How can you get more views on Youtube? The first step to getting more people to watch your Youtube videos is to use the right thumbnail size for your Youtube videos. The second is to make it attracting!

In this post, you will learn about the perfect Youtube thumbnail size and best practices for creating an attracting thumbnail. 

As a special bonus, I’ve made available (at the end of this article) a templete of our Youtube thumbnails (free to download)!


What are Youtube Thumbnails

For the unversed, YouTube thumbnails are the small preview images that are used to represent the videos uploaded on the website. These thumbnails are much like book covers – they attract people’s attention. So, if the thumbnails are good, it will convince people to watch the video.

Here’s how YouTube thumbnails look on the channel:

Youtube Thumbnail Size

This an example of a “good thumbnail” (taken from one of our videos on the channel):

youtube thumbnail example


YouTube Thumbnails: Five Important Points to Consider

According to YouTube’s help center, there are five important points that you need to consider when it comes to YouTube thumbnails. Here are those five points:

  1. The perfect YouTube video thumbnail size is 1280 pixels by 720 pixels (1280px x 720 px).
  2. The YouTube thumbnail dimensions should use an aspect ratio of 16:9.
  3. You should ensure that the thumbnail size is a minimum of 640 pixels wide.
  4. The thumbnail image should be under 2MB.
  5. Supported image formats include JPG, GIF, or PNG.


The Perfect Youtube Thumbnail Size

As mentioned before, the ideal size for your YouTube thumbnail is 1280 pixels by 720 pixels. In other words, it should be 1280 pixels in width and 720 pixels tall. Also, the minimum width of your thumbnail image should be 640 pixels.

YouTube Thumbnail Size

So, YouTube requires your custom YouTube thumbnail size to be big enough because the same image is also used as the preview image in the embedded player.

How to Add Custom Thumbnails to Your YouTube Videos

Have a look at this video to know how to add custom thumbnails to your YouTube videos:

How to Add Custom Thumbnails to Your YouTube Videos

Please note that to upload custom thumbnails, you must have a verified Youtube account.

Here’s how to add custom thumbnails to your new videos:

For Uploads

  1. Select CREATE to upload your video.
  2. Under “Thumbnail”, select Upload thumbnail.

For Live streams

  1. Select CREATE  >  Go live.
  2. On the “Stream” screen, select Change THUMBNAIL.

Here’s how to add custom thumbnails to your already uploaded videos:

  1. Sign in to YouTube Studio.
  2. From the left menu, select Content.
  3. Select a video by clicking its thumbnail.
  4. Under “Thumbnail”, select Upload thumbnail.
  5. Choose the file you’d like to use as your custom thumbnail.
  6. Select Save.

Once you’ve added a custom thumbnail, point to it and click More to download or edit the thumbnail.

If you also wonder what is the image size do you need for your profile photo, banner or post on facebook, read: Recommended Facebook Image Size for your Posts.


Best Practices

Follow the below mentioned best practices to get the desired results:

Use a Still from Your Video

This is the simplest way of adding a thumbnail to your YouTube video. In many cases, YouTube automatically selects the perfect still image from your video to use as a thumbnail. Or, you can use video editing software to export a particular still. To make the thumbnail more appealing, you can also add a title to it.

Create a Custom Graphic

You can also create a custom graphic that effectively represents your video content along with your brand’s name and logo.

Combine a Video Still with Graphics

This practice involves a combination of the first two steps. You can combine a still image from your video with graphic elements. This would create a truly attention-grabbing YouTube thumbnail. It’s a widely used method for videos that include people, such as a vlog, tutorial, or talk show.

Avoid Misleading Images and Titles

Please ensure you are not creating misleading images or titles when creating YouTube thumbnails. Otherwise, you risk losing the trust of your target audience.

YouTube Thumbnail (Free Template)

Please feel free to download our template for Youtube Thumbnails. We made it available for PowerPoint so that most people can make use of it since the Office suite is quite popular. You can customize it as you want to create your own perfect Youtube thumbnail. I hope you enjoy!

Download free Youtube Thumbnail Template >>

How To Create a Thumbnail With the Right Size?

So, create some appealing YouTube thumbnails by following all the above-mentioned guidelines for achieving success and gaining the attention of your audiences.

But, I would advise you to be careful while creating the thumbnails. Your thumbnail may get rejected and it may have an adverse effect on your account if it contains –

  • Nudity or sexually provocative content
  • Hate Speech
  • Violence
  • Harmful or dangerous content

So, take extra care of this aspect too.

If you are interested in growing you Youtube channel and make it as visible as possible don’t miss



Thanks for reading!

I hope this post answered all the questions regarding Youtube Thumbnail Size and best practices 🙂


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