Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Transfer your YouTube channel to a different Google+ Profile or Page

Don’t want to comment on YouTube with your real name? Or is your channel connected to the wrong Google+ Business page or Brand Account? Now you can move your YouTube channel to a different Google+ identity.

New! YouTube has just launched a channel transfer tool that allows you to move your YouTube channel to a different Google+ Page or Google Account/Google+ Profile.

YouTube Help Center: Move YouTube channel to or from a Google+ page
    1. Sign in as the owner of the YouTube channel you want to transfer
    2. Open your channel’s Advanced Account Settings (www.youtube.com/account_advanced)
    3. Select the option to transfer your channel (www.youtube.com/account_transfer_channel)
    4. Re-enter your Google account password
    5. Review your current channel details
    6. Click "Select desired page or profile"
    7. Select a destination Google Account or Google+ Page
    8. If the destination Profile or Page is already connected to a channel, delete it
    9. Move your channel

What is (and is not) transferred along with your YouTube channel?

Your channel and its contents will be transferred, but any Google+-based comments or messages will stay with the source Google+ Page or Profile.

What will be transferred along with your YouTube channel:
  • uploaded videos
  • playlists, favorites and likes
  • subscriptions
  • subscribers
  • legacy username

What will NOT be transferred along with your YouTube channel:

You must the owner of both source and destination Google+ Pages

To transfer your YouTube channel from one Google identity to another, you must be signed in as the owner of both the source and destination Google Account and Google+ Page(s)

Not sure whether you are the owner? You can figure out which account is the owner in the Google+ Page’s manager settings.

What if the the destination Google+ Page is owned by a different account?

If you want to transfer your YouTube channel to a Google+ page that is owned by a different Google account, you have two options:

How can I transfer my channel from one Google Account to a different Google Account?

A Google account can only be associated with one Google+ Profile.
Moving a YouTube channel from one Google Account  to a different Google Account requires an intermediary Google+ Brand Page for the transfer process.

1. You will first need to create a temporary Google+ Page for your YouTube channel:

  • Sign in to Google+ with the email you use to sign in to your YouTube channel
  • Open your Pages dashboard, or go to plus.google.com/dashboard
  • Click the “Get your page” button
  • Create a new Google+ Brand page

2. Then go through the YouTube channel transfer process (described below) to move your channel from your Google+ Profile to the new Google+ Page.

3. After 24 hours you can transfer ownership of the Google+ Page to the destination Google Account.

4. Sign in to the destination account and repeat the transfer process, this time from the Google+ Page to the destination Google+ Profile

5. Once the transfer is complete, and your YouTube channel is no longer connected, you can delete the Google+ Page

How to transfer your YouTube channel from one Google+ Page to another Page or Profile

1. Sign in to YouTube as the owner of the channel you want to transfer.

You may need to switch channel identities by clicking your avatar in the upper right corner, or by going to “All my channels” (www.youtube.com/channel_switcher)

2. Open your channel’s advanced settings

To open your YouTube channel's Advanced Settings
  • click your avatar in the upper right corner
  • click the gear icon
  • click “Advanced”

Or go to www.youtube.com/account_advanced

3. Select the option to transfer your YouTube channel

On the Advanced Settings page under Account Information click the link to start the channel transfer process :

Move channel to your Google Account or a different Brand Account

If you are signed in as Owner of a Brand Account-connected channel it will state "You're the owner of this channel and the connected Google+ Page", and you should be able to proceed.

If you are signed in as the Manager of the Brand Account-connected channel you will need to sign in with the Owner Google account. The "Move channel" link will be grayed out.

You may also see an error message. You will need to sign in to YouTube with the Google account that owns the channel.

Not sure which account is the owner of your channel? Try these suggestions to figure out which account is the owner

4. Re-enter your Google account password.

You will need to re-enter your Google account password. This ensures that someone who inadvertently gains access to your account should not be able to transfer your YouTube channel.

Note: it's good practice to always sign out of your account when you step away from your computer. And never share your account login details.

5. Review the details shown about your channel

You will see details about your channel and the current Google+ Page or Profile it’s connected to. Review those details to make sure that you are transferring the correct channel.

  • legacy username, if set
  • channel name
  • number of uploads, subscribers and playlists
  • custom URL, if set 

6. Click “Select desired page or profile”

You will see a list of the available Google+ Profiles and Pages
and below that a list of Google+ Profiles and Pages that already have a YouTube channel.

click to enlarge

If you do not see the Google+ Page or Brand Account you want to move your channel to in either list, you are not signed in as an owner of your destination Brand Account and Google+ Page. You will have to transfer ownership of that Brand Account and Google+ Page - at least temporarily - to complete the transfer process.

If you want to transfer your channel from one Google+ Profile to a different Google+ Profile, you will have to use a Google+ Page as an intermediary.

