YouTube Business Model | How Does YouTube Make Money?

YouTube is the second-largest search engine in the world behind Google and the biggest video-sharing website.

YouTube was founded in February 2005 as a dating website by Steve Chen, Chad Hurley, and Jawed Karim. It has grown to become the second-largest search engine and the biggest video-sharing website in the world.

The average YouTube user watches over a billion hours of content daily. Each minute, more than 400 hours of content is posted.

Youtube is a popular site available in 76 languages. It is used by individuals and large corporations, celebrities, and other Youtube-exclusive influencers to advertise themselves and earn money.

YouTube’s revenue strategy is based on people viewing, uploading, sharing, rating, adding videos to playlists, commenting, reporting, and subscribing to other users’ videos.

The YouTube app is one of the most popular and widely used applications on smartphones and tablets. 

A video streaming service provides access to various shows, music, instructional content, and vlogs. The company is headquartered in the United States and is based in San Bruno, California.

YouTube has a huge collection of user-generated and commercial videos.

Many corporations are using it to market their products and services as well. YouTube has many videos uploaded by people and has videos from organizations like the BBC, Vevo, and Hulu.

These businesses are part of a YouTube partnership program. It is one of the facets of YouTube’s multifaceted business model.

However, how does Youtube make money, and what is the YouTube Business Model? To be sure, we have all of the answers here.

What is YouTube?

YouTube is one of the most popular social media sites and has evolved significantly over the years.

YouTube is a global video-streaming network to connect the globe to entertainment and education. It was started in 2005 by three ex-PayPal workers.

YouTube Business Model

While working at PayPal, co-founders Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim decided to develop a video-sharing service. The platform is designed to be unique in that users would be able to upload their content.

Company NameGoogle 
Company TypeSubsidiary
FoundersChad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim
ProductOnline video platform
Founded DateFebruary 14, 2005
HeadquarterCalifornia, United States
WebsiteVisit Website

How Does YouTube Work?

YouTube is a website owned by Google that lets users upload videos, share and comment on them, subscribe to others’ channels, and monetize their videos. You can view the platform’s videos for free.

Youtube provides a platform for sharing videos as well as games and music.

What are the ways YouTube generates revenue? The question might seem perplexing on the surface: how can a platform that offers free content generate revenue? In reality, it’s quite simple.

YouTube Business Model

The majority of YouTube videos are available for free. You can watch millions of free videos, even some movies, for as long as you like.

YouTube’s true product is its users. This is a business plan centered on advertising.

The company attracts approximately 1.8 billion users per month. YouTube and other websites track user activity and associate it with their profiles to help marketers create more targeted advertisements.

YouTube, however, generates revenue through a subscription service called Youtube Premium. Youtube Premium provides customers with certain special perks in exchange for a small membership fee.

YouTube Red has been widely supported around the globe. YouTube is yet to introduce the feature in some parts of Europe and Asia. 

The current YouTube subscribers are happy to contribute to YouTube’s revenue stream by paying for the uninterrupted videos. 

YouTube’s video content is mostly free, but their business model will be similar to Netflix’s. Premium customers will receive exclusive partnered content, but non-premium subscribers will not. 

This could be a solution to their financial difficulties. Its success is dependent on the content they produce, and it goes without saying that to develop world-class content, it must first invest heavily.

The current keyword bidding war is also generating a lot of noise. Bidding on keywords is a technique by which YouTube accepts bids for the titles of its videos. 

Why do people bid on titles rather than just utilizing those words? This is how it works. 

If you enter some text into any Google-powered search box, recommendations will appear in the scroll down below. 

This also occurs on YouTube. Therefore, if you want the title of your film to appear immediately after someone types the first few words of the title, you must bid on it. The title is awarded to the highest bidder. This is an extremely helpful feature for “how-to” videos.

How does YouTube make money can also be solved by streaming live video on the platform? 

