YouTube is one of the most popular video platforms out there, but it's also notorious for its lack of advertising revenue sharing with content creators. In fact, more than half of all monetized channels will never receive any ad income at all.
If this doesn't bother you too much, then great! You're in luck because there are plenty of ways to earn some extra cash via YouTube that don't involve annoying advertisements or even earning a salary. The trick is knowing where to look and what options exist for your specific situation.
Let's take a closer look at whether you can actually make money off YouTube without using Google's own platform.
We've already established that many people who post videos online want to avoid being under constant pressure to run them through adverts. If you fall into that category, here's an alternative way you can earn some money from YouTube without having to worry about getting hit by those dreaded banners.
The easiest option is to create your own website (or blog) around your YouTube channel. Then, when someone clicks on a link back to your site or posts your YouTube video on social media, they could end up paying you as compensation for doing so.
This works especially well if you provide tutorials for other users or share high-quality educational material. Just remember that not every user wants to watch lengthy explanations -- so be sure to keep your content interesting enough to pique their curiosity and generate interest.
For example, let's say someone watches your tutorial on creating the perfect cheesecake recipe. They really like the process and decide to try making it themselves. When they attempt to search "recipe instructions," however, they find nothing helpful. So instead, they visit your website, which contains links to related recipes, tips, and tricks. And since you know exactly what kind of person clicked onto your page, you set up your website accordingly.
That same visitor might click on another link that takes them straight to your product salespage. A few days later, when they log in to check out, they see you offer custom cheese cake pans for $9 apiece. Now, while that may seem steep compared to buying something else, consider the value you added to that customer's experience.
They were looking for information from you specifically, and now they feel confident that they can complete the project successfully. That's why you need to focus less on just posting videos and more on building relationships. Your followers should come first, after all, before anything else.
In short, think beyond just setting up a website and start thinking of yourself as a business owner. Once you reach that point, you'll no longer need to rely on AdSense alone. Instead, you can use different methods such as affiliate marketing, selling products, or promoting other businesses.
Another approach would be to join a company such as Patreon. With these services, you can build a community of subscribers who support your work financially. As long as you continue providing quality content over time, each subscriber provides a monthly contribution toward helping you grow your audience.
You won't necessarily make huge amounts of money right away due to limited numbers, but the potential to gain more loyal fans is certainly appealing. Plus, once you become accustomed to receiving recurring donations rather than sporadic ones, you'll realize how easy it is to scale things up further down the road.
Patreon isn't available everywhere yet, though, so we recommend starting small until you figure out what suits your needs best.
As mentioned earlier, you must have a decent following to pull this strategy off. However, if you manage to break through to the masses, it's possible to earn hundreds of dollars per month simply by putting together quick tutorials.
Just imagine how much effort goes into producing a single 30 minute movie trailer. It requires countless hours of preparation, editing, special effects, music composition, sound mixing, color grading, etc., all of which aren't necessary if you only plan to release it to promote a film festival. But if you choose to turn it into a full-length feature, it costs thousands upon thousands of dollars.
Now compare that to the cost involved in making a simple instructional video for beginners. Sure, you'll spend some time writing scripts and brainstorming ideas, but it doesn't require nearly the amount of resources needed to produce a similar length piece. All told, the latter probably took you several times fewer hours.
Of course, there are always exceptions to everything. Some large studios employ dozens of animators whose sole job is to draw cute characters, while others hire professional voice actors to record dialogue. Still, you'd be surprised how affordable it is to put together a basic animation package nowadays.
And if you're interested in becoming a filmmaker, you can easily learn the skills required to make movies on your own. For starters, you can use free tools like Photoshop, Premiere Pro, After Effects, Final Cut Pro X, Da Vinci Resolve, and more. These apps allow anyone to edit footage, cut scenes, add graphics, change audio levels, mix multiple tracks, and apply filters to photos.
It's important to note that you shouldn't expect to compete directly against major players if you opt to go this route. Even if you managed to attract millions of viewers, chances are they wouldn't care unless they watched your content regularly. On top of that, you'd likely have to charge a fair bit higher than average prices to cover production expenses and overhead.
But still, if you enjoy drawing, painting, designing logos, or learning photography techniques, you could potentially earn a nice living off of freelance commissions. Or perhaps you prefer working with text and code to design websites, mobile applications, and software programs.
Either way, if you're passionate about something, you can usually find a way to make it happen with minimal investment. Remember, you don't have to follow the traditional path if it causes undue stress or anxiety.
One final thing worth mentioning is that you don't necessarily need to stick strictly to either method. There are tons of creative solutions out there that combine both types of approaches. For instance, you could upload finished pieces to sites such as Vimeo and Dailymotion, then direct traffic to your personal domain whenever possible.
