You may have heard about YouTube Shadowbans, but they aren’t just a myth. They exist and can happen to any YouTuber.
What Is a Youtube Shadowban?
A shadowban is a form of censorship where a user’s content is hidden from the public view of an online community without the user being notified.
The term “shadowban” was originally used on Reddit, but it has been since used on other social media platforms such as Twitter and YouTube.
There are numerous reasons why a channel may be shadowbanned on YouTube.
Some reasons include spamming, violating community guidelines, posting misleading thumbnails or titles, and using multiple accounts to boost views or subscribers.
There are several things that you can do to try and fix it if your channel has been shadowbanned.
In this article, we will discuss what a youtube shadowban is, how to determine if you have been shadowbanned, and how you can fix it.
Possible Reasons Why Your Videos Are Getting Low Numbers of Views
1. The Views Threshold Theory
According to the views threshold theory, a channel’s daily or monthly views are in proportion to the channel’s size.
There are exceptions algorithm can identify and allow you to break out of this limit, so this limit applies on a broad scale to most average channels.
Smaller channels with 1k subscribers, for example, can have lower monthly view limits during peak than a channel with 100k or more.
Let’s say that your monthly hidden views limit is 1 million views. Whatever you do, youtube will spread those 1 million views out evenly over a month, ensuring that you won’t surpass the barrier or just barely touch it until the algorithm reset for the next month, at which time you’ll have a fresh threshold of 1 million views again.
2. Creating the Same Stuff over and over, or Not Inventing New Ideas
After an extended period of producing similar content, some channels may see a steep decline in viewership.
Based on tests, some of these channels exhibited growth in views after modifying/innovating, or enhancing content.
3. The Sandbox
The sandbox is a hidden component that protects the site from spam, hacking, and abuse.
It affects recently created channels as well as old dead and dormant ones.
When a channel is within this sandbox, its reach or features like showing in search will be restricted, and you’ll have a month or so window before you can once again start showing in search and recommendations.
Other factors, such as change of IP, device, or channel Ownership to a new email can also trigger a shadowban on a channel that’s already doing well.
In all such situations, the channel will be sandboxed for about a week to a month until Google has regained trust in it before removing it from the sandbox.
4. Sudden Change in Content
If a change in content is made abruptly and without relation to the previous content, this might result in a decrease in views.
In this situation, you’ll have to keep posting videos until the algorithm discovers a new audience for your fresh content.
5. Long Breaks
It is possible that if you take lengthy breaks from posting, the algorithm will penalize your channel if you are a frequent poster.
However, keep in mind that this isn’t always the case.
It is based on the number of times your channel posts videos, which has been detected by the algorithm, and it may also be influenced by content quality levels.
It’s also possible that some channels may post videos once or twice a year and still gain a significant number of views, in comparison to other channels that spam on a regular basis.
6. Deleting a Large Number of Videos That Contain a Large Portion of Your Views
The sudden death of your channel’s YouTube recommendations is possible if you remove a large number of videos at once.
The views and watch time for a video are removed along with the video when it is deleted.
Studies show that simply increasing the number of views your channel has, may improve your recommended ability (the more views and watch-time your channel stacks, the more authority it has).
7. Bad Content
This is an easy one. You won’t go viral with terrible stuff, so there’s no use in speculating about it.
If you buy a viral channel and post content like this, but it doesn’t explode, don’t assume that the channel was shadowbanned or anything.
It may be that your material is simply awful.
8. Posting Controversial Content Can Cause a Drop in Views.
If your channel is posting controversial content that will stir up a bit of controversy, then it is possible for youtube to shadowban you.
In most cases, youtube doesn’t react this way, but if youtube detects a large number of people flagging your video as inappropriate or spammy at the same time, youtube may decide to take action against you.
9. Buying Views or Spamming Comments Can Result in a Drop in Views and a Shadowban.
This one’s pretty obvious too. Unfortunately, many youtube channels resort to buying views and/or commenting on their own videos with spam messages because they’re desperate for rapid growth and want to appear more popular than they actually are.
Views can be suppressed by anything that is designed to spam the platform, which will damage the user experience or harm the platform in any manner.
11. Low Views Caused by Owning Several Channels on the Same Ip/Device Trying to Spam Similar Stuff
Running too many channels on the same device, IP, or AdSense might result in a drop in views or a distribution of views across these channels rather than an increase.
This is similar to a shadowban or a view limit that protects the platform from money spammers who try to scale up using little effort.
Many people become greedy and attempt to scale rapidly by flooding their channels with identical material in a bid to boost profits.
This isn’t as simple as it sounds, and scaling on YouTube takes a lot of preparation, skill, and know-how.
This used to be possible in the past, but it’s no longer the case. Keep in mind that this problem affects mostly monetized channels rather than non-monetized ones.
Even on the same IP, non-monetized channels have far higher limits and are not subjected to view counts throttling, according to my experience.
12. There May Also Be Copyright Strikes That Result in a Loss of Views
This type of penalty may result in a drop in views/reach, which can last many months.
It usually lasts around 3 months.
13. Content Flagged by Youtube Can Cause a Drop in Views
After a topic or trend has gotten too crowded, YouTube can manually flag specific spam niches or trends and restrict their reach.
14. A Decrease in Views Can Result from Reaching the Maximum Global Recommendations for Each Niche
Niche size is defined as the number of accessible people in a specific topic. As the audience grows, so does the niche size. The smaller the audience, the smaller the niche size.
The following are examples of niches with the greatest potential audiences:
- General entertainment
- Kids content
- Funny videos
- Viral content
15. Algorithm Cycles Can Also Give You the Illusion of a Shadowban
View fluctuations will occur on every channel throughout its entire existence. Channels may experience large gains in views and then maintain that peak for a while before dropping in viewership, which will also happen.
16. The Death of a Trend or a Drop in Audience Interest Are Some Examples
If you’re dealing with a topic that’s based on trends or something that has a present increase in popularity, and months later if the audience loses interest in it, the algorithm can spot this based on data collected and will look for new content to recommend to this audience.
The way to resurrect a dead channel built on trends is to target new trends and keep posting content based on those trends. Your channel can ride these so-called “trend waves” indefinitely this way, never dying.
Recommended Tool for Growing Your YouTube Channel
The #1 Rated YouTube Video Optimization and Management Toolkit is TubeBuddy.
Use it to accelerate the growth of your audience and realize your YouTube goals.
It’ll help you rank higher in search results and get more of the right people to your videos.
TubeBuddy also comes with an extensive suite of tools for managing your channel.
YouTube is constantly evolving and it’s important to keep up with YouTube best practices.
If you ever feel that your channel is being hit by a “shadowban,” make sure to follow what’s outlined in this article.
If you follow the suggested tips and your channel still isn’t rebounding, it might not be a shadowban.
Your YouTube views may be low because your content is outdated, uninteresting to viewers, or just not engaging enough for people to watch multiple times.