How Does YouTube Count Views? 2023 Breakdown

March 22, 2023

The formula of knowing how Youtube counts views is pretty tricky. Remember the time when BTS’s view count for music video “ON” reduced from 83 Million to 48 million?

Then Youtube had released a statement saying videos tend to slow down, freeze, or adjust while they verify view counts.

Everyone knows BTS has a huge loyal army, so it wouldn’t be surprising if the fans had tried to pull a stunt to increase Youtube count views.

But what is the secret behind Youtube count views? How does Youtube count views? What exactly counts as a view on Youtube? We'll break it down in this article.

What counts as a view on YouTube?

Number of views in "I don't wanna live forever" music video

Initially, when the platform was launched it was easy to gain views. But then they realised creators were spamming and faking views or "artificial views".

So, it became necessary to have a view count system that was harder to manipulate. Youtube is still ambiguous on how it counts the views. But here is a general idea on what Youtube accepts as view count.

A view is a video playback requested by an actual user.
  • The play button on the Youtube video must be initiated by a viewer from a verified IP address. Youtube checks the IP address of the viewer to spot spamming.
  • The viewers should watch the video for 30 seconds or more.

In truth, Youtube does not want marketers to spam or fake views just to cheat the metrics. Youtube has nearly made it impossible to forge fake views.

How does Youtube look for artificial views?

Youtube stripped Sony and Universal of 2 Miliion fake views

As mentioned earlier it was easy for Youtubers to fool the system earlier. But now Youtube has come up with a process of despamming. Even if anyone tries it is going to be hard for them to fool the algorithm.

  • Malware Viruses: If a video looks like it is a dangerous malware that can harm your computer, server, or network — it gets deleted from the platform.
  • Replaying and Refreshing: If you believe that you can fool the algorithm by watching your own videos, then you are mistaken.

Furthermore, whenever a video view reaches 300, the video gets despammed by YouTube’s algorithm.

It means that YouTube filters all the views, and spots any artificial views and reduces them from the actual view counts. It is called the traffic verification process.

NOTE: The YouTube counts for views isn’t unique, it means replays are taken into account. But that does not mean you can increase view count by watching your videos.

Another important fact to keep in mind is YouTube does not recognize a view from someone who leaves spam comments on videos. Here is how you can deal with spam comments on Youtube.

Here are some of the most asked questions related to YouTube views.

Do your own views count on YouTube?

Your own views will count if you play your YouTube video just once or twice and not when you keep refreshing your page.

This is because when you watch it the first couple of times, the algorithm still considers you just another user watching a video. 

On the other hand, if you keep refreshing your YouTube page, the algorithm will consider that to be unnatural and will not consider those as views.

See the section below for even more information on this.

Will Re-watching a YouTube video count as a view?

Repeat button on Youtube

When we like a video on Youtube we keep rewatching it. Sometimes we watch it so many times that we break the replay button.

But the question(s) that haunts everyone is – will rewatching a video increase Youtube view count? or does Youtube count views more than once? The simple answer is yes. But it is a bit more complicated than that.

NOTE: If you replay a video then it counts as a view but Youtube accepts only 4-5 replays as views in 24 hours. After that, if you constantly refresh the page to artificially up the view count, YouTube will pinpoint this as a spamming practice. But even if you are genuinely watching the video on repeat then 4-5 times is the maximum number of replays that will be considered as views.

Can you watch your own video to increase watch hours?

The answer is no. Even though Youtube view count is not unique ( because it considers replays as views), you can’t spam and increase the watch hours on your video. Here is why:

  • Your own view will count only if you watch it once or twice, not if you keep refreshing the page and watching it again and again.
  • You can’t use bots to increase Youtube views. Because counts views that are realistic and logical. Youtube would want to confirm that humans are watching the video not someone else.
NOTE: If a bot tries to increase views it means that an account is randomly jumping from video to video and watching each for 30 seconds only. But watching random videos means they aren’t linked in any way. It means that the videos aren’t relevant or recommended in the recommendation engine. YouTube will identify the watcher as a bot and stop counting its views.

What about embedded video views?

All content creators want to increase their number of views. They want to be on top of the search results. So, they try every trick in the bag to increase the popularity of their videos.

One easy and effective trick is embedding YouTube videos on sites. While this tip may work sometimes, there is a catch.

  • Embedded video views count but only when the video is embedded to the content of the page and a user purposefully clicks on the video to play it. An autoplay embedded video view will not count.
NOTE: Placing your video on the background of the website to increase the number of views also won’t count.

How Youtube guidelines make things easier for viewers

If you are a frequent user of Youtube then you know how authentic the search is. The platform does everything in its power to give the viewer a high-quality experience.

Youtube guidelines are set in place for businesses and people who own channel on the platform. Creators are to take these guidelines seriously and not cheat.

After all, Youtube tries to pay creators for their quality content. If your video garners 20,000 views then you receive $5 per 1,000 views.

This is how Youtube works, the more the views the more the money. Anyone who is using a Youtube channel to get fake/ artificial views is making money unfairly.

Viewership has its Youtube guidelines one needs to follow. If creators follow the guidelines it is easier for viewers to find their videos.

What about Youtube Video ads?

There are two categories of Youtube videos

  • Advertisements.
  • Organic content videos.

While for standard video the minimum watch time is 30 seconds, for an ad it is between 11 to 30 seconds. It shows that the view system of Youtube is more complicated than other platforms.

What About Video Views On Other Social Media?

While Youtube is the primary platform to watch videos, there are other social media platforms where you can use videos as a marketing tool.

Advertisers as well marketers want one thing – to increase the number of views – doesn’t matter whether it comes through Facebook or Twitter.

However, like Youtube, these different platforms have different terms and conditions. What is considered a view on TikTok will not be a view on Twitter and so.

  • Facebook: Facebook videos automatically play when you scroll down the feed. According to Facebook, if you watch it for 3 seconds or more it is considered a view.
  • Instagram / IGTV: Instagram is also similar to FB, 3 seconds or more and it is considered a view
  • Twitter: Twitter does not autoplay like Facebook. So if you click on it then it is considered a views.
  • LinkedIn: 2 seconds or more
  • YouTube: 30 seconds or more and very complicated criteria.
  • Tiktok: 0.1 seconds, whenever a video starts

What does the view metric mean for marketers?

The higher the views the better the marketing. But Youtube makes matters more confusing by showing different numbers on view page, search page and in analytics.

However, there is a reason why the metrics aren’t the same. In analytics, businesses can monitor the progress through Real-time activity metric. The search page shows an estimate of the views based on the video’s history.

No matter where the number shows if more users watch your channel the better. YouTube also takes into account the likes and dislikes (like-dislike ratio).

It has also not disclosed how it handles views from subscribers and non-subscribers. Understanding how does YouTube count views can benefit brands.

They can establish a robust marketing strategy for the business. To make sure your video gets many views you need to create amazing content.

You can make promising exciting videos with the help of OFFEO. It has amazing tools that can come in handy. Want to make an attractive intro for YouTube?

OFFEO’s intro maker offers a huge library of animated graphics such as YouTube subscribe call-to-action prompts. Get better results with innovative video design.

What are you waiting for? Use OFFEO YouTube Intro Maker to create short, stunning and impressive intros!

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