How to Make Money on YouTube in South Africa: A Comprehensive Guide

YouTube has emerged as a powerful platform for content creators worldwide, and South Africa is no exception. With a growing community of YouTubers, the potential for earning income through YouTube is more viable than ever.

In this guide, we’ll explore how to make money on YouTube in South Africa, with key strategies, statistics, and actionable insights.

I use VidIQ to maximise my channel growth. It has helped me grow from 12K subscriber to over 50K since 2021!

Understanding YouTube Monetization in South Africa

YouTube offers various ways to monetize your channel, including AdSense, Channel Memberships, YouTube Premium revenue, and more.

However, it’s essential to meet specific requirements to access these monetization features.

YouTube Partner Program Requirements:
  • Minimum 1,000 subscribers
  • Minimum 4,000 watch hours in the past 12 months
  • Adherence to YouTube monetization policies

South African YouTube Statistics

Below are vital statistics about YouTube’s performance in South Africa that provide a valuable context:

Statistic Value
Total YouTube Users in South Africa 9 million
Average Watch Time per User 8 hours/week
Top YouTube Categories Music, Gaming, Education
Average CPM (Cost Per Mille) $2 – $5

Methods to Make Money on YouTube in South Africa

1. Ad Revenue

Enable AdSense on your channel and earn money through ad impressions and clicks.

  • Typical South African CPM: $2 – $5
  • Influenced by video content, audience demographics, and ad type
2. Channel Memberships

Offer exclusive content to channel members at different pricing tiers.

3. Affiliate Marketing

Promote products and earn commissions on sales made through your unique affiliate links.

  • Suitable for tech, beauty, and fashion YouTubers
  • Potential to earn varying commissions depending on the product
4. Brand Partnerships

Collaborate with brands for sponsored content.


How to Make Money on YouTube in South Africa: A Comprehensive Guide

Unique Niches for South African YouTubers

1. Local Languages Content

With 11 official languages, South Africa presents a fertile ground for content creators to produce videos in different languages like Zulu, Xhosa, and Afrikaans.

2. South African Culture and Heritage

Channels focusing on South African history, art, cuisine, and traditional practices can attract a local and international audience interested in unique cultural insights.

3. Local Travel and Adventure

South Africa’s diverse landscapes offer a niche for travel vloggers to explore wildlife, adventure sports, and local tourism destinations.

4. Social Issues and Education

Content around social development, education, and empowerment resonates with a significant portion of the population, creating a niche for channels focusing on positive change and community growth.

5. E-commerce and Entrepreneurship

With the growth of local businesses and entrepreneurship, channels providing guidance on starting and running a business in South Africa can find a targeted audience.

Challenges for South African YouTubers

1. Internet Accessibility

Although improving, internet access remains limited in certain areas. This impacts both the content creators and the viewership, as high-quality video streaming requires a stable internet connection.

2. Competition with International Content

South African YouTubers often compete with international channels, and the local audience may gravitate towards global trends. Standing out requires a strong understanding of local preferences.

3. Economic Factors

Monetizing a channel might be more challenging due to lower average CPM rates and purchasing power, compared to other developed markets.

4. Regulation and Censorship

Compliance with local laws and regulations may add complexity to content creation, especially when dealing with political or sensitive social issues.

5. Equipment and Technology

Access to cutting-edge equipment and technology may be more expensive or challenging to find, potentially limiting production quality.

South African YouTubers face a unique set of opportunities and challenges shaped by cultural diversity, economic factors, and technological infrastructure. Embracing local niches and overcoming challenges through innovation and a deep understanding of the South African audience can pave the way for success on the platform.

By recognizing these unique aspects, content creators can align their strategies with South Africa’s specific dynamics, opening doors to growth, community engagement, and financial success on YouTube.

Challenges and Solutions

Growing and monetizing a YouTube channel in South Africa poses certain challenges, such as competition and compliance with YouTube’s policies. Solutions include consistent uploading, focusing on your niche (such as YouTube SEO, tips and tricks, etc.), and engaging with your community.


Making money on YouTube in South Africa requires dedication, understanding of the platform’s monetization methods, and leveraging the specific trends and behaviors of the South African audience. By focusing on creating valuable content, engaging with your target audience, and strategically monetizing your channel, you can turn your YouTube passion into a profitable business.


Can I Use YouTube Videos for Educational Purposes?

Any kind of potentially copyright-related YouTube usage can get murky, that includes educational use.

Unfortunately, while many services and laws make exceptions or allowances for educational use, copyright law is not inherently one of them. This does not mean that YouTube is off-limits for educational use, but it is important to understand what constitutes a breach of copyright.

