The Hidden Value of Custom Video Images on YouTube

Our observations indicate that Google might be utilising their image recognition technology from search to find related videos on YouTube. In a number of follow-up test cases we found strong correlation between the two, but only with fresh videos or those who don’t appear to be well-optimised (title, tags, description and other elements). This may indicate that there is a processing or indexation delay and a system which runs parallel to the video processing engine.

Here is an example with one of our own videos and suggestions by YouTube:

Video Suggestions

I know that there is a book called “The Art of SEO” but to draw a parallel between that and “The Art of War Audiobook by Sun Tzu” seems pretty far fetched, let alone “Emma” Audiobook by Jane.

So it must be something to do with the custom image similarity / format:

Custom Youtube Video Image

Compare the two custom images, observe the format and you’ll see that there are basic geometric similarities:


Of course, correlation does not equal causation, but this is definitely worth investigating further.

Don’t you think?

Here’s a test video we created to see if the featured image can be influenced:

Dan Petrovic is a well-known Australian SEO and a managing director of Dejan SEO. He has published numerous research articles in the field of search engine optimisation and online marketing. Dan's work is highly regarded by the world-wide SEO community and featured on some of the most reputable websites in the industry.

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