Thumbnails are important for search and video traffic: think about it…when you make a query on Google, YouTube or another search engine, isn’t it the thumbnail of the video that first captures your attention? Thumbnails are probably the top factor that drives people´s eyes. They play a key role when doing searches on the web and, consequently, for gaining more clicks and increasing views.
A good thumbnail can increase conversion rates dramatically: taking for granted that you have created a great piece of video content, which should drive a good amount of conversions, that content has to be seen first. If you use an attractive and eye-catching thumbnail, this will spark your viewers´ interest in that content, and it will have a direct impact on your conversion rates.
Thumbnails talk about your content: these little snapshots of your video work as some kind of mini-posters. If you want your thumbnails to be accurate and pass on the true essence of your piece, you need to customize them. There’s no way out! Here you have a great example of a custom thumbnail from our friend’s Honest Trailers
What Makes A Good Video Thumbnail?
Remember that, as a rule of thumb (pun intended), a good thumbnail has to grab your audience’s attention but, at the same time, portray the content of the video accurately. Having this in mind, let me share some useful tips on how to create an effective thumbnail.
In general, a close-up of a person’s face usually works very well, especially if the white of the eye is visible.
Showing strong emotions can also be beneficial. People tend to feel emotionally connected with when they see emotions being displayed.
Adjust the contrast and brightness of the image to make it highly attractive and eye-catching.
Make sure the image is still clear and eye-catching even in smaller sizes.
Use bright backgrounds so that your marketing video stands out from others. You can also use contrast and outlines to make it even more catchy.
Choose colors wisely. Complementary colors work very well (they stand out against each other and therefore they grab people’s attention).
Try to choose a thumbnail that represents the first 15-20 seconds of the video.
Make sure it´s easy to see and to understand, even for a casual viewer.