How to Start a YouTube Channel

With more daily users than ever accessing YouTube, there’s never been a better time to start a channel! However, the growth of the platform is driving tougher competition, so it’s important that you set up your channel for success from the start.

No matter what type of channel you’re looking to create, our YouTube Guide is here to help. In this section on how to start a YouTube channel, we’ll take you through everything you need to get started—from creating your account to customizing the look and feel, and accessing top video templates and stock assets. Starting a thriving YouTube channel has never been easier!

What Do I Need to Start a YouTube Channel?

Discover everything you need to start a YouTube channel—from filming equipment to stock assets.

First things first, you need an idea. Perhaps you’re a make-up artist looking to share your knowledge and experience with a wider audience? Maybe you’re a passionate gamer wanting to provide in-depth analysis and theories around a particular game? Whatever your passion, YouTube provides the perfect place to explore it, and a community to share it with.

As well as an original concept, you’ll also need a selection of equipment—including cameras, microphones, and lighting kits—and access to quality video editing software. Remember, the more professional your setup, the more professional (and profitable) your videos are likely to be.

YouTubers also need access to a high-quality library of customizable video templates and stock assets to streamline workflows and speed up production. A creative subscription like Envato Elements provides access to unlimited YouTube assets for a single monthly or annual subscription and is certainly worth looking into.

Types of YouTube Content

There are many types of content for YouTube—all of which can (and should) be used to connect with your audience.
Creating quality video content is essential for a YouTuber. A great video features a captivating intro, strong branding, clear audio, and most importantly, valuable content.
Intended to entice viewers and give a quick summary of your video in one image, thumbnails should be carefully designed or capture the top moment of your video to increase clicks.
Your channel art or banner is essentially your cover photo. It takes pride of place on your channel, so it’s vital that it represents you and your brand.
Community posts help you interact with your audience quickly and easily in between uploads. Creators with 500 subscribers or more can post polls, images, GIFs, and more in this tab.
Pre-roll ads are short advertisements shown at the start of a YouTube video. Ensure your ad hooks viewers within five seconds or less, or risk your pre-roll being skipped!
Create catchy, bite-sized content directly from your phone. Shorts are 60-second vertical videos that allow you to reach new audiences, without shooting and editing a full YouTube video.
Short and sweet! YouTube Stories are 15-second videos that appear in the mobile app for just seven days. A quick and easy way to connect with your audience less formally than in a long-form video.
Displayed at the top of your channel, a trailer is a short video that tells viewers what your channel is all about. Some YouTubers will create a vlog-style trailer while others opt for a highlights reel of top videos.

Trending YouTube Assets

Arm yourself for success with professional YouTube assets that set your channel apart from the competition.
A sleek banner design that would suit just about any YouTuber—from travel vloggers to gamers and artists. Easily customize this template in Photoshop and upload to your channel.
A video intro can make or break your channel. Engage your audience from the first second with this creative template, featuring subscribe elements and social media lower thirds.
Keep it consistent with this all-inclusive YouTube pack. Complete with fully customizable logo reveals, lower thirds, transitions, end screens, titles, and more.

How to Make A YouTube Channel

Setting up a YouTube channel is simple—discover everything you need to know in the steps below.

1. Create Channel

First up, you’ll need a Google account. Once you’ve created one (or if you already have an account), visit and click sign in. Login via Google then click your profile image on the top right corner, and ‘create channel’.

2. Channel Type

Next, choose between a personal channel (using the name and photo on your Google account) or a business channel (using a brand name and logo). When it comes to naming your channel, stick with your brand name or something that aligns to your content.

3. Customization

With your account now set up, you’ll be able to start customizing your channel with a profile picture, banner art, description, and external links. To create a professional-looking channel, browse the YouTube assets available with an Envato Elements subscription.

4. Share a Video

Your account is set up, customized, and ready to go! It’s time to record your first video and start building your subscriber base. Keep reading through this YouTube guide for content inspiration, tips, tricks, and resources to get you started.

How to Use Music on YouTube

Create content with confidence. Envato Elements’ music tracks are 100% royalty-free and safe for YouTube.
Sourcing music for YouTube videos can be a stressful process. Using copyrighted music without permission can lead to your videos being flagged or even removed, which can impact your channel’s performance—and hurt your confidence in the process.

One of the best ways to avoid copyright issues altogether is by relying on a royalty-free music library like Envato Elements. As an Elements subscriber, you’ll have access to more than 110,000 music tracks, which are 100% safe to use on YouTube. All audio downloads come with a license certificate so on the off chance that your videos are flagged for copyright issues, you can upload the certificate and remove the copyright notice quickly and easily.

YouTube Video Templates

Create professional-quality YouTube videos, without spending hours learning the ins and outs of complex video editing software.
Go from concept to render in minutes with After Effects templates. From cinematic openers to engaging lower thirds, there’s a template to suit every channel and video.
Premiere Pro is often the first choice for YouTubers. Discover a world of inspiration with polished templates that will give your content a professional touch.
It’s an up-and-comer for a reason! Explore professionally-designed DaVinci Resolve templates, built to make your YouTube content stand out.
Many Mac users choose Apple Motion to create high-quality content for YouTube. Compatible with Final Cut Pro, there are thousands of Motion templates to explore.
Final Cut Pro is used by millions of creators worldwide—and many of them are YouTubers. Get a headstart on your next video with our library of FCP templates.
Check in with your subscribers with a quick YouTube story. Envato Elements has hundreds of templates to explore—from bold colorful graphics to simple image-driven designs.

How to Create a Successful YouTube Channel

From determining your strategy to securing your first subscribers, here’s what you need to do to become a successful YouTuber.
Successful video marketing begins with a strategy. Discover how to captivate audiences and drive action through your content with our value-packed Video Marketing Guide.

