How to Earn Money from YouTube Without Adsense: 11 Best WaysUpdated: January 31, 2019
Do you have a fairly new channel and wonder how can you earn money from YouTube without Adsense? We'll give you the best alternatives.
Monetizing YouTube videos is a topic that every YouTuber is interested in. I see questions related to how people make money on YouTube frequently. After all, if you enjoy making videos, why not make an income out of it to sustain yourself while doing what you love?
But, how easy it is to make money on YouTube?
The first thing that comes to mind for people who are starting out on YouTube is to make money by monetizing their videos. Some mistaken the process to be as easy as uploading videos on YouTube and see the money pilling. In reality, there are many miss conceptions beginners have about this so-called easy way to make money.
I'll give you the most important reasons why making money on YouTube with Adsense can't be your only source of money in 2019. And I'll go over the best alternatives to earn money from YouTube without Adsense.
You need to meet certain criteria
You need to have 1000 subscribers and 4000 watched hours in the last year to join the program. Reaching these numbers doesn't happen overnight. It takes time and work to reach 1000 subscribers, so you won't be able to use Adsense to make money from the beginning of your channel.
You don't get paid for views
Lots of people thinking about starting a YouTube channel are asking how much you get paid for views on YouTube, or how much money you'll be making if you have 3000 views on a video. There's no answer to these questions. You get paid from the money advertisers are paying to show their ads on your videos. And they get charged only if your viewer watches the ad for at least 30 seconds (or the whole ad if the ad is shorter than 30 sec). If no one watches the ads that pop up on your video, or they are using AdBlock, you won't be seeing any money.
It depends on your niche
Because you get paid only when ads show on your videos and viewers watch them, it means you need ads on your videos (duh). How many ads will be showing up, depends on the niche you're in. A business selling phones won't pay for ads to be shown on your videos about animal food because your audience isn't relevant to the business. Hence, if you're in a niche where businesses are not paying for advertisements, you won't have much success with it.
For small channels, theres not much money to be made
As a guideline, you can expect to make around $1 for 1000 views. That's not a lot of money for a new YouTube channel that gets a couple thousand views per video. You can check out this calculator if you want to get estimates on how much money your YouTube channel can make with AdSense.
So, what now? Do you really need Adsense to make money on YouTube?
Monetizing with Adsense is an easy way to make money on YouTube, but only after your channel is starting to grow in popularity. Until then, there are other ways to make money on YouTube without Adsense, and most YouTubers are using them to make an income from creating videos. Actually, YouTubers are not focusing solely on making money from ads, most of them also have other ways to increase their earnings.
I'll share with you the best 11 Adsense alternatives for YouTube.
Let's go over them in depth.
Becoming an affiliate is the easiest way to make money on YouTube without Adsense. Making money through affiliate links means you advertise certain products in your videos and encourage your viewers to buy the product. You'll have a link to the product in the video description, which is a special URL attached to your account. Every time someone makes a purchase through one of your links, you'll receive a commission from that sale.
⭐Perfect for: Any YouTuber willing to promote products
💡It's easy and little time-consuming.
You just need to place the links to the products you want to promote in the description. This will only take you a couple of minutes to do.
💡Everybody can do it.
It doesn't matter that you're a small YouTube channel, you can still implement this money making technique in your videos from the beginning.
💡You're not limited to the products you're promoting.
Even if you place a link to a certain product on your videos, if the person buys something else after clicking on your link, you'll still get a commission for what he/she brought. This means that you can have the surprise of getting a commission for a $1000 item, even if you promoted a $20 one.
▶ Choose the niche for the products.
If you don't already have a channel running on a certain topic, you can look for niches where there's great demand for products.
▶ Pick some products.
Ask yourself what products would be useful to your audience.
▶ Pick an affiliate partnership.
The most popular affiliate program is Amazon Associates. You can find a wide variety of products to promote in any niche, and it's a globally used platform where people trust to buy from.
▶ Talk about the products in your videos.
