vidIQ, like TubeBuddy, is a tool that provides useful data to YouTubers with the goal of helping them get more views and subscribers. For the purpose of this review, I tried the vidIQ ‘Boost’ plan and tested out each feature, as detailed below. Continue reading for a rundown of how vidIQ works, the main questions people have asked about it, and finally my verdict on how good it is.
How to use vidIQ
First, go to vidIQ.com and make an account. I recommend signing in with your Google account, the same one you use for your YouTube. You’ll then have to give it permissions for it to look at your YouTube account:
Then there are the following main features, or sections, that you can look at in the vidIQ dashboard:
- Subscribers (Boost and Boost+)
- SEO (Boost and Boost+)
I’ll explain what each of these are.
Keywords: Enter a keyword, and vidIQ will show you trending videos for that keyword, as well as suggest a long list of related keywords with their search volume, competition and overall score. Here’s an example for the keyword “anxiety”:
I was quite impressed with vidIQ here, as it came back with a ton of keywords and the overall score metric they give for each keyword (see the “Overall” column in the screenshot above) is super-useful. This basically measures how attractive the keyword is according to vidIQ, taking into account of course the search volume and competition. You can then sort by overall score from highest to lowest to potentially identify some very good keywords to make videos about:
As with TubeBuddy, however, I am not sure how accurate vidIQ’s search volume estimates are.
Competitors: Here you can add any channel on YouTube and get the following information on them (going back 1 year):
- Average daily views
- Average subscribers/day
- Average videos/day
This is all nicely presented in graphs. Here’s an example of me looking at cumulative views for one channel over the last year:
You can also compare multiple channels:
And see handy overall metrics:
Subscribers: This provides the following data:
- Top videos watched by your subscribers
- Top channels watched by your subscribers
- Best times to post
Unfortunately as my YouTube channel was considered too small, vidIQ didn’t come back with anything for these. I am not sure if this would come back with much surprising data, but it could potentially help you find big channels and videos in your niche that you may not have known about.
SEO: Mainly focuses on tags and identifying videos that may need optimization.
Is vidIQ safe?
vidIQ should be perfectly safe. I have not read any reports of it stealing your data or compromising your account, and saw nothing that concerned me during my testing of it.
vidIQ Chrome extension
The vidIQ Chrome extension shows you the following:
Quite handy, though not strictly necessary (this extension is just for convenience, as you can do everything it does in the actual vidIQ dashboard). There is also a vidIQ extension for Firefox.
Are there discount or coupon codes for vidIQ?
Use the code MAYTHEVIEWSBEWITHYOU to get the first month of vidIQ for free (working at the time of writing in late 2020):
Is the vidIQ Academy any good?
The vidIQ Academy contains a number of small courses to help you do better on YouTube:
At the time of writing there are only 10 courses in the vidIQ academy, and they’re fairly basic. Here’s the complete course outline for their “Keyword Research 101” course:
Useful, but definitely nothing that you wouldn’t be able to learn on your own.
What are the alternatives to vidIQ?
vidIQ’s main competitor by far is TubeBuddy, which I also tested in my TubeBuddy review and have referenced before in this article.
My personal opinion is vidIQ is better than TubeBuddy for keyword analysis (since they provide a super-handy and more practical overall score for each keyword which I consider better than TubeBuddy’s) and for educating you on how to grow a YouTube channel beyond just listing data, as they’ve put at least some effort into their vidIQ Academy. TubeBuddy however has a way nicer interface in my view and more advanced features, such as their Click Magnet and A/B Tests. If you’re looking for more features and functionality, therefore, I would probably recommend TubeBuddy; if you’re looking for something simple, practical and useful without being overwhelming, vidIQ may be better for you.
What is vidIQ’s pricing?
Anywhere for $7.50/month to hundreds of dollars per month:
The Boost+ plan here includes a monthly coaching call and “personalized tips”, so it’s only necessary if you’re looking for coaching. The Boost plan gets you Subscriber and SEO data (covered briefly above), while Pro just has analytics and keyword research.
I personally think the best part of vidIQ is its keyword research tool, and for this you’d only need to pay $7.50/month.
My overall verdict on vidIQ
vidIQ is a good product and worth checking out for serious YouTubers. Whether it’s worth actually paying for depends on you and how serious you are with YouTube, along with what features you’re specifically looking for (if considering it in comparison to TubeBuddy).
I definitely recommend trying the Boost plan of vidIQ and only keeping it if it’s worth the price for you. With the coupon code I listed above (MAYTHEVIEWSBEWITHYOU) you can try a month of Boost for free, and just cancel within the first few days if you don’t think it’d be worth it for you.