How to Create YouTube Thumbnails for a YouTube Channel
YouTube channels that have millions of followers start with the first look. Maybe you have a relevant and interesting YouTube channel. Unfortunately, you find that very few people bother to watch your video because your thumbnail is boring.
Don’t let missed opportunities prevent you from getting your message out. This article will teach you how to make YouTube thumbnails that are impossible to scroll past.
What Makes for an Effective YouTube Thumbnail?
An effective thumbnail draws maximum clicks from an audience. Your video content will build your audience, but it’s your thumbnail that initially gets their attention. This doesn’t happen by chance. You can learn how to make sure your thumbnail reaches its maximum potential.
YouTube channels that hit the mark have thumbnails which include:
- Title text explaining the purpose of the video.
- A unique, quality image.
- Bright background colors that contrast with the text.
- A relevant image to the topic of the video.
You should investigate your competitors who seem to be successful. Compare their design with yours and analyze what you can do to make improvements to your thumbnail.
How to Create YouTube Thumbnails in Canva
Make the time and effort you put into your video count. Use the comprehensive tools on the online Canva app to create your thumbnail. Canva offers free and upgraded pro versions on their website.
There are two ways to create a thumbnail with Canva online. You can use your own images or choose a Canva template.
To create a thumbnail from a template:
- Open the Canva app.
- Type “YouTube Thumbnail” in the search box.
- Choose a template and tap “Customize This Template.”
- Make changes from the “Edit” page.
- Save your design and download it to your computer or device.
To create a custom thumbnail with your image:
- Sign in to your Canva account.
- Type “YouTube Thumbnail” in the middle search box.
- Select “Uploads” from the left menu.
- Upload an image from your computer or device.
- Customize your image in the editing box.
- Save your completed design and download it.
When the thumbnail is ready, you can send it to YouTube. Feel free to go back and make changes if you are not satisfied with your thumbnail.
How to Make YouTube Thumbnails in Photoshop
The flexibility of Adobe Photoshop makes it very popular with professional content creators. Photoshop is also available for producing high-quality YouTube thumbnails. However, a subscription is required to use the app.
It takes a couple of minutes to get started. Here are the steps:
- Subscribe to Adobe Photoshop.
- Download and open the app.
- Tap “File” then “New” to set up a canvas.
- Set the size to 1280×720.
- Use the “Gradient” tool (paint bucket) to fill the background.
- Go to “File” then “Place” to add a picture.
- Press “T” to add text.
- Select “File” and “Save for Web.”
Here are a few more tips to make thumbnails on Photoshop:
- Your thumbnail format should be JPG, PNG, or GIF.
- You should keep the file less than 2MB in size.
- Keep the bottom right corner of the screen clear. This is where your timestamp will show.
Once you upload the thumbnail, be sure to keep an eye out for how it is performing. If a thumbnail is not getting clicks, change the image as many times as needed to improve the click rate.
How to Create YouTube Thumbnails on an iPhone
Do not worry if you don’t have a computer to make your YouTube thumbnail. Your iPhone can be used to perform the task by following these easy directions:
- Take good photos of the central theme of the video (yourself, a product, etc.).
- Find and download a YouTube thumbnail app in the Apple Store.
- Open the app.
- Follow the directions to create an image.
- Upload the image to your YouTube account.
Try searching for reviews about the app from experienced content creators. They will usually do a video showing how they used the app. Follow their steps to create a great thumbnail for your channel.
How to Make YouTube Thumbnails on an Android
You don’t need design skills to use your Android device to make a YouTube thumbnail. Design and upload your thumbnail just like the pros. Here’s how to do it:
- Take a good photo for your thumbnail if you don’t have one.
- Search “YouTube thumbnail maker” in the Google App Store.
- Download the app.
- Follow the directions to create the thumbnail.
- Save and upload your thumbnail to YouTube.
View other YouTube channels with topics similar to yours if you need ideas to get you started. YouTube thumbnail apps have all of the design elements you need to make your project look great.
How to Create YouTube Thumbnails on a Mac
There are two ways to make a thumbnail on a Mac computer. You have a choice of using the screenshot tools on your Mac. This can be the fastest way but requires a little more skill. Or you might want to use a thumbnail app to upload a still image.
To use a snapshot from your video:
- Open the video on your computer.
- Tap “Pause” at the frame you want to use.
- Press “Command,” “Shift,” and “4” to enter screenshot mode.
- Tap the top left corner and drag a rectangle to the lower right corner.
- Press “Capture” to Save file.
- Choose “Custom Thumbnail” on YouTube to upload the image.
To make a thumbnail from an app:
- Find and download a thumbnail maker app in the Apple Store.
- Follow the directions to create a custom thumbnail.
- Upload the thumbnail to your YouTube account.
Compare your thumbnail to others in your same industry. If you do not like your design, try switching it with another thumbnail. Change thumbnails as often as you want until you are satisfied with the results you get.
How to Create YouTube Thumbnails on a Windows PC
Making a thumbnail on Windows is a snap with a little time and imagination. Simply use a still shot from your video or an image you already have, and you’ll be finished in no time.
Here’s how to make your thumbnail from a still shot:
- Pause the video to capture the moment.
- Type “Snipping Tool” in the Windows search box in the taskbar to open the app.
- Click “Mode” then choose “Rectangular Snip.”
- Select “File” and “Save As” when the shot appears in the Snipping Tool.
- Upload the saved image.
Here’s how to create your thumbnail on Windows:
- Go to the Google Play Store and download a YouTube thumbnail maker.
- Upload your best photo or choose one from the templates in the app.
- Customize the background and text as directed.
- Download the finished product.
- Save the thumbnail mage to YouTube.
The app will have all the right tools you need to make your thumbnail look professional. For the best results, be sure you use the sizes and ratios specified for YouTube.
Control Your Narrative
Your YouTube thumbnail is like a book cover that tells your story. No one will look inside if it is dreary or unattractive. The good news is you have tools available to create a thumbnail that is the door to the greatest story ever told.
Have you ever made a YouTube thumbnail? We would like to hear about how hard or easy it was to make. Use the comment box below to share your experience.