A [Step-by-Step] 2021 guide to design your custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner for FREE!

“Do not judge a book by its cover,“ they said.

But, we still do it on a subconscious level (thanks to millions of years of human evolution).

The adage is true for YouTube banners too - we shouldn’t judge a YouTube channel by its banner.

But, the fact is we are humans.

Today, attention spans are at an all-time low and nobody can fault viewers for judging a YouTube channel by its banner size and design.

However, the success of a YouTube channel depends on how your YouTube banner looks.

So, in this blog post, I will help you create a stunning aesthetic YouTube banner of size 2048 x 1152 pixels.

I will also explain the best practices with some practical examples.


But, what is a 2048 x 1152 size YouTube banner?

If you already understand the basics of a YouTube banner, feel free to skip this section. But if you’re new to this concept, then read along.

A 2048 x 1152 size YouTube banner is displayed on the top of your YouTube channel. For example, consider our own channel - Picmaker.

Picmaker's youtube channel
Picmaker's Youtube Channel

Do you see the graphic that is displayed above our Picmakr's YouTube channel name?

Yup, the one with the words, “Design the Future”. That’s your 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner. It helps provide a professional look to your channel. Without that banner, any channel would look dull.

Removing a YouTube banner could be detrimental to the channel in a number of ways.

For starters, a new visitor might come to a channel and decide to not subscribe because he/she does not grasp what our channel is all about. A clean banner gives a good first impression and pushes people to subscribe to your channel.

What’s the recommended size for a YouTube banner?

With all that said, you might be doubtful about the right size for your YouTube banner. There are a ton of recommendations out there.

Frankly, it can get a bit confusing. But, I want to make life simple for you. Here are the only 4 details you’ll ever need to know.

  • The recommended size for YouTube banner image: 2560 x 1140 pixels
  • Minimum dimensions for YouTube banner: 2048 x 1152 pixels
  • Safe area to display your texts and logos: 1546 x 423 pixels
  • Maximum File size of YouTube banner: 6MB 

These are the only dimensions and sizes you need to consider while creating your YouTube banner. 

In this blog post, we’ll take a look at how we can create a 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner for FREE.

Why is a 2048 x 1152 size YouTube banner important?

A YouTube banner is important for a number of reasons. But, I’ll cover the top 5 most important reasons to create your custom YouTube banner.

  1. Give your visitors a solid first impression

Let’s say that you are reading one of my blog posts and click on a link to one of my YouTube videos. Let’s also assume that you love my YouTube videos and want to learn more about me (however, that's very unlikely).

So you click on my channel logo and go to my channel dashboard. Let’s assume that my channel looks like this now. 

A youtube channel without a banner
Youtube channel without a Banner

Would you subscribe to it?

On a scale of 1 to 10, how sure are you to subscribe to my channel?

Make a note of your answer. Please be honest with it.

Now let’s assume in the same scenario, where you click my logo, and jump onto my channel dashboard. This is what you see right now.

a youtube channel with an updated banner
Youtube channel with a banner

On a scale of 1 to 10, how sure are you to subscribe to this version of my channel?

If you’re like me, I am sure that you would subscribe to the second version of my channel. That’s because this channel looks much better than the other.

The custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner made my channel look professional.

It gave you the right first impression and pushed you to subscribe.

Plus, it got a lot of things right in our YouTube banner formula.

  1. Tell a story

If done right, your YouTube channel can tell a story about who you are and what you do. You can leave subtle clues as to what your channel is all about.

Take a look at Vanessa Lau’s YouTube channel.

Vanessa's Youtube channel example 1
Vanessa Lau's YouTube channel

She gets a number of things right on her custom YouTube banner.

  • She explains what she does in a simple manner
Vanessa's Youtube channel example 2

One look at her banner and you can understand that she helps creators and coaches with their business. 

  • She also shows valid proof of how many followers she has on Instagram
Vanessa's Youtube channel example 3

This shows that Vanessa knows her stuff. This may be a very small factor, but subconsciously, our human brain tunes into that and recognizes it.

