Wondering how to create a YouTube channel?
Great idea! YouTube stands in a unique place as the world’s top video sharing platform.
So if you want to create video and have people see it, you need to set up a YouTube channel.
There are some strong benefits to having one! Including that your videos can show up in Google search results.
Learning how to create a YouTube channel isn’t too difficult. Let’s walk through it step by step.
Why start a YouTube channel?
Before we dive into the step-by-step tutorial, it’s worth taking a moment to think about why you should.
After all, committing to creating videos consistently can seem like a lot of work – so you want to know there’s a strong potential for return on that investment of time.
YouTube in the numbers
Let’s start with a few numbers.
YouTube has over 2 billion monthly active users and around 122 million daily active users.
On average, users spend 18 minutes a day on the platform.
This adds up to some 1 billion hours of video a month of video watch time!
There are also over 3 million paying subscribers, and the platform made $19.7 billion in 2020.
Cross promoting potential
You can definitely start a YouTube channel without a blog, and make video content your sole focus.
But if you have a blog, or a presence on another social platform that likes video (and they all do these days!), then there’s huge cross promoting potential.
You can add a video to YouTube. Then create a transcript of it.
Add this as a blog post on your blog, and embed the video. Then share it across social media.
That means both the post and the video have a chance to rank in search engines and drive traffic.
Need Instagram post ideas? Repurposed YouTube videos work great there too.
You can make money
There are several ways to make money on YouTube:
- Review your own products or affiliate products, and encourage viewers to buy.
- Send traffic to your website, where you can make money in numerous ways.
- Make money from YouTube ads, memberships, and more.
For the last one, you need to meet a few requirements, such as being at least 18 and having at least 1,000 subscribers.
It starts small at first, but there’s potential! The top earner from 2020, Ryan Kaji, brought in $29.5 million last year.
Owned by Google
And don’t forget that YouTube is owned by Google.
It’s a search engine in its own right. But Google also loves to show YouTube video in their search results.
Check out almost any term and you’ll see video showing up somewhere – usually near the top of the results!
Take the below search: just under the single top search result, there’s People Also Ask. After one more website result, there’s the video section – and all the videos here are from YouTube!
Plus there’s an option to click to more videos for the search term. Because Google knows people love to watch videos!
Did I mention that around 6,696,000,000 searches happen on Google Search engine every day? source
So it’s a great company to rub elbows with.
How to create a YouTube channel
Now we know why you should start a YouTube channel. Let’s start working through how to do it!
1. Go to YouTube and sign in
The first step is to head to YouTube and sign in using the button at upper right.
If you have a Google account that isn’t connected to a channel yet, then you can use that to get started.
You do need a Google Account to sign in to YouTube. A Google Account works across all Google products (like Gmail, Blogger, Maps, YouTube, and more). If you’ve signed in to any of these products before, you already have a Google Account. source
If you don’t, click Create Account to set up a Google Account, which will then take you to YouTube.
2. Head over to your YouTube settings
Once the channel is created, hit the icon in the top right corner and select ‘Your Channel’.
Now you have the option to customize it by selecting the ‘customize channel’ button.
3. Customize your YouTube channel
Now you can really start making it a channel you’re proud to show off.
Visit the customization area to make it look just how you want.
There are some things you can come back to later, such as the channel trailer and featured video for returning subscribers.
Let’s start with getting some basics in place.
4. Upload branding elements to your channel
Select the second tab along the top to access the branding elements
Here you can add a picture that is at least 98 x 98 pixels and 4MB or less. This profile picture will show across your channel.
A logo or a photo of yourself can work here, depending on if you are creating a business or personal channel. You can check out these profile picture ideas.
Next, add a banner image that is at least 2048 x 1152 pixels in size.
Getting the right channel art is important, as this will show above all of your videos.
You can get some great YouTube channel art templates to help with this. The important thing is to make sure you get the critical information in the center, so it shows on all devices.
Finally, you can add a video watermark that’s 150 x 150 pixels, and not animated.
Then hit Publish to make sure this is all live.
5. Add Basic Info to your channel for discoverability
The other important area is in the third tab, where the basic info for the channel settings is found.
Your name should show as your business or personal name – your choice.
Then your channel description should be up to 1000 words. Make sure you get your most important keywords in.
Describe the type of content you’ll be creating so potential subscribers know what they’ll get from you.
When you first start your channel, you can’t change the URL. But once you have 100 or more subscribers, you can come back here and change this to the channel name you desire.
You can also add links you want to share with your viewers, such as to your blog or other social profiles.
Finally, add your contact email address in case anyone wants to reach out.
Then hit Publish to make it live.
6. Upload your first YouTube video
With the basics in place for your channel, you can now start adding your first video.
Head back to your dashboard and click the ‘Create’ button in the top right corner.
You can select to Go Live or to Add a Video.
If you want to add a video you’ve already made, select this, and then upload the file.
Fill in the basics including the title, description, and choosing a thumbnail. For real punch, you can create a YouTube thumbnail to upload. Then select the audience.
The description is important as it helps to rank YouTube videos.
You can add extra features such as an end screen or cards – or just leave these for now while you get started.
YouTube carries out quick copyright checks to make sure you are okay to publish the content – then you can select visibility.
Select to Save or publish or schedule your video, then Save, and it will go live.
You’ll then get the video link and the option to share to different social media sites or via email.
Simple steps to starting a YouTube channel
As you can see, there are just a few simple steps to take to get your YouTube channel up and running.
Then add some graphics to make it look great.
You can add social video you have already produced, individual videos, or even a series of them in a playlist to start your channel.
Don’t have videos yet? Your next step is to get some YouTube video ideas.
Then you’ll have a chance to start getting found in that search bar.
So why not get started today? Go ahead and create your YouTube channel!