YouTube teamed with Indian broadcasters and the Board of Control for Cricket in India in March 2010 to live stream the full Indian Premier League competition on their website. 

This was the first time a live stream of a major athletic event was broadcast on YouTube. YouTube intends to partner with and live stream a variety of sporting and entertainment events.

People are consuming food and entertainment differently because of streamed content. Netflix and Amazon Prime are becoming increasingly popular platforms for content creators rather than traditional television and film. 

Several podcasts are also available on these sites. The challenge for YouTube is to retain top content producers instead of convincing them to move to another platform, as figuring out how YouTube makes money will only prove more difficult. 

Google has made it clear that it will expand the premium sector across the board rather than restricting it to a few sites. The reason for this is that they plan to develop more exclusive content for their platform. 

YouTube may remain the highest-paid employer shortly, but it is not currently profitable.

How Does YouTube Make Money?

YouTube earns most money from Google’s revenue from advertising and accounts for most of Google’s net ad revenue. The company’s business strategy is changing towards one of subscription. 

The sharing of online videos continues to be a source of money secondarily. The company is gradually switching to a subscription-based business model, but it remains a secondary source of revenue.

Let us understand the YouTube revenue sources in detail:


YouTube earns money in a variety of ways. One of the most efficient is through sponsored commercials. 

The result is a paid advertisement; it’s a sponsored video, and the advertiser pays YouTube based on the number of views generated by the ad’s click; this is referred to as SERP advertising.

Sponsored videos are frequently seamlessly integrated into YouTube videos. Sponsorships help to pique viewers’ curiosity. 

The sponsor compensates YouTube for sponsored videos based on the number of views. Advertisements lack this capacity to entice individuals.

Landing Page Advertisements

YouTube’s home page serves as a repository for unique material. The landing page is the first page that you see without logging in. 

A landing page advertisement is a banner-style advertisement that may include both video and still images. Advertisers can employ it in a variety of ways to draw attention to themselves within the story.

YouTube Business Model

Studies reveal that having a video on a landing page can increase conversions by 80%. YouTube’s business model is based on the premium charged to advertisers for video content.

There are numerous banner ad formats available for the home page. Advertisers believe it is a valuable tool on the website.

Embedded Advertisements

YouTube videos often feature a large number of advertisements. An advertisement that appears earlier in the video is called a pre-roll advertisement.

An embedded advertisement model is used to generate income from video-sharing content. A video advertisement precedes the video. The videos include short advertisements to generate revenue, however. 

The best way for advertisers to generate money is to measure how many views an advertisement receives. The video’s author is responsible for the emotion it conveys.

Mid-roll advertisements are those that appear in the middle of a video. Advertisers have placed these advertisements. Advertisers are compensated based on the number of views a video receives.

Youtube recently added the option to skip advertisements. A fee is paid to the content creator who provided the video used to insert the advertisement. The advertiser is under no obligation to pay for a view when this option is selected.

YouTube Red

YouTube offers this subscription service to subscribers interested in unique content. Users can enjoy a more enjoyable trip on the website.

Users who choose this option must pay a monthly fee of approximately $10.

Users gain access to ad-free videos, exclusive content, screensaver mode, audio mode, and free access to Google Play Music.

YouTube Premium

Similar to Netflix, the online video streaming community pioneered the subscription-based freemium business model. 

YouTube Gaming, YouTube Music, and YouTube Premium are all enhanced with a consistent experience.

Channel Membership

YouTube receives revenue from more than just advertisements. Channel memberships were originally introduced as sponsorships, but now they offer YouTube publishers a deeper connection with their subscribers and earn beyond just placing ads. 

Partner channels and video pages can effortlessly incorporate Join buttons with the new advanced capabilities.

Patreon’s financial model encourages its members to take advantage of its benefits. The creator can then offer exclusive offers, discounts, and merchandise to subscribers who spend $4.99/month. 

The online video sharing platform retains approximately 30% of the membership cost paid by the user.

