YouTube Analytics: More Data, More Money

By Carolina Beltran


**Given the enormous amounts of data YouTube generates, it should come as no surprise it offers robust analytics. YouTube’s first analytics offering was called Insight. Released in 2008, Insight was a basic, self-service analytics and reporting tool. Last November, YouTube announced several enhancements to Insight, including a name change to YouTube Analytics.

Analytics, of any type, whether site or video, is a critical component of any effective online media strategy. Any successful marketer will tell you in-depth analysis of analytics data, and implementation of that analysis, makes campaigns thrive. If that’s not compelling enough for you, basic (but thorough) programs like YouTube Analytics are free. We want to highlight the differences between the old and new YouTube data sets and how they can help you run a great video campaign and make more money while you’re at it.

How It Works

YouTube’s first analytics product, Insight, was very basic – it was 2008 after all.  It allowed users to view data for a specific video or aggregate data from all videos for a channel. The five main data types back then were Views & Popularity, Discovery, Demographics, Audience Attention and Community Engagement.

The Views & Popularity reports consisted of trend lines and a heat map of views by location. The Discovery reports displayed search terms and related videos that led to your video. Demographics reports displayed age and gender information and Audience Attention reports featured Hot Spot – which compared your bounce and rewind rates to videos of a similar length. The Community Engagement reports were the most sophisticated of all the reporting, providing data on ratings, commenting and when someone made your video a favorite.

In November 2011, YouTube Analytics was announced and touted as easier to use and smarter than ever. At-a-glance, the interface looks much simpler and the design is familiar – think Google Analytics. In this version, reports have been categorized into two types – Standard and Engagement.  All reports are designed to enable the user to build bigger audiences, make better videos and earn more money.

Build Bigger Audiences

The Demographic report helps you understand who your audience is and where they are coming from so that you can better tailor and target content. These reports will help you learn where your audience is located, their age and their gender.

The Traffic Source report provides insight on websites and searches driving audiences to your content. Use this report to promote your videos more heavily to those sources.

The Subscriber report will show you which of your videos are driving the most views and subscribers so that you can promote them more heavily to generate new audiences or create new, similar videos to reinvigorate existing audiences.

**One of the coolest reports in this new version of YouTube Analytics is the Audience Retention report. Here you’ll learn whether people are watching your whole video or only parts of it and where they stop watching. It’s a great report for finding out how long your videos should be to retain the most viewers.

The Comments report gives you information on which videos are driving the most community engagement and where the comments are coming from. Use this report to join the conversation.

Make Better Videos

There are a few reports available through YouTube Analytics that provide insight on how to make your videos the best they can be for your audience.

The Favorites report provides information on audience ratings and favorites so you know which videos your audience prefers and what kind of videos you should make more of.

The Sharing, Comments and Likes & Dislikes reports help you identify the most engaging videos – individual video metrics enable you to see which videos are being shared, commented on and liked (or disliked) so you can create better content.

Earn More Money

One of the most attractive things about YouTube is the potential for your videos to generate lots of revenue, especially when you consider how many people visit YouTube daily. YouTube Analytics gets you a bit closer to capturing that revenue.

If you use the reports we’ve noted to build your audience and make better videos, you’ll be able to project how much money you’ll earn on those videos. When you identify drivers (sites and audiences driving the most views), you’ll gain insight on where to spend more to get more. **

**Founded in February 2005, YouTube is currently the world’s most popular online video community. By providing a home to videos like Charlie Bit My Finger, Evolution of Dance and Dramatic Chipmunk, YouTube has led the way in popularizing Internet trends in popular culture.

The amount of content uploaded to YouTube every minute alone is staggering:

  • 48 hours of video are uploaded every minute, resulting in nearly 8 years of content uploaded every day
  • Over 3 billion videos are viewed a day
  • Users upload the equivalent of 240,000 full-length films every week
  • More video is uploaded to YouTube in one month than the 3 major US networks created in 60 years
  • 70% of YouTube traffic comes from outside the US
  • YouTube is localized in 25 countries across 43 languages
  • YouTube’s demographic is broad: 18-54 years old
  • YouTube reached over 700 billion playbacks in 2010
  • 800M unique users visit YouTube each month**

Source: YouTube Press Statistics

Gaining access to YouTube Analytics doesn’t require anything more than what you already have – a YouTube account.

We are ready to help you use the advanced YouTube reporting to guide your video advertising strategy and identify opportunities for new video content. As we’ve seen throughout the years, YouTube isn’t simply a video sharing website, it’s also a powerful social network and a creative utopia for users and marketers alike. Let’s get started on making the most of the YouTube Analytics enhancements soon – Contact us!

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