My First YouTube Paycheck

My First YouTube Paycheck: How Much I Make with a Small Channel

See how much I earned in my first YouTube paycheck as well as how much you'll get paid per view.

You may have landed on this page because you’re curious to know how much YouTubers get paid. It’s ok to want to know, especially if you’re thinking of starting your own YouTube channel. 

On May 21st, 2021 I received my first ever YouTube paycheck. I can’t even begin to describe the excitement I felt to finally be receiving my first YouTube payment. Suddenly, making money with YouTube became a real reality for me.

Each channel earns a different amount of money per view, so just keep that in mind when you see how much I make with my small channel. I’ll explain below why some channels earn more than others, so you can decide what type of channel is best suited for you to start.

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How to Get a YouTube Paycheck

In order to start earning with YouTube, you must first apply and be accepted to the YouTube Partner Program. Once accepted, it will enable revenue sharing from ads being served on your content.

Some YouTubers may not yet qualify to get their channels monetized. So first, let’s quickly go over the requirements necessary for you to start getting paid with YouTube.

YouTube Partner Program Eligibility 

In August 2021, YouTube updated their program eligibility requirements for the YouTube Partner Program. Below are the minimum requirements your channel must meet in order to be considered.

Minimum Requirements Needed:

  • You must follow YouTube channel monetization policies. These include YouTube’s Community Guidelines, Terms of Service, Copyright, and Google Adsense program policies.
  • Live in a country/region where the YouTube Partner Program is available. Some of these areas include: France, Nepal, Malaysia, United States, and the United Kingdom.
  • Have no active community guideline strikes on your channel. These are basically the rules for how to conduct yourself on YouTube's platform.
  • Have more than 4,000 valid public watch hours in a rolling 12-month period.
  • Your channel must have more than 1,000 subscribers.
  • You must have a linked Adsense account.

Once your channel meets these requirements, you can apply to the YouTube partner program for channel monetization. Your channel will be manually checked by ‘human reviewers’ per YouTube. You’ll then be notified about a decision within a month’s time. 

But in my experience, you’ll find out well before then. It only took 3 days from the time I applied to the partner program to get a decision on my YouTube monetization status. I recorded a video going over this entire process that you can watch on my YouTube channel.

Set up an AdSense Account

You’ll need to set up a Google Adsense account in order to receive your YouTube payments (Google owns YouTube). This can be done either before or after you apply to the YouTube Partner Program. Preferably, if you want to get ahead of things, then setting this up sooner rather than later is best.

As part of the set up process, you’ll be asked to verify your address to receive payments from Google Adsense.  Google will send you a Personal Identification Number (PIN) mailer to the payment address you provided in your Adsense account. 

When you receive the PIN mailer, you can click Verify Your Address’ in the email confirmation sent to you. Then enter your PIN in the card on the Adsense homepage.

Alternatively, you can sign in to your Adsense account and complete the same steps on the homepage. You’ll need to confirm your address within 4 months from the date on which your first PIN was mailed.

Google Adsense Set Up

Once you’ve completed this step, a test deposit of less than $1.00 will be sent by Google to ‘test’ your bank account. This is to make sure they’re sending your payments to the correct bank account on file. 

As you can see in the image above, I was sent a PIN mailer to my address on April 28th, 2021. Roughly 12 days later, I received the mailer and verified my PIN. Shortly after that, a test amount of $0.15 was deposited to my bank account. Keep an eye out for this deposit as you will be asked to confirm the amount in your Adsense account.


Side Note: Up until recently, you could view your YouTube earnings in one combined account with other Adsense properties, such as blog monetization earnings. But starting in March 2022, Google Adsense is separating these earnings into their own payment accounts.


My First YouTube Paycheck

So now that we have that out of the way, let’s go over how much I got paid on my first youtube paycheck. 

Since my channel became monetized late in the month, my first YouTube payment was for only 5 days of revenue sharing from April 26th – April 30th. Typically, you are paid towards the end of the following month for revenue generated in the previous month.

In my case, I received my first YouTube paycheck via direct deposit on May 21st, 2021 in the amount of $109.13. If my earnings had been below the minimum payment threshold of $100, I would have had to wait until the following month to get paid.

But this was just a small sampling of what was to come next.

my first youtube paycheck

My Second YouTube Paycheck

My second YouTube paycheck was much more exciting to receive. At this point, I had been monetized for a full month and my next payment would represent that. While I did expect it to be much higher than my first paycheck, I was blown away by how much more it actually came to be. 

For monetization earnings for the month of May, I received a YouTube paycheck in the amount of $839.17.