Youtube TV

YouTube TV allows members to watch cable networks like ESPN, ABC, Disney, NBC, and FOX. It is only available in the United States. 

It is a subscription-based service that has been expected to grow rapidly. YouTube has over a billion users, adding a nice revenue stream to YouTube. It is a formidable competitor to Hulu, as well.

Groupon Business Model

YouTube TV is available for $49.99 per month and gives customers six distinct accounts to stream content from 70 different networks. 

You can also subscribe to premium channels for an additional fee. YouTube TV is easily viewed on any device, and each subscription includes a Chromecast.

Is YouTube Profitable?

YouTube is unquestionably profitable as a business, except for the upper echelons of Google. The video-sharing platform’s revenue from advertising is estimated to reach $34 billion between 2017 and 2019. 

The video-sharing platform’s profitability wasn’t shown. Other revenue streams associated with it, including the one I addressed, make it hard to determine profitability.

YouTube is a popular social networking site. It is ideal for personal use, but it can also be utilized by businesses. 

Businesses can also use it to establish a brand. You will be able to see your videos on YouTube and many search engines, including Google.

If you consider an investment, you should hire a company specializing in developing sharing platforms like online video streaming scripts. 

You can contact us to find out how we can help you create and launch a similar platform to YouTube.

Success Story Of YouTube

Three PayPal workers realized there was no single website dedicated to video sharing in 2004.

YouTube, the world’s first and only video-sharing website, was founded by Jawed Karim, Steve Chen, and Chad Hurley in 2005. 

YouTube’s business model had no idea that it would have an excellent start and eventually become the most visited website in Internet history.

Their capital-funded firm raised roughly $11.5 million. The company registered its domain names at its headquarters. The pizzeria was located over a small space in California.

A video created by Jawed Karim, one of the creators, called “Me at The Zoo” showed the world-famous San Diego Zoo. Several months of testing led to the launch of the site in December of that year.

The site’s first million-view video was a Nike video.

YouTube was acquired by Google for $1.65 billion because of its powerful revenue model. Despite its tiny size and lack of coverage in the United Kingdom and many other nations, the website had become a favorite destination for many individuals.

The company began in the United Kingdom and eight additional countries in June 2007.

The company launched HD videos in December 2008. More people became aware of the site’s existence. They also began utilizing it for a variety of purposes.

Poshmark Business Model

2009 was a watershed year for this hyper-growth website. Within four years, the company had achieved praise, demonstrating the well-designed structure of YouTube’s business model. 

They achieved the full launch of HD videos with 1080 pixels rather than 720 pixels and a billion video views each day and a relationship with Channel 4. Channels devoted to gaming and vlogging have grown in popularity.

2010 and the company was on an upward trajectory. Through 2011, the site averaged 3 billion visits per day, thanks to new ad formats.

Individuals began earning money by uploading recordings of their ordinary routines on YouTube. They earned a large profit from advertisements and sponsorships. The corporation underwent a substantial restructure at the end of 2011.

Psy’s “Gangnam Style” became the first video to surpass one billion views. This occurred following the site’s four billion daily video views.

In 2012, YouTube’s business model continued to consolidate its massive international expansion. It self-identifies as a million-dollar business.

The site has risen in popularity over the years, with the owners constantly updating and redefining its services to keep things fresh and new. 

They added live streaming to the feature. The site receives at least five billion video views daily. The service is used by 1.3 billion individuals, and 300 hours of videos are posted every minute of the day.

Key Takeaways From YouTube Business Model

YouTube’s business model accelerated the graph of public reach in a short time due to its ease of access, diverse compositions, and high-quality services.

YouTube’s ability to make money depends on advertising. YouTube is the second most popular website behind Google, so its economic model revolves around acquiring users and optimizing their experience.

Roku Business Model

How inspiring do you find YouTube’s journey? How did YouTube achieve such a global presence, in your opinion, by utilizing the YouTube business model? Please share your opinions in the comments section below.