You have an idea for a Let’s Play series that you’re convinced will blow the Internet’s mind, or maybe you’re dabbling in a new kind of fusion cooking and have the charisma to face the camera and share it with the world. There are, by our estimates, ten million reasons to start your own YouTube channel, but taking that first step can feel daunting. Thankfully, getting started is easier than you think, and with our guide you’ll have your channel up and running in no time.
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How to Create a YouTube Channel
So let’s get started. How do you go about creating your own YouTube channel?
The catch is that you probably already have a YouTube account and you don’t even know it. YouTube, being owned by Google, is tied into your Google/Gmail account, so when you go on YouTube and look in the top right corner, you’ll see whatever icon you have for your Google profile. If you don’t have a Google account, you can create one here, but if you’re averse to creating an account with Google, then we’re afraid you’re out of luck.
So once you’re on YouTube, click your profile icon at the top right to bring up your YouTube account, which will correspond with your Google account, then click the cog icon that appears.
On the new page, click “See all my channels or create a new channel”, then “Create a new channel”. On the next page, type the name of your channel, and click “Create”.
Make Your YouTube Page Look Good
Congratulations! You now have a YouTube channel. The next step is to pizazz it up. Click “Customise Channel” to get to work on the look and layout of the channel. On the new page add a nice big image for your channel art by clicking “Add channel art” and adding your own image.
Note: if you get an old-fashioned Google prompt asking you to “select an item from your online storage” when you try to sign in, this is a common problem in Chrome. To get rid of the message, you need to enable third-party cookies.
To do this, go to your Chrome “Settings -> Advanced -> Privacy and security -> Content settings -> Cookies” and turn off the “Block third-party cookies” option.
Upload a nice banner image that you think sums up your channel (we recommend being more creative than our example image here). Next, adjust the crop so it looks good across desktop, TV and Mobile. Then, if you want, tick the “Auto-enhance” box and see if you like the result. When you’re done, click “Select.”
Next, add a profile image for your channel. Hover over the thumbnail with the generic outline of a person on your “Customize Channel” page, then click the small pencil icon that appears to add your own image.
The other crucial thing to do on your “Customize Channel” page is to fill in all the details in the “About” section. Here, you should add a punchy channel description (no more than a few sentences) and add links to your other channels and any contact information that you think is relevant.
The final step is to start uploading your own videos. To do this, click your logo at the top-right of YouTube, then click Creator Studio. Next, you can drag and drop the video from your PC that you want to upload (upload it in “Private” mode if you want to test to see how it looks and sounds before going public with it.
Once it’s uploaded, fill out all the relevant information in the description and tags. Be precise, don’t waffle, and make sure you add all the relevant links and credits. Finally, click “Save changes.”
The video will now be on the Dashboard of the Creator Studio page. At any point you can click “Edit” to switch your video between “Public” and “Private” look at its viewing stats, and add it to playlists.
So those are the basics, offering a foundation for you to become the next YouTube sensation (or, you know, just upload videos and build up a nice community of people who appreciate them). Remember that if you want your channel to rank higher in YouTube’s search results, you need to post content regularly and of course keep it high quality. Good luck!