YouTube CPM: What It Is, How To Calculate It, and Why It Matters

So you fancy yourself a content creator and YouTube is your platform of choice? Well, how much are you earning for every 1,000 views? 

This is your YouTube CPM, and video creators need to know how it works.

What Is YouTube CPM?

CPM stands for cost per mille (which translates to 1,000 in Latin, Italian, and French). 

CPM is the cost an advertiser will pay for every 1,000 impressions, or “views”,  their ad receives on YouTube. 

It can be used interchangeably with CPT, which stands for cost per thousand. 

YouTube gives 55% of this ad money to content creators. 

Video creators should pay attention to CPM because it identifies which topics advertisers find the most valuable and which topics you should be creating content about. 

An icon supports an explanation of the ways in which researching YouTube CPM rates can help inform a YouTuber’s content strategy.

Ads are your best friend for making money on YouTube. Knowing which videos have the most potential plays a crucial role in becoming a full-time video creator


An image compares the main difference between YouTube CPM and RPM for video creators.

It’s important for video creators to pay attention to both CPM and RPM, but for different reasons.   

CPM is the number that advertisers are most concerned with. It tells them how much it costs to run their ad on a video. 

RPM is your revenue per mille. It gives video creators an accurate amount for how much they will be paid for running ads. It’s a lot lower than CPM because it deducts YouTube’s fees.

Understanding the difference between these terms will help you better measure your earnings.

So, How Do You Calculate CPM on YouTube?

Everyone wants to know how much they’ll be making from their videos and YouTube’s CPM calculations are pretty simple.

An image displays the formula for determining YouTube CPM rates.

You can determine how much your video will make from YouTube ad revenue by rearranging these inputs.

(Total views / 1,000) x CPM = Total revenue

So, if your video receives 50,000 views and the CPM is $10, then the total revenue will be $500. 

YouTube will deduct their 45% fee and pay you $275, but you’re on your own for paying taxes. 

Well, Who Has the Highest YouTube CPM?

Some niches on YouTube are more profitable than others due to the number of views their videos get and how competitive the advertisers are.

Some of the most profitable YouTube CPM rates by niche include:

How to make money online$13.52
Social media marketing$12.41
Finance and investing$12.25
Educational videos$9.89
Photography and filmmaking$7.31

Just to name a few.

Countries with the most profitable Youtube monetization rates are:

South Korea$17.00
The United Kingdom$13.75
United States$13.00

So if you’re in need of some direction, consider pursuing some of these topics as a starting point.

Tell Me, What Hurts My YouTube CPM and How Can I Improve It?

There’s more to managing a successful YouTube channel than simply picking a niche with a high CPM.

You also need to be aware of what can hurt your YouTube CPM and how to avoid these pitfalls. 

There are a few factors to consider.

An image displays the factors that hurt YouTube CPM and offers ways to improve them.

Safe Content

If you want your content to be eligible for ads and attract high-paying advertisers, you need to make content that brands want to be associated with.

One way to do this is by keeping your content in the PG-13 range. If your content is too mature, advertisers will likely avoid it to steer clear of controversy.

Audience Age

If your video’s target market is children, then it’ll bring your YouTube revenue down more than if target adults. 

The reason for this is because YouTube is limited in the amount of personal data they can gather from minors. In turn, advertisers will put target markets where they can better analyze their results.   


Your CPM will also be affected by the location of your viewers. Countries have different CPM averages based on the number of advertisers bidding for that area.

Hypothetically, the videos you make for U.S. viewers might have a lower CPM than videos targeting German viewers.

These rates are subject to change, so you’ll need to stay up to date on which areas have a high CPM.

Seasonal Changes

Some niches see high activity during different times of the year. 

For instance, if you conduct product reviews, then you’ll likely see a spike in activity at the end of the year when people look for gift ideas.

Or if you’re in the fitness niche, you might see spikes in views and CPM at the beginning of the year, thanks to New Year’s resolutions.

But How Can I Monetize My Channel Beyond CPM?

Since ad revenue is erratic, you’re probably wondering how you can stabilize your income.

Switching to a membership platform where you own your content is the perfect way to get out from under the thumb of advertisers.

Hosting content on your own website creates opportunities to:

Ultimately, having your own platform gives you the freedom to create the content you want while earning a reliable, scalable income from your audience through subscriptions.


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