Auto-play videos on Google search! Is it a good idea?

They have been used by Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and almost every content website (including ours), and soon they will accompany every Google search result on your desktop.

Auto-play videos are being tested by the search giant and the same were first spotted by The SEM Post. Google Auto-play videos will pop up on the right sidebar in a search result. For instance, if you search for an upcoming movie, you will see its trailer playing on the right side of the search result as shown in the image below.

It is not yet clear how Google plans to count views on these auto-play videos, or how it plans to prioritise the auto-play YouTube videos that show up in search results. SEM observed that in the US, the searches showed trailers from a YouTube account named Googlemovietrailers (which may, may not belong to Google). In Canada and UK, trailers uploaded by Movieclip Trailers showed up in search results. This opens up a whole new playing field for creators, with a chance to rank on Google’s auto-play search results.


Unlike Facebook auto-play videos, Google auto-play videos play only once without sound. Searchers have to click on the video to hear the audio. We hope Google also gives users an option to stop auto-play video like Facebook does. It was also noted that there were no pre-roll or post-roll ads displayed on the videos. Search results were not particularly looking for videos, but were based around release dates or other information on the movies.

Further, the report notes that some ad blockers and browsers may be able to block Google’s auto-play videos. These videos are only limited to the desktop and do not appear to be working on Mobile as of now.

Commenting on the development, a Google spokesperson told SEM Post, “We are constantly experimenting with ways to improve the Search experience for our users, but have no plans to announce at this time.”

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