How to make thumbnails for your YouTube?

Note: This is a guest post written by Marlene Stephenson

In this article, we will explain how to make thumbnails for YouTube for free quickly and easily. If you want your videos to attract attention and receive more visits every day, Read this post. Let’s get started!

What is a Thumbnail on YouTube?

If you are new to all this, don’t worry. Here are some basics and some frequently asked questions on this topic. A thumbnail on YouTube is a “preview image” of your video. They serve to capture people’s attention visually and thus get the click and the visualization.

Logically, a good thumbnail is not enough to guarantee the success of a video on YouTube, but it is a good start. Every detail in your video is a small piece of the puzzle. The title, description and thumbnail of the video are the first things that people see of each video on YouTube after searching, and that is where the importance of these elements lies.

The most important thing to keep in mind when creating a video is that its content is of quality. However, when uploading it to YouTube, you will have to compete with many other creators and you must put effort if you want your videos to be seen.

What is a Default Thumbnail?

YouTube generally suggests three different frame images to select as a video thumbnail. If you don’t choose one, YouTube will randomly pick these three images and display them as the video thumbnail. So, if you agree with those images, go for it. Otherwise, you can create and upload your own images. It is recommended that all your miniatures be 100% original.

What is a Custom Thumbnail?

The ultimate goal of uploading custom YouTube thumbnails is to make them attractive and generate more organic traffic to your videos. Creating custom thumbnails for your YouTube videos will give you a touch of professionalism and originality that will only bring you benefits. Take advantage of the fact that your content and your message are unique.

Why is it Important to Use Custom Thumbnails?

In a nutshell: Using custom thumbnails for YouTube videos increases your videos’ click-through rate. The CTR (Click Through Rate) is a metric that measures the percentage of clicks a video receives concerning the impressions it has had in a given period.

Why is CTR important? The CTR is important in YouTube because it is the metric that marks if your thumbnails, title and description attract people to see your videos. If there are clicks, there is interest. And if there is interest, the more options you have to make that person your subscriber.

It is simple: The higher the CTR, the greater the profit for your YouTube channel. In other words, the CTR is directly proportional to the increase in your visits and income. Therefore, it is essential to use attractive thumbnails to increase the CTR of all your videos.

What Size and Format Should YouTube Thumbnails Have?

To give you an idea of how big your thumbnails should be on YouTube:

  • Image resolution : 1280 * 720.
  • Pixels: 640.
  • Formats: JPG, GIF, PNG.
  • Limit: 2 MB.
  • Ratio : 16: 9.
  • The best size for a custom YouTube thumbnail is the 16: 9 aspect ratio. The thumbnail resolution on YouTube is 1280 × 720.

Tips for Making Thumbnails

Here are some practical tips to help you create amazing and effective thumbnails for your YouTube channel:

1. Add Catchy Words

While creating thumbnails, try to add a few words that grab your audience’s attention. For example: “Free”, “Review”, “Best”, “Discount”, “Coupon code” like these.

2. Use large fonts

In case you’ve used catchy words, apply larger fonts to those words or highlight them. Adding a smaller font size won’t bring you anything, even if the video has quality content.

3. Include Funny Moments

If your content has funny moments, you can include screenshots of them to get people’s attention. You can use the texts you include in this same way.

4. Add Your Channel Logo

In each YouTube custom thumbnail template, you can add your channel, business, or brand logo if you wish. Adding a channel logo is not mandatory. But it is a simple marketing strategy to expose your brand to more people.

5. Keep the Same Style

Try to stick with the same templates that you use in your thumbnails. It’s easy for the audience to remember and capture your channel wherever they find it.

6. Don’t Use ClickBait Words

I mean that adding thumbnail words that are not relevant to the video is not good to attract audiences. This is a bad practice, in the long term, has negative consequences. Consider that when people see your content, in a quick time, they will know if the video is related to what is cited in the thumbnail or not.


Taking the time to create a custom thumbnail for each of your videos is an essential part of organic YouTube search. This will help you grab your audience’s attention, promote your YouTube videos, and increase your channel’s revenue in the long run.

Follow the tips above to create the best possible thumbnail for each video. Custom thumbnails play a vital role in this. Don’t forget that big results are the by-product of little things.

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