Types Of YouTube Ads And Video Ad Specs In 2022

Piotr Smietana
Piotr Smietana6 min read

Did you know people watch more than a billion hours of video on YouTube every day? A billion hours. Every. Day. For marketers and advertisers, this amount of content consumption presents an incredible opportunity to get your brand, products or services in front of a vast audience.

If you’re regularly on YouTube, you’re probably familiar with the website’s skippable video ads that pop up when you’re watching a video. This is only one type of video ad format, there are many different types of YouTube ads that you can create to broadcast your message to the right people.

In this post, we’ll give you a quick overview of the most popular YouTube ad formats and the key YouTube ad specs you need to know for each of video content.

YouTube video ad specs:

Display Ads

Display Ads

Display ads appear to the top right of a video, right above the video suggestions. The best way to leverage this YouTube ad type is to create content that aligns with what your target audience is looking for. This way, your ads will be more relevant to viewers, and they’ll be more likely to watch. Always remember to include some type of call to action to entice the user to click on the ad.

YouTube Display Ad Specs

Recommended video dimensions: 426 x 240 (240p), 640 x 360 (360p), 854 x 480 (480p),1280 x 720 (720p), 1920 x 1080 (1080p), 2560 x 1440 (1440p) and 3840 x 2160 (2160p)

Aspect ratio: 16:9

Max file size: 128GB or 12 hours, whichever is less.

Accepted video formats: .MOV, .MPEG4, .MP4, .AVI, .WMV, .MPEGPS, .FLV, 3GPP, and WebM.

Placement: To the top right of a video, right above the video suggestions.

CPM bidding: You pay for impressions

Skippable In-Stream Ads

YouTube Display Ad Specs

Most YouTube videos have ads that play before, during or after a video. The ones that you can skip are called skippable in-stream ads. After 5 seconds, the viewer has an option to skip the ad by clicking the button in the bottom corner of the video.

YouTube Skippable In-stream Ad Specs

Video length recommendation: 12 seconds minimum, 3 minutes maximum

Placement: Before, during, and after a video plays on YouTube

Recommended video dimensions: 426 x 240 (240p), 640 x 360 (360p), 854 x 480 (480p),1280 x 720 (720p), 1920 x 1080 (1080p), 2560 x 1440 (1440p) and 3840 x 2160 (2160p)

Aspect ratio: 16:9

Max file size: 128GB or 12 hours, whichever is less.

Accepted video formats: .MOV, .MPEG4, MP4, .AVI, .WMV, .MPEGPS, .FLV, 3GPP, and WebM.

CPV bidding: You only pay for 30-second+ views or clicks

CPM bidding: You pay for impressions

Non-Skippable In-Stream Ads

Non-skippable in-stream ads are the same as skippable in-stream ads, where they appear at the start, middle or end of a video, except, viewers don’t have the option to skip the ad.

YouTube Non-skippable In-stream Ad Specs

Video length recommendation: 15 seconds maximum

Placement: Before, during and after a video plays on YouTube

Recommended video dimensions: 426 x 240 (240p), 640 x 360 (360p), 854 x 480 (480p),1280 x 720 (720p), 1920 x 1080 (1080p), 2560 x 1440 (1440p) and 3840 x 2160 (2160p)

Aspect ratio: 16:9

Max file size: 128GB or 12 hours, whichever is less.

Accepted video formats: .MOV, .MPEG4, MP4, .AVI, .WMV, .MPEGPS, .FLV, 3GPP, and WebM.

CPM bidding: You pay for impressions

Ad extension option: You can add extensions (for example, site links or lead forms) or a product feed to your campaign to influence conversions.

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In-Feed Video Ads

In-feed video ads appear where users discover new content, such as in YouTube search results, next to related YouTube videos, or on the YouTube mobile homepage. They consist of a thumbnail image from the video with some text.

While the exact size and appearance of the ad may vary depending on where it appears, in-feed video ads always invite people to click to watch the video. With this ad, the video can be viewed on the YouTube watch page or channel homepage.

YouTube In-feed Video Ad Specs

Video length recommendation: 12 seconds maximum

Placement: On YouTube search results, alongside related YouTube videos, and on the YouTube mobile homepage

CPV bidding: You pay when viewers watch your ad by clicking the thumbnail.

Ad extension option: You can add extensions (for example, site links or lead forms) or a product feed to your campaign to influence conversions.

Bumper Ads

Bumper ads are 6 seconds (or shorter) and play before, during, or after another video. Viewers don’t have the option to skip the ad, so they’re a great way to present viewers with a short, memorable message.

YouTube Bumper Ads Specs

Video length recommendation: 6 seconds maximum

Placement: Before, during and after a video plays on YouTube

Recommended video dimensions: 426 x 240 (240p), 640 x 360 (360p), 854 x 480 (480p),1280 x 720 (720p), 1920 x 1080 (1080p), 2560 x 1440 (1440p) and 3840 x 2160 (2160p)

Aspect ratio: 16:9

Max file size: 128GB or 12 hours, whichever is less.

Accepted video formats: .MOV, .MPEG4, MP4, .AVI, .WMV, .MPEGPS, .FLV, 3GPP, and WebM.

CPM bidding: You pay for impressions

Ad extension option: You can add extensions (for example, site links or lead forms) or a product feed to your campaign to influence conversions.

Outstream Ads

Outstream ads are mobile-only ads and only appear on websites and apps running on Google video partners – not on YouTube. These ads can appear in various mobile placements, such as banners, interstitials, in-feed, native, and portrait and fullscreen modes.

YouTube Outstream Ad Specs

Placement: Mobile-only. For mobile web placements, outstream ads appear in banners. In your mobile devices apps, outstream ads appear in banners, interstitials, in-feed, native, and portrait and fullscreen modes.

CPM bidding: You pay when someone sees your video play for two seconds or more.

Masthead Ads

A masthead video ad autoplays without sound for up to 30 seconds and appears at the top of the YouTube Home feed, YouTube app or m.youtube.com Home feed). Masthead ads are only available on a reservation basis through a Google sales representative.

YouTube Masthead Ad Specs

Placement: Autoplaying video header at the top of the YouTube app feed or on the desktop homepage

Resolution: 1920 x 1080 or higher

Headline: 23 characters

Description: Up to 62 characters

CTA button: 10 characters or less

Buying models: Cost-per-day (CPD) or CPM (reserve with Google representative)

The First Step in Creating a Successful YouTube Video Ad? Know Your Video Ad Specs

If you want your ad to show up correctly in different placements, you’ve got to know your specs. Following the ad specifications in this article will help ensure that your video ad does what you need it to do: connect with the right audiences and drive them to take action. If you are looking for someone else to do all the heavy lifting, Superside offers design at scale for all your advertising design needs.

This video ad post is part of a much larger guide to Digital Ad Design. So if you are looking to boost your ad performance, download our free guide today to find out all the tips and tricks.

The Definitive Guide to Digital Ad Design

Get industry best practices and case studies for advertising on: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, Amazon and more.

Get the guide
Published: Feb 8, 2022
Piotr Smietana
Written by
Piotr Smietana
Piotr is a Marketing Creative Director at Superside, based in Cracow, Poland. He's a video marketing expert with over 9 years of experience in digital marketing, advertising, gaming and the film industry. When not at work, you can find him flying his drone on an epic adventure, jamming on the electric guitar, or hitting up a nearby music festival.

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