19 May 2020
With 2 billion users worldwide – more than half of all internet users in the world – YouTube is currently the second most popular social network after Facebook! With such a large user-base, YouTube is an opportunity businesses and individuals cannot afford to miss.
Add to this the fact that video creation is becoming increasingly more accessible, and there is no more reason left not to try and harness the power of YouTube. So, if you are thinking about making your own channel on YouTube, it's the right time to start!
Creating a YouTube channel is very simple, completely free, and can be done in several minutes. All you need is an account on Google. If you don't have one yet, you can create it when opening your YouTube channel. In this article, we discuss, step by step, how you can:
Let’s get started!
Go to YouTube and click the “Sign In” button on the top-right corner.
Don’t be confused if you are redirected to the Google sign-in page: the sign-in process to YouTube takes place through Google. In case you have a Google account already, simply fill your login and password to sign in to your YouTube account.
And if you don’t have an account yet, go with “Create Account.” Depending on the purpose of your account, you can create a personal channel or one for your business. However, the creation process is identical in both cases. In this article, we will take a look at how to create an account for your business. To proceed, click on “To manage my business.”
From the page you’re redirected to, select “Create a Gmail account instead” under the email box. Fill in all the boxes and click “Next.” Make sure to remember the email address and the password as you will be using them to log in to your account.
Next, you need to fill in your phone number and some additional personal data. Choose your country and type your phone number without the country code. The phone number is essential, as it will be used to verify your account. For additional security, you can also fill in a recovery email if you have one.
The next step is verification. A 6-digit verification code will be sent to your phone via SMS. Click “Send” and enter the code in the box. If you’ve entered the code correctly, your Gmail account will be created and verified.
The last step is creating your YouTube channel. For this, go to YouTube, open the drop-down menu in the top-right corner, and select “Create a channel.”
From the next step, you have two options to create your channel: using the credentials of your Gmail account, or by using a custom name.
The channel creation process is identical for both options. The only difference is that in case of using a custom name, you’ll need to take one extra step and choose your channel name. Make sure to tick the box that you understand the implications of your action and hit “Create.”
The next page is where you can set up your account – add your profile icon, description, social links. This step is not mandatory – you can skip it and come back later.
Congratulations! Your YouTube channel has just been created. Now it’s time to customize it!
As one of the goals of your channel is to get subscribers, making your channel as appealing as possible is essential. A YouTube subscriber is someone who follows your channel. After subscribing, they stay updated with your activities and new video posts. The more subscribers you get, the more popular your channel will become. And channel customization plays an essential role in this.
This can be done in two ways: from your channel and YouTube Studio. Both can be accessed from the drop-down menu under your name. For simpler customization, we would advise you to go with customizing from your channel.
On the next page, select “Customize Channel.”
Channel art is the visual visitors see at the top of your channel. Remember that it gives your channel a distinct look and tells the viewer what it is about.
For the best look, the optimal image resolution is 2560 x 1440 pixels. File size should be 4MB or smaller. You can add the visual by clicking on “Add channel art” or on the pencil icon at the top-right corner.
You also have an option to add a profile icon. Do this by hovering over the photo icon and clicking on the pencil icon. The best resolution to go for is 800 x 800 pixels. YouTube will crop and adjust the photo to fit the frame.
When adding your channel art, you have three options you can go with: upload your photo, select photos from your drive if you have any, or use images from the Google gallery.
Depending on what device your viewers use, the look of your channel art may slightly vary. YouTube will show examples of how it will look across devices, and you have an option to crop and adjust the visual for a better look.
Make sure to pay extra attention to this step, and create high-quality and beautifully-crafted visuals, if possible. Add some personality and unique touch to your visual, as it is going to be the first thing your visitors see.
Now, it's time to describe your channel. Head to the "About" section to add an irresistible and informative description to your channel that will tell the viewers the story behind it.
Descriptions can provide valuable information to the users and help them understand what they'll be watching. Channel description plays another important role: it helps your videos appear in search results. For this reason, it should be optimized from time to time.
