What’s The Ideal Length For An Explainer Video?

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What’s The Ideal Length For An Explainer Video?

They say the ideal length for an explainer video is 60-90 seconds. This duration ensures maximum engagement and information retention without overwhelming the viewer.

But, there are other possible exceptions depending on your business needs.

By the time you reach the end of this article, you’ll know what’s the best explainer video length for you; 60 seconds, 30 seconds, 2 minutes, or maybe even something else entirely.

How Long Should My Explainer Video Be?

For explainer videos, use 30 seconds for ads, 60-90 seconds for website engagement, up to 2-2.5 minutes for detailed decision-making content, and short clips for onboarding. Tailor length to the viewer's stage in the buyer's journey, ensuring clarity and engagement at each step.

how long should explainer video be

Best Length for Explainer Videos Across Different Platforms

Let's unravel the ideal durations for explainer videos across different platforms, ensuring every second counts towards engaging your viewers effectively.

Explainer video length for website

The best length for an explainer video on your website's homepage is between 60 and 90 seconds.

If you're thinking about other pages, like your service pages, feel free to use longer videos, up to 2 minutes or more. Here’s why: once visitors click through to these pages, they’re already showing interest. They're more engaged and willing to absorb more information about what you offer.

Videos increase website conversion rates by 65.5%. On average, websites featuring videos see a conversion rate of 4.8%, while those without videos have a conversion rate of only 2.9%
More video marketing statistics

Explainer video length for Facebook ads

For Facebook ads, aim for around 15 seconds. Your video needs to grab attention fast, clearly show the main benefit, and have a strong call to action urging viewers to take the next step.

Best Practice Tip: Create your video to work without sound, and add subtitles. Many Facebook users watch autoplay videos with the sound off. Also, since most people will view your video on their phones, make sure any crucial information is displayed in large, easy-to-read text.

Explainer video length for Instagram

Research shows that the sweet spot for Instagram explainer video ads is around 15 seconds. The key detail to remember is that you've got just 3 seconds to catch someone's interest before they're likely to scroll past. So, make those first few moments count.

Explainer video length for Linkedin

For optimal LinkedIn video length, videos should be kept under 30 seconds for brand awareness and consideration goals.

These shorter videos have shown a 200% increase in completion rates. For demand generation or to convey a more complex product or brand story, testing longer videos is recommended, as they can drive as many clicks and views as shorter ones.

Explainer video length for YouTube Pre-roll Ads

If you can get your message across in 6 seconds for YouTube pre-roll ads, that's ideal. However, if you've got more to share, you can stretch it up to 25 seconds. Just ensure that your main benefit is clear by the 6-second mark to keep viewers engaged.

Explainer Video Length for TV Commercials

30 seconds is your magic number for TV explainer videos. It's not just ideal; it's the standard for pretty much any TV commercial. Given that TV viewers are often desensitized to ads, your video needs to be extra engaging. Make sure it delivers your brand's value in quick, compelling snippets to catch and keep their attention.

watching video on tv

The Best Lengths for Different Types of Explainer Videos

Style, when it comes to explainer videos, goes hand-in-hand with the video's message. For animated or live-action explainer videos—often used at the top of the funnel—a classic length of 60-90 seconds is your best bet. These formats are great for grabbing attention and conveying your message quickly.

On the other hand, if you're introducing a new feature or planning a SaaS walkthrough with a screencast, feel free to extend your video up to 5 minutes. This gives you ample time to thoroughly demonstrate how things work, ensuring your audience understands the full value of what you're presenting.

Optimizing length based on the buyer's journey

The stage of the buyer's journey is crucial in determining the ideal length for your explainer video.

Awareness stage: capturing initial interest with short ads

For ads targeting potential customers early in the journey, keep videos short and sweet, up to 30 seconds. This length is perfect for capturing attention and sparking interest.

Consideration stage: Engaging buyers with detailed benefits

When visitors land on your website homepage, where buying intent is higher, a 60-90 second explainer video is ideal. This duration allows you to clearly outline the main benefits and highlight what sets you apart from competitors.

explainer video length in consideration stage

Decision stage: convincing with In-Depth Explainers

As your prospect moves to the decision-making stage, longer videos of 2-2.5 minutes are appropriate. This length provides enough time to delve into key features and solidify their decision to choose your product.

