Bruce Clay seems to think so:
If you don’t have video and your competition does, Bruce thinks we’re going to see a big shift in rankings. He thinks if the top ten sites don’t have video, they may lose their ranking over night.
According to popular search engine optimization firm Bruce Clay, Google will be testing video in search results at the beginning of 2009, directly after Christmas. Based on that testing he sees some drastic changes to SEO that will change the way Google SERPs return results – forever. If he’s right then it will be much more difficult to spam results in the future and many companies that have succeeded with text-based search these past few years may find themselves stuck on an island with no way off. If Bruce Clay is right, it will be as essential to have video on your website by 2010 as it is now to have inbound links pointing to it, and it’s possible that links may not be as valuable then as they are now. What will that do to your website?
I’m not ready to tip my hat to this prediction, but I do believe that Bruce Clay may have a point. Since crawling video is now possible for Google, it seems to reason that companies who are able to host videos on their website will have an added advantage than companies that do not host videos. But inbound linking won’t die. The value of inbound links may diminish, but they won’t die.
In fact, videos will continue to be a good source of link bait. But I would look for some major changes to the way that Google ranks results. The couple of years should be very interesting for search engine optimization.