You either start making product reviews, which means you'll be having dedicated videos to promote the products. Or you can just mention the products and why you recommend them in your usual videos.
▶ Always disclose that you're using affiliate links.
Don't try to hide the fact that you're getting commissions from the sales. Your audience will trust you more if you're transparent with them.
▶ Don't advertise products you know nothing about.
Only pick out products you're familiar with and you can genuine recommend. If you promote random products and they turn out to be bad, it'll reflect badly on your channel.
Another way to monetize YouTube without Adsense is through sponsorships. This is the how many YouTubers earn money or lots of cool freebies. Getting sponsored by a brand means that you get paid to promote the said brand in your videos.
⭐Perfect for: YouTube channels with a decent following
💡You need a base of subscribers before you can get YouTube sponsorships.
In order for brands to collaborate with you, there needs to be something for them to benefit from. When you don't have any following, or too few subscribers, brands won't be interested in your channel because there are no possible prospects for their products.
💡You can get paid with money or goods.
If your YouTube channel is rather small, brands will give you free items in exchange for promotion instead of money.
💡Sponsors will come to you in time.
When your channel will start growing, you'll be receiving proposal emails for sponsorships. Businesses are looking to promote their products everywhere their targeted audience is spending time. And if your channel is one of those places, you'll get hit by proposals.
▶ Find businesses that are relevant to your channel.
Take some time to research which brands are selling products that your audience have interest in. Make a list of them, also taking into account their popularity. Start small and grow from there.
▶ Set some ground rules.
Sponsors will try to bend the collaboration in their favor. So you don't get dragged into something you are not comfortable with, it's best to set some rules for yourself that you are not willing to compromise. For example, you might not agree to let sponsors suggest editing your videos. If so, be clear on it.
▶ Prepare your pitch.
In order to convince brands to pay you for promotion, you have to write a compelling proposal which highlights why they should do it. If you have previous experience with promoting products, you should feature in your pitch the positive results you got.
▶Learn to negotiate.
Don't accept an offer from the start. Usually, people start up with a smaller amount of money that they are actually willing to pay. Don't pass on the chance to receive more money.
▶Don't accept sponsorships that are not related.
You may find that sometimes businesses come to you with proposals for sponsorships but they are not at all relevant to your channel. If it's not relevant for your audience, don't do it. It may seem like you give up an opportunity of making money off YouTube, but promoting irrelevant products will drive your subscribers away.
One way to monetize your YouTube channel is through selling merchandise. There're two ways you can go with this. You can either source products, buy them in bulk, and sell them at a higher price (Amazon or Shopify strategy). Or, if you produce items, you can take advantage of YouTube and sell them on your channel.
⭐Perfect for: YouTubers that manufacture their own products (jewelry making, artists), merchants
You'll have to handle the orders, packing, and delivery. This process will take a notable amount of time. If you want to jump into selling items to make money on YouTube, make sure you have enough time on hand to deal with it in a professional way. If you don't honor your orders with professionalism, you won't get far with it. Customer satisfaction is one of the most important aspects of e-commerce.
💡It requires space to store the products.
You'll be needing a space to use as a warehouse. You can do this in your own home, but depending on the dimensions of the items, your place may start to feel crowded.
💡You need to be aware of the fees.
There will be shipping fees from the manufacturer to you, packing supplies, warehouse supplies (*if you chose to store your items in a warehouse). Make sure that all you have to pay for scales up with what you'll be getting for it and you'll still be left with a profit.
💡If you're making your own products, this is perfect.
When you're the creator of the items, all you have to worry about are the materials needed and the packing supplies (and the time you have to put into creating the items, of course). And if you already create things, it means that you love doing it. YouTube gives you a chance to do what you love and get paid for it.
▶ Choose the items you want to sell.
If you're sourcing products, you can use some tips on how to find the best products to sell on Amazon. You can source products from China, where the manufacturing fees are lower, and sell them on another market (like US or UK) at a higher price. Pick out products that are light, hard to break, and preferably small.
