How to Tell if YouTube Video is Monetized?

How to Tell if YouTube Video is Monetized
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There are a range of different ads which advertisers can choose to display to monetize their videos. Not every video will carry the same ads, and advertisers quite frequently switch ad campaigns around.

You can’t directly check whether a channel is monetized by analyzing their videos with a tool, however, if any advertisements are displayed, it’s monetized. Here’s a look at the various types of ads which YouTube allows.

We’ll also be showing you other ways that marketers make use of YouTube to draw traffic towards their products and services.

A video doesn’t always need to be monetized within the YouTube Partner Program to be making money. After reading our guide, you’ll always know which videos are monetized and how.

YouTube Partner Program Ads

The following ads are the types of advertisements which are offered when partnered with YouTube. Videos monetized using the YouTube Partner program will always display one of the following types of ads.

YouTube Partner Program Ads

TrueView Ads

TrueView ads are YouTube’s standard video ad. Advertisers pay for a TrueView ad when viewers either watch or interact with their video advertisement. Skippable TrueView ads range between 12 seconds and 6 minutes. Non-skippable True-View ads are between 15 and 20 seconds. There are two basic types of TrueView ads which you’ll encounter. Let’s take a look at both.

TrueView Video Discovery Ads

Video Discovery YouTube ads are the ads which you see on YouTube search results pages, related videos on watch pages, and the YouTube homepage. You’ll immediately identify them by the ‘Ad’ text appearing directly beneath the first video names appearing in any search results page. The name of the advertiser appears next to the highlighted ‘Ad’ text.

Display ads appear as related videos on the video sidebar to the right of your screen. Again, you can identify them by the next ‘Ad’ and they appear just beneath ‘Up next’. As soon as a user clicks on the ad in the sidebar, an accompanying banner ad display will appear on the top right.

TrueView In-Stream Ads

TrueView In-Stream Ads are the video ads which you see before you can watch certain videos on YouTube. After watching these ads for five seconds, you’re given the option to skip. These ads are very versatile and allow video creators a broad scope of customization. CTAs and can be added as well as overlay text. Channels monetized with TrueView in-stream advertising can potentially have ads displayed anywhere within the Google Display Network. A commonly used ad is a bottom left overlay featuring nothing more than a thumbnail of the advertiser, a link and an enticing title.

Pre-Roll Ads

Pre-Roll ads can be run before, mid-roll, or after the video. All are referred to are Pre-Roll Ads and they range between 15 and 20 seconds each. You also get non-skippable mid-roll video ads which are played during videos with a duration of 10 minutes or longer.


Bumper video ads are just six seconds each and play directly before a viewer’s video. They’re typically part of larger video campaigns. Brands launches, product launches, and events typically place these types of ads. As soon as you see one, you know the video is monetized.

Other Types of Advertising

Not all advertisers rely on the AdSense revenues generated by the YouTube Partner Program. Here’s a look at how to identify videos which have been monetized by other means.

YouTube Videos as Traffic for CPA

CPA is a marketing acronym which represents cost per action. This is the type of affiliate marketing whereby the advertiser or affiliate is paid for leading a user to complete a certain type of action or sequence of actions.

Common examples are dating site subscriptions, forum signups, email subscription services, file downloads, Android & iOS apps, and game downloads. YouTube gives marketers a massive audience to harness for their traffic.

Many marketers are not interested in the YouTube Partner Program’s advertising revenue at all and instead use the video-giant as a springboard to drive traffic toward targeted offers hosted on their own sites or domains.

Whenever you find a video which displays no ads but instead coaxes you toward leaving YouTube using a link, or even at times typing in the URL manually, you’ve probably found something that is a platform for a CPA offer.

YouTube Videos as Traffic for CPA

Content Locking

Content locking is a method used by affiliate marketers to gain signups, downloads or subscriptions for their products or services. This type of marketing relies on you either downloading an app, filling in your email and completing a double-opt-in subscription, but it can require as little as your email address.

Videos which are ‘content locked’ normally offer a digital product or service in lure of you completing one of their offers.

Prime examples of commonly used content locking are illegal hacks and trainers for games, file downloads such as music, movies and other premium software, and at times books. Anything digital can be offered in lure of signup or download, even information.

Illicit users at times offer methods for money making, security circumvention, and other subjects which fall into a grey area, to say the least. While most illicit information and file downloads offered via content locked videos is nothing more than malware or an empty promise luring users to complete an offer, some legitimate providers do exist.

When you unlock or attempt to unlock any digital offering using a content locked video, you are earning the video creator an affiliate fee. This can range from as low as a few cents to $20 or more. Average file downloads and email subscriptions typically earn the advertiser around a dollar each.

The Importance of Video Monetization 

Advertising revenue is essential to keeping good content coming. Without any incentive and funding to support the costs of video creation, passionate broadcasters would not be able to produce the volume and diversity of good video content which they currently supply.

The next time you like a video but are annoyed by the ads, hold in your frustration and remember that the revenues brought in also made that very video possible.

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