How to improve your video editing skills 

video editing

There are many people who have started taking video editing as a serious profession because of how much demand there is for video editors. 

Everyone now wants a video editor working under them to create different types of video content for them, whether it be for their YouTube channel or for some other business work. Learning video editing has tons of benefits and you would defiantly find it useful still.

Video editing is not an easy skill to command. You can edit videos easily, thanks to the different types of video editing software available, but it takes certain skills to master editing videos properly.

Now I am not a professional video editor, but I am interested in the world of filmmaking, and video editing is a very important part of filmmaking.

Over the years, I have learnt certain skills myself that I apply when I edit my short films, and I thought maybe they could be useful to other people as well.

So without wasting any time, here are some tips and suggestions that you can use to improve your video editing skills.

1. Choose the right editing software 

This seems like a no-brainer, but it is, in fact, a very important factor that you should consider for video editing. As I mentioned above, there are many different types of video editing software present in the market right now.

Most of them even allow their AI technologies to edit the videos for you, but there are obviously some softwares that require you to manually adjust everything and take control of your video.

These are the features that you normally expect on some higher-end video editing software. This is why choosing the right software is very important because all the software are targeted at different people.

If you are someone who has just started editing the videos and you jump straight to softwares such as Final Cut Pro or Premiere Pro, you will definitely find yourself overwhelmed with the features.

So choose the software that suits you the best, and only then can you start making good videos in the first place.

2.  Have a powerful device

If you are genuinely serious about video editing as a profession, then you need a powerful computing device to edit all your videos and films.

This is because there are certain softwares that require specific hardware requirements to run smoothly on a computing device, and you need that sort of horsepower in your computer to edit those videos.

There are many times when the footages have to be compressed down from RAW file format to a simpler format so that the computer doesn’t start lagging and is able to process the videos.

Also, depending on how complicated your edit is, meaning, how many layers of video and audio files you have on your timeline, your PC is supposed to have enough power to handle all these files and render out the videos quickly.

Time is of the essence when it comes to video editing, and a powerful computing device will provide you with the time you need to edit your videos.

3.  Learn some of the shortcuts

Each video editing software has its own types of keyboard shortcuts that you should learn. These shortcuts are designed to make your work faster, and guess what? They actually do.

Just like any particular software, you are able to do a lot more work when you know certain keyboard shortcuts rather than hovering your curse to the exact spot and clicking on it multiple times to get what you want.

It will take a certain amount of time to learn these shortcuts, but the more you edit, the quicker you will learn them, and it will help you in editing your videos. 

There are also many different functions that are added to each software after regular updates, and some of these functions are genuinely shortcuts to some long manual processes.

So you should definitely learn these tricks to help you in editing your videos quickly.

4. Colour correct your video

Colour correction and management is a different skills altogether. There are people who dedicate their time just studying colour science and are hired as colour specialists for videos. 

When you are starting out in the world of shooting, you might shoot your clips on Auto mode, where the AI of the camera decides the overall colour of your clip, and for some people, that is all they are looking for.

As you become professional in this business, you know that shooting in RAW mode is what is better for your videos as you have the overall control of how you want your video to look. 

Colour correcting your video is a skill that you should learn because then you will increase more of your chances of getting hired by individuals.

It should be noted though, that colour correction takes a certain amount of skills, and if you start colour-correcting your videos just like that, then chances are that you would actually be doing more harm than good for your video.

5. Don’t overuse effects

This is a personal suggestion, and it is a subjective tip, you can take it as per your liking, but I don’t like too many effects for my videos. I feel that it actually ends up harming the overall look of it.

Your whole point of making the video is to tell that specific story of the video, and if you indulge yourself in putting too many different types of video, then you will be distracting the audience from the actual message that you are trying to convey.

It also makes the overall video look cheap as it lowers down the quality. The general rule of thumb that I follow while editing videos is that less is more.

The lesser the effects and the transition effects you put in it, the better your video will turn out, and you should always try to do something different.

Because then only your work will stand out from the rest, and people will notice it. If you just do what everyone is doing, then you will not see your videos performing well.

So, don’t use too many effects for your videos and keep it plain and simple.

6. Maintain a steady workflow

This is also an important suggestion that every video editor should keep in mind. There are many times when you will need to reuse your original files for your edit because of many different reasons. 

This happens fairly often than you might think because as the edits become more and more complicated and you have many different files running simultaneously on the timeline, it can lead to some files getting corrupted.

If you don’t have a steady workflow and you have not correctly labelled each file type for each folder, then you are in for a big mess, and you can actually end up ruining your entire project. 

Editing can be very messy and having everything laid out sequentially only helps in running a smoother workflow, especially when you are dealing with multiple files at the same time.

