The Perfect YouTube Thumbnail Size Guide 2023
Search Engine Optimization

The Perfect YouTube Thumbnail Size Guide 2023

07/24/2023 6:03 PM by SEO Admin in Youtube


YouTube’s help center has important points when it comes to YouTube thumbnail images. Follow the below guidelines, you will see YouTube success in no time.

The best thumbnail size for YouTube is 1280 x 720 pixels (width x height), with a minimum width of 640 pixels. The thumbnail image format needs to be JPG, BMP, GIF, or PNG. The YouTube thumbnail dimensions 16:9 is recommended because it is the most commonly used in YouTube players and previews.

Thumbnails are essential! When viewers browse videos, this is the first thing they see. 90% of the best performing videos on YouTube have custom thumbnails," says YouTube. A YouTube thumbnail can help you improve CTR (Click Through Rate) and thus increase views for your videos.

What is a YouTube Thumbnail?

A YouTube thumbnail is a cover or preview image for a video that has been uploaded to YouTube. When you upload a video, YouTube generates thumbnails from it and gives you options from which to choose.

YouTube Thumbnail Size Guide 2023

Having eye-catching thumbnails is critical in getting views on videos on a regular basis, but this is one of the most important things to do after creating a YouTube channel. 

Lets start

Best YouTube Thumbnail Dimensions – Everything You Need to Know

This is the most frequently asked question: what is the best YouTube thumbnail size?

Here's the solution:

The ideal thumbnail size for YouTube is 1280 x 720 px (width x height), with a minimum width of 640 pixels. 16:9 is the aspect ratio. Make sure the thumbnail file does not exceed 2MB in size, and the best file formats to upload are.JPEG,.PNG,.BMP, or.GIF.

YouTube recommends these sizes, so make sure your custom thumbnail follows these guidelines.

Here’s the summary of YouTube Thumbnail Size and Requirements:

  • Thumbnail Size: 1280 x 720 pixels
  • Minimum Width: 640 pixels
  • Thumbnail File size: 2MB maximum
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • File Type: .JPEG, .PNG, .BMP or .GIF

If you want to create a custom thumbnail image for your YouTube videos, you must first meet the technical requirements (which you must understand).

YouTube thumbnail resolution

The ideal resolution for the thumbnails image is 1280 x 720 pixels. The image resolution is expressed in DPI (dots per inch) and corresponds to the number of pixels contained per inch. In general, the images we use on the web have 72 pixels per inch.Higher pixel counts result in higher-quality images, but they also increase file size. If the resolution is low, the image will appear pixelated and may be smaller in file size. As a result, you'll need a high-resolution image that won't appear blurry when scaled up.

Minimum thumbnail width

The YouTube thumbnail image should have a minimum width of 640 pixels. This is the smallest canvas size you can use when creating a custom thumbnail image. A video thumbnail on YouTube cannot have an image smaller than 640 pixels.

Maximum File Size Limit

The maximum file size for a YouTube thumbnail image is 2MB. YouTube set a file size upload limit to make the web browser or mobile app load faster. If the file size exceeds 2MB, YouTube will not accept or upload the image.

Aspect Ratio

The thumbnail image should have a 16:9 aspect ratio. A 16:9 aspect ratio indicates that the image is 16 units wide and 9 units tall. This is the most common ratio used by major media players such as web players, TV, and mobile devices to properly display video. Why the 16:9 aspect ratio? You can upload a video with any aspect ratio. However, when it is played in YouTube players.

Required File Formats

YouTube accepts thumbnail image file types such as JPEG, PNG, BMP, and GIF. Most image creation software and platforms are usually available.

How to Enable Custom Thumbnails Feature

Auto-generated thumbnails are frequently blurry and unappealing. If you don't like the automatically generated thumbnails, you can upload your custom thumnail. To upload a custom thumbnail to YouTube, you must have a verified account.

Here are the steps to verify your account and start uploading custom thumbnails:

Step 1: Log in to your YouTube account.

Step 2: Click on the “Profile Icon” on the top right corner to open the drop-down menu.

Step 3: In the drop-down menu, click on the “Settings“.

Step 4: In your account section, click on the “Channel status and features” link.

Step 5: Click on the “Verify” blue button.

Step 6: Select your country, choose the way to receive verification code, either by call or text. Now enter your phone number (follow the example) and click the “Submit” blue button.

Once you submit the verification code, you will see the verified message “Congratulations! Your YouTube account is now verified.

Now that the YouTube account has been verified, we can enable the feature to upload custom thumbnails to video. When custom thumbnails for specific search results are deemed inappropriate for viewers, YouTube may disable them. All custom thumbnail images must adhere to our Community Guidelines.

How to Create Effective Custom YouTube Thumbnails

According to YouTube, thumbnails are typically the first thing viewers see when they discover one of your videos, and 90% of the best-performing videos on YouTube have custom thumbnails. There are numerous methods for creating custom attractive YouTube thumbnails, but we will focus on four methods for creating a custom YouTube thumbnail image for your videos. We'll go over each one in depth. So let's begin with the first:

Take a Screenshot of Your Video 

YouTube generates thumbnails from your video and provides you with four options from which to choose, but you can now upload a custom screenshot instead. One of the quickest ways to use a custom thumbnail image is to take a screenshot from the video. 

A screenshot can be taken with Windows, Mac, or Phone. Take a screenshot as large as your device allows. Examine your video to find the exact moment when you are in the ideal position. I'm sure you never want to show your facial expressions with your eyes closed or your mouth half open. Take as many screenshots as you can in order to capture a perfect moment with no blur. Once you've created a perfect screenshot, it's time to create a perfect YouTube thumbnail size of 1280 x 720 pixels.

Take Still Shots for YouTube Thumbnail

t's a good idea to consider your thumbnail even before you shoot your video, so you have a variety of options when you upload. So, for this method, use your smartphone to create a custom thumbnail. 

While shooting your YouTube video, take some time to take perfect pictures with your smartphone or camera. Consider taking a selfie and pausing for a moment to take a still shot. This will result in a perfect thumbnail image. There is also a 1% chance of getting a blurry image. 

Now, take a look at all of your snapshots, and do you find exactly what you're looking for? Is your snapshot an accurate representation of the content of your video? If so, crop your photo to fit the YouTube thumbnail size and upload it.You can crop your snap in the accurate dimensions by using SanSEOTools Photo Cropper.

Use YouTube Thumbnail Maker

Another method for creating YouTube thumbnails is to use a thumbnail maker.

Create Your Own YouTube Thumbnail

To increase YouTube discovery, a thumbnail is just as important as a video title. As a result, the thumbnails should accurately represent your content. Use the best fonts for YouTube Thumbnail to make your design stand out.

Never mislead your YouTube audience if you want to grow your channel and make money on YouTube. As a result, the thumbnail must accurately represent the video content. Otherwise, it has a negative impact on viewers. As a result, viewers may dislike your video more than they like it, and they may never subscribe to your channel. 

Tip:   Avoid using another person's image as well, as reverse image search tool can trace the image back to its owner and land you in hot water.

Hope SanSEOTools guide on YouTube Thumbnail Size helps you creating perfect YouTube thumbnails and helps you gain more views. Good luck.