▶ Build a YouTube channel around those products.
In order to sell items, you don't have to solely make videos talking about them. Contrary, you want to make videos that are relevant to your products, but which don't directly sell them. Say you want to sell jewelry. You can make videos about choosing the right earrings for an occasion, maintaining jewelry, or organizing necklaces. These kinds of videos can be optimized for ranking and will bring traffic to your channel. Moreover, you'll set yourself as an authority figure in the niche who people will trust.
If you're not familiar with it yet, you can sell T-shirts online without having to deal with buying the T-shirts, printing, and delivering. It's called print-on-demand. And there are lots of websites offering such services.
⭐Perfect for: YouTubers with designing skills or awesome ideas for designs
💡You need great T-shirt designs.
The internet is full of options when it comes to T-shirts. In order to compete in the market, your designs need to be creative and stand out.
💡You don't have to deal with merchandise.
All you have to do is upload your designs to your preferred website, CafePress is an example, and everything else is outsourced. When someone makes a purchase, you don't have to make anything about it.
💡You don't have to continuously advertise.
It's easy to promote your T-shirts. You just have to wear them in your videos. If the designs are awesome, viewers will be like “I want one of those!” and they will find the link to get it in the description. You can also add a call-to-action at the end of your videos asking people to check out your store.
💡It's fitted for almost any niche.
Music enthusiasts, gamers, tech addicts, animals lovers, cooking amateurs. Whoever your audience is, you can come up with funny texts related to the niche or cool illustrations that your viewers would proudly wear.
💡You can do it without a website.
While having your own website has its benefits, like being in total control of how it looks like, adding calls-to-action, or collecting e-mails, you can still sell without it. On most print-on-demand websites, you can have your own page dedicated to your designs.
▶ Get your designs ready.
If you're good at graphic design, this is the moment to let your creative juice flow. You can also pay professional designers on sites like Fiverr or 99design if you're not proficient with graphic design.
▶ Don't focus solely on what you like.
If you're aiming to make money on YouTube by selling T-shirts, you must be aware that if you like a design, it doesn't mean it will sell. When sales are what you're after, you have to do a market research prior to design and figure out what are the best styles and themes that sell.
▶ Find your print-on-demand supplier.
Teespring, Zazzle, and Threadless, are just a couple of examples.
▶ Try out the merchandise.
Before you jump into selling, you want to make sure the T-shirts are of good quality. Order some T-shirts for yourself to test out the quality.
▶ Make videos related to the T-shirts' designs.
Let's say you chose your designs to be music related. This means you have to attract music lovers to your YouTube channel. To do so, you can make music reviews, teaching tips about using instruments or even make music covers.
Selling e-books is a great way to make money online. People love books in digital format because they are easy to go through from any device. Writing books and using a YouTube channel to promote them is a great way to put yourself out there.
⭐Perfect for: YouTubers with writing skills
💡You can write on any topic.
Self-improvement, writing about a certain career, teaching others how to make money. You can write on whatever topic you know about.
💡You don't have to write a lot.
Publishing an e-book doesn't mean that you have to write a novel of hundreds of pages. You can write an e-book of 40-60 pages containing insightful information.
💡It's an easy process.
It doesn't involve selling physical items, doesn't require tech skills, and there's no monetary investment. All you need is a laptop, some time, and your inspiration.
▶ Decide on what kinds of books you want to write.
If you are a writer, well, you probably already have your own style and interests. If you are open to experimenting, you can search topics that people are interested in and see if you can find something you'd enjoy writing about.
▶ Upload your e-book on Amazon.
Amazon makes it easier for writers to sell their books through their Kindle Direct Publishing. All you have to do is register for an account, upload your PDF, add your cover, set your price, and – you're done. Now go and promote it on your YouTube channel.
Digital products are probably the easiest things to sell online nowadays. If you have ideas about products that your audience would benefit from, you can build an app. If you're a graphic designer, you can create templates or prints. Photographers can sell their images. – You get the picture. Selling digital products is how many YouTubers make money. They don't over promote their products in the videos, but they mention them from time to time to draw viewers back to their website.
