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How much money does a YouTuber make? How do YouTubers make money? A Full-Time YouTubers perspective by Wengie

When people think of successful YouTuber’s especially YouTubers like Pew Die Pie they think wow!! They must earn millions of dollars!! And many people I meet assume that you are making so much money online doing very little but making videos. So how do YouTubers make money and how do YouTubers get paid? Do YouTubers make money or is it all a big lie?

I know so many people that want to quit their jobs to become a full time YouTuber because it seems easy and they would make more money than their current job. It’s one of those careers where people suddenly think of Fame and Fortune when the reality is incredibly different! I can possibly say the same thing about full-time bloggers but that’s a totally different topic all together and not one I can comment completely on.

In this blog post I’ll be talking about how much a full-time YouTuber makes and how do they make money and how do they get paid? If you have other questions regarding YouTube life, please leave it in the comments box and I will type up an in depth blog post for you soon 🙂

To answer this question with a frustratingly common answer I would have to say.


It depends

The reason why I and many YouTubers will give you this answer is because it depends on a lot of factors. I’m going to list all the factors that affect one of the most common source of income for YouTube and that is Advertising income.

If you would like to watch my personal story before eyou get into the nitty gritty I recently made a video explaining how much money I got paid and my financial circumstances after being a full time YouTuber for 2 years:

The following factors will affect how much ad revenue you get:

Your niche and topic and how much revenue advertisers make

YouTube income will vary dramatically depending on what advertisers will pay more money to advertise in certain categories. Usually the more revenue an advertiser can make from the purchase of their product the more they are willing to pay for ad space.

For example Home Loan advertisers will pay more because the revenue they make off a home loan (thousands) is huge, compared to a cereal product that makes $5 from their product.
For my category beauty and fashion the revenue tends to be much lower when you look at the grand scheme of things. $30 for a mascara vs. $30,000 for a home loan is going to be something that will affect your income.
If you look at it from a pure business perspective it makes sense. Why would you spend more money advertising for you product then you earn from it? This will send businesses broke very quickly if they kept following that practice and therefore the revenue you make as a YouTuber will also be determined by your industry and niche.

How much content exists and the quality of your content

The amount of money you make from ads will also be affected by how much content is available to advertise on. If there is an advertiser looking to advertise for selling unicorns for example and you’re the only video on the topic of unicorns you will most likely get the ad placements and ad revenue.
If there are 100,000 videos on unicorns then you’re content must be top quality for the ads to be placed on it. This will also be considered over time, as YouTube will favour ad placements on good content and this is usually shown by the number of view, interactions, comments and the regularity of channel content uploads.
In terms of beauty and fashion content, I would say it’s pretty competitive with the amount of uploads in this category so having good and regular content will help you earn more revenue.

The amount of your viewers that view your ads

Calculating dollar amounts per 1,000 views and multiplying it by the views a YouTuber gets is a very common method that people employ to try and calculate how much revenue a YouTube makes, and although it is better then nothing, it’s actually completely misleading due to a number of factors.
  • Things like ad block is really big these days which means your viewers may not even be watching your ads which means you don’t earn income.
  • In addition views on mobile devices don’t get monetised well and until YouTube find a way to display ads gracefully, most likely you won’t be getting much income from the views you get from mobile devices.
  • Also people may skip your ads and sometimes people may not even get served ads because YouTube values user engagement and would prefer them to not abandon your video before watching.


The amount of views you actually get

If you can’t predict views you also can’t predict revenue, and a YouTuber can get a dramatically different amount of views month on month. Even if you have subscribers you can never truly predict a regular amount of views and therefore you can’t predict any form of regular income.
Even with a large number of subscribers you can’t predict views because the amount of regular views a YouTuber gets varies dramatically due to how YouTube deals with subscriptions. Even if you are subscribed to a YouTuber you may notice that you will stop receiving updates if you skip watching a few of their latest videos.
So if you are subscribed to me and stop seeing my updated videos please go to my channel and watch one to keep getting updates. Better yet just check my channel regularly :)!! Yes?? Thank you :)!!!

Other ways a YouTuber can earn money?

