YouTube Enables Thumbnail A/B Testing For Creators

Low Boon Shen
2 Min Read
YouTube Enables Thumbnail A/B Testing For Creators

You may have started seeing some videos having different thumbnails over time on YouTube, and that’s by design: some creators are using this technique to gauge user’s interest in clicking the video thumbnail, and YouTube is soon rolling out this feature so creators can do thumbnail A/B testing natively.

Evolving YouTube Thumbnails

YouTube Enables Thumbnail A/B Testing For Creators 6

YouTube Enables Thumbnail A/B Testing For Creators 6

Thumbnail design is an art of “clickbaiting” – it’s designed to invite you to click that video if you couldn’t resist the urge to watch it by seeing that very flashy image at a small corner of the webpage (or app). That being said, it is often a one-time thing as creators never bothered changing thumbnails once the video is uploaded, and this can be detrimental for viewership if it’s not done right.

Hence, YouTube is rolling out the Thumbnail Test & Compare feature in the coming weeks to all creators. This feature will allow creators to upload multiple thumbnails for one video, which can be evenly tested by distributing the thumbnail randomly to different users. This means what you see may not be what the other user sees, and the eventual viewership statistics will be presented to the creator to see which thumbnail works better.

YouTube Enables Thumbnail A/B Testing For Creators

YouTube Enables Thumbnail A/B Testing For Creators

YouTube will then determine the preferred thumbnail via the results (which automatically switches the thumbnail for everyone, or recommends the creator with the preferred option), but the creator can override this should they wish to do so. For the end user, that means you’re likely to see more videos with switching thumbnails in the first few days of upload, though I can see not everyone is fond of this idea as things can get visually chaotic pretty quickly.

Source: 9to5Google

Pokdepinion: I personally don’t like this idea of everyone constantly switching thumbnails – but ultimately everyone is going to utilize this to improve viewership.

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