How Much Does YouTube Pay: From Ads To Affiliate Links And Sponsorships

How much do YouTubers make you wonder? How much do you think they make?

From humble beginnings to turn into a rich one, one might assume the requirements are a lot. However, there is one thing that is quite true no matter which at ends of the argument you are.

That is diversifying your income. It is true in real life so it is with YouTube.

After more than a decade of creators finding their passion and freedom from this platform, it is still possible to do it even in 2020. Saturated it might be, but the demands have never been decreased.

So, if you would like to find out how much YouTubers make, or thinking of creating a channel of your own, read along. We will discuss the ways many creators earn and make a living.

We will take this in two routes, the first one being related to a relatively new channel, and the second one being established.  Also, content creators make money on and off the platform. We will go over how much one can make on YouTube alone, then discuss the later.

AdSense

For many, AdSense is not the main source of income. However, it is one of the biggest and consistent ones.

YouTube AdSense earnings

What it basically means is that at the beginning of each video YouTube will roll over an ad, and according to how many have watched the ad you will get the percentage of the total amount.

As we mentioned it is not the main source for many because it varies differently for every single creator. But for the sake of argument, let us take someone with 100k subscribers and 200k views.

Usually, with YouTube, the amount of views you get does not depend on the subscribers you have; and unlike the live-streaming platforms, the views you get can always be more than the number of subscribers you have.

For 200k views, assuming all of the viewers watched your ad, there is one more important factor that plays a part which is CPM. It means cost per mille, which is like cost per thousand.

We will discuss the CPM deeper in a bit. But let us first give you a number for the AdSense alone.

200k views with 100% ads watched would bring the creator anywhere between $2-8 per view. It takes into the CPM and also the industry the video is about.

For example, ads for the financial sector or real estate seem to be of much higher value. That is mainly because advertisers within these industries have more budget to advertise.

So 200k multiplied by let us just take the mean number from the offer cost and say $5 per view.

200k*$5=$1000. But it is certain that you will not have 100% views on your AdSense, so the number then becomes different in an individual case.

This is not something that you should worry about since YouTube determines which ads to place in which videos.

You can learn more about Adsense and how to set it up for your YouTube channel here.

CPM

CPM formula to calculate cost per 1000 impressions

This number in and of itself varies depending on the creator. It varies so much in fact that two creators with the same number of views could get such a different compensation than when revealed could shock the audience.

To continue with our example, 200k views with an average cost of $1 per thousand will give you $200 bucks. However, there are creators whose CPM is about $3, so you would multiply this by 3, which equals $600

So, $600+$1000+$1600 per video.

This amount above is like the perfect scenario which does not really happen. Because most people now not only have AdBlock but also are quite against watching ads.

CPM also differs depending on the location of the creator. For example, an average of $4 might be something that is true to Europe of North America, this is like the highest amount for African countries or India.

On the one hand, this might sound shocking or unfair, or quite discriminative. But there is an explanation for it.

Like we said earlier, the advertiser chooses where the ads to be placed which is monitored by YouTube. So, if your advertiser is also located in India, what is the point of him advertising for Americans when he knows his product is in fact made for the Indian peninsula. Plus, he probably is not ready to pay a higher rate for advertising.

The same goes for European advertisers. They are ready to pay a higher rate, mainly because their law probably states it. But also, they target their audience in Europe where the CPM rate is higher by nature.

If, however, the product or service is digital (SAAS, Nutrition, Workout & Meal-prep Plans, graphic designs, online courses, eBooks, plugins and applications, etc.) and may serve people in various locations, paying the CPM rates still makes sense.

CPC

How to calculate the cost per click- CPC Formula

This abbreviation stands for Cost Per Click. It is quite a popular one in the marketing world and has been taken up the stairs with a YouTube advertiser too.

If in the case of CPM, the advertiser paid you just for playing the ad, in this case, they pay only if the viewer clicked on the ad.

Since getting someone to click on the ad is harder (unless one clicks on it by mistake) than just having them watch, the rate is obviously much higher.

You can also watch this 3min video explaining CPM, and CPC, more in detail from the Google AdSense itself.

According to the Adstage report, in Q1 2018, the advertisers paid on average $9.68 USD.

We hope it already clear by now. Before we went ahead, there needs to be another mention of our calculations being only hypothetical and not to be mistaken for any official report.

These are only the ways that your videos can generate earning based only on VIEWS. There is also a CPE rate that now determines how much engagement you are getting and this is something that advertiser looks as well. The higher your engagement, the higher your rates.

We could not possibly give you any number on this since it depends on the individual channel and the rate is as diverse as the creators themselves.

To learn more about CPE you can go here.

Also, note that ads placed on your videos can have different bids, meaning that if you have 200 ads placed, the first hundred could have offered you $1 per thousand impressions and the other hundred could have offered you $3 per impression.

As we said earlier, this is for the most part determined by all the CPM, CPE, CPC rates, and YouTubes algorithm takes care of it. It is just important for you to know this is one of the reasons every creator receives different revenue from AdSense.

Delivering Value

If those above were passive sources that bring you income, it could not go without saying that it is impossible to achieve this and that is to come later in the article without one thing. That is delivering value.

These days, channels that grow and make huge amounts of money do that because they provide a certain level of value to the viewers. Be it through entertainment, or sharing knowledge, they all make one’s time worthwhile on the platform for however minutes the videos take.

It is something that in fact should be mentioned at the very beginning of each and every article that is ever to be written regarding the social media influencer business model.

We say, business model because it is no secret that it has become a mode of business one that is lucrative and satisfying.

delivering value for audience

And in this very business, just like any, it is utterly important that you provide the best value you can to your audience.

