How to Find out Who Is Watching Your YouTube Videos

YouTube Analytics provides aggregate information about your viewers

Person looking at YouTube Studio Analytics

 Lifewire / Derek Abella

YouTube provides video creators with a wealth of information in its Analytics section. You can't find out specific names of people who saw your videos, but you can get a lot of helpful demographic information beyond only the view counts. The built-in analytics provide aggregate information about your viewers in a manner that is similar to Google Analytics. Use the up-to-date metrics to monitor the performance of your channel and videos.

Finding YouTube Analytics for Your Channel

To find the analytics for all the videos in your channel:

  1. Log in to YouTube and select your profile photo or icon at the top of the screen.

  2. Select YouTube Studio (beta) in the drop-down menu.

    YouTube Studio (beta) menu item on YouTube main page
  3. Select Analytics in the left panel to expand a list of tabs for different types of statistics related to your video viewers, including Reach, Engagement, and Audience.

    Analytics button for YouTube account

Types of Analytic Data

Information about your audience can be viewed through several analytic filters, including:

  • Watch Time
  • Audience Retention
  • Demographics
  • Location
  • Date or Time Frame
  • Content
  • Devices
  • Traffic sources
  • Likes and Dislikes
  • Comments
  • Sharing

How to View Data in YouTube Analytics

Depending on the type of data you're reviewing, you can generate line charts to see how that data has changed over time. You can also view multi-line charts and compare the performance of up to 25 videos. You can download the reports to your hard drive by selecting Export Current View (represented by an arrow icon) at the top of the screen.

Screenshot depicting analytics for a YouTube channel

Overview Report

The first report tab listed under Analytics is Overview. It's a high-level summary of how your content is doing. The report includes performance metrics summarizing watch time, views, and earnings (if applicable). It includes the most relevant data for interactions such as comments, shares, favorites, likes, and dislikes. 

The Overview report also highlights the top 10 pieces of content—by watch time— for your channel, the gender and location of viewers, and top traffic sources. 

Realtime Activity

The Realtime Activity box under the Overview section lets you see viewership stats that are updated in real-time, with only a few minutes of lag time. The two charts show the estimated views of your videos in the previous 48 hours and during the previous 60 minutes, the device type that accessed your video, the operating system of that device, and where the device is located.

Reach

Under the Reach tab, you'll find your channel's impressions, views, unique views, and more. You can also see your channel's traffic sources (are your viewers finding you via YouTube search, external links, etc.?), how many times people clicked on a thumbnail of your videos, and whether or not that click led to watch time. Internal YouTube traffic sources include YouTube search, suggested videos, playlists, YouTube advertising, and other features. External traffic data comes from mobile sources and websites and apps that have your video embedded or linked.

To get the most from this report, set a date range and view sources by location. Then you can filter the sources and viewers for additional information.

Engagement

The Engagement tab provides detailed information on how long people watch your videos. Here, you can see which videos are the most watched, your most effective end screen videos, your top playlists by watch time, and more.

Audience

The Audience tab breaks down the demographics of your audience. It shows the age, gender, and geography of your viewers. The Device type tab can show you what operating system and type of device people are using to view your videos. Devices include computers, smartphones, TVs, and game consoles. You can also see what operating system they used, whether more people watch live or on demand, and which playlists are the most viewed.