Of course, it wouldn’t be murky if we could just tell you exactly what constitutes a copyright violation in all cases. The reality is far too messy, and often on a case-by-case basis. It is not unusual for certain examples of copyright infringement to remain questionable until there is a court case to settle it.

Fortunately, it is entirely possible to use YouTube for educational purposes in such a way that the question of copyright infringement never needs to rear its ugly head.

What Constitutes Educational?

It is important to understand the word “educational” in a copyright/license sense before grabbing YouTube content, as some YouTubers permit the use of their content for educational purposes.

The first thing to note is that if you are making a profit from the content itself—such as selling an online course and including the content in the course—you are unlikely to get the benefit of the doubt from any content creator. To be considered legitimately educational, you would need to be part of an educational institution, such as a school or university. In almost all cases, if you are working outside of those institutional frameworks, you will struggle to convince any copyright holders or service providers that you are educational.

Can I Use YouTube Videos On My Website? 2

YouTube Terms of Service

Another important thing to consider is the YouTube Terms of Service, which apply regardless of how you use the content. One particularly relevant point is YouTube’s stance on downloading their content, which is don’t. It is not allowed to download videos from YouTube for any purpose, which means it is not permissible to download videos for educational purposes.

This may not seem like a problem at first, but when combined with the fact that it is also not permitted to broadcast or display YouTube content, it starts to put a bit of a roadblock in the way of using the platform for educational reasons.

Essentially, it means you would be breaking YouTube terms of service by playing a YouTube video to a class of students, but you would also be breaking the terms of service by downloading the content you wish to show and playing that to your class.

How to Use YouTube for Educational Purposes

So, with that in mind, how do you use YouTube videos for educational purposes? The chances of you being caught playing videos in a primary school classroom are pretty slim, but we wouldn’t advise taking chances like that. No matter how slim the risk of being caught is, you are still breaking the terms and conditions.

In all likelihood, the worst YouTube would do is ban a user for violating their terms of service (though legal action is not impossible). However, if you are breaking the terms using an account that represents the educational institution you work for, you could end up getting the entire school in trouble with YouTube, which could see your employer take disciplinary action against you.

So let’s talk about how you can use it.

Can YouTube Premium Be Shared? 1

Sharing YouTube Videos

If the reason you are sharing the videos does not require them to be watching in real-time together, you can always just share the link to the video with your students in the same way you would share the video with friends. There is no rule against sharing the content (as long as you’re not charging people for the link), and anything your students do with the content after that would be their responsibility.

Getting Content From the Source

It may be against YouTube’s terms to broadcast YouTube or play it to large groups of people, and it may be against their terms to download content from YouTube, but the restrictions only refer to the platform, not the content itself.

If there is a piece of content that you think would serve your educational purposes, consider contacting the owner of that content directly and asking them about using it. If they are okay with this, you can also ask them if it would be possible to send you the content directly, so you can play the media without using YouTube.

It should be noted that there is no practical way for YouTube to catch you downloading their content in the vast majority of cases, especially if you have the permission of the creator to use that content. But, once again, it is against their terms of service, so you are taking a risk if you do that.

Most YouTubers are already putting their content out for “free” in a sense and should be open to the idea of their content being played in an educational setting, even if they would not be getting views for it.

Create Your Own Content

In much the same way that the above suggestion gets around the various problems with YouTube’s terms, so too does creating your own content. And, in creating your own content, you can ensure that it shows exactly what you want it to show.

You will still be subject to YouTube’s terms about broadcasting and playing YouTube to groups of people, but you will also be in possession of the original files, so you won’t need YouTube. And, as a nice aside, your content could be made publicly available and, eventually, monetised.

Final Thoughts

While YouTube doesn’t make any special concessions for educational use, the restrictions it places on the use of its platform should not pose any significant hurdle to someone looking to use YouTube to educate. Whether you are a teacher looking to use informative content that is already there, or someone looking to create the informative content for others, there are ways to make it all work!

Top 5 Tools To Get You Started on YouTube

Very quickly before you go here are 5 amazing tools I have used every day to grow my YouTube channel from 0 to 30K subscribers in the last 12 months that I could not live without.

1. VidIQ helps boost my views and get found in search

I almost exclusively switched to VidIQ from a rival in 2020.

Within 12 months I tripled the size of my channel and very quickly learnt the power of thumbnails, click through rate and proper search optimization. Best of all, they are FREE!

2. Adobe Creative Suite helps me craft amazing looking thumbnails and eye-catching videos

I have been making youtube videos on and off since 2013.

When I first started I threw things together in Window Movie Maker, cringed at how it looked but thought “that’s the best I can do so it’ll have to do”.

Big mistake!

I soon realized the move time you put into your editing and the more engaging your thumbnails are the more views you will get and the more people will trust you enough to subscribe.

That is why I took the plunge and invested in my editing and design process with Adobe Creative Suite. They offer a WIDE range of tools to help make amazing videos, simple to use tools for overlays, graphics, one click tools to fix your audio and the very powerful Photoshop graphics program to make eye-catching thumbnails.

Best of all you can get a free trial for 30 days on their website, a discount if you are a student and if you are a regular human being it starts from as little as £9 per month if you want to commit to a plan.

3. helps people read my videos

You can’t always listen to a video.

Maybe you’re on a bus, a train or sat in a living room with a 5 year old singing baby shark on loop… for HOURS. Or, you are trying to make as little noise as possible while your new born is FINALLY sleeping.

This is where Rev can help you or your audience consume your content on the go, in silence or in a language not native to the video. can help you translate your videos, transcribe your videos, add subtitles and even convert those subtitles into other languages – all from just $1.50 per minute.

A GREAT way to find an audience and keep them hooked no matter where they are watching your content.

4. PlaceIT can help you STAND OUT on YouTube

I SUCK at making anything flashy or arty.

I have every intention in the world to make something that looks cool but im about as artistic as a dropped ice-cream cone on the web windy day.

That is why I could not live on YouTube without someone like PlaceIT. They offer custom YouTube Banners, Avatars, YouTube Video Intros and YouTube End Screen Templates that are easy to edit with simple click, upload wizard to help you make amazing professional graphics in minutes.

Best of all, some of their templates are FREE! or you can pay a small fee if you want to go for their slightly more premium designs (pst – I always used the free ones).

5. StoryBlocks helps me add amazing video b-roll cutaways

I mainly make tutorials and talking head videos.

And in this modern world this can be a little boring if you don’t see something funky every once in a while.

I try with overlays, jump cuts and being funny but my secret weapon is b-roll overlay content.

I can talk about skydiving, food, money, kids, cats – ANYTHING I WANT – with a quick search on the StoryBlocks website I can find a great looking clip to overlay on my videos, keeping them entertained and watching for longer.

They have a wide library of videos, graphics, images and even a video maker tool and it wont break the bank with plans starting from as little as £8.25 ($9) per month.


Keep Learning And Grow On YouTube (DEEP DIVE)

Keep Learning And Grow On YouTube (DEEP DIVE) // The secret to non stop growth on youtube, life and business is learning. If you keep learning new skills, keep learning your niche then you can keep talking about it and teaching people. You can grow your channel and secure your future success by learning marketable skills that can add to your income.

Grow Your YouTube Channel While Learning – I have been on YouTube since 2012 and I strive to get better with every video. Every chance I get I listen to audio books, watch videos and experiment with new platforms to see how this can help my audience and expand my overall reach, and you should to!

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Is It Too Late To Start YouTube –


5 YouTube Educators That ALL Small YouTubers MUST See

5 YouTube Educators That ALL Small YouTubers MUST See // Roberto BlakeNick NimminAmy Schmittauer LandinoBrian G. Johnson and Tim Schmoyer are YouTube Educators on YouTube looking to help you make content, grow on YouTube, create something awesome and improve your own future through educational youtube videos and tutorials.

Their content has be hugely influential in my own YouTube career and I wanted to share the love and share the educational gold mine that are their channels and videos.

YouTube Experts & Educator Playlist —

Roberto Blake Channel —
Videos I Mention Roberto Blake —
Roberto Blake Playlist —

Amy Landino Channel —
Vlog Like A Boss Book —
Amy Landino Playlist —

Nick Nimmin Channel —
Nick Nimmin Playlist —

Brian G Johnson Channel —
Tube Ritual Book —
Brian G Johnson Playlist —

Tim Schmoyer Channel —
Tim Schmoyer Playlist —

YouTubeTips #Education #Learning #Help #YouTubeTutorials #Tutorials #YouTube #FAQs #YouTuberProblems #StartCreating #HowTo #AlanSpicer #RobertoBlake #NickNimminn #AmyLandino #TimSchmoyer #BrianGJohnson



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We can grow together, We can learn together… Start Creating!


Note — Some of my links will be affiliate marketing links. These links do not affect the price of the products or services referred to but may offer commissions that are used to help me to fund the free YouTube video tutorials on this channel — thank you for your support.


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