Google Video Advertising

Google Video Ads

What is Google Video Ads?

Google Video was a free video hosting service from Google, similar to YouTube, that allowed video clips to be hosted on Google servers and embedded on to other websites. This allowed websites to host lots of video remotely without running into bandwidth or storage-capacity issues.

The service was launched on January 25, 2005. A year later, YouTube was acquired by Google, and Google Videos began its evolution into its current form as a video search engine. In 2009, Google Videos stopped accepting new video uploads, and users had the opportunity to migrate their videos onto YouTube. Google Videos was ultimately shut down on August 20, 2012.

How it works

Available video ad formats include skippable in-stream ads, non-skippable in-stream ads, video discovery ads, outstream ads, and bumper ads.

Skippable in-stream ads play before, during, or after other videos. After this type of ad plays for 5 seconds, the viewer is given the option to skip it.

Non-skippable in-stream ads are designed to allow you to reach customers with your entire message and are 15 seconds or less.

Video discovery ads only appear on YouTube and reach people in places where they’re discovering content. The appearance will vary, depending on the ad sizes and ad formats that content publishers support. When a viewer clicks the thumbnail for your ad, the video will play on its YouTube watch or channel page.

Outstream ads show on partner sites. These ads are only available on mobile and tablet and are designed to help make it easier for users to tap to play your video. Outstream ads can help increase brand awareness by extending your reach beyond YouTube.

Bumper ads are a short video ad format, designed to allow you reach customers broadly and increase awareness of your brand by using a short, memorable message. Bumper ads are just 6 seconds or less, and viewers can’t skip the ad.

distribution methods of Google Video Ads:

Uploading videos:

Uploaded videos were saved as a .gvi files under the "Google Videos" folder in "My Videos" and reports of the video(s) details were logged and stored in the user account. The report sorted and listed the number of times that each of the user's videos had been viewed and downloaded within a specific time frame. These ranged from the previous day, week, month or the entire time the videos have been there. Totals were calculated and displayed and the information could be downloaded into a spreadsheet format or printed out.


The basic way to watch the videos was through the Google Video website, Each video had a unique web address in the format of , and that page contained an embedded Flash Video file which could be viewed in any Flash-enabled browser. Permalinks to a certain point in a video were also possible, in the format of #XXhYYmZZs[6] (that is, with a fragment identifier containing a timestamp).

Flash video:

The browser automatically cached the Flash file while it played, and it could be retrieved from the browser cache once it had fully played. There were also several tools and browser extensions to download the file. It could be then viewed in video players that could handle flash, for example VLC media player, Media Player Classic (with ffdshow installed), MPlayer or an FLV player.

Google Video Player:

Google Video Player was another way to view Google videos; it ran on Windows and Mac OS X. The Google Video Player plays back files in Google's own Google Video File (.gvi) media format and supported playlists in "Google Video Pointer" (.gvp) format. When users downloaded to their computers, the resulting file used to be a small .gvp (pointer) file rather than a .gvi file. When run, the .gvp file would download a .gvi (movie) file to the user's default directory.

Creating Google video Ads:

Google Ads scripts allow you to retrieve your video ads using the videoAds() method of VideoAdGroup. You can create new video ads using the newVideoAd() method of VideoAdGroup.

The video ad formats currently supported in Scripts are:

  • TrueView in-stream
  • TrueView video discovery (previously known as TrueView in-display)
  • Bumper

In-stream video ads can play before, during, or after other videos, giving users the option to skip after a specified time. Video discovery ads appear on the Display Network and various YouTube pages and will only play if a user actively clicks on the ad thumbnail first. Bumper ads are 6-seconds or shorter and can appear on YouTube videos, or on videos on partner sites and apps on the Display Network. For complete details on each of these ad types, see About video ad formats.

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