Google’s “Fresh” Video SEO Tips for E-Commerce Sites

Last fall, Google released their new “Freshness Algorithm” in an effort to provide more relevant, real-time results for search queries. This new algorithm shows yet again that Google’s number one priority is to always feature the freshest and most relevant product information. In this article you’ll learn about what you can do to update your product page videos to perform better under Google’s new algorithm so you don’t get left behind!

Thad Rueter, Senior Editor for, reported last December that because of the Google’s new algorithm, e-commerce sites with low-quality and unoriginal content would be demoted in search rankings this spring.

“The [Fresh] update was designed to punish what Google views as low-quality web sites, which includes those with unoriginal content, such as retail sites that rely on the same manufacturer product descriptions that many other e-retailers display. It also sought to downgrade sites that web users seemed to find of little value.”

What was especially interesting in the article was that the reported “big winners” in Google’s algorithm update included “sites that feature a lot of video,” which suggested Google gave a special rankings boost to sites with constantly updated video content.

This is both a big opportunity and a big urgency for e-commerce sites. You can’t let your same old video content just “sit” on your site. Not updating your site’s videos and their landing pages can depress a site’s position in Google’s organic search rankings (i.e., demotions). If you aren’t already planning on releasing new video content and having it featured prominently throughout your site, you need to do so now.

Google “Fresh” Video SEO Tips for E-Commerce sites

Having been in the SEO space since 1997 and doing video SEO since 2006, I am glad to see that Google’s social technologies are allowing for more recent and relevant results to appear at the top of search queries. Below I have combined some of the original ideas from the Internet Retailer article with my own experience in the online video and e-commerce industry to create content-related tips for video commerce SEO improvement.

  • Be Unique. Don’t rely on product videos and manufacturer descriptions. Create your own unique videos with original content.
  • Be Fresh. Don’t repeat the same thing that has already been done. Change up your home page to feature your latest videos and create videos for your product category pages.
  • Be recent. Get fresh videos onto your site quickly. Respond to online conversations around your products in video and do so promptly.  On a larger scale, you can create videos about topics in mainstream media that relate to your products, brand, or consumer lifestyle.
  • Listen. Pay attention to what people are saying in the news and in online conversations on social media channels, search queries, and directly in contact forms, emails, and consumer surveys.  Pay attention to topics around your products, your brand, your competitors, and even your consumers’ lifestyles.   You can use this highly relevant information in your videos.
  • Monitor. Keep an eye on what consumers are searching for on your website and adjust your videos accordingly.  If your search queries and page analytics show that people are most interested in a certain product or line, feature new and related videos around that product more prominently on your site (including on the home page).
  • Respond. Organize your feedback from consumers and create video content that responds to their search queries on products.  You can also create video responses to more general items like FAQs and mainstream media topics that are related to consumer needs.
  • Encourage. Encourage text conversations and reviews around your existing videos, and promote those conversations around your videos on your own web pages. The easiest way to do this is by having a comments section on your video landing pages, and including social video widgets for Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest sharing.
  • Promote. Make your own customers the stars! Many SEO experts say featuring user-generated videos is a great way to provide fresh content for Google’s search algorithm. You should try to feature consumer-generated product video reviews and testimonials along with your own brand-generated videos and in-house videos on your related product web pages. Consumers will be more likely to link from their own blog sites and social media sites to your video pages which will boost your link popularity and SEO as a result.
  • Test. Test your own pages to make sure pages upload properly. Google penalizes sites that have content that causes pages to load slowly. Sometimes videos that are poorly coded or having server issues can cause slow loading time.
  • Rotate. Add video user reviews to existing content and rotate new reviews in regularly.
  • Be social! As Internet Retailer’s Thad Rueter says, “SEO is social media, and vice versa.” You should duplicate your website video SEO efforts on your social media sites. I recommend regularly writing blog posts that feature new video content that you can post to your Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, and other social media channels. Take it from the experience of Ellen Burgan, Internet Marketing Manager for Drs. Fosters & Smith:

“A strong social presence, one that demonstrates a loyalty among consumers that can translate into links, is another sign of good content, and therefore another way to earn the good graces of Google.”