Have you noticed a drop in your YouTube subs and wondered what happened? We explain why the platform may have deleted a percentage of your subscribers lately.
Have you ever noticed this message appear in your creator studio as you've been rummaging around your analytics?
Let's be honest, to the average creator that's a pretty scary message to encounter, as it almost suggests that you are personally responsible for some nefarious YouTube activities. Don't worry. This is not a personal attack on your channel. This message will have been received by every YouTuber in the Creator Studio over the last couple of days because it affects absolutely everyone.
In YouTube's own words they do "regularly verify the legitimacy "of accounts and actions on your channel." And that includes checking the validity of your subscribers. Now you might call this YouTube's version of channel auditing. Whatever you want to call this, it happens to some degree on YouTube every single day. That's why during the Pewdiepie versus T-Series subscriber race, you saw one of the channels lose thousands of subscribers in seconds. It's all to do with YouTube making sure that the numbers are alright.
YouTube: Frequent Purge of Subscribers
Every three or four months, YouTube will do a massive purge of subscribers, or they will fix a problem with subscriber counts. Last December YouTube acknowledged they had an issue removing spam accounts, which led to a huge subscriber killing spree. We ourselves lost over 700 subscribers in that single purge. For the vast majority of channels, they will lose subscribers through accounts that either the user themselves has closed, or because YouTube have terminated them due to a policy violation. Nothing to do with you.
On the other hand, YouTube subscribers gained through artificial means, such as purchasing subscribers through a third party service, could be your fault, and as well as losing those subscribers, you may lose your entire channel. So if you're ever tempted to buy YouTube subscribers, don't do it. And this video will explain exactly why:
On the other side of the coin, you have to consider this. Your channel could be whiter than white, clean as a whistle, but ultimately you have no control over those subscribers. It could be that someone else is acting nefariously not in your best interest. So if you do ever notice anything suspicious happening on your channel, loads more subscribers but no increase in views, it might be better for you to contact YouTube first, if you can.
If you do ever want to scrutinize the subscriber numbers in more detail, in the new Creator Studio you can click the ‘see more’ link on you channel analytics, and then click on ‘subscriber source’ to see a full breakdown of all the subscribers you lose. You gain subscribers, you lose subscribers. Bada bing, bada boom. It's the life of a video creator.
Now, while you may notice a change in your subscriber counts because, let's face it, all video creators have an eagle eye on how many subscribers they've got. The public may never even notice a thing. That's because since September YouTube have been abbreviating subscriber counts to the public, depending on the size of your channel.
In our case, with hundreds of thousands of subscribers, our number increments every thousand. So you might not have even realized we lost 700 subscribers. And at the end of the day remember this. If YouTube is deleting subscribers from your channel, that's because those subscribers don't mean anything to your channel. They're illegal, illegitimate, not wanted by anyone.
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Rob started out on YouTube in 2012, building up a tech channel before joining the vidIQ team. He now educates over 450,000 subscribers on the vidIQ channel which has over 25,000,000 video views. Today he is hard at work sharing everything he has learned on the YouTube platform; educating video creators on how to grow their own channels and turn hobbies into careers - just like Rob did in 2017.