The Best Video Sizes for Each Social Platform in 2019
(Updated June 2019)
Many video creators realize the importance of developing content that is native to the platform they’re creating for. To do this, you need to be aware of which video sizes and dimensions work best on the social platform you’re intending to share on. Below we’ve compiled a list of the major social networks along with the best video sizes for each!
Here at Zubtitle, we developed an online tool that helps you automatically add captions to any video. But, in the process, we came to realize that there is no one-size-fits-all for posting videos on social media. For that reason, we’ve optimized our tool to support the most common sizes: Widescreen (16:9), Square (1:1), Portrait (4:5), and Vertical (9:16).
Now, it’s important to note that most social platforms today will allow you to upload these common video sizes, however, that does not mean that all of these work best on that specific platform. In this list, we’ll share what seems to be the standard for each platform, as well as what we recommend so that you’ll be able to get the most exposure with your video.
What Video Sizes Work Best for Each Social Platform?
Facebook supports many different video aspect ratios: 16:9 widescreen, 9:16 vertical, 2:3 vertical, 4:5 vertical, and 1:1 square. You’re likely going to see the widescreen size the most on Facebook simply because it is the most common for shooting video. It is also going to look the best in full-screen on your desktop. But how often do we really watch a Facebook video full-screen on a desktop?
While widescreen may be the standard, it ends up taking up a very small amount of real estate in the narrow Facebook Newsfeed. Similarly, if you’re browsing Facebook on your phone, it is not even going to take up half of the screen.
By contrast, the vertical format looks great on the Facebook mobile app, allowing for an almost full-screen experience when watching on your phone. But unfortunately, it doesn’t look the best on a desktop. Facebook adds bars to the left and right of the vertical video and crops it down to a square when showing it on a desktop.
For these reasons, we recommend meeting in the middle and going with the square size. Square videos on Facebook look great on both desktop and mobile. They take up a lot of real estate in your friends’ Newsfeed and bring more attention to your video.
We thought it would also be helpful to mention Facebook cover videos. Facebook added this feature for business Pages in 2017, and it can be a great way to make your page stand out. Though you can upload a standard widescreen video here, it’s important to note that the dimensions of the cover area are much narrower and will cause your 16:9 video to be cropped on the top and bottom on the desktop view.
If you want to completely optimize your video for your Page cover, we recommend uploading 820x312p or a higher resolution with this same ratio.
Twitter’s video post sizes are very similar to that of Facebook. The only difference is that previews in the Twitter Feed of vertical video are cropped down to a square, even on mobile. Again, while you’ll see a lot of users uploading widescreen, the square format will get you more attention by covering more space.
From what we can tell, LinkedIn allows you to upload most video sizes, even vertical, however just like on Twitter, vertical videos get cropped into a square. Again, we’d have to vote that you focus on square video content on this platform.
Instagram has slowly transitioned into being 3 content platforms in one, all of which support video. Let’s look at the recommended video size for all three.
Standard: Square, 600 x 600 pixels (1:1 aspect ratio)
Recommended: Square, 600 x 600 pixels (1:1 aspect ratio)
Your normal Instagram posts, which show up on your profile grid and in your follower’s Insta-feed, have long been standardized as the square due to Instagram’s ability to edit and crop your content within the app. Video content has been no different.
Since Instagram has always been a mobile-first experience, uploading widescreen videos is not going to make for the most enjoyable viewing experience. Unlike on YouTube, Facebook, and others, you can’t even rotate your phone to watch videos in full screen on IG.
Vertical videos look great in the Instagram feed, and we’d be very inclined to recommend you utilize this size on the regular… except for one thing. You have to remember your profile grid – vertical videos are always going to be cropped into a square within your grid and may not end up looking how you want.
This is why we ultimately have to recommend sticking with the classic 1:1 square video on Instagram.
IGTV launched in 2018 as the vertical video platform. Though Instagram has since allowed you to upload non-vertical videos also, we still recommend the 9:16 vertical format since the platform was built with mobile users in mind.
Last, but not least, is the king of all video platforms. While you can upload just about any video size on YouTube, your video will always appear in a widescreen 16:9 video player on desktop. And videos that don’t match this aspect ratio will have black bars on the top and bottom, left and right. YouTubers have come to expect the widescreen format, and rightly so, since YouTube users are much more likely to click that “expand to full-screen” button on desktop. We generally recommend that you keep to this standard.
However, as you can see in this video, YouTube has recently allowed vertical videos to appear in a vertical experience on mobile. There is some cropping that goes on in the initial preview, but ultimately it looks really good. The reason we also recommend uploading vertical-sized videos on YouTube is that, more and more, users are watching directly on their phones. YouTube Creators who suspect that most of their content is watched on a mobile device may want to consider making this transition to provide their viewers with a more enjoyable watching experience. But otherwise, the widescreen video size does just fine for the time being.
Zubtitle is a tool that automatically adds captions to your video, helping you increase social engagement. Click here to learn more.