Step by Step Guide: How to Monetize Your YouTube Channel

Are you ready to monetize your YouTube channel? Here's a step-by-step guide on how to apply to the YouTube Partner Program.

Congratulations! If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you’ve reached the two important milestones you need to monetize your YouTube channel:

  • Hitting 1,000 subscribers
  • Generating 4,000 hours of Watch Time

Now that you’ve reached those goals, it’s time to take the next step.

Keep reading for a comprehensive guide on how to apply to the YouTube Partner Program and start making money online.

#1 How to Apply to the YouTube Partner Program

If you want to earn revenue from ads run against your content you'll need to apply to the YouTube Partner Program (YPP). Luckily, you can do that via your YouTube Studio; just follow the steps below to start the process:

  1. On the YouTube homepage, click your profile icon and select ‘YouTube Studio’ in the dropdown menu.
  2. Find the left navigation bar and click ‘Monetization’.

If you need real-time guidance, watch our latest video about how to apply to YPP:

The monetization page will track your progress toward reaching 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of Watch Time.

Once you've met the requirements, you'll see this glorious blue ‘apply now’ button:

Click it, and you'll be asked to complete the following three steps:

  1. Review YPP’s terms.
  2. Set up and connect a Google AdSense account to your channel.
  3. Wait for YouTube to review your channel and inform you of its decision.

But before you do any of this, you need to take care of one thing...

#2 Check the Location Settings on Your Channel

The first step of applying to YPP is checking your channel’s location settings. Basically, you need to make sure your channel is set to the right country so your application is processed smoothly.

A few weeks ago, we applied to monetize a Russian language channel. We'd previously set the channel’s country to Russia, but of course, this doesn't apply to the monetization aspects of the channel.

If you need to change the country listed on your channel, you can do that via the settings menu in the YouTube Studio, as shown below:

#3 Review YouTube’s Terms and Guidelines

The next step in applying to YPP is carefully reviewing the terms of the program. Essentially, you are entering a business contract where both you and YouTube have responsibilities to make the partnership work.

If you’re under 18, get a parent or legal guardian to go through the application with you. This is extremely important because if you try to do the application alone, you’ll eventually get stuck in later steps (such as creating an AdSense account).

Next up, be aware that the documents YouTube presents you with don’t cover everything you need to know. There’s a collection of YouTube policies and guidelines, and you may agree to them unknowingly while applying to YPP.

To cover your bases, you should definitely watch this overview of YouTube’s community guidelines, and if you can, take the entire video course here.

Lastly, give these two documents a read:

#4 Set up a Google AdSense account

To get paid by YouTube, you have to create a Google AdSense account. When you connect this account to your channel, YouTube will send earned revenue from your AdSense account to your bank account.

Follow these steps to set it up:

  1. Return to YouTube’s monetization page (click your profile icon on the YouTube homepage > YouTube Studio > Monetization).
  2. Navigate to step two of the YPP application, which is setting up a Google AdSense account. Click ‘Start’.
  3. For security reasons, you’ll be prompted to log in to your Google account. After you do that, you’ll be asked whether you currently have an AdSense account. If you’re creating a new one, follow all of the on-screen instructions.

If you already have an AdSense account, all you have to do is confirm that to move forward. You'll be asked to sign in to the account and connect your current AdSense account to your YouTube channel by clicking ‘Accept association’.

You may temporarily land on an AdSense page that wants to redirect you back to the monetization page. Go ahead and click ‘Redirect’ to finish your application.

And that’s it! You've successfully applied to the YouTube Partner Program, and now you just need to wait for Youtube’s decision.

#5 Be Prepared for How Long It Takes to Get Accepted for Monetization

So, exactly how long will YouTube take to review your application? According to YouTube’s support page, the official answer is ‘about one month.’

Read the platform’s statement below for more details:

Despite this waiting period, most creators get an answer much quicker. That was certainly true in our case when we monetized the Spanish and Russian vidIQ channels in just 60 hours.

Read more: This Is How Long It Takes To Get Monetized on YouTube

#6 Extra Things to Know About YouTube Monetization

Once you’ve met the requirements for YPP, the application process isn’t too painful.

However, there are some things to be aware of before and after your channel gets monetized, such as:

  • If your channel was rejected from YPP, you haven't 'failed' forever. You can reapply in 30 days, which is enough time to fix any problems on your channel.
  • When it comes to AdSense revenue, you’ll earn 55% of all advertising profits while YouTube takes the other 45%.
  • The revenue share for Super Chats and Channel Memberships is a 70-30 split. You’ll get 70% while YouTube keeps 30%.
  • You need to make at least $100 before YouTube sends funds to your bank account, and it takes up to 60 days for that money to arrive.
  • YouTube doesn’t deduct local taxes from your revenue, but your revenue is most likely taxable. We highly recommend speaking to a tax expert in your region for guidance.

Read more: Tax Filing Tips for US YouTube Creators

Now you know all the important details about applying to YPP and monetizing your channel. We wish you a speedy application, and as always, more views and subscribers!

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