Last Updated on November 8, 2020

Got your channel monetized recently? Logged into Youtube analytics and immediately felt overwhelmed with vague terms like CPM, RPM and playbacks?

Well, first of all – congratulations! (or good luck in your journey, if your channel is not monetized yet).

Understanding Youtube CPM and other monetization-related terms is an important part of a Youtuber’s job. It would help you evaluate your videos performance and find avenues of possible growth for your channel.

In this guide, we would share with you everything you need to know in regards to Youtube CPM and earning ad revenue on Youtube. So let’s get started!

What Is CPM?

CPM is a marketing term that stands for “Cost per mille”. Mille is the latin word for “thousand”. This term is mostly used to showcase the cost an advertiser is paying for 1000 ad views.

What Is Youtube CPM?

When it comes to your own Youtube channel, Youtube CPM is is the average cost advertisers are paying for 1000 views of their ad on your channel.

This number can help you understand the estimated total earnings of your channel, as well as track the performance of specific videos based on their topics and audience interests.

However, it’s important to understand that the CPM number you see in your account is NOT your actual revenue. If you are looking to see your estimated revenue – you need to look into RPM.

What Is RPM?

RPM stands for “Revenue per mille” and it’s the metric Youtube uses to communicate to you the number that you actually earn from the views on your monetized videos.

Youtube takes 45% of the total CPM numbers as their cut; RPM is the 55% that are left to you as the channel owner.

CPM is still an important metric for you, as your RPM directly correlates to it. Higher CPM equals a higher RPM, which means more money in your pockets at the end of the day.

What Is My Youtube CPM?

Finding your Channel’s CPM in the past used to require actual calculations from your side, but recently Youtube started showing those stats directly on your dashboard.

To see your channel’s current CPM rate:

  1. Login into Youtube creator studio.
  2. Head over to the ‘Analytics’ section in the left sidebar.
  3. Inside the analytics section, click on the ‘Revenue’ tab.

The revenue tab would like this:

youtube earnings dashboard

As you can see, there are 3 numbers available there: your estimated revenue, RPM rate and your playback-based CPM (which is your actual CPM, after removing non-monetized views).

How Youtube CPM Work?

Youtube CPM is based entirely on the revenue you’ll make from the ads on your videos.

Earning ad revenue with your monetized channel is very simple. After inserting ads into your video, you’ll get paid for each monetized view – meaning that a viewer either watched an ad for its entire length, watched 30 seconds of an ad or interacted with it (by clicking on a link for example). Your Youtube CPM is the average rate you earn from 1000 monetized views.

As a youtuber, you have plenty of options to choose from when adding ads into your videos. The most common ones are Trueviews ads (More commonly known as skippable ads) and non-skippable bumper ads.

The decision of which type of ads to put on your videos can impact your CPM rate significantly. Adding more non-skippable ads would increase it (as you get paid for watched ads) but on the other hand – it would likely irritate a portion of your viewers and cause them to leave. That’s a trade off you need to take into consideration.

Youtube Niches With The Highest CPM Rates

According to our research of over 100 different public Youtube income reports, the 5 highest paying Youtube CPM niches in 2021 are:

  1. Affiliate marketing
  2. Investing
  3. Dropshipping
  4. Content creation
  5. Personal Finance

You can read our full research, including key Youtube channels and viral video ideas, over here.

Youtube CPM Rates By Country

According to a research made by silvermouse.com, the country with the highest overall CPM rate in 2019 was the Maldives with a staggering CPA rate of $15.47. Western countries such as Australia, New Zealand and the United States had a CPM rate of around $5.

Here’s a list of the top 20 countries according to their research:

Top 20 countries with the highest YouTube CPM

It’s important to mention that those stats are from a very specific research, and won’t necessarily be accurate for your channel as well. Youtube do not share their internal numbers publicly and thus we have to rely on standalone researches made by advertising companies.

What Is the Average CPM On Youtube?

The average CPM rate on Youtube varies greatly from one video to another, depending on both the niche of the video and the origin country of its viewers, like we have mentioned above.

After doing an extensive research and based on numbers we got from other authority figures in the Youtube marketing world, our estimate is that the average CPM rate on Youtube is currently around 1.5-2.5$.

Your goal as a channel owner should be to reach an higher than average CPM rate, which can be done by creating videos based on topics with consistent high CPM rates.

What Is The Highest CPM On Youtube?

Pinning down the exact Youtube channel or video with the highest CPM rate is almost impossible, as Youtube do not share this type of data publicly.

However, there are some Youtubers who do share this information publicly via income reports they post on their channel and allow us to take a deeper dive into their high paying content.

The video with the highest CPM on Youtube that we managed to find got a staggering $300 CPM. This video was made by SCO SHOW, a relatively small channel about online marketing.

You can see him sharing this impressive number and analayzing the keys to its success in the video below:

Do Youtubers Get Paid If Viewers Skip Ads?

The short answer is no. As a youtuber, you get paid only for ads that viewers watched for their full length or at least 30 seconds for longer ads. skipped ads do not count for your earnings.

If we dig a little deeper into this question, it comes down to the type of ad that a user is shown. While skippable ads are well.. skippable, you can always opt to using non-skippable ads in your videos. Those are usually 6 seconds long bumper ads, and you’ll earn revenue for any viewer who watch more than 2 seconds of them.

How Do You Get High CPM On Youtube?

1) Duplicate your winning videos – Analyze all of your videos and figure what are your top 5 videos in terms of CPM rate over a long period of time (ideally 6+ months). From those stats you can find patterns and determine what kind of content is the most valuable for your channel. Come up with more similar video ideas and add them into your video production queue.

2) Create longer pieces of content – In order to show ads in the middle of your videos, they have to be at least 8 minutes long. If you are usually producing shorter videos, consider making them longer and more detailed (if possible) to reach this number. Adding mid-roll ads can increase your revenue and CPM rate by up to 80%.

3) Fill your videos with more ads – The easiest way to increase your CPM is obviously adding more ads in the middle of your videos. Just make sure to consider the downside – each ad you put in increase the chances of more viewers leaving. You need to experiment with a few of your videos until you find the sweet spot for your audience.

How to increase your earnings from Youtube?

Besides increasing your CPM rates and relying on Youtube ads as the main source of profit, there are countless other monetazation methods you can use to increase the earnings from your Youtube channel.

Here’s a couple notable methods:

  1. Affiliate marketing – adding affiliate links in all of your videos’ descriptions is an easy way to increase your potential income without extra work from your side. A lot of youtubers utilize the description to include Amazon affiliate links for viewers who’d like to purchase the exact gear they are using for the video production, but you should add any affiliate link that you believe would be relevant for your audience.
  2. Selling merchandise – After you built a loyal audience, regardless of its size, offering branded merchandise is often a great solution for increasing your channel revenue. It can be as simple as shirts with slogans and catchphrases; the key here is allowing your audience to show their support of your efforts.

We made a complete tutorial featuring all 8 common methods to make money on Youtube, which you can read here.