It’s a small nudge that will compel you to hit the ‘Subscribe’ button and become her follower.

  1. Explain your posting schedule
Vanessa's Youtube channel example 4

Once we are done with intros, you can also use the custom YouTube banner to show your posting schedule. Vanessa states that she puts out a “new video every week”. So, if you’re consistent with your YouTube game, be specific with your posting schedule.

Something like “New video every Sunday noon Eastern Time” or “New videos on every weekday“ or even “New videos every single day”. 

(BTW, If you’re someone who puts out new videos every day, I just have one question for you - How do you do it?! I am struggling to even create 1 video a week.)

Tag @picmakerhq on twitter and tell us all about your YouTube video secrets.

  1. Point people to lead magnets or any other CTA
Vanessa's Youtube channel example 5

Finally, you can use your 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner to lead people out of your YouTube channel. If you take a look at Vanessa’s custom YouTube banner, she points visitors to a free training.

When you click on that, you land on Vanessa’s website.

Vanessa's website
Vanessa Lau's website

This is an example of how you can use custom links to take your subscribers off YouTube and into your website.

You can also use the same button to guide people to a free Ebook.

Ahrefs uses this chance to push people to subscribe to their channel.

a screenshot of ahrefs Youtube channel
Ahrefs Youtube channel's banner

Click on this and you will get an option to subscribe to their YouTube channel (if you’re not subscribed already). Just like Vanessa, they could have used this chance to ask people to hit that button, just by leaving a small Call To Action there.

a screenshot of ahrefs youtube channel
Ahrefs YouTube channel

9 simple steps to make a custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner

Before you start with the designs for your custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube template, make sure that all your dimensions are right.

Plotting out dimensions is a tedious process.

That’s exactly why I created a YouTube banner design template to help you with that process. 

All you need to do is download this image and use it as a reference when you are designing your custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner.

Right click on this template and Hit “Save image“ to save it on your desktop.

If you feel that this template is too colourful for your likes, you can also download our 2nd version.

It’s quite friendly on the eyes.

2048 x 1152 Youtube measuring guide/ template 1
Youtube Banner measuring guide 1

Or you can also download this template below.

2048 x 1152 Youtube measuring guide/ template 1
Youtube banner measuring Guide 2

Anyways both are the same, apart from the different color schemes.

This template will be your guiding light for creating your custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner image.

Select from 100+ free youtube banner templates

Step 1: Download our YouTube banner measurement template for FREE

I’ll say it a thousand times before you download this template. Trust me when I say that it’s that much important for this process.

Just click on the Image and click 'Save'

Have you downloaded it yet?


Let’s get on with our 2nd step now.

Step 2: Go to Picmaker and select a custom dimension

Visit Picmaker.com and login to your dashboard. Feel free to create your own account if you’re not an user already.

On your dashboard select the “Custom size“ option.

Picmaker's dashboard

Step 3: Enter the custom dimension values in there

After you click on the custom size option, this pop-up will be displayed to you.

                                                                       A screenshot of Picmaker's dashboard
Enter your dimensions here

Enter the Dimensions as ‘2048‘ and ‘1152‘ in the corresponding boxes. 

Select ‘px’ as the measurement factor.

a screenshot of picmaker's dashboard 2
Select 'px' as measurement here

Now click on “Create Design“

a screenshot of picmaker's dashboard 3
Click on 'Create' Design

You will be taken to a brand new blank page with your 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner dimensions.

Picmaker's blank canvas
Picmaker's blank canvas

Step 4: Upload our template and import it onto your page

Select the upload 'tab' on the right-hand side and upload the template you downloaded earlier.

Screenshot that asks to select upload tab (to make youtube banner)

Hit the upload button

Screenshot that asks to click upload button (to make youtube banner)

Once you find the template on your device, upload it to your dashboard.

