On YouTube, the struggle is real. More than 300 video-hours are uploaded every single minute. And you’ve got to be better than 99.99% of them if you want your video to gain traction! Perhaps it’s no surprise that in this cut-throat environment, many YouTubers are now turning to the controversial practice of buying views to help raise themselves above the fray.
However, a common question is: Am I in danger of violating YouTube’s terms of service by buying views?
In this article, we’ll talk about YouTube’s terms of service regarding view purchases and what you need to know before going ahead and taking the plunge.
The basics of YouTube’s policy on purchased views
Views are meant to be a measure of people’s genuine interest in a video. YouTube derives views from all watched pages of a video across all environments, including embeds and lean-backs. YouTube defines viewcount gaming as the deliberate act of trying to convert a non-view into a view.
Now, on the policy. YouTube is strongly against any attempt at viewcount gaming. YouTube explicitly states that it’s against purchasing views from any third-party provider, for instance, when you pay $5 in order to get 5,000 views for your video.
In a bid to trick viewers into playing videos, some web designers have deceptive layouts on third-party websites. These deceptive layouts have unrelated elements that play videos once a user clicks on them. Use of such deceptive layouts is also against YouTube’s policy. Additionally, web designers and programmers are also not allowed to serve pop unders that appear under current windows, or place URLs that change in the middle of the click to play videos. This is seen as an attempt to trick a viewer into watching a video and is considered as viewcount gaming.
Things you need to know about buying views
First and foremost, most users think that buying views will get their content deleted. However, contrary to popular belief, buying views won’t get your YouTube videos deleted. Videos may only be removed in instances where they show illegal content, or in cases where the video is explicitly against YouTube’s terms of service.
If you are not a partner and you are not monetizing your videos, the practice of buying videos may not be explicitly against YouTube’s terms of service. The key is to make sure you’re buying from a high-quality provider who provides human views instead of automatic views from bots and fake accounts.
The second thing you need to know is that buying views is unlikely to get your account banned. YouTube periodically audits the views a video receives to check for fake views. If an account is determined to have bought views, rather than get banned or terminated, the fraudulent views will simply be removed.
Most users believe that when you buy views, you are only going to get fake views. This is not necessarily true. Sure, some providers of views generate views falsely by using bots that provide automatic views. However, high-quality view providers do provide genuine, organic views. They pay real people to watch your videos – so views are real, but these people probably won’t follow you. Some providers also do this by promoting your video on various popular websites as well as their social media platforms. Additionally, YouTube ads are also a form of bought views that are both organic and genuine.
One final thing you need to know before you go off buying YouTube views is that buying views is not the magic key to YouTube success. Buying views might increase the number of people interested in watching your video, but it won’t necessarily lead to an increase in the number of engagements on your channel. If you are using your YouTube channel to build your online brand, what you ultimately want is for people to get engaged, to interact with your content and to respond to your CTAs. To ensure this happens as well as to make your bought views seem organic and genuine, it is just as important to buy video likes and comments. In addition to boosting users’ engagement with your content, buying video likes and comments will also boost your channel’s ranking on YouTube’s search engine.
Buying YouTube views is an effective way to enhance the exposure of your channel and videos, and spur the growth of your online brand. However, for this strategy to work, you should ensure that you are not in explicit violation of YouTube’s terms of service, by, for instance, buying views when you are monetizing your videos (pro tip: if you buy views while AdSense is running, they will find you, and they will punish you).
You also need to be cautious about the quality of views you buy, and ensure that you combine buying views with other YouTube strategies if you want to see true, explosive growth of your channel.