Youtube Partner Program: How To Become a Youtube Partner
on Jan 27, 2021
YouTube has close to 37 million channels live today, over 2 billion users, and over 1 billion hours watched daily: it is evident why so many people are looking to get a piece of this enormous pie. But this does not mean that all the 37+ million channels get the same attention – some are more popular and some less so.
The popular channels on YouTube have lots of subscribers and views, and most of them are making money this way. Suppose you already create and post videos and work tirelessly towards building a following on YouTube. In that case, this text is for you – we share all the essential things related to the YouTube Partner Program policies in 2021 and share tips on becoming a YouTube Partner.
What Is The YouTube Partner Program
The YouTube Partner Program allows YouTube creators to earn revenue by serving ads along with their content. By joining the YouTube Partner Program or YPP, as a YouTube creator, you become eligible to monetize your videos, and you can end up earning a pretty penny in the meantime.
Becoming a YouTube Partner will not cost you anything, and you are not obligated to apply for it – this is entirely optional. But if you opt to become a YouTube partner, there are many things to know. Not everything about the YPP is as straightforward as it seems – there are rules you need to follow and conditions you need to fulfill, so you become eligible for the YPP program. Here we'll cover all the bases and help you learn how to qualify for becoming a YouTube Partner more easily and make the best of the YouTube advertising options.
What Are The Benefits Of Being A YouTube Partner
By becoming a YouTube partner, your videos get monetized; meaning you can earn money by doing what you love – creating content for YouTube. But this is not all, as there are some other benefits you can get by joining the YouTube Partner Program -
Monetization Of Your Videos
The most significant advantage of becoming a YouTube Partner is that you'll get monetization of your videos, opening a revenue stream from the ads posted with your content.
YouTube is available globally, but videos from YouTube Partners enjoy a little perk of extra promotion. It means that as a YouTube Partner, your videos can be a part of more extensive advertising campaigns on YouTube, off-site, and even offline .
There are no rules of where you can post your content, and as a YouTube partner, you can post your videos both on YouTube and other sites as well without breaking any rules.
Copyright To Your Videos
YouTube users who are not partners do not retain the right to manage their videos, and YouTube decides on this. YouTube partners, however, retain the copyright and distribution rights. Here we need to note that you should beware of including non-original content in your videos, and you should get permission from the original owners before you do this, so you don't break any of the YouTube monetization rules.
Any YouTube Partner gets access to a developmental program with support benefits, analytics tools, and access to a community of other YouTube partners. This is an excellent way of learning how to produce better quality content and improve your channel's standing.
Customization Of Your Content
A YouTube Partner has the freedom to do extra customization features on their channel. It pertains to customizing your page, creating a custom skin, and some more customizations to reflect your brand.
Monetize Your Live Streams
YouTube Partners can earn money during the live streams by selecting to post ads and via the Super Chat option. As a YouTube Partner, you can select to monetize your live stream with pre-roll ads, mid-roll ads, and by displaying and overlaying ads that run beside or over the content.
How Many Views Do I Need To Be YouTube Partner?
To be eligible for the YouTube Partner Program, a channel has to reach a minimum of 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 valid public watch hours in the past 12 months. You have to fill this condition before applying for the YouTube Partner Program, as this is among the first things the assessment takes into consideration.
The initial threshold of 4,000 valid public watch hours is closely related to the content on your YouTube channel, as it would be close to impossible to reach this condition with a small number of videos. Plus, you cannot cheat by watching your own videos for 4,000 hours, as YouTube's algorithms check for this.
The 1,000 subscriber threshold is essential, as it takes a while for a channel to get to this number of subscribers. Once you hit the 1K subscriber mark, you'll receive a congratulatory email announcing that you've just entered the Opal club.
What Does YouTube Monetization Mean?
Monetization means that YouTube allows companies to buy ad space within your videos. It is done by linking a Google YouTube and AdSense account, where this platform manages the ads part of the deal, and you manage the content part that will attract the viewers. The money is generated by a cost-per-click or cost-per-view policy. YouTube calculates this via their secret algorithm; generally, YouTube receives 45% of the revenue share, while the creators get 55% of the share.
The advertising revenue is not the only way you can earn profits with the YouTube Partner program. There are various ways of how to get paid on YouTube. These include offering extra perks for subscribers who decide to become paying members of your channel.
You can opt to sell merchandise to fans, like branded T-shirts or other paraphernalia that appeal to fans. Your subscribers can pay to post highlighted messages on your videos, and you can also get a percent of the YouTube Premium subscription fee when users view your content.
