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How to Make a Good YouTube Thumbnail 

Custom thumbnails can make your video stand out and attract more viewers. When you upload a video to YouTube, the platform automatically selects three still images to use as thumbnails. However, you can customize your video’s thumbnails to create a unique and eye-catching image. Your YouTube thumbnail also provides an opportunity to establish your brand’s identity. Thus, creating compelling and eye-catching custom thumbnails can be crucial for success on YouTube. In this article, we’ll discuss what makes a good YouTube thumbnail and learn how to create YouTube thumbnails.  

What Is a Thumbnail Image?  

YouTube thumbnail is a brief preview image that appears on the platform. Before clicking to watch, it acts like a visual snapshot, giving viewers an overview of the video’s content. Thumbnails are very important because they have such a big effect on a video’s overall performance. An eye-catching YouTube thumbnail draws viewers in, conveys the topic or theme of the video, and persuades them to click and interact with the content. Also, check out the How to Make Money on YouTube guide to increase your chances on YouTube!

Guide to Making The Best YouTube Thumbnail  

A careful balancing act between strategy, creativity, and visual communication goes into making the best thumbnail. Firstly, your thumbnails should be compatible with YouTube’s recommended sizes. Make sure your thumbnail has the correct size and proportions before moving further. Below, you can find some basic tips on how to make a good YouTube thumbnail. Don’t forget that you can also buy YouTube auto views and boost your videos easily!

Use the Correct Thumbnail Image Size 

Before you do anything else, get the correct dimensions and size for your YouTube thumbnailYouTube Help Center notes five important points regarding YouTube thumbnail images.  

These five points are: 

  • YouTube thumbnail 1280 pixels by 720 pixels is the ideal size. 
  • The aspect ratio for YouTube thumbnails is 16:9. 
  • Ensure that the width of your thumbnail is at least 640 pixels. 
  • Images used as thumbnails should not exceed 2MB. 
  • JPG, GIF, and PNG are the image formats. 
use the correct thumbnail image size

To Add video thumbnails in the YouTube Studio app: 

  • Launch the YouTube Studio app. 
  • Select Content from the bottom menu. 
  • Choose the video that needs editing. 
  • Select Edit, followed by Edit thumbnail. 
  • To create a custom video thumbnail from an image on your device, either select an auto-generated thumbnail or tap Custom thumbnail. 
  • Select your thumbnail and then click on Select after you’re sure. 
  • Press Save. 
  • The YouTube thumbnail changes you make might not show up right away. 

There is a daily limit on the amount of custom thumbnails that a channel can upload. If you encounter an error saying that the “Daily custom thumbnail limit reached,” try uploading a thumbnail again the next day. Limits may differ by country/region or channel history. Copyright violations may impact a channel’s eligibility. 

By nation &region or channel history, limits may differ. Copyright violations may affect a channel’s eligibility for its past. How many thumbnails you can upload is limited if you’ve violated Community Guidelines. 

Use a Fantastic Photo for Your Thumbnail Background  

You want to draw attention to yourself and become noticeable. A strong image can serve as a small trailer can provide context for your video. Additionally, it helps your audience get to know your style better. Occasionally, YouTube will choose different images as a thumbnail by default. But this typically doesn’t look as nice and, therefore, doesn’t receive as many clicks. Even though you could always use stock photos or designing tools, try designing YouTube thumbnails without help first.  

always add some text to YouTube thumbnail

Always Add Some Text  

It’s important to let your viewers know what your video is about, and one way to do this is through text. You can create a short, eye-catching title that accurately reflects the main theme of your video. Alternatively, you can use a specific detail from your video that stands out and draws attention. This will help ensure your viewers are engaged and interested in watching your video. 

Use a Quality Thumbnail Maker  

As previously mentioned, numerous online YouTube thumbnail makers are available that can simplify the process and help you find the best designs and images. Many of these tools offer a free version, while others provide access to additional features through a pro version. 

Create a Template that Is Branded  

You should maintain a consistent theme for your videos as a content creator. To spread brand awareness, it’s recommended that you include your logo on your thumbnail. However, you shouldn’t make it too large or too small; just ensure that it’s noticeable. It’s essential to keep your brand’s theme and logo in mind while creating the template. 

contrast is important for image size and more

Contrast Is Important  

You should pay attention to color contrast if you want your YouTube thumbnail to be reader-friendly. It’s often advisable to make sure that the text color contrasts nicely with the background color when creating a custom thumbnail image. In addition to being reader-friendly, using contrasting colors will make your YouTube thumbnail more noticeable. 

Test Out Different Designs 

Choose a well-performing video, change its thumbnail to a new design, and monitor its performance. If you see an increase in click-through rate after making changes to the thumbnail image, it means your audience liked the new one than the previous one. You can design visually appealing YouTube thumbnails with the help of several incredible tools available. 


As a result, becoming an expert at crafting compelling YouTube thumbnails needs experimentation. These subtle yet effective visuals are the entry points to your content, affecting the choices made by viewers. To captivate audiences and encourage engagement, consistency and relevance are essential parts. Identify the preferences of your audience, then modify your thumbnails accordingly. Remember that a well-designed YouTube thumbnail is a strategic tool that can greatly impact your video’s performance. 

Frequently Asked Questions About

Yes, YouTube allows creators to change a video’s thumbnail even after it has been posted. With the help of this feature, creators can improve their thumbnails over time in response to feedback from the public, shifting fashions, or developing branding tactics.

Split testing, commonly referred to as A/B testing, is a great technique for YouTube thumbnail optimization. Using this technique, you can find out which thumbnail design performs better.

You can make your thumbnails more visually appealing by adding custom thumbnails, but make sure they make sense with the content and are reader-friendly. They should complement the branding and your video to make these images or icons relevant and effective.

To capture users’ attention and entice them to click, use clear, concise writing highlighting important details. Additionally, experimenting with various text placement, sizes, fonts, and colors can help maximize the effectiveness of text. This way, you can boost your traffic and raise the possibility that viewers will click on your video.

It’s important to select images that accurately represent the video’s content, align with your brand’s style and tone, and spark curiosity.

Ava Rowland

Posts: 113

Ava Rowland has a degree in English Language and Literature. She developed her blogging hobby, which she started during this period. She has been writing up-to-date articles professionally for the last three years. She has a kitten named Mittens. She loves watching reality shows to sleep.

4 Comments on How to Make a Good YouTube Thumbnail 

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  1. Amy K.
    Amy K.

    Great read! Your tips helped me understand the importance of making thumbnails stand out. I never realized how much of an impact a well-designed thumbnail could have on video views. Thanks for sharing these insights!

    • Ava Rowland
      Ava Rowland

      I’m glad!

  2. Mark L.
    Mark L.

    Excellent article! I especially appreciated the section on balancing text and imagery in thumbnails. Your examples made it clear how a well-composed thumbnail can attract more viewers. Looking forward to applying these techniques to my own YouTube channel. Keep up the good work!

    • Ava Rowland
      Ava Rowland

      Thank you so much!