⭐Perfect for: Tech enthusiasts, YouTubers with programming skills, YouTubers with vision
💡You sell a product, but you don't have to deal with physical work.
Because it's all digital, it's extremely easy to manage the orders. You don't need a dedicated space for storage, you don't have to deliver the products, and you can be anywhere in the world and still be selling.
💡It's easy to improve the products.
Like I said, everything happens online, you don't manufacture products. You program them from a computer. This makes it easier to make tweaks and improve your products in time.
💡You have to invest at first.
If you are a programmer and can create the products yourself, you have to invest a notable amount of time into it. If you have ideas but don't know how to put them into practice, you can pay someone to build the products the way you want them.
💡It's a market that keeps on growing.
People use more and more digital products each day. There's a lot of space for you to grow and there's an endless oasis of possibilities.
💡It's a way of generating passive income.
Once your digital products are ready for people to buy, there's no much work on your part left other than promoting.
▶ Think about what will benefit your audience.
If you already created a base of subscribers, take a look at who your viewers are. What problems that they have can be solved with a digital product? What would they be interested to buy from you?
▶ Make a strategy.
There's no growth without a strategy. If you want to create an app, make a free, beta version, release it and raise feedback. Are your viewers interested in your product? Do they have suggestions? Take all the feedback you can and improve your app to a more resourceful, premium product. If you want to sell templates, icon packs, and stuff like this, make some freebies first to attract viewers down your product's page and hook them up for your premium packs.
▶ Set up a website.
If you don't already have a website, now's the time to create it. You don't need something complex. A simple, clean, and easy to navigate website with great copy is enough.
▶ Make videos.
When you decided what your products gonna be, don't wait for them to be ready so you start with video recording. Make videos surrounding the topic of your products to grow a community interested in your future releases. When you'll have the products ready, you'll already be having an audience to sell to.
If you've mastered skills in a certain field, you can put together a course and make money on YouTube by selling it.
⭐Perfect for: Youtubers with skills in a certain area, people who enjoy teaching others
💡People on YouTube want to learn.
One of the main reasons people are spending time on YouTube is to learn new things and to improve their skills. Which makes YouTube an amazing place for promoting courses and pieces of training.
💡It's passive income.
Like with digital products, you can create a course that will live on your website for people to buy it. The only thing you need to worry about is properly promoting it in your videos. Of course, to generate better sales you can use additional promotional strategies like using a Facebook group or promoting on Pinterest, but this is up to how much time you're ready to invest into it. You'll be investing some time now in a product that can make you money a long time from now.
💡You already have the knowledge.
After you learned some skills for yourself, it's easy to understand what other people need help with, what information they need, and how to organize the content so it's efficient to learn from.
💡It gives you space to grow on your own terms.
Usually, people who are selling courses or pieces of training make a short e-book so they let prospects get a peek at the kind of content they are delivering. From there, things can go more ways. You can make a premium course to sell at a high price, like $997. Or you can divide the course into sections and charge separately for each section, and even offer a promotional price for those who buy the complete series. There are endless possibilities to go around it.
💡You have to license your courses.
You don't want someone who bought your course to be sharing all its content online for free afterward, do you? Licensing your content is one more additional step, but you can easily take care of it with the help of a lawyer.
▶ Decide the format of the course.
You can make video courses, written resources, PDFs with exercises. It can be all written content, or you can mix things up and do a variety of written and video content. The more entertaining it is, the better.
▶ Set up a website.
Yes, you'll need a website for this, too. Don't feel overwhelmed and don't go overboard. Nice and clean is the way to go. If you don't want to deal with a website, you can upload your courses on websites like Udemy and promote the course on YouTube. Although this approach may sound easier, I don't recommend it because they give creators a really small amount of money for their sales.
▶ Make videos on the topic.
So to make money on YouTube with this approach, people need to first trust your skills. Show them what you know and how you can help them. Give them tips on the subject, teach them in your videos. If your YouTube content is good and helps people out, they'll want to hear more from you and will most likely be open to pay for your wisdom.
Are you a proficient content marketer? Or maybe you can help others take control of their life through consulting sessions? This can be an excellent way on how to make money using YouTube videos to generate leads.
⭐Perfect for: YouTubers that can help people in certain fields by offering consulting services
💡It gives you a wide group of possible prospects.
Users on YouTube are from all over the world, which means that you have access to people no matter where you or they are. Compared to when you offer your services locally where you are limited to the businesses or people that live in your area.
💡You'll be setting yourself as an expert in the niche.
When you use YouTube videos to demonstrate your knowledge, people start perceiving you as an authority in your niche. This means more people will be eager to benefit from your services.
💡Once you grow your channel large enough, people will ask for your services.
If you make videos teaching people how to do certain things, you may find that people will come asking for your services even though you don't advertise them anywhere. That's because they see you know what you're talking about.
▶ Start by making videos to build trust.
Create videos where you teach skills related to your services.
▶ Don't stand back from sharing information.
You may feel like you don't want to give up too much information because, “If I teach them how to do it, they won't hire me, right?”. Well, not exactly. There will be people who are there to learn for themselves, which is a good thing because they will engage and help grow your channel. But there will also be possible prospects, who have the money to hire you and don't have time to invest in learning. Yet, before they get to pay you for services, they have to first know you are good at what you're doing.
▶ Get video testimonials.
Having others vouch for you will raise your trust levels. Just make sure the testimonials are genuine. Paying someone to record a scripted testimonial is not a great idea as your viewers may notice it's not real.
If the way you talk is inspiring to others and you have interesting points of view or great insights in your niche, you can make money from YouTube videos without directly monetizing them. You can use your YouTube channel to make people aware of your speaker skills and get invited to speak at events.
⭐Perfect for: YouTubers with speaker skills, channels in motivational and self-improvement niches, people with great ideas and interesting perspectives
💡You only have to focus on your videos.
Because you'll be selling your talking skills, you don't have to deal with creating products to sell. This will give you more time to focus on the quality of your videos.
💡You can take advantage of your life experience.
If you take a look at the best speakers out there, doesn't matter the niche, you'll find out that all of them share relevant life experiences in their speeches. For example, if you talk about self-improvement, here's your chance to tell your story about the struggles you managed to overcome.
💡It only works with certain niches.
Because you'll be asked to participate in events, it means that there's gotta be events in the niche you target. There are niches where there are no events with speeches involved.
💡You are limited to your local area.
In order to participate in events, they must be somewhere near the place you live. If you live in a city where there's not much going on in terms of events, focusing on becoming a speaker might not be the best choice to make money on YouTube without ads. When you manage to become a successful and popular YouTuber, you may be able to travel to other countries for speeches as you'll get paid enough money to cover up your trip expenses.
▶ Make videos to inspire people.
The best speakers are the best because they know how to talk and tell stories in a way that makes you feel more motivated and inspired just by listening to them. Learn how to make your videos more inspiring.
▶ Approach interesting subjects.
Inspirational videos are those who make people want to be better selves. Be it about self-improvement, becoming healthier, increasing productivity at work, or being more kind to the environment and the people in need. What all inspirational videos aim to do is to charge people with positive energy.
Licensing the videos you upload protects you from someone stealing your content and using it in a way you don't agree with. But besides this, you can also take advantage of licensing to make money from your YouTube videos. If you create videos that can go viral, media publications will want to use those videos on their website or in commercials. If your content is licensed, others won't be able to use it without your consent which will make them pay for it.
⭐Perfect for: YouTubers with short videos
💡You get better exposure.
Some licensing website will also promote your videos on their social channels or the communities they engage in. This will place your videos in front of a bigger audience.
💡It's extremely easy to try.