Example of PewDiePie, from the first look, it does not seem like anything but a guy playing some video games and talking all kinds of things about the game and the players. However, the secret ingredient that is our value lies in the way he does it all.

It is very entertaining to watch him; it is weird yet unique and funny. So, a viewer could either turn to a TV show or just watch him.

Basically, you will be getting the same amount of entertainment. Of course, as tastes differ, so could the reactions and impressions. But from a large community he has gathered, one could also gather that it is quite entertaining.

There is no monetary value we could place on this particular aspect of YouTubing. We included as we saw this an integral part of and one that should not be placed aside when considering how much one makes for a reason. Because a large portion of how much a normal YouTuber makes depends largely on how much value he or she provides.

Sponsorships

Apart from your videos generating income, if you happen to have many views and subscribers on your channel you will be getting offers for sponsorships.

sponsorships on youtube

While there may be somewhat of an industry average for sponsorships, the rate is different and based largely on the total engagement you have on your videos.

Total engagement is the mean sum of your likes, dislikes, comments, shares so on. This number usually is higher for smaller channels than those large big ones with millions of subscribers.

However, there are exceptions to each rule, since some of the big channels operate the same way big TV networks operate, with multiple employees each dedicated to their field of expertise.

To put this into perspective there is a YouTuber called David Dobrik who was famous for giving away cars to his friends and family even strangers at some point. In one of his videos, he openly shows his phone call with one of the potential sponsors.

And he asks for half a Ferrari to just give a shoutout for 20sec. He has a huge channel with 16millin subscribers, thus sponsorships do give big cash like that.

To put it even into a wider perspective, half a Ferrari is at least 100k USD. And that is just for one shoutout.  But his videos on average get 10 million views.

To make it clearer, the biggest tennis tournament Wimbledon gets about 9 million views worldwide.  You do not need to know anything about tennis to understand how big this dude could reach. and his channel had featured many videos about cars in general. So, it was the right partnership for the sponsors as well.

This was a direct sponsorship, although the sponsorships themselves differ. You can also check out this video from the creator academy to understand how sponsorships work.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing itself is one huge industry, and there are many examples of people who have made millions within this market alone.

So it is only logical one would want to incorporate this strategy into their business model no matter what it is. Well, when it comes to working as an influencer, streamer, or YouTuber.

affiliate marketing on YouTube

Affiliate marketing is actually one of the first things that most creators turn to for it has the potential. However, not very many make the most out of its potential.

When it comes to affiliate programs there are many platforms that help you with this, but Amazon is like the go-to platform for many. But the list goes a long way any business that offers affiliate partnership can be used so long as it fits the needs and wants of your audience.

Working with Amazon is easier for it offers a ton of products for every niche and need. That is the reason why many turn to Amazon.

However, if you have a channel where you talk about email marketing and give advice, and happen to use Aweber as a default program, you could be leaving affiliate link to this site. Whoever signs up/buys the monthly subscription, you will be getting your commission on that.

If you have online courses on Udemy or any other platform that offers courses and you happen to bring subscribers to them using your YouTube channel, you will be getting your share of commission from them as well.

As you can see, it just does not stop at Amazon or online coaching platforms. You could even take it to make ClickBank work on YouTube.

It is also hard to give you a number from the affiliate marketing too, for it works differently with every single channel depending on their audience, their engagement, their willingness to go the extra mile to help you grow apart from just subscribing and following you.

However, the average YouTuber with about 100k subscribers and about the same amount of views as in our example could be getting between $4000-$8000 per month.

Merchandise

Merchandising is kind of similar to affiliate marketing, except with affiliate links YouTubers are selling other people’s products. Merchandising they mostly sell products of their own.

merchandise on youtube

The set of products also can be various things such as:

  • Clothes: hoodies, shirts, t-shirts, etc.
  • Equipment: camera gear, electronics
  • Beauty: face cream, colognes
  • Digital products: e-books, online courses

This is the list in general, it can always be bigger and smaller, but keep in mind, all cannot be done by one influencer. It means if you are in a coaching business, you cannot be promoting electronics or camera gear. It would be logical and more beneficial for one to promote online courses, e-books.

So, when it comes to calculating how much can be made off merchandizing, it is important to consider the industry or the niche the one is in.

For example, if it is a digital market, which is not always cheap, an online course could cost form single-digit to three-digit numbers. The more value you provide the more you can charge.

But let us take someone with about 100k subscribers and only 10% of his subscribers are ready to purchase his online course. And let us put a price of $10 per month.

Even though it’s only 10% of his total subscribers 10,000*$10=$100,000.  That is quite the money to be getting per month only from the courses alone. 

That is why you would see many of the YouTubers with Ferraris and living in mansions. But don’t get jump into conclusions, because it takes quite the hard work and dedication to get there let alone create online courses, and constantly to be working on yourself so that you could be providing more value.

To Wrap Up

Even though we have not discussed all the possible ways one can make money and makes money, nor calculated it thoroughly, you now have a rough idea of how much it could be and could get.

It might be easy to sit by the side and wonder how much those are making. But in fact, just like any work or a job, it does have many requirements and difficulties, although it happens to be one of the most satisfying and rewarding fields. So in case if you would like to be one of them, remember to learn thoroughly about your CPM, CPIs, and the sort. Plus, earn loads by providing the best value you can

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Media Whiz
Media Whiz
Love chatting, Love media, Love social! There's nothing wiser in this world, than networking the right way. It brings you joy, money and power. It's been around a decade, since my first media marketing project. And, the way we communicate today has drastically changed over the years. To keep apace, we learn. To make money, we hastle. Join me if you agree.

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