Canva Video Editor – COMPLETE Canva Tutorial For Beginners (2023)!

Canva first became popular with designers. It allowed them to create awesome content without needing the skills or time required for more complex editing software like Photoshop.

And now Canva is coming up against dedicated VIDEO editing software as well! With the new Canva video editor you can create everything from static thumbnails to animations, video intros and even entire video editing projects.

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Like the rest of Canva’s design tools, the Canva Video Editor is super simple to pick up and use. But there’s also plenty more advanced features, cool animations and custom effects under the hood as well.

Canva’s video editing tools aren’t just limited to desktop PC or Mac in your web browser. If you’re an iPhone or Android user, you can also use the Canva app to edit high quality videos on mobile! The process is pretty much the same – feel free to follow along with any device!

Canva Video Editor - COMPLETE Canva Tutorial For Beginners (2023)!
With this Canva video tutorial you’ll be a pro on desktop AND on Canva video editor mobile in no time

With this Canva video tutorial you’ll become a pro on desktop AND on Canva video editor mobile in no time

So in this complete Canva video editing tutorial, we’ll show you exactly how to edit video with Canva!

Here’s what we’ll cover:

Plus we’ll give you a ton of tips and tricks along the way to help you boost your results much faster!

Let’s get started.

How To Create A Project In Canva

First up, open Canva. Create a free account and log in. On the main page there are lots of categories you can choose from.

Select Video and you’ll see a range of video templates with different sizes and formats. You can choose from templates like Facebook Video, Video Message, Slideshow Video, LinkedIn Video Ad or Video Intro for your YouTube channel.

Canva Home Page with 'Video' project category selected
Select Video on the Canva homepage to view the video templates

We suggest starting with the blank Video template so that we can run through how to create videos from scratch.

Canva Interface

There are four main aspects of the Canva interface you’ll be using:

  • Left menu bar: This is where you can access Templates, Elements (shapes, graphics, etc.), Uploads, Text and More.
  • Canvas: The middle area is the canvas where you’ll be creating your video.
  • Timeline: Canva’s editing timeline is a bit different to a traditional video editing timeline but this is where you can see all of your clips and how long they play for. You’ll also edit down all your footage here.
  • Top menu bar: The functionalities on this top menu bar will change depending on what element you have selected but this is where you’ll access a lot of the tools and features.
New untitled design editing interface with Canvas highlighted in a purple rectangle in Canva
The canvas is where you can edit and preview your video masterpiece

Now that you’re familiar with the interface, let’s import footage.

How To Import Footage In Canva

The first step to creating a video in Canva is to upload your footage. Go to Uploads in the left menu. You can upload footage from your computer, Facebook, Google Drive, Instagram or Dropbox. Select your file and hit Open.

Upload icon for importing footage in the left side bar of Canva interface
To import the primary footage of your video, go to Uploads

One really cool feature is that you don’t need to wait for Canva to complete the upload process before you can start editing. Sometimes it can take hours for high quality footage to upload so it’s awesome that with Canva you can get started right away.

Dropdown menu with different ways to import files into Canva including Google Drive, Dropbox, Facebook and Instagram
You can upload footage from a variety of places making for an easy import process

Your files will appear in the Videos section under Uploads. From here, select your primary footage and drag it onto the timeline. By default, the project will format to match the video type. So if you have a widescreen video, the project will default to widescreen.

'Zoom page' button on the bottom of Canva interface
The slider will allow you to zoom in and out on the timeline or canvas

You can zoom in and out on the timeline using the slider at the bottom of the screen. The button on the left of the slider will allow you to change between Zoom thumbnails or Zoom page. So pressing this will switch the slider’s zoom effect to the timeline or to your canvas.

Now that your primary footage has been imported, let’s trim it down.

How To Edit And Trim Footage In Canva

This is where you remove any of the bad takes, mistakes, or anything that won’t be in your final video.

To do this, press the Play button on the left of your timeline. Or grab the Triangle icon above the timeline and scrub through the footage. Choose the option you find easier to quickly locate the parts you want to edit out.

A tiny upside down triangle on top of a thin vertical bar on the video timeline
You can quickly scrub through the footage by clicking and dragging the Triangle icon

There are two main ways you can remove footage. They are:

  • Using the Split page tool
  • Dragging the side handles

Let’s go over how to use the Split page tool first. So, say you want to remove the first take in your footage.

Tool options after right-clicking on the video timeline with Split page highlighted
Once the Triangle icon is in the correct location, right click on the clip and select Split page or press S

Move the Triangle icon to just before where you want the video to begin. Then right click on the clip and select Split page. Now you’ll have two clips and can delete the one you don’t want by pressing Delete on the keyboard.

