How Often Should I Upload to YouTube to Grow a Channel Fast?

What video upload frequency gives you max subscriber growth in the least amount of time?

How often you should be uploading videos to a YouTube channel is probably the most frequent question I get from new creators…a frequent question about frequency, how meta.

And while so many of the worries YouTubers dwell on don’t matter much to your success, finding that perfect upload schedule is one of the most important questions you can answer.

I would say it’s one of the top three factors that have helped me grow my channel to 291,000 in three years on the platform (the other two are building a community and finding video topics that get views)!

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Does YouTube Reward Creators that Upload More Frequently?

Before we get into a few ideas on the perfect upload frequency, I want to share some anecdotal evidence that can help answer the question.

This doesn’t come from deep research or data analytics, only what I’ve seen after three years of religiously studying YouTube best practices and trends on the platform.

For the longest time, the secret to cracking the YouTube code was to upload as frequently as possible. You wanted to be in front of as many people as often as possible.

It gave rise to channels posting daily or even more and gained millions of subscribers.

Then something happened. The channels posting more than three times a week started to see their views drop like a rock. Check out what happened to YouTube legend Evan Carmichael’s channel of 2.7 million subscribers.

How often should I upload videos to YouTube
How often should I upload videos to YouTube?

Now 99% of the creators out there would love to be getting 60,000 views a day, but for Evan to come down from averaging 180K daily views in August 2018 to 120,000 and then half…that is a scary thing to happen to your business!

According to Matt Gielen of Little Monster Media, the reason behind the sharp drop was that a change in the YouTube algorithm started limiting the reach of channels publishing more than three videos a week.

It made sense. Evan hadn’t changed anything about his videos, and Matt had noticed the same trend on other daily upload channels.

For a while, moderation seemed to be the name of the game. This moderation was about when I was going to three videos a week and seeing massive growth for reasons we’ll discuss next.

Fast forward to 2022, though, and it seems things have changed again. (BTW, maybe the fourth factor for YouTube success should be ‘be mindful of the trends on YouTube and be ready to adjust your strategy).

Over the last several months, I’ve noticed many channels exploding on a daily or even multiple uploads per day schedule. Even new channels are getting hundreds of thousands of views a day and thousands of subs by ‘flooding the zone’ on content.

So let’s look at why frequent uploads work best and some ideas to help you develop your upload strategy.

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How Many Videos Does YouTube Want You to Upload Each Week?

Let’s look at it from YouTube’s perspective first to see how we might incorporate that into a strategy.

YouTube wants content! That’s an undeniable truth. It needs content that draws people, keeps them on the platform, and keeps them returning. But that doesn’t necessarily mean it requires you to upload daily or more.

The rationale behind the 2018 algorithm change that hurt daily upload channels was that YouTube was trying to get people to watch smaller channels and new creators that didn’t have the resources to upload daily. Suppose a viewer was coming to a specific channel every day to watch a new video. In that case, that’s a big time commitment that might keep them from exploring other channels and ultimately staying on the platform longer.

Another reason I’ve heard against daily uploads is the potential of cannibalizing views on each. YouTube promotes a video as ‘new’ for 72 hours. That’s why new videos often jump to the top of search or are suggested but then fall off rankings after a few days. So if you’re publishing a fresh video daily, new videos could be pushing ‘less new’ videos out of search or suggested for your subscribers. (Besides, how much of you do people really want to see? I know most people couldn’t stand me daily.)

Fast forward to 2022, though, and the rules have changed. More so than ever, people spend their time indoors and in front of the computer. YouTube wants to grab those eyes, and people are hungry for new videos. It could be the reason daily, and even more frequent, uploads seem to be coming back.

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Rules for How Often to Upload to YouTube to Grow a Channel

Let’s put it all together for a few rules on how often to upload videos for YouTube success.

Rule #1 is consistency! Whether you publish once a week or seven times, you need to do it on the same day and at the same time each week.

Sometimes it helps to think of the similarities between YouTube and traditional TV. YouTube wants shows with the consistency that people know when a new episode is out every week. So viewers wait patiently and make sure they’re free every week at 8 pm on Sunday to watch the latest episode of the Simpsons, and Fox knows it will be able to keep some of them around afterward to watch other shows.

