Blog vs. Youtube is an extensive debate that’s gone on for the past decade. This article will discuss the two platforms and whether you should start a blog or create a YouTube channel.
While I can’t make you choose between either platform, I’ll help you decide through statistics, a pros and cons list, seven questions to ask yourself, and a compromise you can make.
Anyways, let’s get straight into the debate of blog vs. YouTube.
Blogging vs YouTube
I assume you already know these two platforms, but here’s a quick little recap if you’re unfamiliar with blogging or YouTube.
This recap also includes how bloggers and YouTubers monetize on their platforms, plus how much you can potentially make.
What is blogging?
Blogging is the form of writing that gets self-published online. To create a blog, you need to buy a domain name (website name), buy web hosting, and join a blogging platform like WordPress. You can stylize the website to however you please with a free or paid theme and then start creating content.
Blogs are basically websites that have posts or media on them.
Blogging statistics (source Semrush):
- There are more than 500 million blogs out of 1.7 billion websites.
- There are 89,409 Google searches every second.
- Users write more than 70 million new posts every month.
- Over 409 million people view more than 20 billion pages each month.
How to make money blogging
Bloggers can make money in a variety of different ways; here are the top five:
- Display advertising: You can choose to display ads around your blog. It’s the most passive form of blog income, and you can earn between $1 to $50 per 1000 pageviews, depending on your niche and ad network.
- Affiliate marketing: When a user buys a product or service through a tracked (affiliate) link, a blogger will make a commission on the final cost. These affiliate commissions often vary from 5% – 60%, depending on the affiliate’s terms and conditions.
- Digital products: Selling digital products and photography are an easy way bloggers can make money. These digital products often range in price from 99¢ to $250+.
- Courses: If you’re an expert in a particular niche, then a course is a great option to make extra money. Courses are video or text-based and can range in price from $9 – $1000+.
- Sponsored posts: A business will pay bloggers to write about their product or service and promote it to their audience. The pay varies depending on page views, but it’s a minimum of $50 a post.
Now, if you’re wondering how much bloggers can make, it’s between $0 and $100,000+ a month. It all depends on the niche, page views, and high-quality content.
The average blogger makes $29.08 per 1000 page views (source: Income School), so if you built a blog up to 100,000 pageviews/month, you could make an average of $2908/month.
Remember, this is just an average. I’ve seen bloggers like Adam Enfroy make $824.67 per 1000 pageviews. There’s never a set-in-stone figure.
Recommended read: 17 Highest Paid Bloggers in 2021
What is YouTube?
YouTube is a video-sharing platform where users can watch videos, subscribe, like, and comment on other channels, as well as upload their own videos.
Starting a YouTube channel is a lot more straightforward than blogging. All you have to do is sign in to your YouTube account, click on your profile picture, then click on “create a channel,” follow the steps, and voila, you’ve successfully created a YouTube channel.
YouTube statistics (source Hootsuite):
- YouTube has more than two billion logged-in monthly users.
- There are more than a billion hours of videos watched on YouTube every day.
- YouTube is the world’s second-most visited website & social media platform.
How to make money on YouTube
YouTuber’s can also make money in a variety of ways, this includes:
- Google Adsense: Basically, a way for YouTubers to place ads at the start or during their videos. It’s all done for them and is the primary way that YouTubers make their income. The ad rates can vary from $1 to $50 per 1,000 eligible video views.
- Affiliate marketing: Like bloggers, YouTubers can add affiliate links to their video descriptions. Meaning that if their audience member purchases a product or service through their link, they can earn a percentage of the total sale price.
- Merchandise: YouTubers can sell merch to their fans. This option does require a loyal fanbase that trusts the YouTuber.
- Sponsored videos: A business will pay YouTubers to promote their products or services to their fanbase. A YouTuber with 1 million subscribers can expect to make at least $20k from a sponsored video.
The average RPM for Google Adsense is about $2, meaning if you were to get 1 million video views a month, you’d receive $2000 from ads alone.
Similar to blogging, this number can fluctuate a lot depending on your niche. Finance YouTubers like Graham Stephan can receive an RPM of $15 to $25, meaning that he’d make $15,000 to $25,000 for every million views.
Is blogging better than YouTube?
You may be wondering if it’s better to blog or vlog, but there’s never going to be a set-in-stone answer to that question.
For example, I love blogging and will continue doing it for as long as possible, but I also want to branch out to YouTube within the following year. I want to spread my revenue around, so I’m not so heavily reliant on one source.
Again, both platforms have their pros and cons, which I’ll discuss now.
Pros and Cons of Blogging
- Low-cost beginning investment
- Heaps of monetization options
- Design your website however you’d like to
- Can monetize from day one
- No guaranteed success
- Inconsistent income
- Technical issues
- Google SEO takes 6 – 12 months to start ranking
Pros and Cons of YouTube
- Free to create a channel
- Low startup cost if you already own a camera
- Chance of going viral or videos getting promoted
- Not your ‘own platform’
- Time intensive to film and edit
- Expensive gear costs (camera, lighting, microphones)
- No guaranteed success
7 Questions to Ask Yourself About a Blog vs YouTube
Here are seven essential questions to ask yourself over choosing a blog vs. a Youtube channel.
1. What form of content do you love to create?
The first thing you should figure out is what type of content you love to create and consume.
Do you love watching YouTube videos and hands-on tutorials?
Or, do you love reading blog posts and consuming text-based content?
If you’re a good writer, then starting a blog may just be ideal for you. Or, if you love being in front of a camera and conveying your message through video, then creating a YouTube channel may be your perfect option.
If you’re unsure of what content you like to create, then practice with both of them.
