Suppose I design a small app that heavily depends on Google YouTube API to dynamically fetch hundreds of YouTube video data. My site will be able to respond to users' requests, and generate several video pages.

But what I don't get is this: does it means there's no hope of getting found (or indexed) for those videos on search engines since none of those videos actually resides on my server? Since I'll have very limited pages, what options do I have for SEO?

1 Answer 1


Do sites using YouTube video API get indexed by Google? The answer is using these API's will not prevent the site being indexed.

...what options do I have for SEO?

Google will read rendered code. So it does depend on how the code renders when the bot reads your site.

However, if the API translates to just embed or object (or similar controls) then there is nothing (very little) for Google to read (although my research suggests it does of course understand it, but this may not add much value).

Again, it depends on what video's you're serving and why to answer what options you have with SEO but, and assuming the videos are not random, then you could have pre-saved information about each video link. This way, based upon what video is pulled back you then load the appropriate content. This will give Google something to read. However, if the page is constantly loading new videos and therefore new content, Google will not know what that page actually is about since every time it visits, the content has changed completely.

You could take the view of categorising the page or consider having multiple pages for this. So, and assuming you have some control here over what video's you're pulling across, then have some generic content on the page for Animals and only pull animal videos. Have generic content for Music and only pull music videos etc.

Now, I think combine the two! Make sure you have static content on the page which explains the videos at an abstract level which will remain constant and then focus on 'article' (video) detail in a smaller way.

Of course, all of the above is fairly useless if the site is never indexed so you will need to submit the site to Google.

  • Thank you Dave. Thanks so much for the response. Your suggestion about page categorization is noted. But, just to check my understanding of your comment. "Google will read rendered code. So it does depend on how the code renders..." So it means, if my code returns about 20 videos items, all of them will be considered as my page elements/contents and will be indexed against that page provided it rarely changes?
    – Afloz
    Dec 12, 2013 at 11:42
  • Of course. Google can only read what is dished up from the server (the 'HTML'). But, if the rendered code is a link to another site, then Google will read the link, not the contents of that link! I don't want to make my comments personal, but, IMO, I would treat the SEO of a page with video or links to video as if they don't exist! You need to find another way to get the SEO done!
    – Dave
    Dec 12, 2013 at 11:44
  • In essence, I presume what's returned and rendered by the API calls are essentially links to the video on YouTube. The videos are not "dished up from the (my) server (the 'HTML')." So if that's the case, my pages get's little or no credit for the videos.
    – Afloz
    Dec 12, 2013 at 11:53
  • That is correct, and even if the video was on your server, what will a video tell Google? Google can't read it, understand it etc, it can only understand the meta data or content on the page.
    – Dave
    Dec 12, 2013 at 11:56
  • Aha ha. I see your point. Thanks Dave for the help.
    – Afloz
    Dec 12, 2013 at 11:58

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