The other option is to drag the side handles of the clip. Hover your mouse over the very beginning of the clip and you’ll see a little Arrow icon appear. Click and drag the icon to cut back or adjust back the footage.

You can use this same process for removing footage from the end of your clips. And you can even remove footage in the middle of your clips using the same method.

Left and right arrow with a vertical line in the middle visible when dragging and trimming video in Canva
Click and drag on the either ends of your footage to trim

Simply Split page your clip where there’s a mistake and then remove the mistake by dragging the handles.

At this point, go through all of your footage and edit it down until you’re left with only the good stuff.

Then it’s time to add in B-Roll.

How To Add B-Roll In Canva

Canva interface with 'Add B-roll' graphic text
B-roll can be done in Canva by adding your clip as a layer on your Canvas

Adding B-roll in Canva is one of the things that is a bit more complicated. This is because you can’t layer clips on top of each other on the timeline. We’re hoping this is a feature Canva introduces soon. But don’t worry – there is a way to do it!

Let’s say after your first intro clip, you want some B-roll or overlay footage to play.

Video clip dragged from import video side bar to the canvas section in Canva
Drag the B-roll clip onto your project and then resize it to fit the canvas

You can do this by dragging the B-roll footage from the Uploads section onto the canvas (not the timeline!). You can then resize the clip so that it fills the canvas.

PRO TIP: If you don’t have your own b-roll footage, you’ll find some stock videos available in Canva’s library.

If the clip is too long and you only want it to play for a few seconds, you’ll need to adjust the length. Select the B-roll clip and go to the Scissors icon in the top menu.

Scissors icon on the top toolbar used to trim the added b-roll in Canva
You can trim your B-roll by clicking the Scissors icon on the top toolbar

This is where you can trim down the footage and select the section you want to use. Drag the handles around until you have only the footage you want selected. Press Done.

Now if you play the clip, the B-roll footage will appear in the canvas and the original audio will also be playing. But the problem now is that the B-roll clip has audio and will continue looping for the entire length of the primary video clip.

Footage added as a b-roll with beginning and end trimmed in Canva
Drag the beginning and end of your B-roll to trim it down to the perfect frame

The B-roll footage will continue looping unless you Split the clip and delete the excess footage

To fix this, select the clip. Drag the Triangle to where you want the B-roll footage to end. Right clip on the clip and select Split page. Then select the second clip on the timeline that you don’t want the B-roll footage on. Then select the B-roll clip on the canvas and press Delete on the keyboard.

Then you’ll be left with both clips but B-roll will only be on the first one.

Now, you don’t necessarily need to scale your B-roll footage up to be full screen. If you like the effect of having a smaller sized B-roll clip playing on top of your primary video – go for it!

Video in front of the original video footage resized to a small rectangle in Canva
You can leave the B-roll footage as a small clip on your screen if this suits your video

You can leave the B-roll footage as a small clip on your screen if this suits your video

If your B-roll footage has its own audio, you’ll need to remove this so it doesn’t interfere with the primary audio. Select the B-roll clip on the timeline. Then select the B-roll clip on your canvas and press the Speaker icon in the top menu. Press the Mute button.

Phew, that sounded complicated but it all makes sense once you do it! Now you’ll have B-roll footage that plays alongside the primary audio and then reverts back to the primary video footage.

Cursor on the mute button within the Volume Adjustment tool in the top toolbar in Canva
Mute any audio from your B-roll by selecting the clip and going to the Speaker icon

Go ahead and add in all of your B-roll footage now.

Once that’s done, we can add in titles and text.

How To Add Titles & Text In Canva

This is one of the most powerful aspects of Canva. They have so many presets to help you create some amazing titles.

Go to Text in the left menu. You can add in basic text boxes or you can scroll down to the different preset templates and animations.

Text side toolbar to add Titles and Texts in Canva
There are so many text and titles presents for you to choose from under the Text tab

One thing to note is there are quite a lot that have the Canva Pro (crown) symbol on them, meaning you need to pay to be able to use them. But there are just heaps of options here, so you shouldn’t have any problems finding an awesome free one.

Once you’ve found a title that works for your video, you can drag it onto the canvas.

Canva Pro crown icon shown in the available Text templates
If you want to use one of the presets that have a Crown icon, you’ll need to sign up for Canva Pro

Keep in mind that the title will play for the entire length of the clip that was selected when you dragged it onto the canvas. To shorten the time it plays for, you need to go through a similar process as with adding the B-roll footage.

Split page tool used to trim the length of a text added in a video project in Canva
Use the Split page tool to cut your clips into the sections you want the title to be on

So before dragging the title in, add a Split in the clip where you want the title to start and where you want it to end. Select the clip you want the title to play for and then drag the title onto the canvas.

Not too hard is it! Now let’s customize the title.

