How much money can you make on YouTube?

YouTube is one of the most popular websites globally with over 4 billion daily views and 800 million unique monthly visitors, and a few entrepreneurs are using this platform to generate a healthy income.

In South Africa the ever growing broadband penetration rate is good news for YouTube. Uploads have increased by 120% from 2010 to 2011 while website views have increased by more than 190% from 2010 to 2011.

Not everyone on YouTube is simply watching the latest music videos or uploading a few funny cat videos to share with their friends. The platform provides people with an opportunity to make money – and many entrepreneurs are doing exactly that.

Google SA spokesperson Julie Taylor said that local revenues given back to their YouTube partners has increased by 570% from 2010 to 2011.

This raises the question of whether you can make a good living from YouTube alone, given that you have a very popular channel. The answer is yes.

One example is South African Peter Carvell who runs the popular Six Pack Factory channel on YouTube. The channel recently exceeded 100,000 daily views while their website also benefited from the growth.

“My most watched video has around 5.3 million views although it is one of my most unprofessionally produced videos,” said Carvell.

Using Google Adsense to monetize their YouTube channel the Six Pack Factory is now earning over R50,000 per month.

“In the last 12 months my revenue from YouTube has increased by 100% and my channel is now making around R50,000 per month. Not bad for uploading one video per week,” said Carvell.

Some large international YouTube channels are generating well over R1 million per year. According to analytics and advertising company TubeMogul many channels are making over $100,000 per year.

The highest earners, according to TubeMogal, include Shane Dawson ($315,000 per year), The Annoying Orange ($288,000 per year) and Philip DeFranco ($181,000 per year).

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How much money can you make on YouTube?