Still, there are different eligibility criteria for each of these, on top of the minimum 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 public view hours. Your channel will have to pass the context check by YouTube, so it is up to you to create excellent content within the YouTube policies.
Here are the main requirements for monetization on YouTube:
- You must be at least 18 years old or have a legal guardian older than 18 years to handle your AdSense payments
- You need to create content in line with the advertiser-friendly guidelines
- You must be at least 18 years old
- You need to have more than 30K subscribers
Merch and sponsorship shelf
- You must be at least 18 years old
- You need to have more than 10K subscribers
Super Chat and Super Stickers
- You must be at least 18 years old
- You need to live in a region/country where Super Chat is available
YouTube Premium Revenue
- You need to create content watched by a viewer subscribed to YouTube Premium
Is The YouTube Partner Program Available To All YouTubers Worldwide?
The YouTube Partner Program is available in 121 countries in the world. Still, there are "slight" (read huge) differences in the amount of money YouTube pays to partners from various countries/regions. While it may seem unfair, YouTube and Google (the parent company of YouTube) have a good reason behind this:
The ad revenue is calculated via the CPM (Cost Per 1,000 Impressions) rate – the income that the ads on your YouTube videos will generate. This is then shared with YouTube, and the income the YouTube channel is going to earn is outlined in RPM (Revenue Per Mille). Here we need to outline that creators from some countries will get higher CPM and RPMs than creators from other countries.
The CPM depends solely on the advertisers who pay for the ads on your videos. They are usually paying more if the videos (and ads) are shown to people from developed countries that are more willing to buy/pay for the product in the ads than to people from low-income countries.
It is simple – people from the USA, the UK, Canada, Australia, Germany, and the like are more inclined to pay for goods and services they see advertised on YouTube. This is the opposite; let's say people from Zimbabwe, Algeria, or some other low-income country, as they are less inclined to spend money on goods and services advertised on YouTube.
YouTube Partner Program Threshold Requirements
Here are the basic requirements your channel needs to uphold for the YouTube Partner Program eligibility and become monetized on YouTube.
- Have a YouTube channel – the obvious requirement is to have a YouTube channel, create and post advertising-friendly content on your channel
- Have 1,000 subscribers – to apply for the YPP, you need to amass at least 1K subscribers to your channel
- Have 4,000 hours of watch time – your channel has to get at least 4,000 public watch hours in the last 12 months so you can apply for the YPP
- Live in a country where the Partner Program is available – at this time, the YouTube Partner Program is available in 121 countries/regions across the world. Check out the detailed list to see if your location is a part of the available ones.
- Link your channel with an AdSense account – YouTube is a part of Google, and Google AdSense manages all the ads posted on YouTube. So, to be eligible for the YPP, you'll need to create and connect an approved AdSense account to your YouTube account.
- Follow YouTube Community Guidelines – for your channel to be eligible for the YPP, your content needs to follow the Community Guidelines, which pertain to an overall channel. Here are the main aspects of the Community Guidelines:
- Child-safe content
- No nudity or sexual content
- No hate speech
- No spam, scams, or deceptive practices
- No harmful or dangerous content
- No harassment or cyber-bullying
How To Become A YouTube Partner
If your goal is to make money on YouTube, then you'll need to become monetized. We have covered the main requirements of becoming a YouTube Partner and have your videos monetized. Here we'll explain how you can apply for the YPP and start earning money.
Sign in to your YouTube account and then enter the YouTube Studio. On the left side menu, you'll see an option for monetization. When you click on it, you'll be taken to the monetization page, where you will see the conditions you need to uphold to be eligible to apply. If you are under the threshold, you can select ‘Notify Me When I'm Eligible’.
If you are eligible to apply, you'll see that you have over 1K subscribers and over 4K public watch hours, and you need to click Start on the "Review Partner Program terms" link. You need to check the terms, and after this, you'll see a green "Done" sign, and all is left for you is to wait for the request to be processed and get approval. In the meantime, you need to continue to create unique and impressive content that will boost your channel's engagement.
YouTube Partner Program Review Time
After you successfully go through all the processes required for the YPP, meet the watch time and subscriber conditions, and link a Google AdSense account, your application will be put in the queue line. The review process for the YPP takes about a month. It is not always the case, as if you have one monetized channel, the approval process will take much faster for the other channel. Human reviewers process each request, and detailed assessments are made to each part of your channel.