There are many ways in which you can optimize your channel and videos for better results. One of them is to put the most relevant keywords at the beginning of the description, as they are critical for optimization.
You can also include your business email, add links to your website or other social channels, and choose to overlay them on your channel art.
While these steps are not mandatory, they give more comprehensive information about your channel and brand.
Once you are done with the customization, take a look at your channel from the perspective of returning subscribers.
After you've created your channel and customized it, it's time to explore the vast functions it offers.
One of the first things you will notice is the notification section on the top-right corner. YouTube channel notifications tell you when there are new videos and updates from your favorite channels, new comments, or replies.
In the “Home” page, you will see a large list of videos organized by categories: the ones you have recently watched, recommended videos, music, breaking news, interviews, etc. The more videos you watch with time, the more personalized the suggestions will be.
Whenever you subscribe to a channel, you can later find all their videos in your “Subscriptions” section.
There are many more useful sections on the left menu panel.
In the "Library," you can find the history of all your watched videos, the videos which are marked as "Watch later," and your liked videos. In the "History" section, you can easily find the videos you've recently watched. Only you can see your YouTube history and also have an opportunity to delete it.
There are so many videos on YouTube. If you've found a good video but don't have time to watch it, don't worry. In this case, you need the "Watch Later" button. Add videos to your "Watch Later" list and watch them whenever you want. You can find all your liked videos in the "Liked Videos" section and play them all. And this is only a small fraction of the functions that will become available to you once you open a channel!
To simplify the process of managing your account, YouTube has created YouTube Studio —a platform where you can manage your channel, edit your content, update its settings, access channel metrics, and much more.
If you are planning to invest time and effort into your channel, our advice is to dive into YouTube Studio as quickly as possible. You can access it from the same drop-down menu you used to go to your channel.
You will be redirected to your channel Dashboard, from where you can navigate to your videos, playlists, analytics, settings, upload a video, etc.
From the settings, you can add channel keywords for optimization, set default upload settings, edit permissions as to who has access to managing your account, and many more.
These are only some of the tools offered by YouTube Studio. If used correctly, they can simplify the process of channel management, while making it more effective, and help your channel grow faster.
For more advanced settings, head to “Settings” in the drop-down menu under your name. This is where you can find all the information about your account.
In the “Account” section, you can edit your channel name, account type, and some additional parameters. You can also add and remove managers. This is the main difference between Business and Personal accounts — Business accounts allow you to add several users, who will have access to editing the channel.
In case you want to add collaborators to your channel, select “Manage Permissions.” For additional security purposes, you will be asked to re-enter your password.
After you re-enter your password, a pop-up will open. From there, select the “Add members” icon on the top right, and enter the emails of your team members, and select their role. Once you are done, hit “Invite” and an invitation to join the channel will be sent to the selected emails.
In the “Notifications” section, adjust your email and notification preferences. Choose which activity on your channel you want to be notified about.
This part is about annotations, in-video notifications, and captions. You can select whether you want to see them or not. Manage if you wish to show the captions or include auto-generated ones, whenever possible.
The next section is about the privacy of your account. Keep all your liked videos, saved playlists, and subscriptions private. Here you can also manage your activity feed. Block the ads you do not want to see and add the ones you prefer more. For additional information on this, check out Google Ads Settings.
From the “Advanced settings,” you can set up your user and channel ID, create a custom URL, move your channel to a brand account or delete it.
None of these changes are permanent. As your audience grows and you start uploading videos more often, you can always come back to these settings and adjust them according to your needs.
Congratulations! Your YouTube channel is set up and ready to be used to its full potential. Make sure to deeply explore the tools discussed above for the best results. And remember: having a successful YouTube channel is a work in progress. You need to put constant effort into managing it and coming up with creative content to engage your users.
Need a little help with your first video? Have a look at this list of 225 YouTube video ideas for some inspiration, or check our library of more than 800 templates and start creating right away.
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