How to Increase Watch Hours on YouTube: Best Tips


9 Tips to Increase Watch Hours on YouTube

  1. Utilize Storytelling on YouTube
  2. Use Pattern Interrupters to Boost Interest
  3. Utilize Captions Throughout a Video
  4. Don’t Add an Outro
  5. Create Evergreen Videos
  6. Conduct Live Streams
  7. Utilize Playlists
  8. Use End Screens
  9. Publish Videos Constantly

Everyone knows that having 4,000 watch hours is one of the important criteria for YouTube monetization. It isn’t easy which is why a lot of creators use about a year or even more to attain it. However, it is worth it when you eventually get 4,000 watch hours.

When you achieve this, you can enable monetization for your videos through ads via YouTube’s Partner Program. It’s just like earning while sleeping and it’s an amazing way of boosting one’s income stream. Wondering how to increase watch hours on YouTube so you can start earning lots of money from the platform? Read on to find out!

What is YouTube Watch Time?

You may not know what are watch hours on YouTube. Let me explain it to you.

Watch time means the total duration that viewers use to watch a video. Every YouTube video watch time is counted and added to the overall count of a channel. In order for one’s watch time to allow for monetization, he has to get 4,000 watch hours within 12 months.

Additionally, only some video types will be able to collect watch time. Do not put your videos on private to ensure that you get 4,000 public watch hours because it’s the major qualifier.

Are 4,000 Watch Hours Needed to Join the YouTube Partner Program?

You do not need 4,000 hours to become a part of the YPP. You can join with only 3,000 hours and earn via fan funding rather than ads. The fan funding options are Super Chats, Super Thanks, channel memberships, etc.

These are the least requirements to become a part of the YouTube Partner Program. However, don’t forget that you will still require 4,000 watch hours on YouTube to start earning ad revenue.

How to Find the Watch Hours on YouTube

Do you know the amount of watch hours you have now? You have to know this because it’s very useful when you want to build an appropriate strategy to retain the attention of viewers. Follow these steps to check your watch hours;

1. Proceed to ‘YouTube Studio’, then select Earn in the left bar.

2. You will be taken to the ‘Become a Partner’ page. Move down and click ‘How to Join’.

3. Then, you will be shown the number of watch hours on your channel.

Best Tips on How to Gain Additional Watch Hours on YouTube

If you want to start increasing your watch hours on YouTube, utilize the tips below;

1. Utilize Storytelling on YouTube

When you tell a good story, it will keep people engaged and thereby boost your YouTube watch time. In all your videos, try to capture the attention of viewers and make emotional scenes that’ll keep hooking them all through. In order to carry out that effectively, you should utilize these aspects of YouTube storytelling.

First, your titles and thumbnails should be able to convince viewers to click. Then, your video introductions should persuade viewers to continue to watch. Also, utilize emotional connectivity to keep people interested in your story.

Title and Thumbnail

Your title and thumbnail are very important. They have to give people a glimpse of your video story and show how watching it will be.

Video Introduction

An appropriate introduction won’t beat around the bush but state the things that viewers like in the first few seconds. In case you are finding it difficult to decide on hooks, check out the top YouTube videos and their introductions. Always use good hooks that drive curiosity.

Emotional Trigger

Emotions will make your video much more relatable. Use emotional triggers such as fear, nostalgia, etc. to render your video more relevant to people’s lives.

2. Use Pattern Interrupters to Elevate YouTube Watch Time

When you know how to edit your story well, you will boost your watch time greatly. Pattern interrupters are the best to achieve this. They’ll transform a normal video into an amazing one by including a variety of what was there before. They are visual or auditory elements that lead to a change in the thought pattern of someone. Some pattern interrupters are;

  • Adjusting camera angles
  • Graphics and images
  • Music change
  • Changes in scenes
  • Sound effect
  • Jump cut

3. Utilize Captions Throughout a Video

People will watch your videos for a longer time if there are captions. Reading usually removes pressure from people who do not like listening or people with hearing loss. Also, people in crowded places prefer to read captions than to listen to a video.