So far, we've covered two broad strategies for generating passive income streams: running a website based on your YouTube channel or turning your hobby into a career. While neither of these methods guarantees that you'll eventually quit your day job, they represent viable ways to supplement your current earnings.
However, if none of those appeal to you, don't fret. Plenty of people have found success by leveraging YouTube itself. This involves uploading original clips and repurposing existing materials to fit certain specifications.
Here are three examples that prove successful:
Create infographics showing step-by-step guides for tasks like fixing broken appliances, changing car oil, and performing home maintenance. Give readers access to downloadable versions containing images and diagrams so they can print copies for reference purposes.
Post podcasts on topics relevant to your niche. Make sure to include callouts indicating where listeners can subscribe to hear future episodes. Also, consider adding bonus content featuring guests from various fields.
Reuse old recordings of yourself speaking and splicing them together to form an audiobook. Upload your narration file to Amazon's Audible platform and sell physical copies for Kindle owners.
These suggestions are meant to inspire you, not limit your creativity. You can literally come up with whatever makes sense given your hobbies and interests. Just remember to stay consistent with your efforts and optimize your workflow to minimize wasted time.
Once you begin seeing results, you may wish to test out additional tactics to see which bring in the highest returns. Keep in mind that there are lots of factors outside your control that affect profitability, including competition, price points, brand awareness, and more.
Afterward, you can expand your repertoire by exploring unique opportunities elsewhere. Perhaps you discover that you love recording and editing interviews, so you can branch out into radio broadcasting. Maybe you're skilled with web development, so you can explore app creation.
There's truly no telling where you might end up next. But regardless, there's definitely room for growth within YouTube. Don't rule out taking part in viral trends, experimenting with formats, or trying out completely fresh concepts.
To recap, you can generally earn extra money from YouTube without relying on AdSense by:
Setting up a website
Joining crowdfunding sites
Uploading finished projects to third party sites
Selling digital goods
Promoting other companies' products
While there are lots of reasons why you may want to stop displaying ads altogether, it's understandable if you aren't ready to relinquish that source of income entirely. Fortunately, YouTube does offer other avenues to generate residual income aside from AdSense.
For example, it lets partners display promotional content alongside videos on their pages for a fee. Partner Program memberships range anywhere from $1/month to $100/month depending on the type of account you sign up for.
Similarly, sponsored playlists allow advertisers to insert prerolls during playback. Typically, you'll see these appear before every five to 10 minutes of regular viewing, although that varies between brands.
YouTube has been one of the most popular websites in the world for many years, but it's not always easy to find out what your options are when it comes to earning some extra cash with your videos. You may already know that there’s no such thing as free lunch, especially if you want Google to pay you money for every view on your video – at least, not directly through their AdSense program. But even so, there are other ways to get rewarded for putting up content without having to worry about any pesky advertisers or anyone else getting involved.
YouTubers who don't use AdSense will often end up complaining that they're "stuck" with making videos only for them to be watched once (or twice), before they disappear forever into oblivion. The good news is that there are lots of different methods that allow you to actually turn your channels into legit businesses, both online and offline. Here we take a look at three of the best ways to start generating an income off your YouTube videos alone.
If you've been using the platform since its inception back in 2005, then chances are you were probably thinking of trying to use AdSense long ago. As you might expect, this isn't exactly possible anymore due to certain changes that Google made over time. For example, the company now requires creators to verify accounts before being able to display advertisements. This means that those who haven't yet managed to do so won't see adverts appear anywhere near their videos.
In order to keep things interesting, YouTube also introduced the Partner Program in 2015 which allows users to reach out to brands willing to advertise alongside your content. It gives creators more freedom than ever before while still keeping everyone safe. However, it does mean that you need to maintain strong ties with big companies like Nike, Adidas, Samsung, etc., all of whom offer sponsorship deals to help market their products. If you run a small business, these aren't usually ideal choices, unless you plan on growing quickly.
Another option worth considering is Patreon, which was launched in 2013. Creators set prices per month in exchange for exclusive access to their fans. Once again, however, users must meet certain requirements before becoming eligible for a deal. In addition, unlike most traditional sponsorships, you don't necessarily need thousands of subscribers to receive donations.
Finally, another viable choice is affiliate marketing. Basically, this involves promoting someone else's product in return for commission fees whenever a sale is made. Affiliate programs work well for e-commerce platforms and services where people looking to buy something specific sign up and purchase items via links provided within the post itself. A huge downside here is that commissions tend to be lower compared to normal sales. Still, if you enjoy writing articles or reviews, this could prove lucrative.
