12 ways to make money on TikTok
Stop scrolling and start earning. Here are the best ways to make money on TikTok.
Gone are the days when TikTok was just an app for dancing videos. With over one billion active users every month, the social media app covers pretty much any niche, interest and hobby.
It's easy to fall down the rabbit hole of scrolling through the library of videos that literally never ends. But did you know that you can also make money from TikTok?
We're here to share our top tips for monetising your TikTok account.
How many followers do you need on TikTok to get paid?
To join the TikTok Creator Fund, you need at least 10,000 followers. However, this isn't the only way to make money on TikTok – the TikTok Creator Fund doesn't pay a lot anyway. As we explain below, you can start earning money without any followers.
One of the big advantages of making content on TikTok is that every video has the potential to go viral. Even if you have zero followers!
When a video is posted on TikTok, it's shown to a small group of people. If they watch the video for long enough or engage with it, it is then shown to a larger group of people. The same thing happens over and over again, which makes it possible to reach a huge audience if you create top-quality content.
Obviously, it helps if you do have followers as your videos will pop up on their For You Page (FYP, TikTok's homepage) as well. But even without any followers, your first video could go viral. And once you start to accumulate views, you can start earning money on TikTok.
How to make money on TikTok
Here are the top ways to earn money on TikTok:
Get sponsorships on TikTok
One of the best ways to make money on TikTok is by working with brands on sponsored content. They can be a great earner, especially if you have a large and engaged following or if you have a track record of viral videos.
For example, you can create TikTok videos about a certain product or service to then post on your own profile. That way, the brand you're working with gets in front of your audience. But that's not the only way to work with sponsorships on TikTok.
Since a lot of brands don't have the resources to make videos themselves, you can also let them use your content for ads on TikTok. This is called UGC (User Generated Content) creation. But since this gives them ownership of the content you created, you should get paid a lot more for this compared to only posting it on your own account.
Plus, you can ask for even more money for exclusivity. This essentially means that you can't work with other brands or competitors for a certain period of time. Depending on how long the brand wants exclusivity, you can charge extra.
Join the TikTok Creator Fund
The TikTok Creator Fund is an in-platform way to earn money. TikTok put together this fund to reward people for creating quality content on their platform.
Once accepted, you'll get paid depending on the number of views you get, the authenticity of said views and the level of engagement on your content.
To join the TikTok Creator Fund, you have to meet the following criteria:
- Be at least 18 years old
- Have 10,000 or more followers
- Have gained 100,000 or more views on your TikTok videos in the last 30 days.
How much does TikTok pay you for one million views?
TikTok pays between $20 – $40 per one million views (£16 – £32 retrospectively). As you'll probably agree, this isn't a lot. That's why it's much more lucrative to focus on other ways to earn money on TikTok and see the TikTok Creator Fund as a little bonus.
If you get the views, you may as well get paid for them, but the real money is made elsewhere.
Receive donations through TikTok Live
Once you reach 1,000 followers on TikTok, you'll get access to the Live feature. As the name suggests, this lets you live stream to your followers on the app. What you do in the live stream is up to you – from Q&As to sharing special tips and tricks, the sky is the limit.
You can earn money on TikTok Live by collecting donations from viewers. TikTok has its own built-in gift system where viewers can exchange real money for virtual gifts. These gifts can then be gifted to the person who is live streaming.
To cash out your gifts, you have to exchange them for Diamonds, which can be exchanged for cash. Diamonds are worth 50% of the value of coins (TikTok keeps the other 50%).Learn how to start earning money live streaming on Twitch.
Collect tips on TikTok
Apart from getting donations via the app's own system on TikTok Live, there are other ways to collect tips from your followers.
A big pro of this is that there are no or minimal fees. Since TikTok takes a 50% cut of any donations through TikTok Live, you could be missing out on a lot of cash.
However, not many people check out TikTok profiles, so they may not see your links. With TikTok Live, it's a bit easier to collect donations.
Use affiliate marketing to earn money on TikTok
A great way to make money on any social media platform is through affiliate marketing.
Affiliate marketing is when you recommend someone else's product or service. For example, if someone buys a product via your personal link, you could receive a commission.
