The news that music makes YouTube the most revenue will not be very pleasing for artists who see a very poultry return from the video platform. 2018 saw Gaming become the fastest-growing category on YouTube, but Music views still reign supreme and it is music that still generates the most amount of cash for YouTube.
In 2018 Gaming had 693,287,499,930 views, making up 7% of total views and 31% of total content. Music, on the other hand, had 1,987,019,200,235 views, which made up 20% of views, with 5% of total content.
But it’s music that generates profits for the Google-owned platform, according to a new research report by global search engine Pex.
“This is caused by multiple reasons,” says Pex CEO Rasty Turek, who provides the above gaming and music data.
“Gaming content is by far the longest, which requires YouTube to spend more money on hosting it.
“Music, on the other hand, is the shortest of all categories, but in turn generates the most views per average video.”
Music is the only category that consistently attracts hundreds of millions of users to watch the same videos over and over. The first video that ever broke the 1 billion view mark was a music video. The vast majority of videos with over 1 billion views are music videos.
Pex says 621 hours of content are uploaded every minute, which is more than YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki’s estimate in March 2019.
The length of videos is increasing, driven mostly by long-form content, primarily gaming videos and live streaming.
Users uploaded more than 1.3 billion videos in 2018. But as the Pex report’s graph showed, the growth is slowing down.
Turek explains, “This is not caused by competition luring users away, but rather by the fact that YouTube has peaked within the connected population.
“Of the 4 billion people that now own a smartphone, 800 million are blocked from accessing YouTube in China and some large parts of the World still don’t have fast enough connections to consume video content.
“This peak also explains why YouTube spends so many resources on keeping users more active within the platform.”
After Nielsen data indicated that 44% of teens claim they discover live music events on YouTube, it has been striking alliances in concert ticketing overseas.
The current breakdown of which music genres dominate YouTube consumption is not known.
But in 2013, Videoink said pop made up 9.7% and that the Top 5 music topics by uploads were remix (2.7%), hip hop (2.3%), rock (1.8%), pop (1.5%) and guitar (1.3%).
The music industry’s beef with YouTube is not just its low royalty rate: $1 per user compared to $20 by Spotify, said the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry’s Music Consumer Insight Report 2018.
It also found that the majority (47%) of on-demand music streaming is happening on YouTube and that 35% of streaming-music consumers cite user-uploaded services like YouTube as the primary reason they don’t subscribe to a paid audio subscription.
Google Australia advised TMN that there are no specific Australian statistics for YouTube.
But other studies find that globally YouTube operates in 88 countries and has 1.3 billion users, and 98% of American Internet users ages 18 to 24 visit the site.
Pex says that by Dec 31, 2018, YouTube had over 5.2 billion videos uploaded, 1 billion hours of content, 29 trillion views, 250 billion likes and dislikes and 33 billion comments.