This is maybe the easiest way on how to make money on YouTube videos without Adsense. All you need are some short videos either with humor, cute stuff, animals or with recordings which raise curiosity.
💡It's a chance for passive income.
Even if you don't create videos for the sole purpose to license them, you may be having short, funny videos, or cute recording of your pets. You can submit the links to those videos on a licensing site in a matter of minutes. Your videos will then be uploaded without any action on your part required. If people are interested in the videos, they'll license from the website and you'll receive the money in your PayPal account.
💡You won't see lots of money.
While it's hard to tell how much money you can get by licensing your videos because it depends on how many sales you get and you also get money from monetization, there's not a huge amount of money. You're able to score more money if you make viral content, but don't expect to get rich. However, it's an easy way to make money.
▶ If you want to sell, you have to know what sells.
While you can license any video you create and hope that someone will want to buy it, if you really want to make money on YouTube by licensing, you'll want to take a look at what kind of video content media pays for.
▶ License your videos.
Head over to a website like Jukin Media and start licensing your videos. All you have to do is register and submit your videos. From there, media publications will come to the website, search for the type of content they want, and if they like your videos, they'll buy them.
Youtubers are always looking for ways to promote their channel. One of those ways is by having a link to their channel posted in an end card on someone else's video. This approach is not so popular. I've actually come across a single YouTuber that talks about his experience with renting links on YouTube, and he was offered between $150-500/month to promote links on his ranked videos.
⭐Perfect for: Any YouTuber with a decent following
💡Youtubers you promote must be relevant.
Although there are YouTubers willing to pay you for promotions even if their videos are not related to yours in any way, it's best to pass on this opportunity. Sharing irrelevant things with your audience will make them lose trust in the quality of resources you have to offer.
💡If you have enough subscribers, people will come to you.
It's not uncommon for YouTubers with a great base of subscribers to receive inquiries about promoting in their end cards.
💡It may be pretty hard to find people yourself.
Like I said above, people will come to you when your channel will grow. Until then, if you want to benefit from this approach, you have to find interested YouTubers by yourself. While this is an easy way to monetize YouTube videos, it can turn out to be time-consuming if you're running after opportunities.
💡It's not the best way to make money on YouTube.
While you can benefit from the extra money you can make from selling space on your end cards when you have a big channel, it may not worth the time invested into chasing down opportunities. It's up to you and how much time you have on hand.
▶ Find relevant, smaller channels.
Look up for YouTube channels related to your niche that have a smaller audience than you do. Once you find a couple of YouTubers, pitch them with an offer. Make sure to let them know a bit about your audience and how they can benefit from being featured in your video.
▶ For better chances, be patient.
To enhance the chances for your pitch to work, it's best to not jump right into it. Try to create a genuine connection with the other YouTuber before you try to sell him/her. Share his content, comment on his videos, and make him notice you prior to sending him a message. You'll get better chances at convincing him.
▶ Focus to make your videos rank.
If your videos are nowhere to be found in search results, why would someone pay to be featured in your videos? Learn how to properly optimize your videos for high ranking so you grow your channel and make people notice you.
After you went through all these ways to make money on YouTube without Google Adsense, I hope you now got a better idea of what opportunities you have.
There's no universal best way to make money on YouTube.
How profitable an idea may be for your YouTube channel depends on a variety of aspects like:
- what niche you're in
- what you are more skilled towards (teaching, showing, joking, selling, inspiring)
- how much time you have on hand
- how big your channel is
As a beginner, you first need to grow your channel to a decent following before you start making money on YouTube. Upload quality content on a regular basis and once you start seeing some traction, implement one of these ways to earn money from YouTube without Adsense.
Don't jump into doing all of them at once. Pick one, learn how to properly benefit from it, and grow from there.
If you're just starting out and don't know what to make your first video about, or you're out of ideas for new content, we put together a thorough list of YouTube video ideas to sparkle your inspiration.
How do you earn money from YouTube without Adsense? We would be glad to hear your insights.