A YouTube channel header or cover is a picture located at the very top of the channel’s home page. This is what users see first when they clicked on a channel from a video or YouTube search.
In this article, we’ll show you how to make a cool YouTube channel header, how to add it to your channel, and where to look for inspiration when creating your cover art.
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Cap size and format
- recommended cover sizes – 2560 x 1440 px, but not less than 2048 x 1152 px;
- format – jpg, png;
- file weight – up to 6 MB.
Keep in mind that the cover will look different on mobile devices, PCs and Smart TVs. We show schematically where the visible part is located depending on the type of device.
Advice: place the text and key elements of the channel in the visible part, and everything that goes beyond it can be filled with a pattern, a solid background or any picture. Better to place the text in the smallest visible part (for mobile).
It is interesting: How to make a YouTube video cover
Where to look for inspiration – examples of successful covers
Border guard – the blogger’s channel, which exposes the info-gypsy in his videos. On the cover of the channel, the title is in the center, just below the nickname by which the author can be found in all social networks. This part is displayed on all devices. There is also a photo of him on the cover, but this part is not visible on mobile – only on PC and Smart TV.
Tip: If you are a blogger or expert, post your photo on the channel cover. This will help promote your personal brand.
Business youth – conduct trainings for those wishing to start their own business and master classes on the topic of psychology. The screenshot below is an example of a situational banner created for a specific training. In this case, the cover serves as an advertisement for the training. The idea is suitable for creators of expert content, event organizers, creative people.
Dream Team House – the channel of the Russian house of bloggers. The guys regularly shoot joint videos for Tik-Tok, and in parallel, each one is promoting their channels and social networks. The hat idea is suitable for creative teams.
Dima Maslennikov – leads the channel on several topics at once: paranormal phenomena, challenges, life hacks. The horror-style cover of the channel is clearly dedicated to the paranormal playlist. This style suits gaming and entertainment channels.
Syndicate Workshop – a channel on automotive topics. There are 2 main hosts on the cover. The banner style reflects the content of the channel. The only thing for which you can put a minus is not quite a good font on the cover, this is especially noticeable on the word “Workshop”. And a logo with a bunch of small details. Better to use a more readable font and a laconic logo.
vDud – the channel on which the journalist Yuri Dud posts his interviews with famous people. There is nothing superfluous on the cover – the title and the photo. A good option for serious channels.
MARMAGE – the author of the channel uploads cartoons in which he ironically talks about his life. On the cover he himself, or rather his drawn character. But even if you do not shoot cartoons and have nothing to do with illustrations at all, you can use this idea. Not suitable for a serious channel with expert content, but just right for a blogger’s channel. Find an illustrator, send him your photo and order a cover where you will be drawn.
You have probably seen channels with a large number of views and subscribers, but no cover, for example, on the Pushka and Ivangai channels.
What – all the recommendations are in vain? No! The fact is that these channels take on their content, and Ivangai has also successfully promoted his personal brand. Their videos are often trending, and subscribers don’t really care what’s on the cover. But we do not recommend doing this. Firstly, beginner channels need to promote themselves first, and the proper design of the YouTube channel can help with this. Secondly, new channel visitors who have not yet “tasted” the content pay attention to the cover, and even such a trifle can influence the decision to subscribe.
How to make a cool YouTube channel header
There are 3 main ways to create a channel cover – none of them require you to be a designer:
1. Do it yourself in Canva editor
This method is as simple as possible. Firstly, the drag & drop editor is intuitive (even a beginner can handle it), and secondly, it has ready-made header templates for YouTube, designed taking into account the size of the visible area.
Head over to Canva’s home page. We are looking for “YouTube channel design”.
Choose a template that we like. Choose templates where the text is centered – then it will accurately fall into the visible part on all devices. There are most of these templates in Canva, but there are also some where the text goes beyond the visible part for mobile.
After choosing the template, replace everything that is needed (background, title, elements) and save.
The advantage of this method is that you do not need to contact anyone and pay money for design development – the cover can be made free and quickly.
2. Buy or find free cover templates for Photoshop
You download templates and edit them in Photoshop. The good thing about this method is that you can find templates from professional designers – they look cooler than what Canva offers. The downside is that you need to be able to work with Photoshop, and basic skills are not enough to uniqueize the template.
3. Order from a freelancer
You find a freelancer, give him a task, and he makes the cover. The plus of the method – you don’t have to do anything yourself, the minus is that a decent cover will cost from 1,000 rubles and more, and you also need to explain your wishes so that the performer understands you exactly.
Advice: so that the freelancer does the job as you expect from him – prepare the most detailed terms of reference and show examples of covers that you need to focus on.
How to put or change the cover of a YouTube channel: step by step instructions.
Step 1… We go to the main YouTube page (you need to log in), in the upper right corner, click on your avatar. In the pop-up window, click “My Channel”.
Step 2… To install the cover for the first time, click on the blue button “Customize channel view”.
In the settings, click on the “Branding” section.
Step 3… Scroll down a bit, find “Banner Image” and click “Load”.
We load a picture from a computer. If its size is less than 2048 x 1152 px, the image will not load, and a warning will pop up that a different size is needed. If everything is in order with the size, YouTube will show in the picture schematically where the visible area will be, depending on the device. 3 zones are shown – the zone that is visible on TV, the zone that is visible on computers and the zone that is visible on all devices (the smallest). If everything suits you, click “Finish”.
To change the cover to a different one, go to the “Branding” section again, scroll to the “Banner Image” and press “Change”. You can also remove the cover completely.
An alternative way is to open the “My Channel” section from the main YouTube and find the camera icon in the upper right corner of the cover. By clicking on it, we get to the same section as shown in the screenshot above.
Important: Previously it was possible to change the cover of a channel on a PC and in the mobile version of the application. It can now only be changed on the computer.
YouTube channel header is an important design element that influences the first impression of the channel. If you have an inconspicuous cover, new visitors may think that you are not serious about the design of your content, so it is better to work on it. Check out the top YouTube channels to determine your cover style.
You can make a channel header yourself in an online editor, use a ready-made template for Photoshop, or order from a freelancer.