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Beginner’s Guide to YouTube Video Editing

Creating a successful YouTube channel involves having videos which are excellent and above average. Choosing the right equipment, the right editing software and adding video effects are essential skills to possess. In this article, I will guide you through YouTube video editing.

Beginner’s Guide to YouTube Video Editing

The steps listed below will get you started editing your YouTube video:

1. Select Editing Computer

While video editing doesn’t require a costly computer, it is prudent to get a powerful computer. Firstly, you need to select a computer with a powerful monitor and video card. These come installed on most new computers and will enhance the quality of your videos. If you’re using an older computer, you will need to check its features against the specifications of your video editing software. However, many older computers are simply not suitable for video editing because they have outdated specifications. Therefore, you may consider upgrading your whole system.

In choosing between a Windows PC and a Mac computer, there really isn’t much issue. Either platforms can be selected, although a Mac computer is usually recommended for beginners as it is easy to use, while a Windows PC is favored for intermediate and professional editing. Regardless, you may choose either one.

Also, make sure your chosen video editing computer has a large hard drive space and memory capacity. Also, be sure that it has the necessary connectors for your video camera and external storage devices.

2. Select Video Editing Software

A video software is necessary to edit individual shots or footage into a single video file, which will be uploaded to YouTube. The editing software also enables you to add onscreen text and other special effects. As a beginner, it’d be advisable to start with a free video editing program for your PC or Mac. Mastery of these programs may take some time as video interface are typically complicated. However, with some trial and error tries with these programs, you will be become a pro at it.

There are a number of free video editing software. On Windows PC users, there is Microsoft’s free Movie Maker and for Mac users, there is Apple’s free iMovie. Here are some really great, low-cost video editing software.

  • Movavi Video Editor

This program is a very powerful video editing software with tons of features. It has both free and paid versions. With both versions of the program, you can create spectacular videos, even without a movie-making experience. This program is easy to use; it has no complicated settings. It has a short learning curve. It also has filters, transitions and titles that will make your video look more sophisticated. Another great feature of this program is its quick export option; it will share directly to YouTube. There is a Plus version which comes with niceties.

  • Adobe Premiere Pro:

A very popular choice for video editing, Adobe Premiere Pro has lots of advantages. It is efficient and is powered with automated tools to speed up your work. You can use it with any camera. With the new features added too, you can now capture footage and start editing on all your devices anywhere.

These programs will help you create special effects, give you more choices for transitions and produce more professional results.

3. Edit your Production

Essentially, the goal of editing a video is to have a flawless, seamless video that perfectly delivers your message to your viewer.

Most editing software offers a timeline view, onto which you drop the individual shots you have. These will be joined to create a master video file. While adding your individual shots to the master video file, you can move them around, trim or shorten any individual shot, and delete those that need to be removed. Then, you can make the video more professional by adding transitions between shots.

After this, you can enhance your video with special effects and add text and graphics to your video. For text, you superimpose the text onscreen by adding a text layer to the video at specific points, usually the beginning and end of the video. Also, you can superimpose pictures and other graphics to your video.

Other special effects are split-screen, soft focus and sepia tone. You can also add background music, either from your collection or generic music styles provided by the editing program you are using. The editing programs will guide you through these functions step-by-step.

A word of caution – as tempting as many of these special effects are, don’t go overboard with them. Too much special effect will divert attention away from your message. Try to limit their usage; sometimes, less is more.

4. Video Editing Accessories

Like I said earlier, make sure you have a large hard drive space. This is because video files use up a lot of space. It is even advisable to have external storage devices.

Also, you will need several cables, especially Firewire or USB to connect your computer to external hard drives and cameras.

5. More Editing Tips

Everything discussed above is all important. However, there are more tips that will improve your video editing skills.

  • Always shoot more footage than you think you will need. These will enhance the story and may be used for smooth transitions in your video.
  • Use a tripod when recording footage.
  • Use instrumentals or classical music as your video’s accompanying music. Lyrics may distract your viewer from the video itself.
  • To keep your viewer’s interest, get a more medium range or close-up shots than wide shots.
  • When your video editing is done, make sure to choose the right video format before uploading. Recommended formats include .WMA, .MP4, .AVI. These formats are all supported by YouTube.
  • Don’t work for too long; remember to always take a break. This proves useful as sometimes, fresh eyes will reveal what tired eyes didn’t see.


This guide to YouTube Video Editing outlines the essential equipment, skills and tips a beginner must know and have. Follow these and you are on your way to building a successful YouTube channel.

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One Comment

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this useful article with everyone, the image content is very good, hope that you will continue to write and share in the future.

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