Dimensions for YouTube Shorts as Vertical Content  

Keynote

The best format for YouTube Shorts is a 9:16 aspect ratio with a high resolution of 1080×1920 pixels. With this size, a better viewing experience on smartphones is aimed, since it allows for full-screen playback. Furthermore, the YouTube algorithm values this format, which could increase your chances of getting more traffic.

YouTube Shorts are among the most viewed content types on the internet, sharing the top with TikTok videos, and Instagram Reels. Vertical content has become essential for anyone seeking visibility on social media platforms.  

Getting a good number of views after posting a YouTube short depends on several points, one of which this article will teach you today: dimensions. Contrary to popular belief, there is more to it than creating a 60-second vertical video and posting it on YouTube. 

Here is everything you need to know about dimensions for YouTube Shorts. 

What Is the Right Size for YouTube Shorts? 

The best format for YouTube Shorts with an aspect ratio of 9:16 on a vertical format and a high resolution of about 1080×1920 pixels is the ideal size for YouTube Shorts that you can record with your smartphone. While many creators own a professional camera for higher YouTube Shorts quality, later on, most of them start creating their YouTube Shorts videos on their phones. 

The Benefit of These YouTube Shorts Dimensions 

According to analytics and results from YouTube creators’ experience with YouTube Shorts, there are several reasons why these YouTube Shorts dimensions are the best for anyone who wants to create content. 

1. Creates A Better Viewing Experience on Phone 

Most smartphones are designed for the best possible video viewing experience in vertical mode. With a 9:16 ratio, you can use your screen in full-screen mode and not have to fill the screen with bars to fit the video on the screen.  

2. Users Prefer 9:16 Aspect Ratio Videos 

Most users stated that they like videos with a 9:16 aspect ratio where they are not distracted by black/white bars. The other ratios like 1:1 or 4:3 make the video appear smaller, which is not desirable on already small screens. Vertical, full-screen videos are more captivating and easy to engage for many users. 

3. Algorithmic Priority 

YouTube algorithm prioritizes videos that are created in 9:16 vertical YouTube Shorts format for higher chances of engagement on the platform. It is one of the factors that affect the YouTube Shorts algorithm. Vertical videos on a 9:16 ratio attract more views than the other forms of videos. 

You can similarly use this size guide on your process of Shorts Thumbnails.

YouTube Short Size for Square Content 

YouTube automatically categorizes square videos with a 1:1 ratio as YouTube Short content as long as they are vertical. Therefore, any dimensions for YouTube shorts with a vertical format from 1:1 to 9:16 can be shared as a YouTube Shorts video with back bars added to fill the screen. So, technically it’s possible to create a square YouTube Short content. 

On the other hand, creating square content for YouTube Shorts comes with advantages and disadvantages. While you may not be able to have a full-screen viewing experience with a square YouTube Shorts video format, it will be easier for your audience to see your name and captions without being jammed by the video playing in the background. 

What Size Are YouTube Short Considered Too Narrow and Too Wide? 

If you are not sure whether your video is too narrow or too wide to be considered a square and if it’s still possible to upload it as a YouTube Shorts video, here is how it goes:  

If the video content is a little wider than a square YouTube algorithm does not allow you to upload it as a YouTube Shorts format. Initially, the widest YouTube Short can be in square form. 

Similarly, the narrowest video format that you can upload on YouTube with YouTube Shorts format is 9:16, which means you cannot upload any video in a YouTube Short format no narrower than 9:16. 

While wide content is better for sharing movie clips, scenery, and videos recorded with more than one person, it may not be as desirable for the viewers while they’re scrolling on the platform. After all, what they want is bite-sized, easy-to-consume short-length YouTube Shorts content. Square and a little narrower ratios like 4: 5 on the other hand, can be used as an alternative for content that does not fit the full-screen ratio when the creator does not want to upload video as content no other than YouTube Short.  

It is a good idea to remember that most phones and cameras have adjusted ratios in the settings menu where you can pick the ratio of your video upon recording to make your editing part easier before uploading your YouTube Shorts video. 

FAQs 

Can YouTube Shorts be horizontal? 

The video ratio for YouTube Shorts cannot be wider than a square unless you use additional video editing apps to fit the horizontal video into the 9:16 screen with black background bars. This way your video can be posted in wider formats like 16:9, 5:4, etc. 
Another alternative to posting horizontal videos as YouTube Shorts is to rotate them before posting them in a YouTube Shorts format. A rotated video is technically the same as a vertically recorded video for the YouTube algorithm and all your viewers have to do is rotate their screen physically to watch the YouTube Shorts video in a higher quality. 

Which video file formats are supported for YouTube Shorts? 

YouTube allows users to upload their videos in certain supported formats which include: MP4, .MOV, .AVI, .MPEGPS, WebM, .MPEG4, etc. If you have difficulty with uploading your content on YouTube, you can use converting sites to convert your video to a supported YouTube Shorts format. 

What is the best aspect ratio for YouTube Shorts? 

While YouTube Shorts are typically created in 9:16 format to share videos narrower than a square, the best engagement and visibility are often gained from videos that are displayed on full screen. Allowing the audience to use all of the screen for watching the YouTube Shorts content results in higher likes and views for creators.  
If you’re a content creator who wants to grow your YouTube channel with YouTube Shorts, the best dimensions for YouTube Shorts are 9:16 and anything narrower than a square. This way you can create more compelling content for your YouTube channel. 

Written by
Stacey Thornhill

Stacey Thornhill leads the way in digital media and content strategy. She perfectly combines her marketing passion with a rich expertise in digital platforms like Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Facebook.

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