The last time I checked, it was easier to find Yahoo Video by searching for it, rather than trusting the user-experience folks at Yahoo.com. But let’s give it a shot anyway. You start your Rubiks cube and we’ll see who gets there first.
- I’m at the Yahoo! Homepage. I see Movies/TV in the primary navigation. I’m running low on water.
- There’s another “video” above the search bar, which probably just refines search results to be video only. My bag of rice is beginning to deplete.
- Wait- just noticed tabs above the lead news story and one says video. Wonder what that might be. Oh that was a mistake. It’s all news, and pre-rolls before I see a clip ripped from ABC’s programming. They don’t dare confess the time, but I’m guessing 6 minutes. I’m surviving on red berries and roots.
- Confused, I try “My Yahoo.” Sadly, it has my movie theaters but most everything else is the same. Except for the Movies/TV is now just TV. That makes sense. I haven’t shaved and I’m beginning to get weak and delirious.
- Success! A Yahoo! search for “Yahoo Video” resulted in the top-secret video site as the first search listing. I’ll bet the video folks are high-fiving each other for that primo organic placement. Maybe they could talk Yahoo into, I dunno, a hyperlink? Maybe some contextual links to the dessert island site called Yahoo Video. Bookmark this folks in case Google Video overtakes it in the Yahoo keyword rankings. http://video.yahoo.com/
Now here’s the thing… the site is so simplified as to be confusing. I can’t quite “dig in” by niche categories or list top creators. I can’t see ratings because Yahoo people don’t rate or interact. Yahoo Video is far from the community and organic form of the industry’s leader. People don’t subscribe, or even visit related videos from a creator they like. So it’s nearly impossible to get views on Yahoo Video unless an editor likes you enough to sort through your recent clips and give it a decent placement.
I’ll give Yahoo credit, and assume they want to be very selective about the videos appear (good for viewers and for advertisers). The result is quality control and ad-friendly videos (none of that rogue CGA stuff). But the site just doesn’t make me want to stick around like YouTube. In fact it’s pushing me off the Internet. I’m going to see if my DVR recorded The Office last week, and whether I’ve missed it.
Anyone else want me jumping on their video site and chronicalling my confusion as if I’m the User Experience Genius? It’s worth noting that the kind editors featured my pets in Halloween video giving it more than 600,000 views (very exciting). I love you editors. Just not your employers commitment to online video. And sadly those views don’t provide income or bring an audience closer to me: the adjacent videos had 36 and 69 views. And I’ve got just 31 fans (compare that to 63,000 on YouTube).
The market needs a better competitor to YouTube… it will spawn innovation, drag advertisers into the space, and benefit creators. And I’ve always thought Yahoo, as a media company more than a search player, would emerge with a better video play than Google.
Let’s step up the game, Yahoo Video! I volunteer one day of my consultative skills (normally $2500 in fees) if you let me brainstorm improvements with your talented user-experience folks, and some assurance that if we pitch something better you’ll seriously consider rolling it out. Of course free consulting is worth what you pay. Tee hee.