Select the title box and you’ll see a variety of tools appear in the top menu. With these tools you can customize the:

  • Font
  • Color
  • Size
  • Alignment
List of font styles for texts in Canva
Select the text or title box and all the different functionalities will appear in the top menu bar

We also usually include a rectangle behind our titles to make them stand out more.

To do this, click on Elements in the left menu. Search and select any shape you like and drag it onto the canvas. In this case, we used a square and adjusted the shape to be a rectangle.

Arrows on two ends visible when dragging a text to resize in Canva
Make adjustments to the shape so it fits nicely behind your title

You can adjust the size by dragging the edges and then position it behind the text. In the top menu bar, select the colored square and you’ll be able to change the color of the element.

So now you’ll have a basic title on screen. But wait, there’s more! You can also animate the titles.

Text Animations options in Canva
You can animate most elements in Canva by selecting the element and pressing Animate

Select the title and in the top menu bar select Animate. Once again, there are lots of presets here. Preview the different ones and pick one that fits your video. You can follow the same process to animate the background element as well.

Now that your titles are sorted, let’s add in some effects and transitions.

How To Add Effects & Transitions In Canva

To add effects and transitions to your video, take a look at your timeline between each of the clips. You’ll notice below the + button is the Add Transition button.

A few different preset Canva video transitions will appear such as Dissolve, Slide and Circle Wipe.

Transition button in between clips in Canva video timeline
To add a Canva video transition between clips, press the Add transition button
Video transition options in Canva
Choose between a few different video transition for your project

We don’t usually use these kinds of transitions in our videos. Instead, we recommend using a zoom cut.

If you’re not sure what a zoom cut is – it’s where you zoom in on one of your clips so that when it’s playing it looks as if it’s a different camera angle to the previous clip. This is a great way to break up your content and keep viewers engaged.

To do this in Canva, select the clip you want to use the zoom cut on. In the top menu bar select Crop. Then zoom in on the clip – make it bigger by dragging the corners out slightly.

Just make sure you don’t zoom in too far. A slight zoom will give an awesome effect. And that’s it! This simple zoom is our favourite type of transition.

Footage resized bigger to create a zoom in transition in Canva
To add a zoom cut, select the clip and then press Crop in the top menu bar

Another effect you can adjust for your video is the playback speed. To do this, click on your clip and select Playback in the top menu. Then you can adjust the speed using the slide bar underneath Video Speed.

So now that you’ve added any transitions and zoom cuts between clips, you can move onto adding music to your video.

Video Playback setting with a slider to adjust the video speed in Canva
Adjust the speed of your footage by clicking Playback on the top toolbar and adjusting the slider bar

How To Add Music In Canva

Go to Audio in the left menu bar. Canva has a huge music library with both free and paid options.

Music note symbol on the left sidebar of Canva to add music
Go to Audio in the left sidebar menu and you’ll see the full Canva audio library

It’s awesome that Canva has so much audio in here. But at Primal Video we usually stick to using audio from Artlist and Epidemic Sound. This is because we know for certain there won’t be any licensing issues.

If you’re using music from Canva, check out the library and drag the audio file onto your project.

Upload files button under Upload tab to add import videos or audio in Canva
You can either use audio from Canva’s library or upload audio from sites like Artlist & Epidemic Sound

If you’re using tracks from somewhere else, go to Uploads then Audio and then select Upload media. Find the audio file and select Open.

After you’ve dropped the audio onto the canvas, it will appear down in the timeline. You can then drag it around so it starts and finishes when you want it to.

Purple audio file in the editing timeline in Canva
Your audio track will appear as a purple clip on your timeline – click and drag it to move it and lengthen it

It’s a good idea to listen through your video now with the audio in case you want to move any clips around to match the beat of your audio track.

Once your music is good to go, it’s time to adjust the audio levels.

How To Adjust Audio In Canva

Canva is really good at automatically adjusting the primary audio to the right levels. But if you do find it needs adjusting, there’s a super quick fix.

Click the individual clip on the timeline and then make sure it’s selected on the canvas too. Press the Speaker icon in the top menu. Then you can adjust the volume level by moving the slider.

Speaker icon in the top toolbar to adjust volume in Canva
Adjust the clip volume by selecting the clip and then pressing the Speaker icon

Once you’re happy with the volume levels of the primary audio, you can check the music volume. If this needs to be adjusted, it’s the exact process as with the primary audio.

PRO TIP: When using background music, it’s a good idea to start at 20 – 30% volume and then adjust from there.

Volume slider bar set to 20% for background music in Canva
Try setting your background music volume at 20 – 30% as a starting point

If you’re able to, go through this process using headphones for an accurate idea of the actual volume levels.

Now, what we’ve covered so far have been the core editing functionalities of Canva. One of the other really powerful aspects is the graphics and templates.  

