Google recently expanded the video indexing report in Search Console, providing more specific reasons why a video may not appear prominently in search results.
The search giant hopes to aid in better optimizing video content for visibility and discovery on its platforms.
More Specific Feedback for Webmasters
Previously, Search Console displayed a vague “Google could not determine the prominent video on the page” error message when encountering issues with video content.
Google is breaking down the general message into three specific reasons:
- Video outside the viewport
- Video too small
- Video too tall
The change offers clear, actionable advice.
For instance, reposition the video so it’s inside the renderable area of the page and visible when it loads.
Or you may need to adjust the video’s size to meet Google’s specific criteria.
Potential Impact of Changes
Changes to the video indexing report in Search Console can impact sites that receive traffic to pages with video content.
“By providing more precise feedback on why a video might not be indexed, Google is enabling website owners to make necessary changes that could improve their video content’s visibility in Google Search. This could potentially lead to an increase in traffic to their websites, provided that the recommended changes are implemented and result in better indexing and visibility of the videos.”
As video content plays a more significant role in SERPs, getting featured in video carousels and video-rich snippets, it’s crucial to ensure Google is indexing them correctly.
Best Practices for Video Indexing
While the updates to Google’s video indexing report provide more specific reasons for indexing issues, they don’t offer a comprehensive list of best practices.
However, from the details provided and Google’s general guidelines, we can infer the following best practices:
- Position videos within the viewport.
- Ensure the video is of an appropriate size.
- Use video sitemaps and structured data.
- Make video content files accessible to Googlebot.
- Provide clear and accurate metadata.
- Prioritize video quality and user engagement.
These practices can help improve video visibility in Google Search, enhancing user engagement and website traffic.
Gradual Implementation Of Changes
You won’t immediately notice these changes in your video indexing report.
Google says the historical data could take up to three months to flush out before all the new error reasons are displayed.
“Since the Search Console video indexing report shows 3 months of historical data, you may still see the ‘Google could not determine the prominent video on the page’ in the list of reasons in the Video Indexing report, but it has no effect on your pages.”
While the new Search Console report provides more specific guidance on why a video might not be indexed, it’s up to you to leverage this information.
Understanding the issues affecting video indexing and implementing the necessary changes can improve your video content’s visibility and drive more traffic.
Featured image generated by the author using Midjourney.