The YouTube reviewers check several aspects of your YouTube channel:
- Main theme
- Move viewed videos
- Newest videos
- The largest portion of watch time
- Video metadata: titles, thumbnails, descriptions
After the detailed channel revision, you'll be notified of YouTube's decision. We need to note that sometimes it can take more than a month, depending on the application volumes or any other issues. Also, there is little you can do about speeding up this process, as all applications are processed in the order they are received. Since people do the reviews, sometimes there can be differences in opinions that can delay the revision process.
How Often Does YouTube Pay?
After you get approval and get your YouTube channel monetized, you will be notified by email, and your videos will start displaying ads. Once your videos start generating clicks and earning cash, this will come via your AdSense account. The payouts usually happen around the 21st of every month, but there can be variations on this schedule.
How do you get paid on YouTube? It depends on your location and selected payment method. Generally, the payments from AdSense are done via direct deposit, via wire transfer, or even mailed checks for YouTubers from some countries.
To get a payment, your balance needs to be over $100. If your videos are earning the average of $5/1,000 ad views, you’ll need at least 20K views to get the initial $100.
Since YouTube and AdSense both are part of Google, you don't need to do anything special, but you'll need to keep a close eye on the Advertiser-friendly content guidelines. According to these, your videos will not be suitable for ads and will not be monetized if they contain:
- Inappropriate language
- Violence and shocking content
- Harmful or dangerous actions
- Controversial issues
- Sensitive events
- Adult content
- Firearms-related content
- Demeaning content
- Hateful or derogatory content
- Drug-related content and more
Do YouTubers Have To Pay Taxes?
In one word – Yes. YouTubers have to pay taxes on their earnings, and these taxes depend on the tax laws in the country they reside in. Experience has shown that YouTubers, as they are considered self-employed, usually have to pay higher taxes, but this depends on your country's tax policies. Since we are not tax advisers and cannot speak with certainty on this topic, we advise you to consult with a proper tax consultant who is knowledgeable on your country's tax regulations.
What To Do If Your Channel Is Rejected For Monetization
Suppose you think you have upheld all the requirements for getting your YouTube channel monetized, but you end up getting a rejection notification. In that case, it means that the people who have reviewed your channel disagree that your channel is upholding the guidelines and YouTube policies. Even if you get a rejection notification, not all is lost. You can apply again in 30 days after getting the initial rejection.
But in the meantime, you'll need to make specific changes to your channel and fix all the things that were lacking, so you have better chances of getting accepted. The rejection email usually has the answers you need and could provide insight into your channel's compliance with the YouTube guidelines.
You should review your channel and videos carefully and see which ones violate the YouTube monetization policies or the Community Guidelines, otherwise, you might find out very quickly what is youtube demonetization. This relates to videos, titles, tags, descriptions, and thumbnails. Next, make sure you edit or even delete any videos that violate the YouTube policies. After all, this is done, you can apply again, and you'll still have to wait about a month for the review process to go through.
We will talk about what is YouTube demonetization in another article; here we’ll only mention that this happens when you lose the monetization privileges on your videos.
How Much Can You Earn With YouTube Partner Program?
We cannot provide a unique answer to this matter, as the amount of money your YouTube channel earns depends on many factors. An estimate about YouTube's pay rate is between $0.01 and $0.03 for each ad view, with an average of $0.18. This comes to $18/1K ad views, or in terms of CPM (Cost per 1,000 impressions) anywhere between $0.30 and $2.50 CPM. In terms of earnings, it comes between $3 and $5 for every 1K views. However, it depends on your location and the type of content you create. According to a Forbes estimate, the top YouTube channels can earn up to $5 for every 1K views.
As a rule of thumb, videos that show original content appealing to the general public have greater chances for success and earning more money via the YPP. Original music videos also hold a good shot of earning a good income via YouTube. However, the videos that have copyrighted music in them do not earn income, nor do videos that don't hold any appeal to advertisers.
According to Forbes, some of the most popular YouTube channels that earn a pretty penny and are some of the richest YouTubers in the world are kids who do everyday stuff and get paid to do this. This is Ryan Kaji's case when he was only three years old, and his parents posted videos of him unboxing toys. Now Ryan is a YouTube megastar with impressive earnings that go well beyond YouTube.
Another example is Anastasia Radzinskaya, whose dad started posting videos from her progress in living with cerebral palsy. Now Nastya, as her channel is called, is cooperating with global brands who pay her to advertise their products.
