How to Change the Thumbnail of a YouTube Video to a Custom One

By Alex Smith

When you upload a video to YouTube, the site selects three images from your video that you can choose from for your thumbnail. Custom thumbnails are not allowed, unless you are a YouTube partner. However, you can ensure that the thumbnail you want is selected by inserting it in the middle of your video. This can be done with any video editing program. You must delete the old version of your YouTube video, but you will replace it with one that allows a custom thumbnail.

Things You'll Need

  • Video editing program

Step 1

Load your video in your editing program.

Step 2

Go to the exact halfway point in your video.

Step 3

Insert the still image that you want for your thumbnail.

Step 4

Set the duration of the image to three seconds.

Step 5

Save the video.

Step 6

Log into YouTube.

Step 7

Go to "My Videos," then select the current version of your video, and delete it.

Step 8

Click the "Upload" button in the upper right corner.

Step 9

Select the new version of your video from the computer, and click "Open."

Step 10

Allow the video to upload.

Step 11

Click "My Videos," then select "Edit," next to the video you just uploaded.

Step 12

Select the center image for the thumbnail, if it is not selected automatically.

Step 13

Click "Save Changes."