determines the types of suggested videos you will receive on your home page!
#3 Watch Next
When watching a video, you must have noticed a list of new videos on the right side of the screen. This list changes for every video and will contain a mix of content similar to the one you are currently watching (both from the same channel as well as other similar ones) + some others unrelated to the topic, but based on your past viewing history.
For example, if you are watching a cat video, you may find animal-related videos on the right.
#4 Subscription Feed
The subscription feed is the place where YouTube shows all the recent videos from the channels you have subscribed to. The content here is categorized under “today,” “yesterday,” “last week,” and “last month” to help you find the recent uploads easily.
YouTube knows that a subscription means you want to watch that creator’s videos more. But, sometimes, it can be easy to miss a new upload. But, by going to the subscription feed, you can stay up-to-date on all the new content by your favorite channels!
#5 Recommended Shorts
Shorts are a great way to keep yourself entertained for a while and also discover new channels and YouTube makes this process very easy! Click on the “shorts” tab on the left corner, and you are good to go!
#6 Explore/ Trending
The explore tab is a top tier YouTube browse feature and is probably one of the best ways to discover new videos and channels. Scroll down a bit, and you will find it on the left corner of the screen.
As you can see, the explore tab is separated into various categories such as trending, fashion, learning, news, sports, music, and so on. Each category will give you a new set of recommendations under that topic. If there are any major live events happening, you will find those at the top.
Under the trending category, you will find a mixture of viral videos from all niches. In order to be featured here, a certain video must have a high engagement count.
The recommendations under the explore tab can range from videos that are just a few weeks old to ones that are a few years old! This is because YouTube wants to promote exceptional videos that it thinks you will really enjoy.
#7 Personalized Playlists
Sometimes, YouTube creates personalized playlists that fit your interests based on the videos you have watched in the past. You can easily identify them by the word “mix” in the title.
These mixes are tailored to you, specifically, and are regularly updated so they don’t become obsolete. One thing I really like about this feature is that if you watch enough videos around a certain topic, YouTube will end up making you a playlist centering on that topic.
For example, after I watched a couple of videos about editing and content creation, YouTube made two playlists on those topics with videos from different content creators thrown in!
#8 Browse Channels
All the browse features we saw up until now focused on recommending new videos to you. But this one focuses exclusively on channels.
On the left corner, under the list of all the channels you have subscribed to, you will find a tab called “browse channels.” Just like explore, this tab is also separated into categories, and each category contains several top channels that you may be interested in. You can check them out and subscribe if you wish!
YouTube Browse Features vs. Suggested Videos
The videos that you see on the right side of the screen when you are watching something on YouTube are known as suggested videos. They are often other videos from the same channel, or related videos from a different channel, or completed unrelated videos based on your past viewing history.
These suggested videos are personalized recommendations that YouTube thinks you would like. So, what is the difference between these and browse features? YouTube browse features include all the 8 different features we saw above, but suggested videos form only a part of them. To put it another way, suggested videos are a subset of YouTube browse features.
Now that you know what YouTube browse features are and how they can help you find new videos that fit your tastes, you will never have to spend hours searching for the right thing to watch. Go forth and discover new wonders!