Custom Thumbnail on YouTube Videos

YouTube Help

First in order to enable you YouTube videos to be able to add custom thumbnails you must both verify your account & become a YouTube Partner. Both of these steps are simple.

Verifying Your Account

In order to verify your account you need to go to the “Video Manager” shown below.
YouTube Video Manager
Once you do that you need to select channel settings on the left bar. Once you do you will be shown a screen like below. You need to make sure your account is verified & you are a certified partner. Once you go through the process the little light for custom thumbnails will turn green.
YouTube Settings

After custom thunbnails is enabled we can now add it to one of our videos. To do so we need to go back to “Video Manager” and then select “Edit” on the video which we would like to add a thumbnail to. To the right of the video under the automatically generated thumbnails to select from there should now be a button enabled named “Custom Thumbnail”. Upload your photo and now that will be what people see before they play your video!
YouTube Custom Thumbnail
The best size to make your thumbnail would be 1280 x 720 pixels. This is so that no matter how large your video is displayed, the thumbnail will still remain nice and crisp.

Optimizing “WordPress SEO” Plugin Settings

Optimize Wordpress SEO Settings

WordPress SEO has quickly become the #1 SEO plugin for WordPress serving millions of happy bloggers including myself. I decided to make a video about WordPress SEO because when you first activate the plugin there are actually a lot of additional things that can and should be done in order to get the most out of it. Enjoy!

A couple of useful links relating to WordPress SEO are as follows:

WordPress SEO – The Definitive Guide
WordPress Plugins by Yoast

Advanced Custom Fields Integration

Advanced Custom Fields

In this video tutorial I take you through the integration of Advanced Custom Fields into WordPress. Advanced Custom Fields is a WordPress plugin that allows you to add custom fields to your posts & pages. This is by far the best plugin I have found to do this and it has enabled me to take my client work to the next level. With this plugin its a breeze to make a whole site customizable without it taking all day. There is although a slight learning curve. You can’t complain though because it gives you so much power to customize your themes.

ACF (Advanced Custom Fields) has over 20 field types from uploading files to date pickers. This plugin is free, but has a few paid add-ons… one of which is repeater. Repeater is amazing because it allows you to let the end user decide how many fields he wants to repeat. So for instance an agenda, or speakers for an event. These types of things are always changing and have different amounts even day to day as updates are made. Using repeater you could put that kind of control into the hands of your client and not have to worry about the length of certain fields. This is also great for slideshows so you don’t have to specify the amount of slides you should have, its flexible. Originally this functionality was baked into the main plugin files and to unlock the repeater field you would just have to input a code key, but recently due to some WordPress policy changes ACF was forced to remove this “baked in” functionality and now ACF Repeater exists as a separate plugin that needs to be installed.

So here is the tutorial video. I hope you enjoy and I welcome any feedback. FYI the first few minutes I go off on a tangent on some other minor update to the site. I originally recorded this as to just capture me working on a live site doing day to day updates but I really ended up focusing on ACF.

To download ACF go here: Advanced Custom Fields

How to Autoplay a YouTube Embedded Video

YouTube Help

In order to have a embedded YouTube video autoplay on load add this to the end of the URL (right after the video unique string): ?version=3&autoplay=1.

i.e. http://www.youtube.com/embed/JP9ZH6EuTrA?version=3&autoplay=1

At https://developers.google.com/youtube/player_parameters#autoplay

it states that:

autoplay (supported players: AS3, AS2, HTML5)
Values: 0 or 1. Default is 0. Sets whether or not the initial video will autoplay when the player loads.