Search engine videos optimisation

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    The best way of getting rich inclusion of your videos in the search results at Google is to submit a list of videos to them, either in the MediaRSS or Sitemap format. Google prefers Sitemaps, but Screen9 offers both for this purpose. You as a publisher can choose which videos should be indexed and which should be excluded.

    All configuration of these settings is done through the Account Console, under "Account Settings" -> "Syndication"

    console_syndication_header.png

     

    Under "MediaRSS/Sitemap" settings, change the "Inclusion" dropdown to something other than "None" to start generating MediaRSS/Sitemap feeds. Depending on the level, different amounts of videos will be included:

    • None: No videos are included, leaving you with an empty sitemap.
    • Approved (moderation): Only videos that are "Approved" will be included. To approve a video, check its "Moderation" dropdown on its details page.
    • All: All videos in your account will be included.

    A few of the settings on the page deserve some special mention:

    console_syndication_settings.png

    • Landing page pattern: On which page the video exists. "%s" is replaced by the mediaid.
    • Expiry date: The number of days (after the upload date) that external parties should keep the video in their search indices.
    • Included links: Which data to include links to in the sitemap. Depending on what you decide to include, search engines may use that data to provide rich search results or even embedded players in the search results.
      • Including the video will allow the search engines to download it and grab frames from it to display next to the search results. If your sitemap is publically available, these URLs could be used by bandwidth thieves to deliver the video in another context, so please restrict access to your sitemap only to trusted parties. Google has an article on how to verify that a visitor is actually theirs.
      • Including the player will allow the search engines to embed it on the search results page, if it deems it appropriate to do so. This might result in more video impressions, but might drive less traffic to your site.

    Submitting your sitemap to Google

    Once you have set up the options as required you can start using the MRSS/Sitemap feeds available on the right-hand side of the page. A few extra steps are required, however, before Google can accept them.

    First and foremost, you will need to set up a proxy for the feed on your own site in order to make sure that Google will accept it. Preferably this should reside in the root of your site. While you could just place a static copy of the sitemap, you should mirror it dynamically from Screen9 in order to keep it as updated as possible. The CGI you create for mirroring it need to mirror the status code, content type and response body. To get an idea of the amount of work involved, here's some example code for a simple mirroring script written in Python:

     

    import urllib
    f = urllib2.urlopen('YOUR_SITEMAP_URL')
    print 'Content-type: %s' % (f.info().get('content-type', )
    print ''
    while True:
        buffer = f.read(128*1024)
        if buffer == '':
            break
        print buffer 
    

     

    Once this is set up on your end and you've verified that it is working, you can submit the Sitemap to Google. To do this, we refer you to Google's own page on the subject.

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