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Why does my CPM drop in January?

Updated: Jun 30, 2023

As a content creator, you likely hate January as it is typically the worst performing month of the year for advertising revenue. If you’re new to YouTube, January might come as a bit of a shock. While CPMs vary throughout the year, the most significant change occurs between December and January. 

January CPMs dropped decreased YouTube

We understand just as well as you, that declined changes in CPMs can certainly be frustrating to deal with. CPM means “Cost Per Mille”, the price that advertisers pay for 1,000 impressions of their advertisement. When there is high competition for advertising, your CPM will be higher.

CPMs are seasonal and increase and decrease in value based on the advertiser competition.

Why does this happen?

You may have noticed that in December your CPM was at an all time high, or at least higher than normal! However, when you have checked your January reports, it is a lot lower than normal. So why does this happen?

During the festive period, advertisers’ demand for ad space is much higher than normal. Over this period, advertisers are willing to spend a lot of money to get their products sold during the Christmas present buying rush. But then on the flip side, January hits, it’s just a month with very little advertiser demand. Companies cut their advertisement budget after Christmas and in turn the competition is lower and your CPM is also. 

CPM fluctuations happen across the board, whether you’re a YouTube content creator or a TV network.

Using historical data, we found that CPMs typically drop 40% after the festive season in December, then slowly pick up speed throughout the year. Don't worry, Valentines Day is just around the corner and you'll see see your CPM back at the heights you love! 

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