Screenshot that asks to upload the template (to make youtube banner)

Step 5: Drag and drop the template onto your blank canvas

Once you have the template on your Picmaker dashboard, drag and drop it onto your blank canvas. 

Screenshot that asks to drag and drop template onto the blank canvas (to make youtube banner)
Drag and drop the template onto your canvas

Resize it to fit the dimensions of your custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube channel template.

Step 6: Determine your background for the custom YouTube banner

Once you have uploaded this template onto your dashboard, it’s time to get your hands dirty. Understand if you’re planning to use a picture or a solid color for your banners.

  • If I am using a picture, here is how I would go after this step

You can click on the photos tab and choose from millions of stock photos on our templates.

Screenshot that asks to click photos to add pictures. (to make youtube banner)

If you want to make it personal, you can also upload an original photo by clicking on the upload tab and uploading your image.

  • If you are using solid colors, select on the Gradients or shapes to fill your YouTube banner.
Screenshot that asks to click objects to add colors. (to make youtube banner)

On a personal note, I like to keep things simple. So I am just going to go with solid colors for this tutorial.

Step 7: Add fonts and colours over the entire banner

My first step is to add a primary color over the tablet area.

Screenshot that mentions black as primary colour (to make youtube banner)

Once your primary color has covered the entire desktop area, click on ‘Arrangement.’

Screenshot that asks you to select arrangement icon (to make youtube banner)

 And then hit ‘Backward’.

Screenshot that asks to select back in arrangement tab (to make youtube banner)

The design will disappear behind our template. 

But you don’t need to worry.

We will retrieve that design in the coming steps. Now go on and add another solid color like this cyan for the mobile area.

Screenshot that states cyan as secondary banner colour

Just like the above step, click on ‘Arrangement’ and hit the ‘Backward’ option.

Screenshot that asks to select back in arrangements tab (to make youtube banner)

Step 8: Delete the template

After you have added enough variations and colors, feel free to go and delete the template. 

Screenshot that asks you to delete the youtube banner measuring template (to make youtube banner)

Voilà! Now, you are left with just the templates or designs that you chose earlier.

Step 9: Be creative within the designated area

Now that you have the designated area all to yourself, feel free to let your creativity run free. Start by adding the right texts and CTAs for your YouTube channel. You can choose from the hundreds of fonts available on Picmaker’s dashboard.

Just click on the text tab and select a style of your liking.

Screenshot that asks to select text tab and add new fonts (to make youtube banner)

You can change the size and color of the selected font to make it fit your design.

Screenshot that asks to add CTA and short descriptions (to make youtube banner)

You can also add some fun elements to make your 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner pop.

Select the ‘Objects’ bar and put in elements that fit the theme of your YouTube banner.

Screenshot that asks to add graphic elements (to make youtube banner)

If you’re looking to amp it up, you can also add your images by removing their background.

Screenshot that asks to add image (to make youtube banner)

Upload your image and click on “Effects.” 

Select ‘Remove Background’ and remove the image background for free.

Screenshot that asks to remove background (to make youtube banner)

You can finetune it to add or remove parts from your image. Once it’s done click on ‘Finish’.

Screenshot that prompts you to click the Finish button (to make youtube banner)

You can take this up a notch and ‘Stickerify’ your image to make it pop. But, I’m not going to do this. Instead, I'll let you figure out that feature for yourself. 👊

Screenshot that asks you to resize the image to fit your banner (to make youtube banner)

Once you’re satisfied with your 2048 x 1152 custom YouTube banner, go ahead and download it.

Just one last thing, feel free to add a background for this banner. This background cannot be seen on your smartphones or desktops, but it can be seen on your television.

Screenshot that asks to add more graphic elements (to make youtube banner)

Personally I like to add multiple colors and keep my background as a gradient of all the colors.

Screenshot that asks you to add a background to your youtube banner (to make youtube banner)

Once it’s done, hit download and take your 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner offline.