YouTube video practice: Start recording yourself, talk to the camera, and get comfortable in front of it. Record yourself talking about your selected topic, and edit the video.
Blogging practice: Research a topic in your selected niche (like landscape photography) and write a detailed blog post in a note writing app. Read these 70 beginner blog post ideas.
Doing practice like this will help you properly understand which platform is more suited and comfortable for you.
2. How much patience do you have for monetization?
If you want to start a blog or YouTube channel for monetization purposes, you have to be aware of the time it takes to monetize.
With a blog, you can monetize from day one. You can join an advertising network, different affiliate programs and start adding them to your initial posts.
Instead of waiting for Google traffic, you can drive traffic from social media and technically start earning money from day one.
To monetize YouTube, your channel must have 1,000 subscribers and have at least 4,000 public watch hours in the past 12 months to qualify for Google Adsense.
You can add affiliate links in your descriptions, but they most likely won’t get clicks with a low subscriber and view count.
If you’re impatient and want to monetize from day one, starting a blog is the option to choose.
3. How much money do you have for startup costs?
Starting a blog and a YouTube channel is very different. Here are the costs:
Costs to start a blog:
– Web hosting: $2 – $10 a month
– Domain name: $10 – $15 a year
– Theme: $60
– Logo: $5 – $50
– Premium plugins: $20 – $80 a year
Starting a blog with the bare minimum (web hosting and domain name) costs around $5 a month. You can check out my recommended blogging tools & resources here.
Costs to start a YouTube channel:
– Camera: $300 – $1,000+
– Premium editing software: $100+
– Lighting: $50 – $100+
If you choose to buy a camera and not film with your smartphone, you’re looking at an upfront cost of $300+.
4. Do you care about putting yourself out there?
This question is more aimed at starting a YouTube channel and if you’re comfortable with people being able to see your progress.
What do I mean by this?
I mean that with a YouTube channel, your subscriber and view counts are displayed for everyone to see. Your friends and family may know that you get two views a video and have only 15 subscribers.
All of your progress is put out there for everyone to see.
Whereas with a blog, your progress isn’t shown for everyone to see. You don’t know my domain authority, how many page views I receive a month, or how much I make unless I explicitly tell you (like I do in my income reports 🤣).
I could also be getting 500,000 pageviews a month, and a general audience wouldn’t know that. Yes, you can use keyword research tools to track your statistics, but they’re just estimates and are never correct.
So, are you comfortable putting yourself out there? Or, would you prefer to be more lowkey with a blog?
5. Are you comfortable speaking to a camera?
If you’re comfortable being in front of a camera, you’ll have a great time starting a YouTube channel. But if you’re not, then you’ll have to improve on that before starting a channel.
Audiences can quickly pick up if you’re uncomfortable or nervous on camera, and it can generally make for a worse viewing experience. This is something that you don’t want to happen as a new YouTuber.
So, if you’re uncomfortable being on camera, I have a few tips for you:
- Start practicing: Set up your camera on your desk or around your house, and just start talking to it for 15 minutes here and there. Doing so will make you a lot more comfortable on camera and will help you learn good camera angles.
- Write a video plan: Having a set plan will stop you from forgetting what to talk about and make your thoughts and ideas flow easier.
- Be authentic: Be your authentic self, and don’t try to be the “perfect YouTuber.” Remember that people love personality and realness. Authenticity is why Emma Chamberlain gets an average of 4 million views a video, because she doesn’t act like someone she isn’t.
6. What type of skills do you have?
Another critical question to ask yourself between starting a blog vs a YouTube channel is, what type of skills do you possess?
With blogging, you’ll need to have a lot of technical skills and some practical skills. The technical abilities involve web design, SEO, content writing, understanding CSS and HTML. The practical skills include photo taking and networking.
With YouTube, you need to possess a lot of practical skills. These include setting up a functioning camera and lighting setup and knowing how to talk fluently. The technical skills include video editing and thumbnail design, a lot less technical than blogging.
While you can learn these skills over time, knowing whether you love these platforms’ practical or technical sides will help you a lot in the beginning.
7. Are you prepared to put in the work?
The last of the questions between starting a blog vs. a YouTube channel is, are you prepared to put in the work?
Neither of these platforms is a get-rich-quick scheme, and you’ll have to put in the work to get somewhere.
You wouldn’t expect to get 40-hours of pay for 2 hours of work, so you need to put in the work and hours necessary to build your page views and subscribers.
You also have to expect that you’ll be working months without making a single dollar. It’s rough, but you have to just keep pushing through and persevering.
Just keep in mind that it often takes bloggers 18 – 24 months before they’re making a full-time income, and it can take YouTuber’s years to gain traction and build a following.
Should I start a blog or YouTube channel?
I can’t tell you whether to start a blog or YouTube channel. Hopefully, you’ve figured that out by yourself with those seven questions.
I love both platforms so much and think they’re perfect in their own set of ways.
You may just prefer writing content, and that’s perfectly fine.
Or, you may enjoy creating videos, and that’s excellent too.
Just choose whatever option feels right for you, or even come to a compromise and start them both.
Please remember that both platforms aren’t get-rich-quick schemes, and it will take a while before you start seeing consistent income.
So that wraps up the debate over starting a blog vs. a YouTube channel.
Hopefully, this article has helped you make a clear decision between blogging or YouTube.
Both platforms have their pros and cons and are excellent in their own set of ways. If you love text-based content and writing, then blogging is meant for you.
Or, if you love video-based content and being on camera, then YouTube is ideal for you.
I’ve chosen blogging as my primary platform, but as I’ve discussed before, I’m also aiming to branch out and start a YouTube channel as well.
Blog vs Youtube: Which platform are you choosing?