We’re often asked by publishers where the Mediavine Video Player should be placed to deliver the best performance: in the content or within the recipe/how-to card.
As always, there are multiple factors to consider when determining the ideal placement (and how we’re defining placement itself, which we’ll get to momentarily), and they’re the usual suspects: SEO, user experience and, of course, revenue.
First, Let’s Define Placement
There’s actually two placements we’re talking about here. The first is where, in the Schema.org markup, your video appears: In its own VideoObject at the top level of Schema.org, or inside a video property inside the Recipe or HowTo object.
(Wondering what is Schema.org? Don’t miss our post that explains how it works.)
If you don’t know what that means, you aren’t alone, and that’s okay. Basically, think of it as what is outputting the Schema for you: The Mediavine Video Player, the top level VideoObject or your recipe card plugin (when the video is inside the recipe card).
The second placement is the physical location of the player, as in where is it being displayed: Inside the card, or inside the content.
So ideally, where should you want the Schema and where do you want the player to physically live? Let’s break that down through the lens of SEO, UX and revenue potential — the three goals we mentioned above.
It’s no secret that Google loves video, and so do we.
We devoted an entire blog post to video and SEO, but today we’re focusing on its Schema.org placement. Where is it better to output your video schema, in the card or the top level object?
Most publishers get concerned by warnings they see in Google Search Console for Recipe and How-To Schema markup missing video. It’s important to note this is just a warning and NOT an error.
Repeat: It’s nothing to worry about or overthink. That said, if you can provide this additional information to Google, they love it.
We’ve found that if you include video schema in the recipe card, that’s actually the better spot. If the Mediavine video player information is outputted by a recipe card like Create, you’ll be eligible for a video preview inside the recipe carousel up top:
The good news is that Schema in either the card or a top level VideoObject (which the Mediavine video player outputs for you) will make you eligible for the rest of the Google video carousels and positions.
It’s also fine to output it in both. We’ve seen people still show up in that awesome carousel spot.
Then there’s the all-important revenue component. Which option is going to earn the most, running the video in-content, or in the card?
We strongly recommend that videos physically be placed inside the content, specifically right below the fold and a little bit further down on mobile to give the player and video time to load.
We actually offer a feature called “Optimize Video Placement” which will do this for you and which we recommend to maximize revenue performance. (The Schema placement does not impact revenue.) Check out our post on Mediavine video capabilities for more about how that setting works.
Finally, there’s the audience to consider. Which placement is best for the user?
Compared to SEO and revenue aspects, UX is more subjective for publishers and audiences. In our view, an autoplay video which sticks with users is a good experience if the video is relevant. That would be our in-content placement.
Some would counter that a click-to-play player inside the recipe card is the better user experience. However, a very small percentage of users click on a video on a recipe or how-to site.
You’ll likely see only a tiny number of users watching the video if this is the only placement. If you want more people to watch, you want it in the content. If making users click to play is important to you, it will do better in the card.
Okay, so where do I place the Mediavine video embed code?
If you’re running Create, the best practice is going to be placing the video embed inside your post and then inside the card, selecting the video and using the “Hide Video” feature.
This will output the Schema inside the card, but allow you to place the video in the content so it appears higher. You’ll get Schema in both places, which is not a problem in any result we’ve seen in Google.
If you’re not running Create, you can run your video in both places. Place it in the content and inside the card. You can certainly still do this with Create as well if you prefer.
Wait, so you can run the video in both?
Yes, we’ve worked hard on our player to ensure that the same video embed can be used multiple times on a page and still be optimized.
There will be a slight slowdown from loading the video twice, but most of this will be mitigated by caching and our optimizations. The player should only have to load once, and the same goes for most of the libraries.
As a bonus, our players “talk” to each other.
Example: If an auto-playing video is sticking with the user, and then they go to click the video inside your card, it will automatically stop the sticky player to ensure an optimal user experience.
In short, the answer to the question of whether you should you run a video inside a card or in content is both. You want the Schema in the card and the player in the content.
There are strategies to accomplish both, with the Create plugin especially. Why choose between SEO, revenue and user experience when you can have all three with the Mediavine Video Player and Create!
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