Adding clickable timestamp chapters to your YouTube videos makes them more engaging, search-friendly, and easy to navigate. But manually entering timestamps for chapters can be extremely tedious. Here are two methods to simplify the YouTube chapter creation process – one paid and one free.
Watch the Video
Method 1: Using the TubeBuddy Extension (Paid)
TubeBuddy is a popular Chrome extension for YouTubers, packing tons of analytics and productivity tools. One handy feature is its chapter creation capabilities.
After installing TubeBuddy and linking your YouTube account, click the “Chapters” button it adds to your video editor. From here, you can:
- Add chapter titles and timestamps with one click.
- Divide the video into logical sections like Introduction, Overview, Conclusion.
- Insert a chapter screenshot to give viewers a preview of that section.
- Reorder chapters easily by dragging and dropping them.
TubeBuddy chapters save directly to your video for viewers to see. The downside is that the chapters feature requires TubeBuddy’s $9/month Star plan. But for avid YouTubers, the time savings may justify the cost.
Method 2: The YouTube Chapters Editor Extension (Free)
For a free alternative, the YouTube Chapters Editor Chrome extension works directly on YouTube Studio. To use it:
- Install the extension from the Chrome Web Store.
- Open the YouTube Studio editor for the video you want chapters on.
- Click the extension icon to activate the editor panel.
- Play through the video, pause at logical breakpoints, and click “Add” to insert chapters.
- Title each chapter appropriately based on the content.
- Click “Save” when finished to add the chapters to the video.
While not as robust as TubeBuddy, the Chapters Editor gets the job done without any subscription. Just watch your video start-to-finish, pausing to add timestamped chapters at key points.
Tips for Efficient Chapter Creation
Adding chapters as you edit makes things easier than doing it after. Consider:
- Adding obvious segments like Introduction, Overview, Pros/Cons, Conclusion
- Inserting title slides in the timeline to indicate the start of a new section
- Not going overboard – focus on 4-6 high-level chapters
- Keeping titles short but descriptive
Proper chaptering takes some work initially, but ultimately enhances the viewer experience and discoverability of your videos. Just use the method that best fits your budget and channel size.