Why you probably don't want an auto-playing video "hero"/banner section.

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In my opinion there are too many issues to make them worthwhile doing:

  • You need an fairly flat-contrast, silent, abstract video, not one with people or large variations in contrast that will make reading the overlaid text difficult. This severely limits your choices.
  • OR you need to put some kind of overlay on top of the video to darken/lighten it to make the text readable.
  • You need to heavily optimise the video to make it small enough that it downloads and displays quickly.
  • And even so, it's a large amount of data to download that affects people loading the page on mobile and will have an impact on SEO and usability.
  • For all the above reasons, auto-playing video is generally frowned upon and most browsers try to block it, especially on mobile. In some cases this is only true for videos with sound.
  • Using an autoplaying video will use more hosting bandwidth and resources on your hosting server, unless you offload the video to a service like Vimeo or a "content delivery network".