There was a time when YouTube was a phenomenon. Now that’s no longer the case. Thanks to the overpowering effects of globalization and the internet boom, YouTube is now a known concept to anybody who understands the supremacy of videos in the last decade or a little more. Even when the site stays a premier one on the web, there’s limited knowledge prevailing among the masses about how one can customize it. Regardless of one being a casual viewer or someone who’s more into the experimental zone, tweaking YouTube is for benefits and logical reasons.
It’s nothing strange to find several commoners who’ve made an indelible mark among the masses of the world, by simply utilizing this website. Even jobs and careers are now made aside from the traditional, conventional ones using YouTube or applying the use of it in related fields. Talk to social media marketers and they will tell you how a large chunk of their success is owed to only those channels that they’ve dealt with. Now that social media platforms have become unimaginably potent to engage the audience, learning the art of navigating the essentials and tools can prove highly useful to pitch any user to stardom or simply keep them cooped inside an inactive shell.
Below mentioned are some quick tips, tricks, and hacks that YouTube has in offer for all. It makes great sense in the current times to know most since the application and usage of the advanced features will pull in viewers like no other.
1. Make YouTube videos into GIF in no time
There’s a little URL trick and very few people knew about this. Simply select the video that you intend to watch and check for its URL. Now add the word ‘gif’ preceding the domain name and you will get a host of GIFs at your disposal. The video gets uploaded and also ready to edit, simply using gifs.com.
For example, suppose your YouTube video URL is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ek6G_nvGaPE. Then you can create the GIF using the URL https://www.gifyoutube.com/watch?v=ek6G_nvGaPE.
In fact, there will be a plethora of options in the menu bar alongside the timeline bar at the bottom. So, set the GIF timing, edit the frame, captions and you’re good to go!
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2. Create, collaborate and share on the video playlists
Much like the favorite media sharing sites as ‘Spotify’ or ‘iTunes’, creating a ‘playlist’ on YouTube is no big deal. Whether it’s keeping playlists private or publicly sharing them, it is indeed possible using YouTube. It doesn’t mean that playlists come handy to those having an affinity for music only, for individuals who love viewing cooking videos or checking out yoga steps or dance can be benefited likewise. The playlists here are so segmented that it makes it easier for people to browse and get the exact one they’re looking for.
3. Download videos, save to watch later
Yes… possible! You can literally bookmark YouTube videos to watch at a later and a convenient time. Imagine that you do not have the chance to listen or watch it exactly then but cannot let it go that easily either. Similar to Facebook’s feature called ‘Save for Later’, the ‘Watch later’ playlist can be accessed freely as well.
You simply need to open the video on YouTube and click on ‘add to’ icon beneath that or to access, visit the YouTube homepage and select ‘Watch later’ from the menu. Better still, download the link and feel free to munch on those popcorns and enjoy the content as and when you wish to. There are also many YouTube playlist downloader apps available on the internet. Few of them can be quite handy at specific times.
4. Create your own custom YouTube URL
How about having an easy address of yourself that would lead to your YouTube channel? Nothing like it! Create your own custom URL and you based on features like YouTube username, your display name, other URLs you wish to have or the linked website that you have chosen to go ahead with.
Ahead of this, be very careful to understand that the custom URL is the one you have rightly chosen. This is because there’s no provision to change or transfer to anyone who would also be game in getting that. In fact, it’s a linking to both the YouTube channel and Google+.
5. Utilize the huge library of royalty-free and high-quality music and sound effects
Imagine getting some great sound effects or music to your created YouTube video (or any other video) and that too utilizing YouTube. Wonderful an experience no doubt! There’s a complete library containing 320 kbps audio tracks, sounds, and effects; all of which can be downloaded in a royalty-free way and be added to the videos.
You can do that using the channel’s audio library and open ‘creator studio’ and select ‘audio library’. Then comes to the ‘sound effects’ zone where you keep searching for the sounds in the search bar and find the aptest one for your need.
6. Upload and watch 360-degree videos (including live and pre-recorded versions), alongside VR
This is no news now, for YouTube had already started with it way back in 2015! And indeed it was a rage. From brands to even celebrated artists, users have never deterred to create some amazing 360-degree content.
The experience, however, kept varying across different platforms. So on the desktop, one got access to every angle of the video, while mobiles were way easier to follow. Thankfully, there are cameras that come with the adaptability to function in a 360-degree mode and are also compatible with YouTube.
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7. Checking for transcripts of other people’s videos
Not many are aware that YouTube has a provision of generating written transcripts related to every video and uploaded to the site. In fact, everyone can access the transcript until the user chooses to keep it hidden manually from all the viewers. For instance, at the time of writing quotes from videos, doing a pause-and-type job or simply taking bits and pieces of videos, instead of re-watching the complete video.
By opening the video on the site and simply clicking on the ‘More’ option under the video title, one can find ‘transcript’. This will feature a new module but within the same window.
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8. Adding an end screen to augment content
Almost a decade back, YouTube came up with a feature of getting links known as ‘annotations’ that can be inserted as and when it’s felt essential inside the videos. These are akin to call-to-action buttons that would help people to initiate some activity. Like subscribing to the channel, visiting separate resources and the like.
In order to give a boost to the overall viewing experience, the annotations are now replaced using end screens; whereby appealing call-to-action cards can be put in, almost at the end of the content. In fact, users can create customized end screens as well, so that viewers are well alerted about which videos they are suggested alongside few sites.
9. The target of ads is based on similar lines as Google and Facebook
Quite similar to Facebook and Google, there is an algorithm that works for YouTube videos. Also, in this site, the algorithms ensure that people do not become overburdened with ads while they view videos. It is for this reason that most ads are not shown on a few videos that can be converted into cash, despite having stark matches in terms of demographics.
Few ad formats that one can expect to see on YouTube include- overlay ads, display ads, video ads that can be skipped and also those that can’t be skipped, midroll, bumper ads and such.
10. Watch videos online and remove ads (at a nominal rate)
Thanks to the subscription service of YouTube called ‘YouTube Premium’ (formerly YouTube Red), video ads can take a backseat when it comes to watching YouTube videos. At just about $11.99 every month, the ad-free video experience is no doubt a winner. Besides, one can also save videos on mobile devices and watch them while being offline. That must sound great!
This facility actually came to the forefront since the launch of it in late 2015. But now it’s in full swing. Though the official figures haven’t surfaced yet, with several million subscribers already, the deletion of ads would certainly be a welcome move for all.
11. Keep Google Trends beside to explore and compare YouTube search terms
Basically, Google Trends is a great marketing tool to have some smart and simple keyword choices. If required, this can be utilized in the best ways possible to go ahead with YouTube search queries.
You can type a search term on the ‘explore topics’ at the search bar and then click on ‘web search’. The next will be finding ‘YouTube Search’ such that the filtering of YouTube searches happens specifically.
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The Bottom Line:
YouTube has been a fascinating site that has kept redefining itself in these years. With the hacks, tips, and tricks that lie in store for all, working on the site and rediscovering its innovative features is indeed a wonderful aspect. In due course of time, there will be many more who will keep adding themselves to the list so that the usage of YouTube is broadened. Besides, it’s always handy for learning new things every now and then!