If you’ve ever worked with video editing programs like iMovie or Adobe Premiere, you’re probably accustomed to adding transition effects between your video scenes. Cross-fades, blurs, and wipes are all standard fare for simple but professional video edits.
As online video platforms become increasingly dominant, the editing process has also moved more and more to the web. There are several important reasons for this: online storage is highly manageable, web apps don’t require any downloads or bulky desktop apps, workflows are easily transferred across different devices, and team collaboration is enabled in shared online workspaces.
In this article, I’ll introduce you to a quick and intuitive way to add basic transition effects to your videos online, using an editor that allows you to make all your video edits in the same place. Here’s how you can get started:
- Upload your video files to a video editor
- Arrange your clips in the timeline
- Add your transitions
- Export and download
Step 1: Upload video files to a video editor.
I’ll be using Kapwing to show you how to add transitions to your video clips. Head over to Kapwing and click "Start Editing" to open your own workspace where you can upload your video files using the Upload button, pasting a link into the URL field, or dragging and dropping your files directly into the editing window.
Most likely, you’ll be uploading several different video files to use in your project. For a project with transition effects, you’ll want to keep all your video clips in the same scene, so all you need to do is upload every video you want to use straight to the editing canvas, one video layer on top of the other.
Step 2: Arrange your clips in the timeline
When you’ve added all your video clips to the editor, you’ll see all your video clips on different levels of the timeline. To order them the way you want, drag them to the right or left on the timeline – when you put the beginning of one layer at the end of another, the clips will snap into place. You can also click and drag the ends of your video layers to trim them, or select a time in the middle of a clip and click the "Split" button to split it into separate video layers.
If you want to add a transition effect in between two video layers, make sure you’ve put them on the same line of the timeline, so their edges are touching. It should look like this:
Step 3: Add your transitions
When you’re done arranging your layers in the timeline, it’s time to add your transitions. First, I’ll show you how to add cross-dissolve or cross-blur transition effects. When your video layers are on the same line and touching each other, open the Transitions tab in the left sidebar.
Preview over 60 video transitions by hovering your cursor over each one. Once you’ve found the transition style you want to use, drag and drop the transition in between your video clips to apply it.
After you've applied a transition to your video, you can adjust the speed of it by clicking on the transition effect in the timeline and using the right sidebar.
Step 4: Export and download
When all your transitions are added, play through your project from beginning to end and make sure it looks the way you want it to. Once you’re satisfied with your project, click "Export" in the top right corner and give Kapwing some time to process your video – for longer projects, this can take several minutes. When your video is done processing, click the "Download file" on the right side of the screen and your project will be saved directly to your device’s files.
I hope this article helps you build your video editing toolkit using online tools! If you're interested in more content about high-level video production using web-based software, check out our YouTube channel Kapwing App. And while you're here, look through some related articles on professional video editing tasks: