Top 5 Video Editing Tools YouTubers Use


Posting videos on YouTube or your website can be fun or frustrating depending upon the video editing tools you use. With search engine optimization (SEO) placing more emphasis on Internet video feeds, it’s a necessary evil that requires figuring out what works best in your particular scenario.

There is a wide range of options, and choosing which is best for your application depends upon several factors. These include cost, ease of use, sophistication, and customization.

Here are the top five software packages YouTubers use with brief evaluation of each one’s pros and cons.

Free Software

There are a number of free programs downloadable from the Internet or that come free with computers. These include iMovie, which is part of the Apple pre-installed software suite on most Macs, and Windows Movie Maker on PCs. While these programs can perform basic functions like cutting, creating transitions, adding audio tracks, and inserting titles, they are far more limited in their sophistication.

Both iMovie and Movie Maker are easy to learn and pretty intuitive but are “kludgy” rather than elegant, which makes editing slower and more challenging.

Lots of Features

Adobe Premiere Elements gets high marks from both Mac and PC users because it has lots and lots of features and tools for software aimed at the personal user market.

The down side of that, of course, is the steep learning curve in order to take full advantage of the program. For a mom or dad wanting to just send cute video of the kids to family members, this may be overkill. But if you’re a small business, it’s a way to upgrade the look and feel of your promotion work.

Professional Quality Features

PowerDirector 11 Deluxe is geared toward more professional videographers and to that end is packed with features and tools, including support for Ultra High Definition and 3D Video formats. With its graphics card acceleration and use of multiple CPUs, the program is fast and powerful.

There is also a great online community support that is helpful due to the higher complexity of the program. If you are looking for a high-end professional video editor, this does not replace programs like Avid Media Composer or Final Cut Pro. But what it lacks in detailed control for the professional, PowerDirector makes up for in usability.

Mobile Options

Of course, the most prolific YouTubers are posting video taken right from their Smartphones. Viddy is a social media service that actually allows you to do some editing of your handiwork. You can clip the video at the start or end, add an audio track, and change brightness. You cannot overlay text tiles, but it’s a sure bet that’s coming soon. Before you start shooting, you also have Instagram-like effect filters that you can add for a little more customization.

Free Trials

Remember that many of the paid programs offer a free 30-day trial that gives you a chance to see if the software is right for your needs. So there is really nothing to lose if you devote enough time to testing during the trial period.

Editing software is an essential tool to take a website or YouTube video to a high level of quality. Although many people think quality on the Internet doesn’t matter, higher quality speaks volumes especially if the goal is business promotion.

2 Comments + Add Comment

  • Hi Sarah,

    I agree with you that iMovie is a great free tool for Mac users.
    To be honest I’m missing ScreenFlow, I really love that tool!
    What do you think of ScreenFlow?

    Best regards,

  • Hi Sarah,

    iMovie is something I have to get more into now since I started to record my own interviews on skype, so it’s definitely a great free tool. Also I have to agree with Jan here, I’m missing ScreenFlow, I just start using it and it’s awesome for recording how to videos and a lot of other stuff as well.

    Thanks for sharing!

    All the best,

Leave a comment