While TikTok, YouTube Shorts, and Instagram Reels have existed for quite some time, Facebook recently made Reels, its contribution to the short-form video realm, accessible to creators across the United States.

Facebook advertises Reels as “fun and short videos consisting of music, audio, AR effects, text overlays, and more” that users can create on the Facebook app via their mobile device.

This article answers the most frequently asked questions about Facebook Reels, then shows how to edit and upload this short-form video.

How to Watch Facebook Reels

Reels are displayed on Facebook’s News Feed. Once users click a Reel, they are taken to a feed where swiping up reveals the next video, akin to many other short-form video platforms.

According to Facebook, People can discover reels based on their interests and what’s popular both at the top of the News Feed alongside Stories and Rooms and in a new, dedicated News Feed section.

An image showing the various ways to view Facebook Reels

You can also create and share reels in Groups to engage with their favorite interest communities.

An image showing Facebook Reels in Groups

Who Can Watch Your Reels?

By default, Facebook Reels are set to be public for anyone who is over 18, but you can change the settings to limit access to friends or yourself.

An image showing the privacy options for Facebook Reels

You also have the option to change the desired audience on a Reel-by-Reel basis at any time. Your Reels will then appear in the News Feed for your followers, as well as the dedicated Reels section in the News Feed for people not following you to discover.

What are the Requirements for a Reels Video?

To be considered for the Reels feed, videos must be 30 seconds or less, be uploaded through the Reels option in Facebook, and follow Facebook’s Community Guidelines.

What In-App Editing Features do Reels Have?

Facebook currently has various in-app tools for creating Reels, including the ability to:

  • Film clips with up to 30 seconds of footage using the Reels camera
  • Stitch together multiple clips into a single Reel by recording them or selecting them from your gallery
  • Add music from the Facebook music library
  • Create a reel with audio from other public reels by selecting Use Audio from the other person’s reel
  • Change video speed
  • Record hands-free using a countdown timer
  • Use AR Effects created by either Facebook or third-party developers to record multiple clips with different effects

Can Reels be Monetized?

As part of Facebook’s commitment to invest over $1 billion in creators through 2022, they’re also offering a new bonus program to help creators earn money when people view their reels. What’s known as the “Reels Play bonus” will initially be invite-only, beginning in the US and potentially expanding globally over time.

Similarly to Instagram Reels, Facebook also intends to begin testing full-screen and immersive ads between reels to help small businesses and brands connect with new audiences. There is also a possibility that Facebook will eventually integrate Reels with the Facebook Stars live streaming digital-gifting monetization program.

How to Edit and Upload Facebook Reels

While the Facebook app has many useful editing features for Reels, it can’t do everything.

I recommend using Kapwing to edit your Reels. It’s a free online video editor that works on phones, tablets, and computers (both iOS and Android devices). You can use it to resize horizontal videos into vertical ones and download TikTok videos without the watermark to make reusing your content for Reels easier.

An image showing the different editing options in Kapwing

Upload Your Videos to Kapwing

First, film your video clips and then open Kapwing to start editing them - remember that your final video must be less than 30 seconds. Click the Upload button in the Studio to search your files or paste a link to a video that’s already on the internet.

The Scenes tab is a good place to compile your video clips at first.

Images showing the Scenes tab in the Kapwing Studio

Edit Your Video

Reels need to be vertical, so click the background and select the 9:16 aspect ratio to ensure your video has the right dimensions.

Now, you can use the options in the toolbar to add text, and search for images and GIFs right within the editor. You can also add any music or sound through the Audio tab by uploading an MP3 file or pasting the link to a video with the song you want to use.

A screenshot showing different editing options in Kapwing

Export and Download Your Video

Once you’re satisfied with your video, you can download your video by either clicking on the green Export Video button located on the top right of your workspace or selecting the drop down arrow directly to its right to export it as a specific file format.

After rendering, you can share your video using the provided links or you can download the file directly to your phone, tablet, or desktop. If you would like to make any changes, you can easily go back into your workspace and make any edits as needed.

Publish as a Facebook Reel

You can start creating Reels on your mobile device at the top of the Facebook app’s Feed or by selecting “Create” from the dedicated Reels section in the News Feed.

An image showing where to find and upload Reels on the Facebook News Feed

You can then upload your existing pre-edited videos from your phone’s gallery or use a combination of real-time and pre-recorded clips.

If you have any feedback about Kapwing or the Kapwing Studio, feel free to let us know! For more tips and tutorials on creating great digital content in 2021, check back in at the Kapwing Resources page, subscribe to our YouTube channel, or read through some articles related to Facebook: