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Can you make money on YouTube?

Despite all of the advertisements populating videos on YouTube, YouTube actually makes less money than it costs to run the website. Google operates YouTube at a loss each year, spending money on the hardware needed to host videos and doling out advertiser revenue for content creators. Advertisers would rather advertise for people who are already searching something related to a company’s product like on Google rather than advertise to people who just want to watch a video. However, despite YouTube’s inability to make a profit on YouTube, it is possible for you to make a profit by making videos on YouTube.

Content creators make money off YouTube when Google doles out their fair share of ad revenue. Since advertisers only pay when viewers click on an ad or watch over 30 seconds of one, people who skip ads will not increase your profit at all. This is why the ads need to be relevant. If the ads are not relevant, then they will be skipped. This is why a targeted demographic is best for making money. An advertisement for makeup will not impress a boy interested in sports. Channels with a wide audience might get more views, but will probably have a lower portion of people click on the ads, since the demographic is just too large to be easily impressed by one type of ad.

Similar to Facebook, YouTube wants you to stay on the website for as long as possible; the longer you stay on, the more likely you are to click on an advertisement and generate some revenue. This is why the more videos the merrier. Having a small amount of higher quality videos might lead to a few more viewers, but a larger amount of slightly lower quality videos will generate more profit as there will still be a large percentage of people who will watch the video despite the drop in quality. You are also competing with other channels, so your goal should be to get as many people to watch as many of your videos as possible in a short amount of time. Quantity generates more money than quality.

Following these guidelines will allow you to make money where Google cannot. By targeting a demographic and making as many videos as possible you can make a profit, and if you are incredibly dedicated and the ad revenue high enough, you can make a living off of YouTube.


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