Additionally, you should utilize subtitles if you have a multicultural YouTube audience. Subtitles carry out the translation of audio into many languages in order for individuals from far regions to comprehend better.

4. Don’t Add an Outro

Do you know that a lot of viewers go away once they hear goodbye or closing phrases? Therefore, rather than announcing your video’s end, leave when people don’t know. Your watch hours will increase if you do not announce a video’s ending.

5. Create Evergreen Videos

Evergreen videos are popular throughout the year, so they are important for getting more watch hours. Evergreen topics such as how to change your job, how to make pizza, how to make friends in your 40s, etc. usually have high search volume throughout the year.

These video types usually provide steady watch time due to popularity. In case you find it difficult to choose evergreen content ideas, try to find out what your viewers care most about.

6. Conduct Live Streams on YouTube

Live stream watch hours also count in the 4000 hours target. Therefore, do live streams to connect with people in real time. It’s among the best ways of boosting your watch hours.

Start utilizing live streaming especially if you have stayed on YouTube for around 12 months. By that time, you would have had at least 1000 subscribers who could join your streams.

7. Utilize Playlists for Building Watch Hours

Users binge videos non-stop on Netflix due to the fact that their videos are organized with playlists. People do not need to continue to select episodes, instead, they’ll select a movie and Netflix will play its episodes automatically.

It’s a good strategy to utilize in your YouTube channel. Find out the topics with the highest interest and make YouTube playlists holding 10 or more such videos. It is a very easy way of boosting one’s watch time.

8. Utilize End Screens for Building Watch Hours

YouTube end screen is an interactive outro that comes up in a video’s last 5-20 seconds. You’re free to include any clickable element to it like a website link, subscribe button, another channel’s link, etc.

Sending viewers to your other videos is ideal if you’re aiming to increase your watch time. Rather than making an outro, say the last point and change to an end screen fast. Then, recommend another video to viewers.

9. Publish Videos Constantly

YouTube has a recommendation system that usually suggests appropriate videos to viewers according to their watch history and some other factors. YouTube will do this quicker and easier if you are constantly creating and uploading videos.

The algorithm can’t depend on a channel for good recommendations when there aren’t plenty of videos. It isn’t a must to upload every day. However, abide by a schedule that’ll keep viewers engaged and won’t lead to burnout on your part.


Can I Watch My Own YouTube Video for Additional Watch Hours?

You may watch your own video but don’t do so with the aim of increasing your watch hours. Based on what YouTube said, they do not allow things that artificially boost view count, likes, comments, and other metrics. Also, a lot of creators discovered that the platform deletes views that come from their personal browsers after 2 days.

What is a Good Way of Increasing My Watch Hours?

Concentrate on audience retention. As viewers are watching your videos for a longer time, you will be getting more watch hours. Check the number of viewers that are still watching after 30 seconds and check how many of them watch till the end. Also, check whether people watch 50% of your content on average. Use all this information to make and publish better videos.

Are YouTube Shorts Counted as Watch Hours?

No, watch hours from Shorts doesn’t count in your 3,000 hours needed to become a part of YouTube’s Partner Program. The watch hours have to originate from normal videos. Alternatively, you can get 500 subscribers and 3 million Shorts views within 90 days.

Should I Create Longer Videos to Gain Additional Watch Hours?

You can create long videos, so you’ll get 3,000 hours. However, note that your content has to be just the right length for a particular topic and shouldn’t be too long and boring. If people become bored, they will leave your video and that’ll hurt your watch hours.

How Do I Gain More Free YouTube Watch Hours?

In order to gain more watch hours on YouTube, utilize and master storytelling, utilize pattern interrupters for boosting engagement, utilize captions in your video, forget about outros, always create evergreen content, regularly conduct live streams, utilize playlists and end screens for building watch hours, and upload videos constantly.

Written by
Beatriz Sirena

Beatriz Sirena, a true trailblazer in the world of social media and digital storytelling, seamlessly integrates her academic background with a wealth of creative expertise on Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Facebook.

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