How Much I Make On YouTube With 2,600 Subscribers

How Much Money I Made on YouTube in 2021

Wondering how much small YouTubers can make on the platform? Well, you’re in luck, since I am one of those small creators making a little bit of money on YouTube. I’ll peel back the curtain and show you the numbers my channel is producing.

How Much I Made on YouTube in 2021

With 2021 now behind us, I decided to take a moment to look at last year’s analytics. We’ll review my AdSense revenue, affiliate income, and general growth numbers in turn.

And here’s an overview if you’d prefer a video version:

Let’s start with the bread and butter for many YouTube creators: AdSense revenue.

AdSense Revenue

AdSense revenue is earned through Google placing advertisements on your content. Creators can influence where these ads show on a particular video, but, generally, Google AdSense determines the specific ad shown.

AdSense is effectively an auction platform where advertisers bid for ad space. The more advertisers there are bidding for a specific type of ad slot, the greater the AdSense revenue. YouTube creators get a significant cut of this AdSense revenue, while Google keeps the rest.

To start earning AdSense revenue on YouTube, you have to meet a couple of key requirements. These requirements are subject to change. Personally, I needed to reach 4,000 watch hours in a 365 day period and have 1,000 subscribers.

I met these requirements and officially monetized my channel in June of 2021.

In my first year of monetization, I made $428.29 over 186 days, or an average of $2.30 per day.

In other words, my average revenue put me just over the world absolute poverty threshold of $1.90 per day.

Sure, it’s nothing that will propel me to financial independence anytime soon, but it’s a significant achievement nonetheless. and that’s especially considering I was making nothing in AdSense revenue for quite some time before that.

Keep in mind that this was after 1 and a half years of consistent posting, with an average of about 3 videos per week. Granted, I think that my newer content is better than my earliest content, which I suppose should be the natural course of things in YouTube.

Affiliate Income

Affiliate income is when another business pays you for traffic that you drive to its website.

In the YouTube world, this typically involves including a link to that affiliate business in the video description. YouTube video descriptions are often filled with multiple affiliate links, my own included.

YouTube Affiliate Income

During 2021, I also made a few hundred dollars in affiliate income.

These mainly included affiliate commissions from three stock brokerages: M1 Finance, Robinhood, and Webull. They generally pay me after people sign up for free accounts after using my links.

In other words, since I only made a few hundred dollars in AdSense revenue, I doubled my YouTube income with affiliate links.

I typically would mention the affiliate links at the end of my videos, with an occasional video going through that affiliate’s product or a particular feature in greater detail. I use affiliate links to things that I personally use or to those that otherwise offer a nice free bonus to my viewers.

It was a nice additional income stream with relatively little additional effort.

Growth Numbers

In 2021, I had 92,866 video views, which was over double the previous year. That was across 1.4 million impressions, with a 4.0% click through-rate on those impressions. Both of those were dramatically higher than my 2020 metrics:

Jack Duffley YouTube Analytics 2021

The plurality of my views came from YouTube search traffic:

Jack Duffley YouTube Traffic Source Types 2021

None of my videos went viral in 2021, so it makes sense that the largest portion of my traffic would be from keyword searches.

Meanwhile, I gained 2,039 subscribers, bringing me to a total of 2,649 to end the year. That means I was able to 4x my subscriber count from the end of the previous year.

If I am to 4x my subscriber count again, that would put me at over 10,000 subscribers by the end of 2022. Time will tell if that happens!

Conclusion – Making Money on YouTube

YouTube is a slog if you’re just in it for the money. It will probably take a long time before you ever make significant money, assuming you do at all.

There’s never a guarantee that you’ll be successful with any video, even those you believe to be truly great ones. If you’re expecting instant results, prepare to be disappointed.

You have to enjoy what you’re doing on the platform. If you don’t, not only will it hurt the quality of your content, but you’ll get extremely frustrated very quickly.

At the same time, if you’re trying to grow on YouTube, you have to be looking for ways to improve your content. Whether that be your delivery, your equipment, or simply the content, you can’t get complacent, especially if you haven’t seen much growth with your existing status quo.

And that’s part of the fun. I enjoy getting better at making videos and understanding those topics which I’m interested in. What good is putting in all of this work if you don’t end up improving yourself by the end?

I’m looking forward to what this next year has in store. Maybe this will be the year I crack 10,000 subscribers! Or maybe not. Whatever the case, to those of you who have subscribed and supported the channel to this point, thank you very much! And to those of you who haven’t, thanks for stopping by in any event!

This website, and any communication stemming from it, while hopefully informative, should not be taken as financial or legal advice. Assume all links are affiliate links. I am an Amazon affiliate.

Jack Duffley

Jack Duffley is a real estate investor and attorney based in Houston, TX.

Recent Posts