Since its initial launch in 2005, YouTube has transformed from a mere entertainment platform to a life-changing career path for many global creators. Between monetization opportunities stemming from YouTube’s Partner Program and landing sponsored/branded collabs, top-earning YouTubers make millions annually. While not every YouTube creator may see these high earnings, we’re here to remind you that it is possible, and if you take the platform seriously, you can make a good living.
Don’t be fooled—YouTube is not a get-rich-quick scheme, and it takes a lot of hard work to create a steady income from the platform, let alone gross millions of dollars from climbing the ranks as a YouTube sensation. While it’s clear that the opportunities to make money on YouTube are abundant, most people have one simple question—"How much do YouTubers make?”. Considering there are many different avenues to make money on YouTube, which you can learn in our guide on making money on YouTube, answering this question is not as simple as one may think. Keep reading to learn more about how much top earners make on YouTube and what most creators who upload on the platform can expect to make further down the road.
How Much Do Top Earners on YouTube Make?
Starting out, you may make little to no money as a beginning YouTuber with a small subscriber count. However, once you get consistent on the platform and grow your audience, it is possible to make a living being a YouTuber. Below are some top creators on YouTube as of 2022 and how much they’re bringing in, according to Forbes. Before diving in, please remember that not all earnings for these top creators are solely from YouTube. However, the platform is a foundation for building revenue streams for each of these creators (i.e., merch sales, product lines, and business endeavors).
MrBeast: $54 Million+
With just under 100 million subscribers, MrBeast has almost doubled his earnings year over year. Roughly half of his reported earnings come from YouTube Ad revenue, while the rest comes from business ventures such as his MrBeast Meals collaborations with over 1,600 restaurants across the country.
Jake Paul: $45 Million+
After being looped into controversy, demonetized from YouTube, and launching a boxing career, Jake Paul returns to the YouTube top earners list with a whopping $45 million (compared to $21 million when he was last placed on the list in 2018). Though 90% of his earnings come from boxing, his YouTube serves as a tool for marketing his career offline.
Markiplier: $38 Million+
Markiplier got his start playing video games on YouTube and now is a wiz at selling merch and raising money for charity—he’s also looking to do other things such as selling his TV adaptation of The Edge of Sleep to streaming platforms such as HULU or Netflix.
How Much Does YouTube Pay Per View?
According to various financial resources such as Mint and Business Insider, a YouTuber can make around $18 per 1,000 ad views, which equals about $3 to $5 per 1,000 video views. Based on those calculations, a creator can make roughly $5,000 for every million views. Of course, the actual earnings from a YouTube video depend on other factors such as ad clickthroughs and the length of the video.
How Much Does YouTube Pay Per Subscriber?
While expanding your reach and growing your subscriber base on YouTube is a great way to work towards increasing your earnings on the platform, your subscriber count doesn’t directly impact the amount of money you make. Subscribers are valuable but not the best indicator of how much money you’ll make on YouTube.
As you can see, there is no cut-and-dry answer on how much YouTubers make. Unlike other fields, there’s not an expected salary range that people look towards as market value. It depends on many factors, such as your niche, how consistently you’re posting on YouTube, and even things you may be doing off YouTube, such as landing sponsorships and bringing in revenue from membership-based platforms.
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