Youtube has rolled out a new user handles feature for all channels. Every channel will have a unique handle, making it easier for users to discover content and interact with creators they love.
Handles will appear on channel pages and Shorts, so they'll be instantly and consistently recognisable.
Earlier, only creators with more than 100 subscribers were eligible for custom URLs, but now every channel can have a unique URL based on their handle.
It will make the process of commenting and mentioning simpler and faster.
For example, creators can be shouted out in a mention in comments or tagged in the title of a recent collab, helping them increase visibility and reach with new audiences.
Youtube said, “Handles join channel names as another way to identify a YouTube channel, but unlike channel names, handles are truly unique to each channel so creators can further establish their distinct presence and brand on YouTube.”
Over the next month, Youtube will notify creators when they can choose a handle for their channel. In most cases, if a channel already has a personalised URL, that will automatically become their default handle, or they can opt to change the handle for their channel as soon as the notification in YouTube Studio comes through.
“Because handles must be unique and every channel on YouTube will have one, we're rolling them out gradually. The timing of when a creator will get access to the handles selection process depends on a number of factors, including overall YouTube presence, subscriber count and whether the channel is active or inactive,” added YouTube in a blog post.
If no handle is claimed by November 14, 2022, then one will be automatically applied. Although, the option to change to a customised handle will remain available after November 14 as well.
When a creator chooses their handle, YouTube will also create a matching URL (ex: youtube.com/@handle) so creators can easily direct people to their content when they’re not on YouTube. If a channel already has a personalised URL, there’s no need to update links: they’ll automatically be redirected to the new, handle-based URL to create a better, more unified presence for creators on YouTube.
One of the biggest problems on Youtube has been the increased number of users forming lookalike channel names of known creators. This is mostly done as part of phishing scams. Now this update will solve this problem of YouTube channels and content creators.