While it seems impossible, there are plenty of sites offering revenue streams similar to AdSense. One of the biggest names here is Revver, which operates under Facebook Inc.'s social media subsidiary Instagram. Founded in 2008, the site offers various advertising opportunities to publishers across numerous categories including entertainment, technology, sports, health & fitness, fashion, etc. According to research conducted last year, Revver accounted for around 10 percent of total views on original content posted on Facebook.
For creators wanting to join the network, simply head to revver.com/publishers and register for free. When signing up, you should enter your preferred demographic information along with details regarding the type of content you intend to publish. Afterward, create an account and add relevant photos, bios, and descriptions to complete your profile page.
Once everything is ready, follow the instructions outlined on the screen above. From there, you can either choose to focus on creating branded pages or try expanding your audience by posting regular updates onto your existing profiles. Either way, you shouldn't need much guidance beyond pointing viewers towards your own personal URL. Just remember that each publisher gets assigned a unique ID number, so make sure to check your settings and privacy preferences first.
Other notable players include:
SocialFlow - Another great place to promote your content is Socialflow, whose main goal is to connect influencers with brands seeking exposure. Users can apply to become part of the community after completing simple steps. Once accepted, publishers can decide whether or not they'd prefer to participate in sponsored posts or banner promotions instead.
SurveyMonkey - Similar to Revver, SurveyMonkey focuses primarily on providing targeted surveys to interested parties. While it doesn't boast quite the same success rate, it's certainly worth checking out if you're keen to explore additional sources of data collection.
As mentioned earlier, none of these networks require you to hand over control of your content in order to gain financial benefits. With a little bit of creativity, they should provide ample opportunity for growth.
The next question concerns whether or not you can earn from Blogger without AdSense.
Yes, you absolutely can! All you need to do is write blogs regularly, build up loyal readership numbers, and encourage others to spread the word. By doing so, you'll soon discover that traffic will naturally increase as more people share your links.
There's nothing wrong with blogging purely for fun, though. If you feel inspired enough, why not consider taking your thoughts further down the path toward entrepreneurship? To begin with, you could try setting up shop on platforms like Tumblr, Medium, WordPress, HubPages, and other places where readers can easily consume your material. Alternatively, you could go ahead and open up your own blog. While the latter approach takes longer to bear fruit, it's arguably easier to scale later on down the road.
Whatever route you eventually opt for, there's no reason why you cannot leverage your knowledge to generate passive income. On top of that, it goes without saying that bloggers are perfectly capable of turning their passion projects into successful full-time jobs -- even if they never involve any kind of payment whatsoever.
Here are just two examples to illustrate our point:
Mitch Meyers is a former professional gamer turned blogger who currently works as Director of Content Strategy at Buffer. His expertise lies in helping writers craft compelling copy that attracts attention -- he knows his stuff. That said, Mitch didn't initially pursue a career focused on the written word until he started working on projects related to gaming journalism. He found himself struggling to learn proper grammar rules and sentence structure, among other things, leading him to seek advice from experts. Eventually, Mitch decided to put together a series of short tutorials aimed at helping newcomers improve their skillset. Nowadays, he runs several blogs and writes frequently for publications like Forbes, VentureBeat, TechCrunch, Mashable, Polygon, Kotaku, and others.
Kai Bird is a freelance journalist based in New York City. Back in 2011, Kai noticed a lack of quality reporting concerning topics closely linked to technology, finance, politics, economics, science, medicine, and global issues. So he teamed up with fellow journalists and founded ProPublica, a nonprofit investigative outlet that publishes stories designed to inform local communities and the general public alike. Since its launch in 2012, Kai's team has published dozens of reports that have helped shed light on major corporations accused of unethical practices, government corruption, and human rights violations. These days, Kai spends most of her spare time pursuing journalistic endeavors associated with tech, science, and education.
Of course, there are countless others who became highly successful by building upon their passions. What matters is that you believe in yourself, stay true to your values, and stick with your dream. And whatever happens, persistence generally pays off sooner rather than later.
So can you make money from a blog without ads? Yes, you can! Well, sort of...
YouTube is one of the biggest video platforms on the internet, but it's also an incredibly competitive space for content creators. The platform has strict policies about what types of videos are allowed to be posted there, which means that most channels will need to look towards other ways of earning income.
In this article we'll go over some alternatives to advertising revenue with Google. Some methods require more work than others, so keep reading if you're interested!
A quick search online turns up thousands of results promising easy ways to make money through YouTube. Most involve buying clicks or impressions, either directly from advertisers or from affiliate marketers who buy traffic themselves. If you want to know everything about making money on YouTube, check out our guide here.
However, these options aren't always reliable. It takes time to build relationships between advertisers and affiliates, meaning your earnings could take months before they start coming in consistently. They may even stop working altogether once another advertiser buys your ad slot.