Onboarding stage: Simplifying product adoption with short guides

For onboarding videos, brevity is key. Use short videos designed to guide new users through each step of getting started with your product. A concise video for each step ensures that you effectively assist them in achieving their goals with your product. This approach keeps information digestible and focuses on moving users smoothly through the onboarding process.

The brand factor

Lastly, let's talk about the brand factor. The awareness level of your brand plays a crucial role in planning your video's length.

When to Go real short – Up to 30 seconds

As we’ve mentioned, your explainer video needs to be long enough to cover all your necessary info. For that, you generally need 50-60 seconds not including the hook and CTA.

But there is one occasion when videos shorter than 30 seconds work perfectly. But it’s not going to be your main or first explainer video. Let me explain.

If you’re a company with a lot of followers on social media or a brand that’s a household name, you don’t need to prime viewers or spend time engaging their emotions. Brands like that have already spent millions getting people to recognize and react positively to them.

For example, brands like MailChimp or Ahrefs don’t need to spend time breaking the ice before explaining new products. They can get away with showing a product for 14 seconds and then flash the logo.

But this is about the only time a shorter explainer video could work.

What about longer videos?

explainer video popular lengths

Explainer videos longer than 2 minutes

Shorter explainer videos are great for announcing new features or persuading people to visit your homepage to learn more.

What if your new feature or product takes a lot of time to explain how it works and how it can be used? In this case, you absolutely can create a long video breaking down every aspect or feature.

This type of long-form explainer video can be screen recording, live video with animation, or all of those together.

The idea here is that the total package you’re creating is ultimately fascinating to watch even at the 5-10 minute length. And, of course, if you are the next Apple, the sky’s the limit.

Remember the Steve Jobs’ presentations?

People watched, hypnotized for hours until the last second, hoping for even more!

But you better have an amazing product or service if you want to pull that off.

How long should my 1st explainer video be?

If you are a new company, one of your main goals is to get the word out. To do this, you need ample time to prime the audience and get/keep their attention. The best length for this case is 60-90 seconds.

Remember, no one knows about you yet; your explainer video needs to be long enough to introduce your brand and cover several points, without being too long that it gets boring.

This is the most popular length, so let’s take a look at how long each stage of your video should be.

Planning the perfect length.

If you want your explainer video to be the perfect length, planning is key. Start with a solid script and a clear concept. Here’s a straightforward tip to help you out.

  • The Problem (5-10 seconds)
  • The Solution/Value Proposition (5-10 seconds)
  • How it Works/Benefits Your Customer Will Get (30-50 seconds)
  • Call to Action (10 seconds)

PRO TIP:

For your script, use this rule: 1 second of video should equal about 2.5 words. This will help you accurately plan your explainer video's length and avoid the need for re-recording.

The Problem (5-10 seconds)

Modern attention spans are short. If you spend too much time on a long opening, viewers will move on. That’s it, and you don’t get a second chance. Viewers need to understand in just a few moments if what you’re offering appeals to them.

explainer video problem

The Solution/Value Proposition (5-10 seconds)

After the customer is engaged is the perfect time for a company/logo reveal along with your business solution.

You should tell about your main value proposition here; keep it short enough to maintain interest and keep people watching.

How it works/benefits your customer will get (30-50 seconds)

Here’s where you get the bulk of your message across. If you do everything right, you’ll have a solid chunk of time to talk further about your product and all the ways it will make your customer’s lives better.

But still, focus is key; don’t list every detail. We recommend one main point and 3-4 sub points.

Always remember, your viewer is doing research and watched all your competition’s videos as well. You’re in a race, and need to stay sharp.

Keep focused on your main message, the key feature that makes you better (or different), and your most valuable benefit you want stuck in their memory.

Call to action (10 seconds)

Always, always, always make it crystal clear at the end of your explainer video what exactly you want your customer to do next. You’ll want your logo or brand front and center here again as well.

Does length really matter? : The conclusion

Having been in the explainer video industry for years, we’ve been students of any research that helps us serve our clients better.

Some research states the ideal length for explainer video is up to 30 seconds. Others say 60-90 seconds is the sweet spot. And others still make a case for 2 minutes.

The truth is, many people putting out these numbers have forgotten the one basic and fundamental truth — marketing videos are simply a form of communication.

So, the same as it is in everyday life, people most often listen to what you have to say when they know you, are interested or trust you. It’s hard for anyone to hear your first message as a newcomer.

If you’d like to chat with us about figuring out the rest of the details, don’t hesitate to reach out any time.

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