How to design YouTube thumbnails that get clicks: A tutorial in Canva

How to design YouTube thumbnails that get clicks: A tutorial in Canva

 How to design YouTube thumbnails that get clicks: A tutorial in Canva

You’ve got the content, now you need to figure out the best way to design your YouTube channel’s thumbnail so it gets clicks and more views. The thumbnail image plays an important role in your video’s success on YouTube because it shows up as the preview image before people click to watch the video. There are several things you can do in Canva to create a great-looking YouTube thumbnail image that will get clicks, but first let’s go over what makes an effective thumbnail design in general.

Watch full Tutorial step-by-step in the below video

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Step 1. Pick your color scheme

Since your main objective is getting views, it’s important to choose colors that are eye-catching and active. One of my favorite color schemes is black, red, and yellow—but feel free to experiment! Consider picking a light background color and adding a darker accent (red), which will help draw attention towards your call-to-action buttons. Make sure you have enough contrast between different elements of your thumbnail for optimal readability. Avoid using pure white, which can be difficult for viewers to look at.

Step 2. Select the right layout

The key is to select a layout with plenty of white space around your graphic. In fact, white space around your graphic might be more important than a fancy background.

Step 3. Write a clear, powerful headline

Your headline should be clear, concise and attention-grabbing. Consider how you want your audience to respond when they read it. Are you hoping they’ll share it with friends? Or are you trying to encourage them to read further? Be creative, but stay on topic! If there are other words you can use instead of how-to—such as guide or review—go for it. These terms tend to perform better than generic headlines because people know exactly what they mean. Your headline should also mention something about your target audience or any other specifics related to your topic.

Step 4. Add actionable text

Next, add text that contains instructions for a reader to follow. This doesn’t have to be a long step-by-step guide but it does need to include actionable steps for people who want a little more detail. In some cases, you can break up these actionable steps into subheadings as well. Just remember, Google doesn’t always properly decipher subheadings so use your best judgment and try not to go overboard with them! Otherwise you run the risk of overloading your post with too much information.

Step 5. Include an eye-catching image

In addition to designing an effective thumbnail, you’ll want a great image to go with it. If you have an awesome logo or photo, use it! But make sure it’s in high resolution—at least 1,000 pixels wide for a full-width thumbnail and at least 2,000 pixels wide for a half-width one. You can always crop down if your image is too big after you upload it. Also make sure it matches your niche. For example, if you’re making YouTube videos about tech gadgets for teens, then your thumbnail needs to say tech gadgets for teens.

Step 6. Add icons as needed

For example, if your post is about creating a business plan, add an icon of a pencil. If it's about something else, add another relevant icon (see our icons list here ). Then click on Create at the bottom right of your screen. The new text will be added below your first section title.

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