How to earn money on YouTube – monetize even a small channel

Data aktualizacji: 31.03.2023

Nobody needs much convincing anymore that earning money on YouTube is possible and – in fact – you can earn a lot of it. More and more of the youngest Internet users dream of becoming a YouTuber. Hardly surprising if you ask me.

How to earn money on YouTube – the requirements

The most popular way of earning money among YouTubers is through the YouTube affiliate program. However, it can be quite difficult for a beginning YouTuber to meet all the requirements for YouTube affiliate program. The amount of material that needs to be published to reach the required 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of viewing time for your videos requires a lot of work and even more time. Earning on AdSense through the YouTube affiliate program or directly on the AdSense network is also a matter of the amount of traffic generated.

How to earn money on YouTube – can you earn money on YouTube, if you have a small channel?

The Internet is constantly changing and the direction of changes is determined by its users. The huge amount of information that the average user must process daily and the flood of “fake news” cause a decrease in trust in large websites. It is no longer the giants of the Internet that influence the purchasing decisions and other activities of Internet users. Nowadays, niche thematic websites and influencers who are experts in their fields enjoy the greatest trust. There is lot of little-known websites, YouTube channels and blogs that attract smaller but very active communities. Thanks to the valuable content they provide, they gain permanent groups of fans. Affiliation is the best way to monetize this type of website.

Earning money on Youtube is very simple, youtubers are using affiliation more and more to recommend specific products in their videos and earn a commission on their sales. At the same time, affiliate cooperation gives every creator a great deal of freedom. An additional advantage of this way of earning money on YouTube is the fact that, as a YouTuber, you do not sign any additional agreements with brands whose products you want to recommend and you can end it at any time, without having to explain your decision.

How to earn money on YouTube – the perks of working within an affiliate network

  • no formal agreements signed with any brand
  • complete freedom when it comes to creating your promotional content
  • you only recommend the products you choose yourself
  • you can end the cooperation with the brand at any point, without giving any reason
earn money on youtube
Affiliation – difficult word, easy action

How to earn money on YouTube – affiliation is the fastest way to monetize even a small traffic

We have a lot of affiliate opportunities on YouTube, so thanks to affiliation, earning money on YouTube is within the reach of even a not highly popular YouTuber. Under YouTube videos, we can add clickable affiliate links (as many as we want) that can lead directly to stores with products that we present or mention in the video. These can be clothes, cosmetics, books, games, gadgets etc. Each viewer can easily go to the purchase page via the affiliate link in the video description.

There is no limit to the number of affiliate links in the video description. Therefore, it is worth using that option and linking each product with a detailed description. Additionally, it is worth paying attention to the way we describe the product. It is going to work much more effectively if we write:

Here you can buy “The Beginning” by Dan Brown: https://goo.gl/VmoVhL

Than if we write:

Link to the book: https://goo.gl/VmoVhL

It is worth remembering, especially when there are many products from one category in the video. YouTube audiences are getting more and more used to the recommendations from their favorite YouTubers. Therefore, even without much encouragement, they look into the descriptions of videos to find links to the products interesting to them. Remember that for them it means saving the time and no longer having to search the Internet on their own in order to find that specific product. By going quickly to the product in the store, they can immediately see its price, which is an additional facilitation and accelerates the purchase decision.

Therefore, there are no losers in affiliate cooperation, everyone benefits from it:

  • PUBLISHER (in this case, a YouTuber) who receives a commission for the sale
  • INTERNET USER who quickly finds a product recommended by a trusted YouTuber
  • THE ADVERTISER (online store) that sells more thanks to the recommendation.

How to earn money on YouTube – good practices

Dawid Tymiński has a men’s fashion channel, where he talks as well about the personal development and self-image. He is the author of Dandycore – the dandiest channel on YT. He suggests specific solutions and outfit ideas to his subscribers.

Dawid pays a great deal of attention to making his advice not only practical but, above all, possible to implement. Therefore, under his videos, he places links to stores where you can buy the presented products or ones that are very similar to them.