Tips To Get Accepted To YPP Fast
Here we've prepared an outline of all the things you need to know to increase your chances of getting monetized on YouTube:
1. Make Sure Your Channel Follows YouTube Policies For Monetization
The YouTube Monetization Policies are the set of rules that include the Community Guidelines, Terms Of Service, Copyright, and Google AdSense Program Policies. Please read carefully through these as they are used when the YouTube reviewers check your channel for monetization. But it is not enough to uphold these once, as each monetized channel undergoes regular checks to see if the YouTube partners follow the rules.
2. Enable 2-Factor Verification on Google
The 2-Factor verification adds a double layer of protection to any account. Since your YouTube account is available by signing in to your Google account, you need to make this a priority. A 2-Factor or 2-Step verification is when you need to enter a password and use an additional device, like an SMS code sent to your phone to sign in to your account. Only accounts that have the 2-Factor verification active will be approved for monetization, so to avoid unnecessary delays and improve your account's security, you should do this immediately.
To do this, first, visit the Google 2-Step Verification page. The upper right corner has a Get Started button; when you click on it, you’ll be taken to a new page explaining the benefits of the 2-Step Verification. From here, you need to log in to your Google Account, verifying that you are the owner of the account. Once you log in, you’ll see a window with your paired devices you can use for the 2-Step Verification process. Using a one-time code you receive via SMS is the easiest way to keep your account under a double layer of protection.
3. Make Sure You Fulfill the Prerequisite Conditions
To start making money on YouTube, you need to get the prerequisite 1K subscribers and 4K public watch hours. Also, you need to make sure all your YouTube content meets the YouTube guidelines and policies.
4. Open An AdSense Account
Google AdSense handles the ads displayed on YouTube, so you'll need to get an AdSense account to start making money on YouTube. To sign up on AdSense, you need a valid Google account and your own content, i.e., your YouTube channel. To sign up, visit the Google AdSense page, click on the Sign-Up button, and enter the site you wish to show ads on.
Next, enter your Google email address, and select if you want AdSense to send you customized help suggestions; then click on Save and continue. After this, you need to log into your Google Account, select your country/region, review and accept the AdSense Terms and Condition, and click on the Create Account button. After your account is created, you need to activate it – connect your YouTube account to AdSense, enter payment address details and verify your account via your phone number.
If everything checks out, you'll receive a confirmation email telling you that your account is active in a couple of days. You can then link it to your YouTube channel, as only YouTube channels with connected AdSense accounts are eligible for monetization.
5. Enable Monetization Of Your Videos
To enable your YouTube videos' monetization, you'll need to sign up for the YouTube Partner Program. If you don't meet the YPP monetization requirements immediately, click on the "Notify Me When I'm Eligible" button. If you are eligible, apply for the monetization process by filling out the application following the step-by-step instructions. After you become a YouTube Partner, you can selectively activate/deactivate monetization on each video.
After uploading your video, you need to open the Video Manager tab and find the Monetize button. From here, a screen with the monetization options will appear, and you need to check the Monetize with Ads, put in all the appropriate descriptions and tags in your video, and Save Changes. It also needs to be approved by YouTube, and once it is done, you'll see a Monetized badge under the video in the YouTube Studio section.
6. Agree To YouTube Partner Program Terms & Policies
The YouTube Partner Program Policies are the collection of guidelines and policies for all YouTube creators. But these are slightly more rigorous for the YouTube channels that are looking to make money on YouTube. Read through all of these and memorize them, as you'll need to continuously uphold them, as YouTube reviewers regularly check the monetized channels for possible violations.
7. Be Patient During the Review Process
The YPP review process usually takes about a month, but this may take even longer. It depends on the volume of requests the human YouTube reviewers face, as each request is handled as it is received. If your channel has a lot of content, sometimes more than one reviewer is needed to check out everything, making the revision process lengthier. It would be best if you refrained from contacting YouTube and asking about your monetization request's progress, as there is nothing you can to speed up things during this stage.
8. Continue Your Constant Activity On Your Channel
You can work on your channel by creating and posting original content and growing your YouTube channel. The YouTube creators who have a constant influx of fresh content have better chances of getting approved for YouTube monetization. Also, YouTubers who interact with their viewers, reply to comments and engage their subscribers to have better chances of getting more views.
A note here: to help any growing YouTube channel and help creators who are actively engaging with the YouTube community, YouTube may demonetize channels that have not posted anything for more than six months. So, to avoid this, stay active and create excellent and engaging YouTube content regularly.
When we consider everything, getting monetized on YouTube is worth it and you won't even have to wonder what is MCN. From the 31+ million channels on YouTube, about 30% are monetized. By careful planning and excellent execution, you can also join this family, and you can earn money on YouTube doing what you love.