Click the destination Google+ Page or Profile URL to view it before starting the transfer

7. Select the destination Google+ Page or Google Account

If you click on an Available Google+ Page you will then see a confirmation screen showing the details of your channel after the transfer.

click to enlarge

Check the details before completing the transfer!

Note that while a legacy username will be transferred along with your channel, the custom URL will stay with the original Google+ Page or Profile. There is no option to change the custom URL connected to Google+.

Your channel will take on the custom URL of the destination Google+ Page, if it has one.

8. Delete the YouTube channel connected to your destination Google+ Page

If you click on a Google+ Page that is already connected to a YouTube channel, you will be given the option of deleting that channel to complete the transfer.

A confirmation screen will appear that lists the number of videos, playlists and comments that will be permanently deleted along with the channel. Click the red “delete” button to complete the process.

9. Click the Move channel button to complete the process

Your channel will immediately be transferred. That's it!

Be sure to update links to your channel's custom URL in your promotional material!

What are the alternatives for changing your YouTube channel identity?

If you cannot transfer your channel to a different Google+ Page there are alternatives for changing your YouTube identity.

If you have questions or run into problems, post your question in the official YouTube help forum.

Posted by Peggy K


  1. Peggy, you are such a great resource! Thanks so much for this article. I am worried about view count transfers, however. If I move my YouTube channel from my Google+ profile to a Google+ page, will my overall view count, as well as the view counts for my individual videos, be transferred over?

    1. Kristin: sorry for the delayed response. Yes all your view counts will move with your videos.

  2. Kristin: your channel's view counts should transfer along with your channel and videos. The only things that do not transfer are Google+ based: channel icon, channel name, private messages, the comments you have made, and new-style custom URL.

  3. Worked beautifully! Like a charm! You are a Godsend! Thank you!

    1. That's great Jill! Glad it worked for you.

  4. Thanks so much for your great article. If the google plus name is You Have Chosen Remember. But the Google plus custom URL is YouHaveChosentoRememberOneness – can the new youtube url just have YouHaveChosentoRemember? Also, it seems like Google is putting out conflicting information about which comments do not get brought over. Is it the comments made BEFORE or AFTER November 2013? Is it all the comments or just the ones that the channel owner added via Google Plus? Are you sure this can be reverted to the old name (and comments) if something doesn't work well (ex. important comments are lost) Again, thanks so much.

    1. Hi Jennifer: the YouTube custom URL is going to be the same as the Google+ custom URL - if you have plus.google.com/+YouHaveChosentoRememberOneness
      The YouTube channel connected to that Google+ will be:

      Regarding comments: If the comments are Google+ based comments made after November 2013, then they will stay with the original Google+ Page when you move your channel. If the comments were made before November 2013, they should stay with your channel.

      As far as I know, you can move your channel back to the original Google+ and it should be restored, but I cannot guarantee 100% that will work.

  5. Hi Peggy
    Does it transfer all the comments made by viewer to the new Google + Page ?

    1. Yes all the comments in the video should nice with the video. However any comments you posted before moving your channel will still be linked to the old identity.

    2. Peggy - a few days ago I have transferred my YouTube channel connected to my google plus profile to a google plus business page. Now I can not find videos - my both accounts are empty even though there is one showing my videos and subscriptions. Can I undo the changes or my videos are lost?

    3. Hi Peggy. A few days ago I transferred my YouTube channel connected to my google plus profile to a business google plus page. Now my videos are gone even though there is an account showing them when I sign into YouTube. Why? Can I undo the changes?

    4. Dmitri: could you share one of your video URLs? If the video are visible, you should be able to access your channel.

  6. Will this get rid of the old /user/nickname URL?

    I set up a custom URL (using my real name) but the channel still displays the ugly ass nickname I choose when I was 14: /user/dark515rogue

    1. Hi Patrick, yes, that's currently the case. If you have an old /user/ URL, YouTube may display that in the browser address bar. And even if you do not, YouTube may display the /channel/ URL instead. People only see the new custom URL in the address bar when following a link to your channel.

  7. Hi there, so I'm a bit confused with the comments thing. Will my youtube comments be deleted? Or just comments I made or someone else made on my google+ account?

    1. Daniel: your post-November 2013 comments remain back on the original Google account. Best I can tell, the comments stay there, but link to the Google+ for that Google identity, since there is no longer a channel.

  8. Do your video views transfer when you perform an account transfer?

    1. Krissy: Yes, your videos and playlists transfer along with your channel.

  9. If I move my youtube channel to a google brand will the share link addresses change? I have many things linked back to my videos.

    1. When you move your channel, all the video URLs stay the same. Also the /channel/ URL and any old /user/ URL (if your channel has one) stay the same. The only URL that changes is the Google+ based /c/ URL.