Affiliation gives you an opportunity to include sponsored messages in typical content articles. Secondly, it is a great and minimally invasive way to test the reaction of our community to the fact that we start earning money on the blog. The last important point is that each party wins in affiliation. The blogger and the affiliate network have a commission, the store has a sale, and the buyer saves time and often money on their purchases.

Robert Nawrowski has been running a channel related to new technologies for several years. A large part of the channel is devoted to testing and thoroughly discussing the latest smartphones.

You will find lots of affiliate links in almost every description of a video that is a product review. The user not only receives a comprehensive product summary from Robert, but also its price and a verified place on the web where the product can be purchased.

Robert always tells his subscribers that the links can be affiliated and he explains, why:

Some of the links in the description may be so-called affiliate links, which means that they transfer to the website of a specific store (offer). Thanks to this, you have links with prices that are always up-to-date, and I receive a small commission for a sell that comes from such a click. All links are placed in good faith with due care. If something does not work as it should, I am sorry and please let me know.

how to earn on youtube
Screenshot of a a YouTube channel description with affiliate links

How to earn money on YouTube – a few more possibilities

A description of a particular video is not the only place on YouTube, which can be used for an affiliate link. We also have a place on the background photo bar:

how to earn on youtube
YouTube background photo bar

We can also add in in a profile description, unfortunately not in a clickable form.

how to earn on youtube
YouTube profile description – where to place an affiliate link

How to earn money on YouTube – YouTube affiliate program

As I already mentioned, a popular way to earn money on YouTube among larger YouTube channels is to join the YouTube affiliate program. The YouTube affiliate program gives creators access to more YouTube resources and features, and most importantly, it gives you the opportunity to earn money on your channel. However, in order to get into the YouTube program, you need to go through the verification of your channel and at the same time meet a number of requirements.

One of the most important and most difficult requirements is to have at least 1,000 subscribers and have 4,000 hours of viewing time for your videos on public sites. Reaching these thresholds is a confirmation for YouTube that you have enough content for them to decide whether a channel complies with all YouTube partner program guidelines and qualifies for it.

If you have a minimum reach and number of views for your videos, be sure to create an AdSense account linked to your YouTube channel. This is necessary to make earning money on YouTube possible.

How to earn money on YouTube – YouTube partner program requirements

  • You must follow the YouTube partner program rules.
  • You must live in a country or region where the YouTube partner program is available.
  • You must have gained more than 4,000 hours of viewing time on public sites in the last 12 months.
  • You must have 1000+ subscribers.
  • You must have an AdSense account linked to your channel.


IMPORTANT: Remember that it takes a long time to verify the account that is submitted to the YouTube partner program. The standard waiting time for approval to the program is a minimum of one month, which, due to the large number of applications, may be prolonged.

How to earn money on YouTube – Google AdSense advertising?

Google AdSense is a Google advertising platform that displays contextual ads on websites in the form of texts, banners and videos. The tool is available to everyone and very easy to implement on the site. AdSense ads give you the opportunity to earn money on YouTube without having to search for advertisers on your own, because the system provides them continuously. Google AsSense is – of course – not only a platform for YouTubers, but also for bloggers and other websites.

Like most advertising solutions, making money through AdSense also has its downsides and limitations. First of all, AdSense ads are not displayed with AdBlock enabled, and as you know, in Poland, AdBlock is used by almost every other Internet user. Thus, half of the users will not see the advertisements posted by publishers through the AdSense system. The amount of earnings depends on the volume of traffic to the site, therefore sites with niche topics have no chance of high earnings on the AdSense network. Therefore, it is not a good way to earn money on small YouTube channels or niche websites and blogs that do not have large reach but can boast a faithful and committed community.

How to earn money on YouTube – Free e-book

YouTube is not the only social networking site that allows you to earn money from affiliate links. Such possibilities are offered by basically all social media: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or Snapchat.

how to earn on youtube
And ad for a free ebook about making money on social media