How To Color Correct In Canva

To adjust the colors of your video, click on your clip and make sure it’s selected on the canvas.

Then hit Edit video in the top menu and go to Adjust.

Edit video option in the top toolbar in Canva
Access the different settings to Color Correct under ‘Edit Video

Here you can make any color adjustments to things like:

  • Warmth
  • Tint
  • Brightness
  • Contrast
  • Highlights
  • Shadows
  • Fade
  • Much more!
Adjust settings where you can set brightness, contrast, saturation, etc.
Edit your videos with many color adjustments like brightness, contrast, and saturation

You can also play around with different filters. To do this, select Effects in the menu.

These are essentially like Instagram filters that you can apply to your video footage. You can also adjust the Intensity of these filters by moving the slider bar.

Effects tab in Edit video setting with Background Remover feature, Filters options and Intensity slider bar
You can add filters (similar to Instagram) to your video to give it a different feel

How To Add Graphics & Templates In Canva

Let’s say you want to add a video intro after the first clip of your video. Press the + button in between the two clips and select the Add page icon.

Plus (+) symbol in between clips to add a new page in Canva
To add in other elements to your video, click the + button and then Add Page

Then go to Templates in the left menu and search for ‘YouTube Intros’. Find a template that you like and drag it onto the canvas.

If you can’t find a template you like, you can also create an awesome video intro from scratch in Canva. Or another tool we really recommend for this is Placeit.

Templates library showing different customizable YouTube intro template option in Canva
Try searching for YouTube Intros and there will be heaps of options to choose from

It’s not just video intros you can add in this easily with Canva. They also have incredible templates for animated end screens, outros and even B-roll footage.

So have a play around with the different templates – they’re super powerful and customizable so it’s a great starting point for beginners.

YouTube Intro template being edited in Canva canvas
It’s not just video intros you can add in – there are HEAPS of templates and best of all, they’re customizable

Now your video is complete! Let’s export.

How To Add Export & Share Your Videos In Canva

Go to Share in the top right corner then click Download. Make sure MP4 video is selected and press the Download button. The video file will now download onto your computer ready to be uploaded to YouTube or wherever you plan to upload it!

Export menu showing MP4 file type, quality, and selected pages for export
After pressing Download you’ll see a progress box down the bottom showing how long of the download is remaining

Awesome AI Tools In Canva

Canva has some awesome new AI tools that can help you create awesome video projects.

Beat Sync

This is an amazing tool that helps you sync the beat of your audio to the footage in your timeline.

To do this, add clips and music to your timeline as usual.

Once you have added your music, select Beat Sync in the top menu and it will display a sidebar on the left showing these options:

  • Sync now
  • Display beat markers
Beat Sync feature in Canva
Use Beat Sync if you want to synchronize your footage to your background music beats

In the free version, toggling the Display beat markers button will display markers on your music timeline. You can then go ahead and manually sync your videos to the beat by adjusting/trimming your clips by dragging the arrows.

With Canva Pro, you can toggle Sync now and it will automatically do it for you!

Display beat markers toggled on under Beat Sync Canva feature
Toggling Display beat markers will show the markers you’ve added in the music track in the editing timeline

Background Remover (Paid feature)

This can be really helpful if you want to overlay clips on your primary video. It works best for videos with a simple background.

To do this, add two videos onto your canvas. Click the video that you want to remove the background from.

A footage added on top of the primary footage as an example for background remover feature in Canva
Add the video you want to remove the background from as a top layer

Then go to the top menu, click Edit Video and on the left sidebar select Background Remover. It will then automatically remove the background.

Edit video setting and Background Remover feature highlighted in Canva
With Canva Pro, easily remove background with one click using the Background Remover feature

It’s great to see Canva incorporating these great AI tools to help speed up your workflows and to create even better video content.

Now You Know How To Edit Video In Canva

There you have it, our complete guide to video editing with Canva. In this tutorial you’ve learnt exactly how to use Canva Video Editor to create professional quality videos.

Hopefully now you can see just how powerful the video editing tool is! It rivals some of the more advanced video editing software.

Canva Video Editor graphic text on the bottom left and in the middle, a video camera icon inside a gradient blue colored circle
In this Canva tutorial we explained exactly how to use Canva video editing tools

The best part is, you don’t even need Canva Pro to create an awesome video. You can do it all using the free version.

We hope you enjoyed our new guide on how to edit videos with Canva. If you found it useful, feel free to share it on your social media platforms or with others who might like to learn more about Canva video editing.

For more information on creating YouTube videos, check out the Primal Video YouTube Ranking Guide. You’ll learn about the latest tools and strategies for improving video rankings on both YouTube and Google – and it’s completely free!


Recommended Gear & Resources

Check out an up-to-date list of all the gear, software & tools we use and recommend right now at Primal Video on our resources page here!

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