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How Many YouTube Channels Are There?

We all know YouTube has gotten incredibly big, but just how many YouTube channels are there in the world? Let's dig in and use a little known Google trick to find out.

YouTube recently hit a huge milestone, over 1 billion hours of videos are watched each day. On top of that, the number of YouTube channels with over 1 million subscribers has jumped in recent years.

YouTube CEO and tech innovator Susan Wojcicki released a look back and review last February. In the article, she noted that channels with over 1 million subscribers almost doubled last year. In addition, YouTube creators who earn five or six figures grew by 40% in just one year.

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But, exactly how many YouTube channels are there? As of August 2019, there are 373 million YouTube channels.

How did we come up with that number? By using Google’s very own servers along with some search operators to source the number of channels.

How Many YouTube Channels Are There? – Methodology

You may not realize but if you have a YouTube account you have a channel as well. You may think that a channel is something fancy but actually a channel is just the homepage where any of your personal videos are organized.

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It’s clear, YouTube is continuing to grow at a rapid pace and the YouTube channels that provide user-generated content are continuing to rapidly grow. So how can we get a snapshot of the channel count today in 2019?

Google provides all kinds of cool tools to use when searching. These are called search operators. You can do things like excluding certain words, search in the text of webpages for specific words and more.

In this case, we will use the “site” search operator to see how many pages are indexed that meet certain criteria.

The first thing we’ll need to know is whether there are specific unique URLs that match channels on YouTube. After looking through a dozen or so, we find that every YouTube channel has a similar url structure:

“https://www.youtube.com/channel/” followed by a string of numbers and letters.

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Now, we can use this in the site operator by heading to Google.com and searching for “site:https://www.youtube.com/channel/*” without quotes.

You may notice that I added an asterisk, which designates a wildcard for Google. In other words, anything can follow the trailing /.

Above you’ll see a screenshot of what comes up. Google’s servers have indexed a total of 373 million YouTube channels.

*NOTE: what we can’t really account for is the potential that Google hasn’t indexed some very small channels with, say less than 10 users or so.

However, this gives us a great idea of how many YouTube channels there are: 373 million. There are some other sites that claim 23 million YouTube channels, which is clearly way off just by looking at the number of channels YouTube has indexed.

How Many YouTubers Are There?

Number of YouTubers

According to YouTube, there are over 1.9 billion YouTubers out there. This is the number of active users that log in each and every month.

However, that doesn’t take into account all the Youtubers that have an account but don’t use YouTube very often. Given the number above, it is very likely that YouTube has well over 2 billion users in total. However, we don’t know the exact number as they haven’t shared that with the public. Only the number of active users.

There are 1.9 billion YouTubers on YouTube

How Many YouTube Channels Have Over 1 Million Subscribers?

As we know from above, the number of YouTube channels with over a million subscribers is growing incredibly fast.

In 2016, Social Blade reported that over 2,400 channels have 1 million or more subscribers. BUT, that was 3 years ago.

Let’s take a look today.

If you look through the list of top 5,000 channels by subscribers every single one has over 2 million subscribers. That means there are over 5,000 YouTube channels with more than 1 million subscribers.

Another fact is that the number of channels with over 1 million subscribers grew by more than 75% year over year.

This would lead me to guess the total number of YouTube channels with over 1 million subscribers is somewhere between 7,000 and 10,000.

Unfortunately, at this point, YouTube hasn’t provided the exact number of channels that fall into this category.

Top YouTube Channels In 2019

Now that we’ve covered the total number of YouTube channels and how many super popular channels there are, let’s cover the cream of the crop.

These are the channels with the most subscribers:

2019 RankYouTube ChannelNumber Of Subscribers (In Millions)
1T-Series108
2PewDiePie99
35-Minute Crafts59
4Cocomelon – Nursery Rhymes57
5SET India53
6Canal KondZilla51
7WWE47
8Justin Bieber46
9Dude Perfect44
10Zee Music Company41

The fun thing is that the number will constantly change and hopefully we’ll see some new entries into the list of top 10 YouTube channels.

Multiple YouTube Channels

One factor to take into account is that anyone can have multiple YouTube channels. For instance, you could have a personal YouTube channel as well as a channel for your business.

Say you own a coffee shop and as a hobby make DIY craft projects. You could both have a channel showing how to make coffee at your coffee shop as well as how to do craft projects using your personal account.

Interested in adding another channel to your portfolio, you can do so by following these steps:

  1. Make sure you’re signed in to YouTube using the same account you want to add a business channel to.
  2. Head over to your YouTube Channel list: https://www.youtube.com/channel_switcher
  3. From there you will see a list of your channels along with an option to create a new channel, click or tap on the plus sign.
  4. Once you click the plus you will be shown a screen to choose your business name, think of what is appropriate for the business or other channel you want to set up. Keep in mind you don’t need to include LLC if you don’t want to. This doesn’t have to be your official business name, it can be what you would like to call it or what you want the public to see.
  5. Continue to fill in the details on the new business channel.

As you can imagine, the fact that any person can have multiple YouTube channels means that there are more YouTube channels then there are users. Every user has at least one channel and some have multiple channels

Using this logic we come to a bit different conclusion as to how many YouTube channels there are. We know that YouTube has over 1.3 BILLION users every month based on a stat from last year. Given that’s only the number of users per month and the fact that users can have multiple channels leads us to believe there are, in total, significantly more than 1.3 billion channels out there.

Trevor Nace

Trevor Nace is the founder of How-To Apps. He has a PhD from Duke University and has been in the tech space and writing about tech for a number of years. He previously started and ran an app website and his articles on apps have been read millions of times around the globe. You can find him on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.

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