We've covered many methods of selling your own products on Amazon, but those sites don't allow users to upload their own videos. As such, any site where you can post original creative works like a blog, Facebook page, Instagram account, etc., is ideal for creating passive streams of income. You should also consider using websites like Patreon to crowdfund projects instead.
If you're looking for additional income while building your audience, try finding sponsorships from brands. This isn't as common as selling your own product, but companies often use influencers to promote their latest products. For example, GoPro sponsored Logan Paul's Let's Play series because he had such a large following. A company might pay you just for being known enough to represent them.
It's important to note that you shouldn't rely solely on these sources of income since they won't replace regular monthly checks. However, they're great supplemental sources of cash flow when combined with other side hustles.
One popular way people attempt to generate income on their personal blogs involves adding ads to every single page. While this approach works well for established bloggers, it can quickly become overwhelming. Not only does each individual advertisement cost money, but placing multiple ads per page requires hiring someone to manage all of that code. Even worse, some pages simply refuse to load properly due to the clutter.
Fortunately, there are plenty of free tools you can add to your website (or WordPress plugin) to display advertisements. One of the easiest ways to accomplish this is through programs called "content networks." These services connect publishers with advertisers based on the type of content published. Once approved, you can choose which ads appear next to posts, articles, comments, etc.
Some examples include RevContent, ContentLinkedIN, LinkShare Display Network, TrafficGeyser, among countless others. There are even full-featured plugins that help simplify the process further. All you need to do then is find a publisher partner with good reputation and lots of followers.
For more information on partnering with various content network providers, see our list of recommended places to advertise. And remember, if you prefer not to deal with third parties, you can still place ads directly onto your webpages. Simply sign up for a service like TextLink or Dofollow.
Bloggers already have an advantage over most aspiring YouTubers thanks to existing social media audiences built over years of blogging. Because of this, it's easier to pick up sponsorship deals from major brands. Companies typically target individuals whose social media accounts bring in millions of views daily rather than smaller personalities and newcomers.
This doesn't mean you won't ever earn anything from a brand unless you reach a certain level of popularity though. For instance, fashion retailer Zara sponsors several bloggers including Lauren Laitin, owner of lifestyle blog My Confessional. She was selected specifically because she attracts 1 million unique visitors monthly. In addition, celebrities like Kim Kardashian and Katy Perry regularly share her posts on Twitter and Instagram.
As long as you stay relevant, you can potentially develop similar success stories. Start small by reaching out to local businesses and asking whether they'd be willing to sponsor your efforts. Don't forget to mention your current follower count too.
Most importantly, remember that you must maintain quality content. Brands usually hire experts to review potential partnerships before committing funds, so you should strive to provide valuable insights and commentary throughout your interactions. After proving yourself trustworthy, you can move into bigger opportunities.
Here are two great resources to get started:
The Blogger Fellowship is a program run by former Gawker Media executives designed to assist high-traffic blog owners. Its members receive mentorship and training focused on growing an effective marketing strategy.
Social Triggers connects entrepreneurs with industry leaders via its website and newsletter. Interested applicants are invited to complete a questionnaire detailing their goals and background. Successful candidates will then be paired with mentors to accelerate growth.
Sometimes the simplest solutions are the ones that work best. Thanks to recent changes made to YouTube's algorithm, viewers now expect to see organic recommendations in order to maximize viewing experience satisfaction. To put it shortly, anyone hoping to profit off of their uploaded footage would better focus on generating interest first.
While this seems counterintuitive at first glance, the truth is that producing engaging videos that capture user attention is far more lucrative than relying exclusively on automated systems. Of course, this comes down largely to proper planning and scheduling, but the key remains in getting people excited about whatever you're covering.
You can achieve this by keeping things simple yet interesting. Try experimenting with different camera angles, soundtracks, titles, transitions, captions, and filters. Doing so will encourage viewers' curiosity and hopefully lead them back to your feed later on.
Another option is to create videos around trending topics. Although it sounds difficult, think beyond news headlines -- dig deeper to explore why people care so much. Think of what makes your favorite celebrity, musician, book, movie, TV show, animal, sports team, actor/actress...etc. famous? Why did they succeed where everyone else failed? What makes them special? Then let your answers inspire an entertaining narrative.
To see a few successful ideas, take a peek at our roundups of greatest funny TikToks and greatest viral music videos on Vimeo.
Remember, there's no right or wrong answer here. Just stick to your gut instincts and follow your passions. When done correctly, you'll soon discover that making money on YouTube becomes effortless. Now that you understand the basics, it's time to learn how to master YouTube SEO.
Become CEO of your own lead generation software company, just follow our battle-tested guidelines and rake in the profits.