Video creators ranging in levels of expertise rely on the crop tool to make edits to their videos. Reasons for cropping a video vary from cutting out a distracting section in the background to emphasizing one area of the screen. Social media publishers may also crop a video to make it the correct aspect ratio for a post.

In this article, I’ll explain how to crop a video on any device using a free online video editor called Kapwing. This tool works for images, GIFs, and videos and is designed for beginners, so you don’t need any video editing expertise to crop videos with it. Kapwing works on any iPhone, Android, PC, or tablet as long as you have an internet connection.

Note: This article is about cropping the area of a video, not cutting the timeline of a video. If you’re looking to make a video shorter, use Kapwing’s Trim Video tool instead.

Step 1: Open Kapwing’s Studio

Start by navigating to the Kapwing homepage and clicking “Start Editing.” Kapwing’s Studio lets you adjust the visual layout of a video, image, or GIF.

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Step 2: Upload or Import Video

Once you click the “Start Editing” button, you’ll see an option to either upload your video from your device, paste a video URL, or start with a blank canvas. You can also import a video from your Google Drive. Choose the option that works best for you to begin uploading the video that you want to crop. Alternatively, creators can import videos directly from YouTube, Instagram, and other websites.

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Upload something to the Kapwing Studio

Step 3: Crop

To crop your video on a computer, click on the video layer in the editor and click “Crop” on the right side of the Studio. This will pull up the crop menu where you can begin making adjustments to your video. To crop a video on an iPhone or Android, tap the video, then "edit video" above the canvas and tap "Crop."

Use the sliders on the corners to adjust the area to crop out and the area you want to include. You can also use the preset options below the video’s timeline to adjust the crop area to a common aspect ratio like 1:1 for an Instagram post.

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Watch the video preview to make sure your cropped video looks good from beginning to end. Then, click “Done Cropping” to return to the Studio.

Now, your cropped video appears on top of the video canvas. To remove the white background on a computer click "remove padding on the right side of the Studio. The video will shrink down to the cropped layer. If you're on a mobile device, tap the background, then tap, "Edit Selected Layer." From here, tap "Remove Padding" and your background will be the perfect size.

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Creators can explore the other tools available in the Studio: adding text or stickers, changing the speed of a video, overlaying a filter or blur, making a video collage, etc.

Step 4: Publish

Now your video has been cropped! After the preview looks right, click “Export Video” to process the new version of the MP4. Kapwing will process your edits and return the video back to you. You can download the cropped MP4 to publish on social media, save it on your phone, share the URL with your friends, or go back and re-edit the video.

In my example, I uploaded a video from my phone and cropped it to the left half. Here’s the output video of my friend eating Cheetos:

If you didn't sign in before starting, you will see a small watermark in the bottom corner of your video. You can sign in with your Google or Facebook login to remove the Kapwing watermark for free.

That’s all! I hope that this article helps you crop your videos perfectly to the area you like. This same technique works for images and GIFs also so that you can use Kapwing for all of your multimedia editing needs.

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