20+ Creative YouTube Banner Templates & Tips to Wow Your Audience!

By Sara McGuire, Aug 22, 2018

youtube banner template

Think of your favorite YouTube channels. What do they all have in common?

(Well, aside from a ton of subscribers.)

I’ll give you a hint: they probably all have a custom, high-quality YouTube banner on their profiles. One look and you have a sense of what their channels will offer you.

Consistent and recognizable visual branding is essential for growing your YouTube following.

If you’re a content marketer, odds are you’ll recognize Brian Dean’s Backlinko green when you see it:

backlinko youtube banner

That’s because he uses this shade of green in his site banner as well. That way anyone finding his content via YouTube first, or via his blog posts first, will recognize his branding when they come across more content by him.

There’s also the matter of making your channel look legitimate. Just like with website design, blog design and social media profiles, your YouTube channel design is the packaging for the content you’re trying to “sell”.

But if you’re a smaller business, or just one person trying to get your channel off the ground, then odds are you don’t have the budget to hire a designer for your visual branding.

That’s why you can save a lot of money and stress by creating your own YouTube banner.

When in doubt, start with a YouTube banner template

If you don’t have much design experience, the idea of designing your own YouTube banner from scratch might seem a bit daunting.

That’s why, before we dive into tips for how you can create your own creative YouTube banner, I want to suggest a shortcut:

Save yourself the stress by using a YouTube banner template as the foundation for your design.

A template will guide your design, while also ensuring that your banner uses the correct dimensions. The recommended YouTube banner dimensions are 2560 x 1440 pixels. So you need to use your space wisely.

Not sure where to start? Don’t worry.

This guide will offer you some helpful tips for designing your own YouTube banner, starting with a YouTube banner template.

 

1. Pick a YouTube banner layout that fits your vision

When it comes to selecting a YouTube banner template, look for a layout that works for you. Think about where you want the focus of your banner to be, and the effect that you want it to have.

There are a few basic banner layouts you can start with.

Centered title layout

Placing your title in the center of your banner puts the emphasis on the font. The symmetrical layout will make your title look bold and focused.

youtube banner template


 

Asymmetrical layout

An asymmetrical layout can look more casual and playful. Typically, you would place your title to one side of the banner and balance it out with a picture on the other side.

youtube banner template


 

Sectioned layout

If you want to incorporate multiple images into your banner, you can do so by dividing your banner into sections. To prevent your banner from looking cluttered, make sure that the sections are even widths.

youtube banner template


 

2. Offer a window into what viewers can expect from your channel

Odds are, someone has landed on your channel one of two ways: they either watched a video of your and wanted more, or someone linked them to your channel.

Your banner can indicate to visitors whether or not your channel will offer them more of what they’re interested in. That means that the style, tagline and images you include should give people a bite-sized view of what your channel is all about.

For example, say you’re a travel vlogger. Your YouTube banner should indicate to visitors that they can expect more adventures from you:

youtube banner template


 

3. Include your brand tagline or slogan

What’s your channel’s elevator pitch? What’s your core value proposition? Include your catchy tagline in your YouTube banner.

Typically, YouTubers will put their tagline along the top or bottom of their banners. For example, this YouTube banner template for an anime review channel lists the topics covered in their videos along the bottom:

youtube banner template


 

To avoid cluttering up your banner design, keep your tagline to one sentence.

Another option is to simply include your website url in your banner. That will also help spread awareness about your brand.

4. Keep your YouTube banner design simple

There isn’t a lot of space to pack too many design elements into your YouTube banner. That’s why it’s good practice to keep your YouTube banner design simple.

For example, simply use a photo as the background of your banner, with your title and nothing else. Like in this YouTube banner template:

youtube banner template


 

You can help text pop from the background by creating a transparent overlay. Place your text on top of a square icon and then adjust the icon’s opacity so that the background image shows through.

Now you can read the text without obscuring the background image!

youtube banner hack

If you want, you can put even more focus on the title in your banner design. For example, take a look at how the popular travel channel High On Life uses a simple background image, allowing the big, bold font to stand out:

high on life youtube banner

 

5. Use a font that reflects the mood of your channel

The fonts you use can communicate what the tone, style and even topic of your channel are. That’s because people tend to associate different personalities with different fonts.

For example, which font looks happier to you?

happy font

Probably the bouncy second font, right?

We associate different fonts with different industries. For example, serif fonts are typical of more traditional industries like publishing and insurance. Meanwhile, sans serif fonts are more commonly found in branding for tech companies.

While certain fonts looks more reliable and traditional, other fonts look more casual and playful. For example, take a look at the font that the comedy duo of Good Mythical Morning use in their banner:

good mythical morning banner

The font is a bit quirky and not too serious.

Or take this YouTube banner template that uses a decorative font to give it a creative feel:

youtube banner template


 

Now look at the more serious and reputable serif fonts used in Veritasium‘s banner. Their videos teach science and engineering concepts, and they’ve gone for a look that is in-line with more traditional education industry branding:

veritasium youtube banner

See how fonts affect the overall tone of a channel?

Read our Netflix font psychology study to learn more about font personalities.

 

6. If you use a photo, make sure it’s high-quality

A blurry image can ruin an otherwise awesome design. The images you use in your YouTube banner should have a minimum resolution of 100-150 dpi.

Most stock photo sites like Unsplash or Pexels will provide images in high-quality. (Venngage also has a stock photo image library with high-quality photos!)

But if you’re using your own original images, make sure they are crisp and clear when you upload them to YouTube.

 

7. Include a call-to-action in your YouTube banner

Your banner is prime real estate on your YouTube profile. If there’s an action you want visitors to take (like, say, slamming that subscribe button), why not include it in your banner?

A call-to-action (or CTA) is a phrase or button that asks readers to do a specific thing, like following you on Twitter or signing up for your newsletter.

Content marketing guru Neil Patel is never afraid to throw a CTA at you, so why should you be?

neil patel youtube banner

If you are selling merchandise or promoting upcoming event that you want your audience to know about, your banner is also a great place to mention it.

 

8. Coordinate your YouTube banner with your channel icon

If you want your YouTube profile page to look professional, every design element should blend seamlessly together.

The first things viewers will probably look at when they land on your profile is your banner. The second thing will probably be your channel icon.

That’s why it’s a good idea to use the same color scheme and visual style in both images. Typically, you should use your brand colors.

For example, take a look at how well the POPSUGAR Fitness YouTube banner and channel icon go together:

popsugar youtube banner

 

9. Be mindful of design trends in your niche

Take another look at the baking YouTube channel template I showed earlier:

youtube banner template


 

The pastel color scheme, personal font style, and whimsical image are what viewers would expect of a baking channel. Popular baking YouTuber CupcakeJemma uses a script font and sprinkle-inspired background for her banner as well:

cupcakejemma youtube banner

 

10. Create your own custom YouTube banner template that you can repurpose

Once you’ve created a YouTube banner that you’re stoked to use, why not make it into a template that you can repurpose again and again?

A custom template will come in handy if you want to switch up your banner design periodically. For example, you could simply swap out the background image based on what you’re currently promoting on your channel:

youtube banner template


 

youtube banner template

By using the same template, you can keep your channel design fresh while maintaining your recognizable visual branding.

 

11. Include a subtle border around your YouTube banner

Minimalistic design projects are very popular lately because they feel so simple and effortless. Designers use exactly what they need to get their message across effectively. No more, and no less.

A simple border will give your minimalist banner a definable edge and direct the viewer’s eye to the center of your banner.

This approach can also be used to push people towards a call to action, like in the example below, or to other social media accounts.

Youtube Banner Template2

 

12. Use banner background image that reflects the theme of your channel

There are literally millions of stock photos out there that you can use. The problem is that these images tend to be vague.

That’s fine for some projects, but not for your YouTube banner.

In fact, a vague image may actually turn off potential viewers. You want to engage them with your YouTube banner, not bore them.

A random sunset or landscape is not going to get someone pumped to check out your videos.

In this example, the background image is perfectly selected for this channel. It’s interesting enough to catch your eye and inform the viewer about the channel. But it doesn’t distract from the channel’s tagline either.

Youtube Banner Template9

 

13. Position your channel title in the corner of your YouTube banner

As you have probably noticed in this article, many YouTube banners center their text.

But if you want to use a slightly more unconventional layout, try placing your title text in one of the corners of your banner.

Take the Youtube banner example below. The designers used a compelling image that’s hard to miss. The image pulls your eyes, and then you see the title text.

This is a one way to stand out in a crowded space like YouTube.

Youtube Banner Template10

 

14. Include a personalized call to action

People love YouTube because it allows them to connect with their favorite influencers.

These creators also make viewers feel connected by building a community of like-minded fans. So if you have a name for your community or a channel specific term, include that in your banner call to action.

For example in this banner, the viewers are referred to as a “crew.” That sounds a lot more inclusive and personal than just calling them subscribers.

Youtube Banner Template5

 

15. Use simple icons and illustrations

Struggling to find a good idea for your YouTube banner? Try using some icons or illustrations that are related to your topic!

The creators of the banner below used icons to quickly tell viewers what their channel is all about.

Even if there was no text in this banner, you probably could guess the topic. Because humans process images a lot faster than text, you can use icons to quickly get your message across.

Youtube Banner Template8

 

16. Add a color filter to your YouTube banner image

Have you ever found an image with the perfect subject matter for your design, but the color scheme didn’t fit your theme or company branding?

A quick and easy way to solve this problem is to use a color filter, like in the YouTube banner example below. This can personalize the image to fit the mood of your channel, or to match your brand colors.

A color filter can also help your text pop from the background.

Youtube Banner Template7

 

17. Create a collage of images

Similar to how you can create a banner design using icons, you can also create a collage of images that offer a preview of what to expect on your channel. An easy way to do this is to use stills from your videos.

In order for your design to be cohesive, make sure the images have a similar style, color scheme, and tone. This will make your YouTube banner look more professional, and will also reinforce your channel’s brand,

Youtube Banner Template6

 

18. Use drop shadows to give your banner design depth 

“Drop shadow” is a design term used to describe the effect of giving objects in your design shadows. This gives the impression that the objects are raised above the backgrounds.

I know creating a shadow may sound a little daunting to a new designer. But don’t worry, it’s actually very easy with Venngage.

All you really have to do is duplicate the shape, choose a darker color and then position it behind the original one.

And this effect can give your YouTube banner design a ton of depth.

Youtube Banner Template4

 

19. Use a big, easy to read font

It’s important to remember that a large chunk of YouTube viewers are on mobile devices. That means that small text is going to be nearly impossible to read.

That’s why I would recommend using a large or bold font on your YouTube Banner. This will ensure that your viewers see your channel name or call to action on any screen.

Big, bold fonts are also one of this year’s graphic design trends!

Youtube Banner Template1

 

20. Include a brief channel summary in your YouTube banner

Let’s face it, we’re all lazy on social media. We barely read things before moving on.

You can make skimming easy for new viewers by offering a brief description of your channel, like in the YouTube banner template below.

A simple, one-sentence tagline works. Try to make it as direct and compelling as possible, to inspire them to want more.

Youtube Banner Template3

 

Get those subs!

With a quality YouTube banner, you’re one step closer to growing your audience. Remember, creating a strong brand requires a multi-faceted approach, beyond just the videos you put out.

Want some more tips for building a strong brand? Here are some more guides to help you out:

How to Create a Brand Style Guide Like These Top Tech Companies

60+ Brand Guidelines Templates, Examples & Tips For Consistent Branding

Increase Blog Traffic And Boost Engagement With These 37 Proven Methods

Social Media Images: The Ultimate Guide to Designing Epic Graphics [Free Ebook]

About Sara McGuire

Sara McGuire is a Content Editor at Venngage. When she isn't writing research-driven content, she enjoys reviewing music and hitting up the latest culinary hot spot in her home city of Toronto. Follow her on Twitter @sara_mcguire