YouTube rolled out YouTube Shorts back in March 2021, with the goal of competing on the short-form video front.
Instagram and TikTok already established a strong presence in this area, so YouTube had to create a viable solution to ensure it's not losing customers to the competing platforms.
Given that YouTube already had 2.6 billion user base, it was easy to get people to start paying attention to the new video format.
Views started rolling in and creators started making quick 60-second videos.
Yet, based on the reviews in the last year or so (from users to creators), YouTube Shorts leave a lot to be desired.
The format is far from perfect, and the biggest questions and worries for creators is the ROI they make.
That's why the focus of today's guide is on showing you how much money can you earn from YouTube shorts and whether it's viable for you to make these type of videos.
YouTube Shorts Requirements - Who Can Earn From YouTube Shorts?
The biggest novelty with YouTube Shorts is that there are almost no requirements preventing you from making your first $1 with YouTube (at the moment). You only need to have one YouTube short video created in the last 6 months.
Of course, you still need to fulfill basic requirements like uploading original content to abide by YouTube's community guidelines.
This is very much different to YouTube's Partner Program (YPP) for long-form content, where you need 4,000 watch hours and at least 1,000 subscribers.
YouTube Shorts Fund - How Much Can You Earn From YouTube Shorts?
Back in 2021, YouTube established a $100 million fund, specifically for paying out creators for their short-form content. This fund was meant to support creators for 2021 and 2022.
Every month, YouTube chooses thousands of creators to claim money from a fund. Every creator can earn anywhere from $100 to $10,000.
How much each creator will claim from this fund is dependent on the number of views their short video acquired.
Unfortunately, given the number of creators competing to get a portion of the fund, each creator can't expect to earn a living by making YouTube Shorts (far from it actually!)
But, YouTube was very upfront that this initial set-up is not a permanent one.
It was a quick solution in order to ensure their creators can still reach a large audience, without having to move to other platforms to do that.
It was also necessary for YouTube to do that, in order to stay relevant. So far, it seems YouTube has made the right decision. Based on the data from June 2022, YouTube shorts have 30 billion daily views.
That number, we can assume, is far bigger right now. It's no wonder that, even though the ROI is extremely low, creators still regularly publish shorts.
YouTube Shorts In 2023 - Earning Ad Revenue
Starting in early 2023, YouTube is expanding their Partnership program to include YouTube Shorts.
A revenue share program for YouTube Shorts will be slightly different. Creators will be eligible to keep 45% of total revenue, in contrast to 55% of total revenue they get to keep for the long-form content.
To enter the YouTube's Partner program, you will need a minimum of 1,000 subscribers and 10 million Shorts views in the last 90 days or 4,000 public watch hours on your long-form content.
If you enter the YPP using views from shorts, you will still be eligible to monetize your long-form content and vice-versa.
This can be a crucial piece of information that defines your content creation strategy, as getting views on YouTube shorts tend to be easier at the moment.
But the biggest question is how will you exactly earn ad revenue from 60-second long video content?
YouTube's plan is to run ads between videos in the feed. For each month, the total revenue from these ads will be put together in the same fund.
Each Shorts creator will get a portion from that fund based on their share of total views.
What Happens With YouTube's Shorts Fund?
YouTube's Shorts fund is getting discontinued on February 1st, 2023 and it's getting replaced with the ad revenue share program.
Is It Worth It To Create YouTube Shorts?
At the moment, it’s not as much, at least if you are looking at the revenue aspects of it.
Even if you blow up (like in the example we showed above), and get 5 million views, you are going to earn little to no money from it.
But YouTube shorts are designed to:
- Attract plenty of views far more easily than long-form content.
- Be quick and easy to create (using your phone camera).
- Reach a larger audience with less effort and time invested.
Even though that audience is hard to convert into direct sales, you can always convert this audience into subscribers and more views for your long-form content.
As you can see in the example above, Jack generated a ton of new subscribers by uploading Shorts videos. This is likely the best way to go when thinking about creating YouTube shorts.
Once you have converted these views into subscribers, you have a larger control and more opportunities to make money. You can move forward with long-form content that incorporates brand sponsorships and larger portion of the ad revenue.
While YouTube Shorts are not a viable way to make money at the moment, they still present a decent opportunity to get your content in front of more people.
This can very much lead to subscriber growth and channel discovery, along with getting picked up by the YouTube algorithm more often.
What is your experience with making money on YouTube Shorts? Share them in the comment section below!