The SERPs Show Video Thumbnails When There Is No Video on a Page Could OG Code Be The Issue?

author image Written by: Rabije Gashi Corluka           Categories - In The News, SEO Tips>Google Search

Google is showing video thumbnails in SERPs even if the video wasn’t embedded on the page. Why? No one knows.

Crystal Carter, an SEO expert, posted an example on Twitter of Google doing this for her page. If you were to go to her page, there would be no video.

However, with her example, the OG video tag is present in the source code but there is no visible video rendered to the user. So, the best practice would be not to include the OG video tag if there is no video on the page.

Read More: Short Videos Overtaking Search

As you can see, Google did add the ‘uploaded by’ reference and admitted it was uploaded by them, the Google Search Central. Still – why is it showing a video if it’s not playable on the page? I guess that’s something Google needs to figure out on its own.

In this specific example, the search was for videos, and Google does show landing pages that have video elements.

Also, Crystal did link to the Youtube video with the featured image from the video.

Read More: new Search Features In Google

So, seems like the logic behind Google showing the thumbnail when there is no playable video on the page might be the adding of the video in the OG tag. At least that’s what the Twitter discussion says.

Rabije Gashi Corluka

Rabije always enjoyed finding different angles to a story, so it’s not surprising her curiosity influenced a move to a new continent, widening her perspective. She enjoys hearing people's stories and learning about different cultures and places - but most of all, she loves putting her thoughts on a piece of paper. Her love for writing led to her studying Journalism and PR, but she actually became a storyteller during her radio-hosting era. Now, she uses her skills, experience, and love for writing to help your brand stand out.

Should You Optimize For Virtual Reality?


Both virtual and augmented reality are here to stay. It’s no secret they will definitely impact the future of marketing. Just like marketers everywhere had to accept that SEO is a vital part of their marketing strategy, the sooner you accept virtual environment optimization, the better.

Now, hold on – I didn’t come up with the term – Taylor Kurtz from Search Engine Land did and with good reason. We have to call this new thing something, right?

Anyways, VEO – or Virtual Environment Optimization is, well, optimizing for virtual marketing. Basically, as Taylor explained, it’s “the task of working within a virtual environment and utilizing the resources available to best position the clients’ products and services within an alternative reality”.

With SEO, you focus mostly on content and work hard to get on the top of search results.

With VEO, you strategize how to best position your products in another reality.

Read More: How Virtual Events Are Becoming The ‘New Normal’

Why Should You Do It Now?

Because – statistics. At the moment, marketing and advertising are at the bottom of the list of industries where VR is the most useful, at 16%. Clearly, there is room for growth and improvement.

So, why should you try VEO?

According to Finances Online, VR’s top benefits for workforce development are:

  • Providing information in real-time;
  • Facilitating training and mirroring in real-life experiences;
  • Enhancing creativity in product design and development;
  • Enabling a remote workforce to collaborate in real-time;
  • Allowing users to live out someone else’s life experiences;
  • Capturing novel user data like behaviour and eye and gesture tracking.

In 2020, the combined markets of both augmented and virtual reality were worth around 12 billion dollars. By 2024, that number should be 72.8 billion, and retail is the sector projected to deliver the biggest commercial investment in AR and VR technology.

Read More: Google Lets Virtual Food Brands Have Google Business Profiles

How the Shopping experience changed

Online shopping saw a massive increase during the pandemic and changed the way people shop. Both millennials and Gen Z plan to continue shopping online, simply because they prefer that way over in-person shopping in a physical store.

Add VR to that equation.

A VR experience can influence a consumer’s buying decisions –  VR statistics indicate that conversions in e-commerce could increase by 17% when VR is adopted.

According to a Kibo survey, sixty-one percent of consumers would rather shop online with augmented reality experiences, and 40% would spend more on customizable items with AR.

Everything is online now, we’re practically living on a cloud (pun intended). Who’s to say trends won’t continue to shift even more towards a reality where old-school shopping and trying clothes on is done from the comfort of your home?

We’re almost there, after all – with the grocery and furniture shopping, right? You can use your phone to check if that statement chair you’re dreaming of goes well with the rest of your decor – let’s now forget how cool and advanced that is!

Virtual Content Is King

Yes, content is king to the SEO queen, and you should still continue to create great content and try getting up there in SERPs. But, as we start to enter this new meta world, you should think about adjusting to it, too.

As Taylor mentioned in his article, Google might index, crawl, and rank web content based on visual search results for AR-based content soon.

You will need to focus on visual content like infographics, videos and images. Combine that with SEO-friendly content and you might just have paved yourself a road to success. A virtual store is one of the ways to go!


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Google Search Console Item Classifications Updated


Google made some reporting changes within Search Console. No changes have been made to crawling, indexing or rankings!

The search engine changed how it displays errors within some of the Search Console reports. Now it only shows valid or invalid information, rather than errors, valid with warnings and valid.

Google said the URLs or items in the Search Console report will no longer be grouped in status categories such as Valid, Warning, or Error. They will now be classified into two broader statuses that will reflect if the URLS or items are valid or not.

Read More: Google Sending Warnings On Intrusive Interstitials

Invalid Vs. Valid

According to Google, invalid means there’s a critical issue in the page or items. Not invalid means that the item might still have warnings, but no critical issues. Google explained that the implications for valid and invalid states differ by report type.

Grouping the top-level item (a rich result for the rich result reports, a page or URL for the other reports) into two groups: pages or items with critical issues are labelled something like invalid; pages or items without critical issues are labelled something like valid. We think this new grouping will make it easier to see quickly which issues affect your site’s appearance on Google, in order to help you prioritize your fixes.” – Google said in the announcement.

Here’s a first look:

Photo Source: developers.google.com


Google also said that these changes will also be reflected in the URL inspection tool and the API. The URL inspection tool will show these changes immediately, while the API changes are yet to arrive.

In their help document, Google said that the impacted reports impacted by these changes are:

  • Core Web Vitals
  • Mobile Usability
  • AMP report
  • Rich results report
  • URL inspection tool

These changes are made to help you understand reports better and prioritize issues easier.

Read More: ‘Discovered – Not Indexed’ Status Could Last Forever
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