I encountered a problem today when I decided to implement structured data for a YouTube video on my website. I was puzzled about the "contentURL" and "embedUrl".

While the "embedUrl" is clear where to get from YouTube, there's a problem with “contentURL”. Google's spec doesn't help much since they provide such an example: "contentUrl": "https://www.example.com/video/123/file.mp4", "embedUrl": "https://www.example.com/embed/123".

While my video is hosted on YouTube, there is no .mp4 path for it. So, in my case, I added the following structured data on the page of my website: "contentUrl": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1jee4qFYdP8", "embedUrl": "https://www.youtube.com/embed/1jee4qFYdP8?si=UnP-PsGhOxMGR5jZ"

I'm not sure if this is correct, but Google's Validator did not complain and the validation was successful.

How do you make such markup on your websites?

2 Answers 2


I have no idea, but I have done it like this:

<meta itemprop="thumbnailUrl" content="https://img.youtube.com/vi/xxxxx/0.jpg" />
<link itemprop="embedUrl" href="https://www.youtube.com/embed/xxxxx" />
<meta itemprop="contentUrl" content="https://www.xxxxx.co.uk/video.php?v=xxxxx" />    

To be honest, I did it the other way round first. Further, all I was concerned about was the 'No thumbnail URL provided' error I was getting in Google Search Console and thought I would add a bit more into the schema info.


I think the difference between contentURL and embedURL is determined by how you are hosting the file. If you are embedding the file from a streaming service like YouTube, then you would use that property.

If you a natively hosting the file from your site, not a stream service, then the contentURL would apply.

So in your example, I would only use embedURL since it is coming from YouTube and your are embedding it from that service.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.