Create Link to a Specific Part in a YouTube Video

Sending someone a YouTube video is a great way share information.  But often, the part of the video you want to share is in the middle of the video.  With some changes to the link you can make a video start at a specific time you choose.

We build MakeVideoLink.com to make it easy for you to set up a YouTube video link with a timestamp (or a Vimeo timestamp link).  But if you want to add a start time to a YouTube link yourself, below we show you the technical details that help you link to a video so it starts at a specific time in terms of hours, minutes, and seconds.

The basic idea is to add a timecode to the URL.  You start with 1.) The basic URL and you add 2.) Some timecode information to the link (example: “t=”) and then you add 3.) The time expressed as the number of seconds (example: “33”).

Here are all three parts:
1.) A basic URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J5FlI3ndrKw
2.) The timecode parameter: “t=”
3.) And the time you want the video to start: “33” seconds into the video (or whatever you choose)

Putting it all together, it looks like this:

YouTube URL with Timestamp: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J5FlI3ndrKw&t=33

Note that before the “t=” you have to add the “&” character (more on this below).

It is a little complicated, but it works.  If you try the link above, it starts at “33 seconds” – because that is how we set up the link.  In our example, the time is expressed as seconds.  So if you want the video to start at 33 seconds into the video, you enter “t=33.”  If you wanted to start at 55 seconds, you would use “t=55.”

But the video we are using for this explanation is over two hours long.  What if you want to want to start after the first minute?  Or maybe 1 hour, 15 minutes and 20 seconds into the video?  You would use the same process, but you would add more details to the timescode.

Here is a more complicated example:

Complicated Example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J5FlI3ndrKw&t=1h15m20s

We are using the same YouTube timecode features, but now we have added details for the hour (“h”), the minute (“m”) and the second (“s) where we want the video to start.

This is complicated further when you look at how YouTube often uses the shorter format for the URL:

Shorter URL: https://youtu.be/J5FlI3ndrKw

This example works the same way, but unlike the “Basic URL” we used above, there is no “?” parameter in the URL.  To make the start a YouTube video at a specific time with the shorter URL, we need to add the “?” instead of the “&” (that is just how URLs work).  And with the shorter YouTube URLs that end in “.be” the timecode will only work with seconds.  A little technical, right?

Here we will show you the same video, with both types of URL:

Basic URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J5FlI3ndrKw&t=1h15m20s
Shorter URL: https://youtu.be/J5FlI3ndrKw?t=4520

Those two URLs above both link to the same video, and the same start time, but require different use of the timecodes.  Its technical.

You can skip all of that technical detail with the video timestamp URL tools we offer here at MakeVideoLink.com.  It’s easy to add a time stamp to the end of the video’s URL by using our tool to create a YouTube link to a specific time.  And we also have a tool for time-based Vimeo videos as well.  By using our site, you don’t have to remember the details…

When you want to “make video link” we can help.