How to Make Money on YouTube

Last Updated:
November 7, 2023

How to Make Money on YouTube

In the modern era, many people make money online. From remote work to social media influencers, the options are almost endless. This article looks at the different ways you can make money on YouTube.

The YouTube Partner Program

The first way to make money on YouTube is by having ads before, and potentially during your videos. The only way to do this is by joining the YouTube partner program. To join you’ll need 1000 subscribers and either 4000 watch hours over 12 months or 10 million shorts views in 90 days. Once you are part of the partner program, you can choose what videos to monetize and where you want ads to appear. You will also need to create a Google AdSense account to get paid.

Sell Branded Merchandise

A great way to make money is by selling things to your loyal audience in the form of branded merch. This not only boosts your income but your exposure as well. Furthermore, it deepens the relationship with your viewers as they support you through purchases. Consider utilizing print-on-demand and dropshipping to produce and ship the items. By doing this, there is less financial risk for you, and you do not need to store boxes of products. Use your tagline, or inside jokes with your audience to create meaningful and fun designs. Then, simply link to your products in the video description, your bio, and during live streams.


This is a great way for your audience to support your future ventures. If you are looking to buy new equipment or produce a higher-quality series, crowdfunding can help. This allows you to call on your audience, and encourage their participation. Anyone who donates then gets access to special perks, tiered based on the donation amount. Popular perks include their name in the credits, a sneak peek of the project, a private live video chat, or signed merch. Make sure you use a crowdfunding website with a proven track record like Kickstarter or Indiegogo.

Allow Donations or Memberships

This is similar to crowdfunding, but without the promise of anything. As a creator, you are simply allowing your audience and fans to contribute to you financially. However, many creators will offer perks to audience members that donate or subscribe as a way to say thank you. Popular donation options are:

Super Chats

The Super Chat feature on YouTube allows live-stream viewers to tip during the stream. These tips and the comments attached to them are clearly shown to the creator, so they can acknowledge the tipper. Note: creators must be part of the partner program to access the Super Chat monetization feature.

Channel Memberships

YouTube memberships allow partner program creators to offer member-only benefits to viewers who join. Often, creators will have a special live stream, or video each month for their paying subscribers.


This membership platform is a popular option for creators. Fans can subscribe for as little as $1 per month, and each tier of donation has different rewards.

Buy Me a Coffee

The Buy Me a Coffee platform allows creators to accept a small, set amount (like how much a cup of coffee is) from their fans. There is often no reward, but is a great way for creators to accept donations, especially if they do not host live-streams.

Affiliate Marketing and Brand Influencing

If you already review products, or make videos within a certain niche, affiliate and influencer marketing can help you make money.

Affiliate Marketing

With affiliate marketing, you get a percentage of each sale whenever someone uses your link to that product. This is great for channels that do DIY projects, cooking videos or even to share your clothing or equipment.

Brand Influencing

This is when a company or brand approaches you to do a partnership. Often these partnerships require you to make a dedicated video about the product or brand. Make sure to only accept partnerships with brands you like to stay authentic for your audience.

Use the strategies above to make money on YouTube while continuing to make the content you like. Remember, your audience is watching to support you and because you offer something to them, whether it’s entertainment or knowledge. Make sure to continue offering them this value as you implement monetization strategies or work with brands.

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