A few common threads might come to mind when you think about social media networks like Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok. One of these is account handles, which are an essential element of any social media account.
YouTube has launched handles to help people find your channel. Let’s explain what they are and how they work.
What Are YouTube Handles?
If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, a social media handle is a way for people to search for and identify social media accounts. Most social media channels have them, and YouTube is following suit.
YouTube announced handles in a YouTube blog post on October 10, 2022, stating:
For many creators, YouTube isn’t just a place to upload and comment on videos, it’s a community and home base. That’s why today we’re introducing handles, a new way for people to easily find and engage with creators and each other on YouTube. Every channel will have a unique handle, making it easier for fans to discover content and interact with creators they love.
Handles are available to all creators, not just those on YouTube Premium. This will probably come as a relief to many, especially since YouTube Premium comes at a cost. However, if you’re considering getting it, there are a few things you ought to consider before paying for YouTube Premium.
How YouTube Handles Work
YouTube handles will work similarly to how they do on other social media channels. They won’t replace channel names. Instead, they’ll make it easier to identify, mention, and tag channels.
Creators can create YouTube handles when they receive a notification in YouTube Studio. You can expect to receive one over the month following the announcement.
Channel handles will appear on both YouTube videos and on Shorts. Each channel will have a unique handle. Given that there are channels with similar names, there may be cases where the creators behind those channels try to secure the same handle. In such cases, the creator who secures the handle first gets to keep it.
Since YouTube launched handles, some creators have complained about smaller, less established channels securing handles similar to their channel names. But something to consider is that YouTube automatically gives channels handles similar to their personalized URLs.
However, those creators have the option to change their default handles when they receive a notification from YouTube. Finally, when you create a handle, YouTube will generate a matching URL that includes your handle. This will help you direct traffic to your content from outside YouTube.
How YouTube Handles Will Affect Creators
YouTube handles will help creators get more visibility for their channels and make them easier to find, tag, and mention on YouTube. This will help creators grow their channels as a result.
YouTube channel names tend to be long, so handles will help make channels easier to remember. Again, this makes it easier for other creators and viewers to tag and mention those channels.
However, it helps if your handle is similar to your channel name. Otherwise, it would be counterproductive as it may leave people confused and even frustrated.
Remember: when it comes to YouTube, monetization is the name of the game. The more eyes you attract and keep, the better your chances of making money on the platform. Your channel elements, like your channel name and handle, are some building blocks of a successful YouTube channel.
Take Advantage of YouTube Handles
It can be challenging to stand out on popular platforms like YouTube and other social media networks. However, handles have made it simpler for people to discover a creator’s content. To that end, be intentional about the YouTube handle you create; it could be a great tool to grow your channel and make it more noticeable.