YouTube payment

As you can imagine, I was pleasantly surprised to see this. Needless to say, this paycheck reaffirmed my commitment to growing my channel even more. As a small YouTuber with only 3,000 subscribers at the time, I was pumped to turn this hobby into a legitimate side hustle income!

Now common sense would tell you that in order to grow your channel and earn more with YouTube Adsense, you’d simply need to upload more videos. But as I soon came to find out, there were certain YouTube videos that made more money per view than other videos on my channel. 

What YouTube Videos Make the Most Money

Not all YouTube videos earn the same amount of money per view. Knowing which videos will make you the most can really skyrocket your earnings. It’s one way small YouTubers such as myself can make more money with less videos.

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Just a quick heads up – You may have noticed there are a handful of YouTube calculators online that attempt to estimate the amount of money a YouTuber earns per view. But I found most of these numbers to be generally incorrect. Even popular sites such as Social Blade have been debunked by various top YouTubers on the validity of their numbers.

While I can’t tell you how accurate YouTube calculators really are at estimating a YouTuber’s income, I can share with you my YouTube channel numbers. These numbers you'll see further down below are not estimates, but are of my actual earnings per view shown in my YouTube Studio dashboard

How Much is One View Worth on YouTube

Contrary to popular belief, the amount of subscribers your channel has does not determine how much you earn on YouTube. That’s not to say that your subscriber count won’t help in pushing your YouTube earnings higher. If you have an engaged following on YouTube, then this will certainly help you get more views on your videos, which in turn will earn you more money.

Much of what you earn with YouTube Adsense will be based on a mix of criteria, including the following elements:

  • Number of Views a Video Gets
  • Video Topic (Niche)
  • Country of Origin Where Your Views Are Coming From
  • Google Adsense Auction (Advertiser ‘bids’ for ad placement on your video)
  • Percentage of ‘clicks' per view (aka ‘Pay-Per-Click' metrics for ads shown on your video)
  • Quality of ads placed on your videos

For this reason, it’s not as cut and dry to allocate a blanket amount you’ll earn per view on your videos. To show you just how varied each video view is worth on YouTube, here are some quick snapshots of my earnings per thousand views.

Earnings Per View on a Copywriting Book Review

This video below is a book review I did for Copywriting Secrets by Jim Edwards. I earn $7.33 per thousand views on the video, or $.00733 per video view.

YouTube views to money
Watch This Video on YouTube

Earnings Per View on Fetch Rewards App Video

This video on how to earn 100,000 points on the Fetch Rewards app earns me $13.18 per thousand views, or $.01318 per video view.

earnings per video view
Watch This Video on YouTube

Earnings Per View on High Ticket Programs

This video about High Ticket Affiliate Programs earns me a mind blowing $49.63 per thousand views, or $.04963 per video view.

YouTube Paid Me
Watch This Video on YouTube

Earnings Per View for Stock Investing Video

And this is a video about How to Find Undervalued Stocks in the market. The video earns me $26.14 per thousand views, or $.02614 per video view.

YouTube Pays Me
Watch This Video on YouTube

As you can see for yourself, there is a wide range of earnings per YouTube video view across various subject matters. You can use your YouTube analytics to see exactly what videos on your channel earn you the most, and decide from there what kind of content you want to focus on creating for your channel. 

Earn More Money on YouTube

Typically, videos discussing how to make money, save money, or invest money will offer you the highest amount per video view. That’s because these niches generally offer higher ticket items for sale to their audience. This allows them a wider buffer for how much they can spend on ads, since their advertising budgets tend to be larger.

On the contrary, video topics leaning more towards hobbies such as arts and crafts, knitting, exercising, and gaming tend to earn less money per view. In general, these niches have far less high ticket items for sale, which is reflected in the Google Adsense Auction.

These types of channels can earn far more money with brand sponsorship deals and with YouTube affiliate marketing.

The good news is you don’t have to choose one avenue or the other to make money with YouTube. You can combine all three revenue generating activities (YouTube monetization, affiliate marketing, sponsorship deals) to quickly start earning a significant amount of money on YouTube! 

How Much I Make on YouTube Conclusion

My first YouTube paycheck was an exciting step in my personal journey towards making money with YouTube. But I was actually earning money with affiliate marketing prior to my small channel being monetized. Affiliate marketing is one easy way to start earning money now, while you work your way towards reaching the minimum eligibility requirements for YouTube Adsense. 

In the free YouTube masterclass by Sean Cannell, you’ll learn exactly how to start making money with your channel right from the beginning! 

Ready to get started? Take the FREE YouTube Masterclass here

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