Screenshot that asks to download your youtube banner (to make youtube banner)

And your custom YouTube banner is done

Screenshot that shows that your Youtube banner is downloaded (to make youtube banner)

Now that you're done with all the steps, it's time to take a breather with this quote.

There are three great responses to a piece of design.

Yes, no, and wow!

You should aim for 'Wow'!

With your Youtube banner, you should aim for something that wows the people taking a look at it.

With all that said and done, here's a short recap of the 9 steps in the form of an Infographic.

9 steps to make a custom Youtube banner for FREE!
9 steps for a custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner

With all that said and done, creativity plays an important role in your 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner.

Your opportunities are endless with Picmaker's free images and graphic, at your disposal. Learn more about it in our YouTube banner maker.

Go now and come back with a spectacular YouTube Banner!


How to upload your custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner?

You’ve worked really hard on your custom YouTube banner. You have added the fonts, graphics, and CTA to make it truly personal. Now, you need to make sure that you upload your YouTube banner in the right way.

Go to YouTube and click on your account logo at the top right. 


Select ‘YouTube Studio’ from the drop-down list.


On your creator studio, select the ‘Customization’ tab 

Screenshot that asks you to select customization tab in your Youtube studio (to make youtube banner)

and click on ‘Branding’.

Screenshot that asks to click on Branding Tab (to make youtube banner)

Select the change banner option and upload your banner.

Screenshot that asks you to click on change button under banner image(to make youtube banner)

Now select your custom 2048 x 1156 YouTube banner from your downloads and upload it.

Screenshot that shows you have uploaded your banner onto youtube(to make youtube banner)

Once done, click on the ‘Publish’ button.

Screenshot that asks you to hit the 'Publish' button on your youtube channel(to make youtube banner)

Now you can click on ‘View Channel’ to your channel with the new and updated custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner.

Screenshot that asks view your youtube channel (to make youtube banner)

Go ahead and view your YouTube banner on all your devices to make sure that it’s perfect.

To wrap up, here are 3 examples of a perfect YouTube banner

  1. Justin Brown - Primal Video

From the CTA to the short summary about the channel, Justin Brown at Primal video does everything right. The banner matches the color theme of their YouTube channel, while also asking visitors to check out their free guide.

This custom YouTube banner screams perfect in all ways.

  1. Nick Nimmin

Nick Nimmin is a successful youtuber and marketer, who has one of the perfect banners on Youtube. He uses his banner space to convert more visitors into subscribers. He does this in three successful ways

  • His tagline explains why you should subscribe - He explains that you should subscribe for tips on Youtube videos and video-making tips.
  • He places a “Click to subscribe” link on his CTA. - This allows visitors an extra way to subscribe to his Youtube channel.
  1. Salma Jafri

Salma Jafri keeps her YouTube banner simple. All she includes is a short summary of her channel, along with her picture.  This is also a great way to design your banner. She has included links to all her social media channels along with her website.


I hope that by now, you a good idea about designing and uploading your custom 2048 x 1152 YouTube banner.

If you have any more queries or doubts, feel free to reach out to us at yo@picmaker.com.

I'll be happy to personally answer your queries regarding this topic.

Thank you for reading.

And, if you'd like to know about inspirational YouTubers who've grown their subscriber base from zero, here's a list of all the fabulous conversations we've had in our "Grow Your YouTube" series:

  1. Live For Another – The story of 20-somethings who make it a habit to help ailing patients live their craziest dreams
  2. Trekers - The YouTuber couple who shot to celebrity status with a video of a secret World War II U-boat
  3. The story of how a celebrity interviewer-YouTuber discovered his "Aha!" moment three years ago - Chris Van Vliet
  4. How a French guitarist got 2 million views on his YouTube videos - Tanguy Kerleroux
  5. The awe-inspiring tale of a 55-year-old realtor-YouTuber who's aiming for 100k subs from zero!
  6. "If you aren't authentic on YouTube, people can smell you from a mile," says a flight attendant-YouTuber