YouTube trends are constantly evolving—and with so much content being produced, it’s more important than ever to stay relevant. Our blog will give you a headstart.

To grow your channel, you need to nail your intro. Learn the essential elements of a captivating intro, and how to make one in Premiere Pro.
Your thumbnails should grab attention and tell viewers exactly what to expect from your video content. Come up with engaging designs using our top tips and templates.
Learn how to shape channel art, maximize the effectiveness of your videos, and drive new audiences to your content with our top tips for channel promotion.

YouTube Tutorials

Take your channel from zero to hero with these top tutorials for YouTubers.
Your YouTube channel should be as eye-catching as possible and this starts with your profile picture. Find out how to make the perfect profile picture—no experience required!
Never underestimate the power of a good thumbnail! Discover the five qualities every good YouTube video thumbnail has in common and learn to make your own.
If you’re looking to go beyond a template and want to create a YouTube banner from scratch, this tutorial is for you. Follow the written instructions or watch the video.

Best YouTube Templates

You’re going to want to bookmark this list! Explore the top YouTube templates to inspire your next video.
Consistent branding is key to success on YouTube. In this article, we’ll share tips for creating effective channel art using 10 of our favorite templates.
Every budding YouTuber needs an aesthetic banner design. Build your brand with this collection of creative and inspiring YouTube banner templates.
An end card gives you 20 seconds to promote other videos, encourage subscriptions, or share a link to your website. Use your time wisely with these top templates.
Can you get your point across in 15 seconds or less? If not, you may want to explore these top 10 YouTube Shorts templates!
Create professionally-designed motion graphics for your channel. Plus, this list includes a selection of free video templates from MixKit!
Ready to go live? In this article, we reveal the top tools and templates for creating YouTube Live broadcast graphics. Ready, set, stream!

How to Choose a YouTube Niche

Discover our top tips and pointers to help you get from YouTube vision to YouTube victory.
Choosing the right niche is essential to creating a successful YouTube channel. Find out what’s trending and how to determine the right niche for you.
Creating quality YouTube content starts with a thorough concept. Here, we’ll guide you through best practices to improve the performance of your content.
It’s time to talk lights, camera, and action! Get familiar with what you need to start producing—from your setting to soundproofing, lighting, mics, and editing software.
Once you’ve created your channel and started producing video content, it’s time to grow your following. Boost your subscribers with our top tips.

YouTube FAQs

To start a channel, simply sign in to YouTube on a computer or your mobile device. Click your profile photo or your account in the upper-righthand corner, and navigate to ‘your channel’. Then, begin customizing your channel with a preferred layout, branding, and basic information. If you want to create an entirely new channel, simply navigate to your account page and click ‘create a new channel’.

Creating a YouTube channel is completely free. The only costs will be those associated with creating your content, whether that’s production equipment, software, or your shooting space. 

While ad revenue is the most common way to earn money on YouTube, there are various different strategies. Once you’ve hit 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours, you’ll want to join the YouTube Partner Program to start monetizing your channel. You can also sell your own merch, create sponsored content, become an affiliate, and have fans pay you directly.

All music tracks and sound effects on Envato Elements are 100% royalty-free or ‘creator-safe’, meaning creators are free to use them on YouTube. We provide license certificates for all audio downloaded on Envato Elements so should a copyright notice appear on a YouTube video that is tracked by Content ID, it can be cleared quickly and easily.

Further Reading

Take your YouTube learning further with these popular blog articles and guides from Envato.
How do you become a successful YouTuber? Hear it from the experts! We asked YouTube artist PhraseRunner to tell us exactly what it takes.
Building a video project in After Effects? We’ve got thousands of templates ready to be customized with your footage, branding, text, and more.
Content really is key. Discover expert tips for nailing your YouTube content and growing your brand in this interview with YouTuber Premiere Gal.

Your YouTube Toolkit

Everything you need to become a successful YouTuber is just a subscription away.
With perfectly-timed music, you can evoke emotion, set a mood, or conceal undesirable background noise from your footage. Explore thousands of royalty-free music tracks.

From transitions to lower thirds and subscribe buttons, our professionally-designed video templates can help you create valuable content to boost your subscribes. Learn about Video Templates.

Create a cohesive brand identity with Facebook cover photos, Instagram posts, Pinterest graphics, and more. We’ve got social media templates for every platform and occasion.

Meet the Experts

World-renowned for his photo edits, Benny Productions – AKA Benny Van Valen – developed a YouTube channel and million-subscriber following in just two years. To produce his incredible Photoshop edits, digital artwork, and engaging YouTube videos, he relies on Envato Elements’ diverse, customizable and value-packed creative library:

“I don’t remember ever looking for something that Envato Elements ended up not having. I myself really enjoy the 3D section. Being able to choose your own angle is a huge gamechanger. Besides, the amount of 3D assets available is simply insane. I also think the video templates are great for YouTubers. I often use templates as a base and work from there. There’s endless cool stuff! Finally, the stock photos. On Envato Elements, I often find photos I can’t find on free stock websites. It’s definitely valuable.”

Why YouTubers Love Envato Elements

Unlimited downloads

When we say unlimited we mean it. Enjoy access to our complete library of digital assets with an Elements subscription.

Simple licensing for YouTube

All assets are royalty-free and covered by one simple license so you can create content with confidence.

Premium quality

Our creative assets are professionally made by expert creators. Every item is unique and fully customizable.

New assets added daily

Deliver on-trend projects with access to our library. With new items added daily, there’s always something to inspire.

One subscription.
Unlimited downloads.

© 2023 Envato Pty Ltd. Trademarks and brands are the property of their respective owners.