Competitors of YouTube (Competitor analysis of YouTube)
This article aims to study the main competitors of YouTube. YouTube is an American online video-sharing platform, founded in 2005. It is a subsidiary of Google. Its performance has been skyrocketing since it was taken over from the original three founders i.e. Jawed Karim, Chad Hurley, and Steve Chen. Its market dominance has been undisputed for so long that some people ask: ‘does YouTube really have a competitor?’ Well, the answer is ‘yes’ regardless of how dominant YouTube is in many countries around the world.
Certainly, YouTube is the world’s largest video sharing platform. It is also an advertising space, with advertisers spending billions of dollars on it every year. But that does not mean that YouTube walks away unscathed from competition. Not only are other sites competing for the same viewers, but also companies like Facebook, TikTok, Vimeo, and others are doing everything they can to vie for the global market share.
Who are YouTube’s main competitors?
YouTube has over 2 billion monthly logged-in users. People watch over a billion hours of video and generate billions of views everyday (YouTube, 2022). However, there are several platforms that compete with YouTube. To explore the main competitors and carry out a competitor analysis of YouTube, this article looks into two industries i.e. online video-sharing industry, and online video advertising industry.
Competitors of YouTube in online video-sharing industry
As an online video-sharing platform, YouTube has a number of competitors e.g. Vimeo, Dailymotion, Twitch, Wistia, Metacafe, Vube, Flickr, Sprout Video, Metacafe, Veoh, TikTok, and Dtube. YouTube is the leading video platform in the USA. It has been reported that 90% of the Internet users use it to watch videos, whereas only 9% users used Vimeo for the same purpose (Statista, 2022).
Vimeo is a close competitor of YouTube. It is a video hosting and sharing platform, headquartered in New York, the USA. It was founded in 2004. Like Vimeo, Dailymotion is also a big competitor of YouTube. It was founded in 2005, and headquartered in Paris, France. It has over 300 million users worldwide, who watch 3.5 billion videos on its player each month (Dailymotion, 2022). It often comes up with new services to draw the attention of the target audience. Though it is a bit far from YouTube currently, its march continues with a potential to creating enormous pressures on YouTube and other competitors.
In India, YouTube is challenged by TikTok. TikTok is a Chinese short video sharing platform, launched in 2016. Its biggest foreign market is India with an estimated 125 million users. However, to counter the challenges from TikTok, YouTube has announced limiting YouTube Shorts to 15 seconds (BBC, 2020). Apart from TikTok, YouTube also faces a number of local competitors in the Indian market.
One of the largest competitors of YouTube in Russia is VKontakte (VK) which hugely appeals to millennials. Similarly, another company that has emerged as a good competitor is Twitch that has used an excellent niche i.e. video game live streaming. It is a subsidiary of Amazon.com Inc.
Competitors of YouTube in online video advertising industry
YouTube’s global advertising revenues amounted to around $28.84 billion in 2021 (Statista, 2022). Unsurprisingly, YouTube is a key player in online video advertising industry in Europe. YouTube and Facebook are neck and neck in market share battle in Europe; hence Facebook the biggest competitor of YouTube. In the USA, the main competitors of YouTube are Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, and Instagram (IGTV).
YouTube’s competitive advantages
YouTube has some advantages over its competitors. It is already the world’s most popular online video platform and has plenty of space to grow further. It offers a huge library of videos that are easy to find and helps content creators make money on the platform. Most of the content creators are very loyal to it as well. Not only will these help it compete with the competitors, but also mean that the company has big advantages when it comes to negotiating with advertisers.
Live streaming contents is very popular in YouTube. It allows users to interact with creators while they broadcast their videos, which helps build trust between creators and viewers. Content creators also use live streams to promote their exclusive contents and events, which can help increase their viewership and other business. However, it should be mentioned that many of YouTube’s competitors now offer live streaming services.
Although YouTube has dominated the online video sharing market for years, it is very important to keep in mind that other platforms are not going away, rather growing at a rapid speed. To maintain and capture more market share, YouTube needs to continue innovating and improving its user experience. If it does not innovate and make improvements, the competitors might eventually steal the show.
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Last update: 04 February 2022
BBC (2020) TikTok: YouTube launches rival to be tested in India, available at: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-54156997 (accessed 27 October 2020)
Dailymotion (2022) About Dailymotion, available at: https://www.dailymotion.com/gb/about (accessed 03 February 2022)
Statista (2022) Leading online video platforms in the United States in November 2018, based on reach, available at: https://www.statista.com/statistics/266201/us-market-share-of-leading-internet-video-portals/ (04 January 2022)
YouTube (2022) About YouTube, available at: https://about.youtube/ (accessed 04 February 2022)
Author: M Rahman
M Rahman writes extensively online and offline with an emphasis on business management, marketing, and tourism. He is a lecturer in Management and Marketing. He holds an MSc in Tourism & Hospitality from the University of Sunderland. Also, graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University with a BA in Business & Management Studies and completed a DTLLS (Diploma in Teaching in the Life-Long Learning Sector) from London South Bank University.