Google Search Adds YouTube Social Contacts As Sitelinks

Google Search Adds YouTube Social Contacts As Sitelinks

Mark noticed something very interesting the other day, and we thought it was worth sharing. Google is now rolling your YouTube social contacts into search results for "YouTube" whenever you're logged into your Google account--this is assuming, of course, that you have a YouTube account linked with your Google account. It's a curious move, but a smart one.

Included with the standard sitelinks we're used to seeing, like "Music," "Movies," or "My Videos," we now also see usernames of people we frequently connect with.  Here's a screenshot of what Mark sees now when he searches for "youtube" while logged in:

Google Search Adds YouTube Social Contacts As Sitelinks

When you click on the usernames, you'll end up at that user's main Channel page.

Now, on first glance, you might think this is an unnecessary move. After all... who goes to Google and types in "youtube," right? Well, a whole heck of a lot of people do that, actually, as we learn at the end of every year when the most-searched-phrases lists are published. In fact, "youtube" was the 4th-most-searched term in 2009, and jumped up to 3rd in 2010, just behind "facebook" and "facebook login."

Google Search Adds YouTube Social Contacts As Sitelinks

So Google, knowing how many users search in this manner, is simply adding a new social layer to the search experience whenever it's specific to YouTube. I think it's great, even if I won't be likely to use it myself (surprisingly, when I want to visit YouTube, I just go straight there instead of searching Google for it).

What's not clear is how the users that show up are chosen, but my guess is that it's directly tied to the amount of social behavior between those users and the searcher.

Anyone else seeing this? Is this rolled out to everyone or is it more random testing? Both Mark and I have encountered it, but there haven't been any announcements made that I'm aware of.

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Posted in Video Search
About the Author -
Jeremy Scott is the founder of The Viral Orchard, an Internet marketing firm offering content writing and development services, viral marketing consulting, and SEO services. Jeremy writes constantly, loves online video, and enjoys helping small businesses succeed in any way he can. View All Posts By -

What do you think? ▼
  • Ronnie Bincer

    I see it - the extra channels etc., but just like Jeremy said, I also rarely search for "youtube" in a google search. In fact I think this is the first time I've tried that!

  • Fernando Pizarro

    There is something about seeing your name or the name of someone you know in search results that is pretty magnetic - I wouldn't be surprised if there's a marketing strategy in there somewhere...

  • Grant Crowell

    OK, now explain why one of YouTube's main links is now JUSTIN BIEBER??

    • Mark Robertson

      no $h!t...

      • Grant Crowell

        Spoken like true Bieber fan-boys. ;)

    • Jeremy Scott

      Well, we don't have to like it... but you don't really need it explained, right?