7. Select good music

You have the option of using many different types of music for your videos, and you should select the ones that really suit the entire mood of your video. 

If you start putting up any music in your video without thinking about how it is going with the video, then the video wouldn’t turn out as well as it could. 

You should also choose the songs for which you have the rights to or use non-copyright songs because there are serious infringement laws that are used by social media sites like YouTube, Instagram, etc.

If you don’t abide by them, then either your video will not get monetised, or worse, your video will be pulled down from the site, and that is the last thing that you would want after putting your time and effort into editing any video.

Also read: How to add music to video

8. Learn from others

This also seems like an obvious trick, but it is actually not used by a lot of people. You should always learn different editing tricks and tips from others. 

The fact that you are reading this article proves that you have started to go down this path of learning, and this is a good skill because so many times people use their own sets of techniques that can be genuinely beneficial towards others.

There are a number of different YouTube channels that have tutorials available for free regarding any particular video editing software.

You can simply watch them and apply those styles to your video as well. 

Whenever I have a particular idea regarding any video but I don’t know how to execute it, I simply search for it on YouTube and see how others achieve it. 

These are free resources that you should definitely use.

9. Use good texts

Fonts and titles also play an important part in making the video seem genuinely good. You have tons of different types of fonts available, and all of them are great for different purposes.

You have to see which type of font best suits the style of your video. People often make the mistake of simply using all the old fonts that they used on their previous videos and use them on their new ones as well.

That is a very lazy thing to do, and fonts actually help a lot in making the type of video that you want. I spend a lot of time choosing between the type of font that best suits my style of the video, and you should do it too.

10. Keep on editing

Again, this seems like a piece of obvious advice, but not a lot of people use it for their videos. The best way to improve upon any skill of yours, regardless of whether it is video editing or not, is to just keep working on it. 

This is a simple rule that you can follow in all facets of life because when you are starting new to any field, you are bound to make mistakes in it, and the same goes for video editing as well.

As time goes along, you should learn from those mistakes and try not to repeat those mistakes when you move forward.

This feels more like life advice than a video editing advice, but it is something that I truly believe in, and it has helped in editing better videos as time goes along.


Let’s now discuss some of the questions that are asked about this topic.

How do you develop video editing skills?

Well, it is not a skill that you inherit from your genes, so that’s a good thing. So when it comes to ‘developing’ video editing skills, it all boils down to practising this art form. 

You are bound to make mistakes on your first try, and that is a good thing because it is a creative field, and you can make as many mistakes as you like.

As time goes along, you should learn from those mistakes and make better edits over and over again. Each time you edit, you learn something new, consciously or subconsciously, and that does happen.

This is how you develop video editing skills.

What skills do video editors need?

You really just need to practice one skill, and that is being patient. This is because video editing can seem challenging enough when you first start, and you will have to edit the videos again and again till you find the video that you wanted to make. 

It takes a certain amount of practice, but being patient is the key in all of this, and it has genuinely helped a lot of people when it comes to video editing.

Other than that, you will easily learn all the other skills that are more technical, but this is something that you should have from the beginning, then only you will stay for the entire course.

What is the 321 rule in video editing?

I mentioned this in a previous article as well, where I discussed some of the tips that you can try for video editing, and even then, I mentioned that it is not a hardcore rule that you have to follow.

It is a fairly simple rule, and you should take some form of inspiration from it. 

The 321 rule stands for: you have to make 3 different copies of each file, store those copies in 2 separate places, and share 1 great story from your video.

As I said, it is not a hardcore rule that you should follow, but it is still something that you can use to get inspired.

How to learn video editing skills for free? 

YouTube. That’s your answer. Simply search for any skill regarding video editing that you want to try, and you will find thousands of videos regarding it. 

The internet is full of such free resources, and you should definitely use them all to learn as many new things as you can. 

The things that you learn on YouTube are the same things for which you have to pay $1000 Dollars at film school to learn; this is because those film school graduates are making those videos. 

There are also plenty of free video editing softwares available that you can use to apply those newly learned video editing skills. 


Well, there you have it. An article regarding improving your video editing skills. Video editing is now available on all platforms with very different pricing points. 

You can easily start by learning and using the free software to improve upon your skills and move up the ladder from there. 

As always, these have been some of the tips/advice that I have about this topic. What about you? Do you agree with my list of advice, or do you have some other tips regarding this topic?

Whatever your thoughts are, do let us know about it in the comments down below!

Picture of Sanjit Mansingh

Sanjit Mansingh

Sanjit Mansingh is a Journalism and Mass Communication graduate. While studying in this field he quickly realized what he wants to do in his life: Filmmaking. His interest in writing scripts is what made him give a try in the world of content writing. Sanjit's an avid Movie Geek and is an award winning Director as well.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts