How to Make Money From YouTube Shorts (Without Monetization)

Affiliate Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links that I get a kickback from.

Consistent views on YouTube Shorts

YouTube Shorts get a lot of views but don’t make much money.

That’s why you can’t rely on Adsense to monetize them.

There are alternative Shorts monetization options such as affiliate marketing, promoting your own courses, selling digital products, and more.

In this guide, I want to share with you what are some of the other ways to make money from short-form videos on YouTube other than Adsense.  

1. Promote Affiliate Products

You need to sign up for an affiliate program to get a custom link for a product that you want to promote.

Some of the most popular affiliate networks are Amazon Associates, Impact, and PartnerStack.

The easiest way to find an affiliate program for a brand that you want to promote is to Google [brand name] + affiliate program.

Once a viewer clicks on your link and buys the product you will get a percentage of the sale amount.

You can make YouTube Shorts about product reviews, product comparisons, unboxings, first impressions, and how-to videos while linking to them in the pinned comment.

Then tell viewers that you’ve left a link to the product or software that you’re reviewing in the pinned comment of your Short.

If a viewer likes that product they will buy it after clicking on your affiliate link and you’ll make money.

YouTube Shorts have to be 60 seconds or less which means that you don’t have to go in-depth in your review.

It could even be an overview or an unboxing.

What to do if you have nothing to review?

2. Create and Promote a Course

If you have expertise in a particular field you can make a course and host it on Skillshare.

The good news is that you can create online courses for free and it’s a lot easier than most people think.

Take small information from your online course and turn it into YouTube Shorts.

At the end of the Short, you can share a link to your full course where viewers can get the rest of the information.

The viewer doesn’t have to watch your course for your to make money from Skillshare.

If someone doesn’t take your course but signs up to Skillshare through your course link you will still earn 60% of their first payment.

I have a course about how to make viral YouTube Shorts that I promote in my YouTube Shorts.

3. Make Money in the Description

There are two ways to make money from your Short’s description:

1. Post affiliate links in the description

Affiliate links in YouTube Short description

You don’t have to make shorts about specific affiliate products but you can still link to things related to that topic in your Short’s description.

It’s less likely that viewers will click on links that are unrelated to the topic of your Short.

But it’s still worth a shot.

If your Short goes viral, and you have a few affiliate links in the description (or the pinned comment), then most likely at least a small percentage of viewers will click on those affiliate links.

I sometimes leave links to products that I use myself in most of my video descriptions even if the videos aren’t related to the products. 

For example, I leave a link to VidIQ which is a tool that I use to optimize my YouTube videos for SEO.

I also link to NordVPN which is a VPN that I’m currently using.

Both of these software are not related to each other in any way.

2. Post links to your long form videos in the description

Description of YouTube Short

The other way to utilize descriptions to make money with Shorts is to leave links to your other videos or to your channel.

If you’re monetized on YouTube and a viewer watches your long-form video – you make money.

Make it easy for the viewer to binge-watch your content. 

The more content from you someone watches the higher the chance that they will get to know, like, and trust you.

The more people know like and trust you the more money you can make.

What’s also great is that if your long-form videos talk about affiliate products and have links to them, you still have a chance to earn affiliate commissions from a Shorts viewer that came to that video through your Short. 

4. Use Pinned Comments

Pinned comment on YouTube Shorts

Pinned comments are easier to get to on mobile than the description.

In my experience, most Shorts viewers read comments more often than the description.

If a Short goes viral then there will be viewers that want to know what other people think of your content and head into the comment section.

You can leave a comment on your own Short with a link to your long-form videos or a link to a product that you recommend.

If you’re doing this on a desktop, you can click on the three dots next to your comment and select pin.

Every time a viewer opens the comment section of your Short the first thing that they’ll see will be your pinned comment with links to your other content, your channel, or an affiliate product.

Even better, you can tell viewers to check out the pinned comment at the end of the Short.

5. Create and Sell a Digital Prodcut

Just like TikTok, YouTube Shorts can go viral very quickly.

That means that there’s big potential to create and sell your digital products.

Most eCommerce stores use TikTok’s organic reach to advertise products to a large number of people without having to pay for ads. 

You can do the same with YouTube Shorts.

You can list & sell digital products for free on Payhip.

The hardest part of selling digital products is advertising them.

And if you use YouTube Shorts as a way to organically advertise your digital products you could make money this way if you manage to make your Shorts go viral.

P.S. I made this free Notion template with everything I know about starting and growing a YouTube channel. I really hope you’ll like it.

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Does Views on Shorts Get Paid?

Creators that are monetized can earn money from Shorts views with Shorts ads revenue sharing.

Read more about Shorts monetization here.

You can calculate how much your Shorts can make with this Shorts money calculator.

When it comes to making money through YouTube Adsense long-form content wins over Shorts big time.

Here’s how much the biggest YouTubers earn from YouTube Adsense.

YouTube Shorts Monetization Requirements

Shorts monetisation requirements

To start earning ad revenue from YouTube shorts you need to join the YouTube partner program.

You can join the YPP if you have 1000 subscribers and either 4000 watch hours on long-form videos in the last year or 10,000,000 views on YouTube Shorts in the last 90 days.

How Do YouTube Shorts Go Viral?

YouTube studio view of a Short going viral

I posted some Shorts on my YouTube channel and I didn’t expect them to get so many views.

One Short got over 400,000 views and most of my Shorts are still getting consistent daily views every single day.

Even though I posted a lot more long-form videos than Shorts, most of the views on my channel are from Shorts.

If I look at my YouTube studio analytics, the top-viewed content on my channel in the last 48 hours is all Shorts.

That just shows how much YouTube is pushing this feature and how big of an opportunity Shorts are.

Views from YouTube Shorts in 48 hours

Was This Guide on How to Make Money With YouTube Shorts Useful?

The hardest part on YouTube is letting someone know that you even exist.

That’s why, I’ll leave you with a few great resources to help you get discovered faster on YouTube and start making money faster:

How To Get More Views On YouTube Shorts

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How To Start a Viral YouTube Channel

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9 Best AI Tools For YouTubers (Make Videos 67.1% Faster With AI)

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