So since I’ve talked about advertising revenue mainly I will move on to other sources of income which may mean the actually income of a YouTuber can vary dramatically even if you figured out how to work out their $ for every 1,000 views, the amount of regular views and how often their views get monetised.


Sponsorships, Product Placements and Shoutouts

A large amount of money can come from sponsorship, paid shout outs and product placements and this can also vary dramatically by industry. And thank goodness for this kind of income otherwise YouTube may become unsustainable for a lot of YouTuber’s including myself.
Side note: So for those of you guys that hate on sponsorships, please keep in mind that these kind of arrangements are actually keeping your favourite content free. If these sponsorships stopped you will find a lot of channels asking for a paid subscriptions, donations etc. just to keep afloat, so it’s in your best interest to keep supporting this. Unfortunately in this world nothing comes for free and I would rather companies pay for content to be made as opposed to our viewers. We want to try to keep it free for your guys any way that we can!
The great thing is that this kind of content is becoming regulated so you will usually find that there is a disclaimer in the description box or a hashtag ad, or advertorial whenever these shoutouts are made. In addition I feel as a YouTuber and speaking of many out there, we would never endorse a product we hated mainly out of pure integrity. Our opinions are always honest when doing a review and we will mention what is great about the product. Keep in mind just like any product there are good things and bad things so the final decision is always up to you to make as with anything!

Stores, Businesses and Merchandise

Other sources of income also include YouTuber’s starting their own businesses outside of YouTube or creating shops selling products that they love as well as creating merchandise like T-Shirts and phone cases etc. I’m personally working on a few businesses as well on the side and as a YouTuber it’s usually required you get pretty creative with the way you make income. These shops and brands may not be directly linked to the YouTuber but the YouTuber will market them on their channel and talk about them like they would talk about any other product they love.
I personally however am creating brands and products that I don’t want to be linked to me personally, I’m an entrepreneur before I was a YouTuber, but it’s always great to have a channel where you can market things freely, and that’s what’s great about having a YouTube account.
Other types of merchandise may also be books. Many YouTuber’s are writing their own books and selling that and passing on their knowledge and creativity. I think this is a great way to earn some extra income and this has inspired me to create my own diet foodplan e-book for you guys as well.

Television and Guest Appearances

This final source of income I’m going to cover is probably reserved for the most popular ones but that is appearance fee’s for events or TV shows. Although many don’t get paid to appear on television some might depending on the type of involvement. In addition very large YouTubers can get paid an appearance fee to show up at a event, and put on a performance. Many large YouTube festivals pay for some top talent to fly in to create a great show for the fans, and give them an opportunity to meet YouTubers you mainly watch through your television screen. Depending on your popularity, you can get paid over $10,000 for one event.
At the end of the day, YouTube is like any other business with the YouTuber being business owners. A business can succeed and fail in the same industry depending on how it performs and how it serves its customers. YouTube is no different.
If you think you want to become a YouTuber one day I will tell you that it’s not always glitz and glamour and be prepared to work very hard, and be creative in ways you can’t even imagine (this includes being business savvy). The ones that are able to learn a living off YouTube and aren’t at the Million subscriber mark yet have to get creative with different revenue streams and may have a backup plan in place which may include savings, or a part time job to make it easier to survive. If you live at home, you won’t have this pressure so enjoy the process :)!!
For myself I can say I am not earning as much as I used to, and if I had to work out how much I’m actually get paid for the hours that I work on YouTube (which is sometimes almost every waking moment) I will probably be better off working minimum wage at McDonalds. However I am loving being able to be my own boss and being able to share my creativity and vision everyday. These things money can’t buy and I have not regretted it for a second :).
While I’m here I’d love for you to watch and thumb up my new channel trailer, it would really help me out :)!!

I hope this blog post helps those of you that are looking to make YouTube your career one day and remember to share this blog post it if you know someone that’s every wondered this too!!If you have any other questions on this topic to comment below!

Much love,

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    Vivian Yuen
    February 15, 2015 at 10:26 pm

    Wonderful new trailer, Wengie!



  • Leave a Reply to Vivian Yuen Cancel Reply