Of course, it's easiest to promote a service or product that matches your niche. So, if you're on BookTok (book-focused videos on TikTok), you can link to the books you review in your videos.
Since it's relatively easy to go viral on TikTok (compared to other social media platforms), you could be making a lot of sales through one video. We've got an in-depth guide on affiliate marketing for more info and tips.
Sell products through TikTok Shop
You may have seen TikTok Shop already, but it's essentially a marketplace for products on the social media app. If you see something you like on a video and it's linked to TikTok Shop, you can order it to your house in a few clicks. Super easy!
So how can creators benefit from this? If you find products on TikTok Shop that you like or you think your audience would like, there's a way to earn money. Similar to regular affiliate marketing, you can become an affiliate for shops on TikTok.
You can then link to the products on your videos or on your TikTok Lives. And because the TikTok Shop button will appear on your video, it's easy for viewers to order it right there and then. For every sale made through your content, you will get a commission.
And, obviously, if you start a business, you can add your products to TikTok Shop too! To do so, you will have to be approved so make sure you read through all the terms and conditions first.
Market your business or services
As there are so many TikTok users and going viral is relatively easy (compared to other social media platforms), one viral video could result in thousands of sales.
Keep track of any video trends or popular sounds to use. Some of the viral video trends are easy to replicate on the CapCut app. They partner with TikTok to make it easy to use templates straight from TikTok and upload them onto your account.
Become a TikTok constultant
Once you've got the hang of growing a TikTok account and getting viral videos, you can start thinking about sharing your gift with the world. For the right price, of course.
As mentioned in the last point, the chances of going viral on TikTok are much higher than on other platforms. And the more people see a video, the more they'll see the product or service a business has to offer.
If you know how to create quality content that has the potential to go viral, you could help companies make thousands of sales.
Similarly, you can offer coaching sessions for aspiring TikTokers. If you have the tips and tricks to grow an account and earn money on TikTok, you can help future influencers get started. You could even give feedback on their current account along with ideas on how to take it further.
Earn money from TikTok Rewards
Another way to earn money on TikTok is by referring friends to the app with TikTok Rewards. You can find your unique code by tapping on the wrapped present icon on your TikTok page. The type of reward changes from time to time, but we've seen gift cards and actual money.
There are a few criteria the new users must meet for you to qualify for your reward, including:
- They have never created a TikTok account
- They have never downloaded the TikTok app on their device before
- They meet the age criteria (18+ in the UK)
- They're in the same country as you.
Sell your own merchandise on TikTok
As you start to accumulate followers on TikTok and your fanbase grows, you can eventually create your own merchandise.
You can, for example, create merch with your brand's logo or a catchphrase that you use a lot in your content.
To do this successfully, you will need an engaged following. It can work particularly well if you have a following across multiple platforms.
Start a Patreon
Patreon is a separate platform where creators can offer paid memberships for fans to access exclusive content. If you've managed to create a fanbase on TikTok, it's worth thinking about expanding to sites like Patreon to grow your income.
On Patreon, you can share platform-exclusive content, which can include special tutorials, vlogs or Q&As.
It's important to keep in mind that running a Patreon page is a lot of extra work, and you won't be able to share all the content on your regular TikTok page (otherwise, why would anybody pay extra for it?). But if you have a loyal fanbase, you can earn quite a bit of extra money with it!Like the idea of creating even more content? Learn how to make money with a podcast.
Repurpose your TikToks on YouTube
While this isn't essentially making money on TikTok, why let the content you created go to waste on one platform only? Since YouTube introduced Shorts, it's possible to upload short-form content onto the platform.
And similar to TikTok's Creators Fund, YouTube will pay you for the number of views you get (if you're part of the YouTube Partner Programme).
Make sure you upload the original video though, not the one you download from your TikTok page.
As TikTok puts a watermark on your video after you publish it, it'll look much better if you reupload the original video on YouTube. It may take a few extra minutes to add new music and captions, but it'll be worth it.
Oh, and don't forget to publish them on Instagram too! Even though Instagram doesn't pay you for views, it's a great way to grow your following. And the bigger your following, the easier it is to make money from social media and grow your online brand.
Looking into making long-form videos as well? Check out our guide to making money on YouTube.