The company rolled out improved tools in English and Spanish to help voters register to vote and get information on deadlines and early voting, CEO Sundar Pichai said in a Thursday earnings call. Google also worked with news organizations to live stream all three U.S. presidential debates.
"We saw record-breaking interest from the YouTube community," Pichai said. "In fact, the three debates rank as the three most-viewed political livestreams of all time on YouTube, with over 8.5 million hours watched live, a 5x increase from the 2012 debates."
Searches for U.S. election content on YouTube increased almost 550 percent compared to this time in the last election.
"We have long aimed to help people find the information that they want, right when the need it, and sometimes, even before they think to ask for it," Pichai said.
Alphabet's Google offered investors better-than-expected profits and a generous buyback on Thursday, thanks in part to YouTube's success. To be sure, YouTube's original series, like "Single by Thirty," also played a big role in driving engagement and YouTube Red subscriptions, Pichai said.
Disclosure: NBC News, which shares a parent with CNBC, streamed debates on YouTube.