Who Makes the Most Money on YouTube: A Comprehensive Guide


YouTube has become a platform for not just entertainment but also a source of income for many creators. With over 2 billion logged-in monthly active users and 5 billion videos viewed every day, there’s no doubt about the potential it holds for a successful career. However, the question still remains, who makes the most money on YouTube? This article aims to provide you with a comprehensive guide on navigating the world of YouTube earnings and understanding what it takes to be a top earner.

List of the Top YouTube Earners

According to Forbes, these are the top earners on YouTube:

  1. Ryan Kaji – $26 million
  2. Mr. Beast – $24 million
  3. Dude Perfect – $23 million
  4. Rhett and Link – $20 million
  5. Markiplier – $19.5 million
  6. Preston Arsement – $19 million
  7. Nastya – $18.5 million
  8. Blippi – $17 million
  9. David Dobrik – $15.5 million
  10. Jeffree Star – $15 million

Each YouTuber has managed to break into the top earners’ list using different strategies. Ryan Kaji, at just 9 years old, has the most subscribers on the list and creates content specifically for children. Mr. Beast, a philanthropist, has gained traction through his videos of giving away large amounts of money to strangers. Dude Perfect’s videos focus on trick shots and stunts, while Rhett and Link have built an audience around their comedic sketches and hosting the popular show “Good Mythical Morning.” Markiplier creates video game-related content, Preston Arsement is a Minecraft streamer, while Blippi educates children while entertaining them.

The Secrets Behind YouTube Fame

Becoming a successful YouTuber requires more than just a video camera and an internet connection. The following qualities have contributed to the success of YouTubers:

  • Consistency – Posting regular content helps to keep viewers engaged and promotes growth.
  • Authenticity – Being genuine and transparent makes it easier to connect with viewers and can help build a loyal audience.
  • Creativity – Standing out in a sea of content creators often means creating something new and exciting that viewers haven’t seen before.
  • Adaptability – Being flexible and willing to try new things is crucial in navigating and staying ahead of the platform changes.

The top earners on YouTube embody these qualities, and it’s evident through their massive success and building a loyal audience. For instance, Mr. Beast has capitalized on his authenticity and giving back to others, while Ryan Kaji’s parents have kept to a strict production schedule and produced content consistently. Jeffree Star has built a business empire around his makeup line and authenticity, while Casey Neistat has often pushed the boundaries of the platform with new and innovative ideas.

In building a successful YouTube channel, creators can also focus on collaboration, cross-promotion, effective use of social media, and interaction with their audience. Utilizing these tactics helps to increase engagement, build brand identity, and create loyal communities.

Demystifying YouTube’s Revenue Sharing Model

YouTube has a revenue-sharing model in place with its creators, paying 55% of advertising revenue while they keep 45%. However, advertising revenue is not the only way to make money on the platform. Other revenue sources include:

  • Channel Memberships – Members can pay a monthly fee to support their favorite channels and receive exclusive content and other perks.
  • Merchandise – YouTubers can sell their branded merchandise to fans through various platforms, including Teespring and Spreadshirt.
  • Super Chat and Super Stickers – Fans can donate money during a live stream to highlight their message.
  • Affiliate Marketing – Creators can promote products and service within their videos and receive a commission on sales made through their unique link.
  • Sponsorships – Brands can pay creators to promote products or services in their videos.

It’s essential to optimize videos and channel monetization to create sustainable revenue. Some tips include understanding viewer demographics, creating engaging content, optimizing ads, using effective calls-to-action, and diversifying income streams.

The Future of YouTube

YouTube is constantly evolving, and new features come up regularly. Recently, YouTube introduced chapters, a feature that allows creators to divvy up a video into several segments for easier navigation. Another feature is YouTube Shorts, a platform similar to TikTok but on YouTube. This feature helps creators make short-length videos with music. Utilizing these features helps content creators to remain competitive and attract more viewership.

Live streaming has also become more prevalent on the platform, and creators can develop live shows and monetize them using Super Chat and Super Stickers. Additionally, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and interactive content could play a pivotal role in YouTube’s future and offer new opportunities for creators.

Monetizing Your YouTube Channel

Monetizing a YouTube channel is one of the most common goals for beginner creators. However, it takes some time and effort to achieve it, but with the right strategies, it’s possible. Some tips for monetizing a channel include:

  • Create a plan – Develop a content strategy that aligns with your target audience and the niche. Identify your strengths, expectations, and goals for the channel.
  • Diversify monetization options – Explore productive ways to monetize the channel, both in the short and long term. Some of the monetization options include joining the YouTube partner program, sponsorships, affiliate marketing, merchandise, and memberships.
  • Engage with your audience – Encourage strong interaction with viewers, either by responding to comments or engaging through other social media platforms.

Consistently producing high-quality, engaging content is the most effective way to grow your channel, attract more viewership, and improve monetization opportunities.


Who makes the most money on YouTube will depend on their strategies, audience, the niche, and their brand image. Nonetheless, consistency, creativity, authenticity, and adaptability remain critical success factors. Content creators can explore the different monetization options, focus on building a loyal audience and diversify income streams while keeping up with platform trends. With the right strategies and mindset, YouTube monetization can help to build a sustainable career and achieve financial independence.

Webben Editor

Hello! I'm Webben, your guide to intriguing insights about our diverse world. I strive to share knowledge, ignite curiosity, and promote understanding across various fields. Join me on this enlightening journey as we explore and grow together.

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