How peeved do you think viewers would have been if Jerry Seinfeld didn’t have a new show ready for Must See Thursday? (yeah, maybe I’m mixing up my TV history, but you get the idea). The viewers wouldn’t like it, NBC wouldn’t have liked it, and Jerry wouldn’t have made tens of million an episode.

Commit to a consistent schedule, let people know when they can expect a new video, and keep them coming back.

Rule #2 is you need to be uploading more than once a week and preferably more than twice.

Of course, the exception is if you’re making Hollywood-level productions that take weeks or months to produce. On the other hand, if your quality is that high, you can get away with a couple of new videos a month.

For everyone else, you must keep from getting buried among other new videos and stay top-of-mind with your community. Two or more videos a week gives viewers frequent content to consume without overloading them.

I happen to like a schedule of three videos a week. It gives each at least 48 hours to run without getting stepped on by another video. It provides the community with a constant flow of content and is something I can keep up with every week.

Rule #3 – use stories and your community tab to fill the gap between videos.

The verdict is still out on whether posting to your community tab might take valuable browsing real estate away from your videos. Still, I asked my channel manager partner, a free service by YouTube to larger channels, about stories. The 15-second clips are featured in special sections in browse and do not take away from reach on your videos.

This community aspect means connecting with your community once or twice a week through a Stories clip can be a great way to stay relevant and get personal with your people.

Posting to the community tab is also a great way to get more content in front of people without creating a new video. I try to post to the account at least once a week.

Rule #4 is to feel free to break the rules every once in a while.

YouTube is constantly developing its discovery model; external factors can influence what works best.

I would recommend against reducing the frequency of uploads unless you’re posting 5+ videos a week and can’t keep up. Taking a break for a bit is ok, but you could accomplish the same thing by doing double the videos one week and just getting ahead.

More likely, there will be times when you want to increase the frequency of uploads for a few weeks. These kinds of upload challenges are popular, and sometimes…oh maybe, when everyone is locked-down in front of their computer, it makes sense to get as much content out there as possible.

The best strategy for finding what works best in terms of video frequency for your channel seems to be scaling up gradually. Start with one or two weekly videos and see how that fits your schedule. When you think you’re ready and if you have time, start doing three videos a week and see if that jumpstarts more growth.

This way, you’ll be able to find that perfect schedule without overloading yourself. I started with one video a week in 2017 but saw big, sustainable bumps in daily views with each increase in upload frequency.

Click to reserve your spot at the FREE YouTube Quick-start Webinar! I’m sharing three strategies that helped me grow my YouTube channel and double my business income. I guarantee they WILL work for you. Seats are limited for the webinar, so make sure you reserve yours.

How Uploading YouTube Videos Consistently Helps 

For anyone who wants to be successful on YouTube, it is essential to upload videos consistently. Unfortunately, many people make the mistake of uploading one or two videos and then stop because they don’t think they’ll get views or subscribers.

Few people will notice your first video unless you have a big following already. But if you keep doing it repeatedly, slowly but surely, your videos will start going viral and gaining more views. It may take quite a while for this process to work, but things will take off quickly once it does. Before you know it, your channel could end up with several hundred subscribers, and you’ll be able to monetize and make a lot of money off your excellent videos.

I have been making videos for many years and have never uploaded the same video twice. Making this kind of commitment to uploading videos consistently has helped me reach my goals faster than I ever thought possible. So, before you upload another one of your old videos, take some time to think about what you can do better next time.

When someone sees the same video repeatedly, they tend to get bored with it very quickly. So this is one reason why uploading new videos consistently helps your views grow more than simply leaving old ones up there forever. Some people think it’s better for their channel if they upload videos frequently because fresh content usually gets more attention than something stale that has been left alone for too long. This freshness factor is true if you do not let too much time go by between each upload.

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When you upload fresh content that people haven’t seen before, they will likely watch it all the way through. This engagement increases your chances of getting views significantly. You won’t be wasting anyone’s time by uploading something they’ve already watched or disliked. Although, that’s not something anybody wants to do, so, please try to avoid doing so even if it does happen accidentally.

The good thing about doing this is that you don’t have to spend much time planning videos. If you’re going for quantity over quality, then being spontaneous and getting your thoughts out there is what you should do.

Growing a channel on YouTube means not just giving people what they want to watch but doing it when and how often they want to watch. This strategy means developing your perfect uploading strategy for frequency and sticking to it. Put together a process of frequent uploads, and you’ll grow your community and your channel.

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