How Long on Average Does It Take to Make Money on YouTube?

Oct 15, 2020


How long on average does it take to make money on YouTube? After all, one of the main reasons people start a YouTube channel is to make money. But should people start a channel in hopes of making money? Or, is making money on YouTube a more difficult than more people imagine?

Depending on the way you monetize your videos, you can make money on YouTube quite quickly. However, you mustn't expect to make money quickly, as this might lead to unrealistic expectations. It's best to expect it to take a significant amount of time before you make any money so you do not set yourself up for failure.

Most content creators tend to monetize their YouTube videos strictly with Google AdSense. There are a few problems with depending on AdSense for making money. Such reasons include advertiser boycotts and the YouTube partner program requirements. In most cases, it's best to diversify and pursue different monetization methods alongside AdSense.

How Long Does It Take for You to Start Making Money on YouTube

how long does it take for you to start making money on youtube

There are a lot of skills you will need to learn as a YouTube content creator. Alongside learning editing skills, you'll have to learn how to optimize your videos, design thumbnails, and more. One skill that can be particularly hard to learn is sales. Your sales skills will directly influence your ability to earn money on YouTube.

So, how long does it take for you to start making money on YouTube? Well, as I just mentioned, a lot of this will depend on your sales skills. If you have experience with marketing, you will have an easier time making money than someone without experience. If you are a beginner, you will discover that making YouTube money isn't as easy as it seems.

Another thing that will impact the time it takes for you to make money is the monetization methods you employ. If you only monetize your videos with AdSense, then it might take a long time for you to reach the monetization threshold set by YouTube. Affiliate marketing, however, is a monetization option that might lead to money faster.

Something important to remember is the fact that you will not make any money if your videos don't get seen. So, while the thought of making money might entice you, it's important not to neglect other aspects of YouTube. Uploading a video or two and expecting to make a lot of money isn't a recipe for success.

How Difficult Is It to Make Money on YouTube


Many content creators fall for the trap of believing a guru who raves about how easy making money on YouTube is. Making YouTube money isn't as easy as the gurus say- it's quite difficult. But how difficult is it to make money on YouTube? Is it near-impossible or does it simply take some effort and patience?

Above, I mentioned the fact that as a content creator, you will need to learn some different skills. Learning skills can take a pretty long time. However, learning these skills is necessary if you want to achieve YouTube marketing success. Skills are what separates those who do achieve success and don't achieve success.

Since you will need to become educated about different topics, the process of making money on YouTube can be quite difficult. It's not making money that's difficult, it's being in a position to make the money. If you do not know how to sell or how to create content that can convert sales, you'll struggle to make money.

One other thing you should be aware of is the difficulty level associated with different monetization options. Sure, making money with AdSense is quite easy- just upload and get views. But, there's a tradeoff for this ease, as you need to be a partnered channel to monetize videos with AdSense.

Alternative Ways to Monetize YouTube Videos


There are many alternative ways to monetize YouTube videos aside from Google AdSense. AdSense might be the most popular option, but that doesn't make it the best option. There are many alternatives to Google AdSense that allow content creators to make more money and to make money while having less than 1,000 subscribers, for example.

Some alternatives to AdSense include:

  • Affiliate marketing

Let's break down each of these monetization options in more detail.

Affiliate Marketing

If you've done any research into YouTube monetization methods, chances are you've heard of affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is one of the best options available for anyone looking to make money on YouTube. It's also easily done and is becoming more popular as time goes on.

With affiliate marketing, you receive a commission whenever someone purchases a product or service through your affiliate link. All you need to do to make money with affiliate marketing is to sell the product or service to viewers in your videos and get them to click on your affiliate link.

As I mentioned, affiliate marketing is becoming more popular as time goes on. Due to this, more companies are beginning to create affiliate programs. Affiliate programs exist for companies like Amazon, Walmart, and website hosting companies like Bluehost. There are plenty of affiliate programs available for channels of all niches.


With the rise in popularity of influencer marketing, more brands are beginning to offer sponsorships to content creators. In the past, you had to have a sizeable audience to get access to sponsorship opportunities. However, as micro-influencer marketing has gained popularity, sponsorship opportunities for smaller content creators have begun to pop up.

Sponsorships usually consist of a discount code for small content creators, and a monthly salary for larger creators. The gaming niche in particular is a niche that has made sponsorships a popular way to make money on YouTube. With this said, more niches are beginning to offer sponsorships for content creators.

One of the benefits of being sponsored by a brand is the increased ability to network with other creators. If you're sponsored by a brand, you'll be able to leverage that sponsorship when conversing with another content creator also sponsored by the brand. So, while you might not make tons of money at first, you will get access to great networking opportunities.


Referrals are quite similar to affiliate marketing. Referrals, however, typically consist of you getting paid whenever someone signs up for a service or website using your referral link. Meaning, referrals typically don't involve physical products, whereas affiliate marketing can involve physical products.

Some examples of popular referral programs are the Fiverr and the Awesome Creator Academy membership referral programs. With both of these referral programs, you are paid whenever a user signs up through your referral link. This makes it easy for you to be rewarded for suggesting services to people who might benefit from them.

There are plenty of referral programs available online, particularly in the business and marketing niche. Many people in the business and marketing niche are often looking to improve their business by paying freelancers or accessing group coaching opportunities. So, it makes sense that this niche is full of referral programs.


There are many different ways to go about making money on YouTube. Each monetization method comes equipped with a different degree of difficulty. Due to this, content creators will need to learn different skills to make money. How long on average does it take to make money on YouTube? It depends on the creators' skills and monetization method of choice.

Daniel James
Hi there! I’m Daniel, the founder, and CEO of Tubefluence. I help businesses and influencers utilize the power of YouTube marketing to grow an audience and generate leads.
TubeRanker offers the ultimate toolset for Creators & Marketers to optimize their videos against the YouTube algorithm and rank higher in YouTube & Google searches and recommendation engines.
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