How to Create and Upload YouTube Shorts

As an answer to TikTok, YouTube created a feature called YouTube Shorts. Here's how to create and upload YouTube Shorts.

October 27, 2023
5 min read
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How to create and upload YouTube Shorts

If you’re not already familiar with YouTube Shorts, it’s a YouTube feature that highlights short-form, vertical videos. Essentially, it’s YouTube’s answer to TikTok. The experience was designed for creators and artists who want to shoot short, catchy videos using nothing but their mobile phones. But how exactly do you create and upload YouTube Shorts?

There are essentially two different ways to go about getting your video up on YouTube Shorts. And we’re here to break them both down for you. Just keep scrolling!

How to Create and Upload YouTube Shorts

Use the YouTube App

The first option to create and upload YouTube Shorts is by doing everything directly in the YouTube app. Just follow the steps below:

1. Create Your YouTube Shorts Video

When you open the YouTube app, you’ll see a large + icon on the bottom menu. When you tap that icon, YouTube will provide you with the options to upload a video, create a Short, or go live. Select the Create a Short option and you’ll be directed to a screen that will look very familiar if you’ve spent any time on TikTok or Instagram Reels. Just like TikTok and IG Reels, the YouTube Shorts creator allows you to film a video directly in the app or upload a video you’ve already filmed on your phone. 

Main dashboard on YouTube
Creating a YouTube Short
Uploading YouTube Shorts

2. Edit Your YouTube Shorts Video

Once you’ve created your video, you can also use the YouTube Shorts feature to perform some very basic video editing. Again, the options that you’ll find for editing are very similar to what you’ve probably already seen on Instagram Reels and TikTok. You can add a sound, change the speed, add a filter, use a green screen, etc. The downside of using the native YouTube Shorts editor to edit your video is that your options are extremely limited. But if you’re trying to get something up quickly, it can work in a pinch.

3. Publish Your YouTube Shorts Video

After you’ve created and edited your YouTube Shorts video, you’re almost ready to publish it! All you have to do is add a title and description with appropriate keywords. If you want your YouTube Shorts to get the widest reach, try including the hashtag #Shorts somewhere in the title or description.

Use Editing Software

Your second option is to use an outside software to create, edit, and optimize your YouTube Shorts video and then upload the completed video to YouTube. While this option may seem like an extra step, it allows you additional flexibility to optimize your Short to get the best engagement. Just follow the steps below:

1. Create Your YouTube Shorts Video

For this option, instead of creating your YouTube Shorts video directly in the YouTube app, you’ll create it on your phone. The most important thing to remember when you’re going this route is that YouTube Shorts videos must be 60 seconds or less. When you record in the app, you’ll be automatically cut off when you reach that point. So it’s important to remember to cut yourself off (or edit down to that mark) when you’re filming and editing outside of the app.

2. Edit Your YouTube Shorts Video

Once you’ve created your video, it’s time to edit. One of the best things about creating and editing your video yourself outside of the YouTube app is that you can take advantage of much more extensive editing features. Especially when you choose Zubtitle

When you use Zubtitle to prepare your YouTube Shorts video, you’ll have the option to add timed captions (in just a few seconds), which can be attention-grabbing and allow viewers to watch even with the volume muted. You can write a headline and add it to the top of the video, which we recommend since YouTube Shorts use a random frame from your video as the thumbnail. So this addition can also increase your video’s click-through rate. 

Use Zubtitle to customize your styling and text colors. You can even trim, crop, and resize your video so that it’s the right length and perfectly formatted for YouTube Shorts. When it comes to choosing your aspect ratio, keep in mind that YouTube Shorts (again, just like TikTok and IG Reels) should ideally be in a 9:16 aspect ratio.

3. Upload Your YouTube Shorts Video

Now it’s time to take your edited and optimized YouTube Shorts video and upload it to YouTube! Obviously, you can go about that by following the steps from the first Use the YouTube App option by opening the app, tapping the + icon, selecting the Create a Short option, and uploading your completed video from your mobile device.

But, if your video is less than 60 seconds and in a 9:16 aspect ratio, you can actually upload your video directly to YouTube instead of going through the YouTube Shorts feature. Simply upload as you would a normal YouTube video and YouTube will automatically categorize it as a  Short.

Pro Tip: To check that your video got properly categorized as a Short, look for the red Shorts icon on the video thumbnail after you publish it.

BONUS: Repurpose for TikTok or Instagram Reels

The benefit of editing & optimizing your YouTube Short outside of the YouTube app is that you can now repurpose your video in other apps that support short vertical videos. So be sure and share your video on TikTok, IG Reels, etc.

Either way, make sure that you use appropriate keywords in your title and description and include the hashtag #Shorts.

Want to create and upload YouTube Shorts easily? 

Sign up for a free Zubtitle account today and start creating instantly.

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