Skip to main content

YouTube will no longer display overlay ads: check your ad revenue by format for the impact

If you watch YouTube videos on desktop, you are sure to have seen ads that appear on the bottom of the video player. 

Maybe you were annoyed when the ad covered what you were watching.

Well, no more. As of April 6, overlay ads will no longer appear on YouTube videos.

YouTube says this change is being made to "improve the viewer experience and shift engagement to higher performing ad formats".

Of course this does not mean that ads on long form videos will be going away entirely. The current ad formats are:
  • Skippable video ads: Viewers can skip after 5 seconds
  • Non-skippable video ads: Must be watch, are 15-20 seconds long
  • Bumper ads: Short, non-skippable video as up to 6 seconds long
  • Sponsored cards
Unlike overlay ads, video ads are not limited to desktop - they are available on mobile devices, TVs and game consoles too. 

And they are less intrusive, at least once they are done playing. 

What does this mean for YouTube Partners? 

If you are monetizing your videos, YouTube believes there will be "little impact" with this change. 

Check which ad formats are generating revenue

You can check to see which ad formats are generating revenue on your channel in Analytics in YouTube Studio. 

1. Sign in to YouTube Studio (
2. Click Analytics on the left menu
3. Click the Revenue tab
4. At top right click Advanced Mode

5. Above the graph click Revenue source (you may need to click More to see this option)

6. Below the graph you will see a list of Revenue Sources. Click Watch Page Ads.

7. Below the new graph you will see a breakdown of the Watch Page Ads YouTube Revenue for your channel. 
Display ads include overlay ads: 
Rich media, image, or TrueView in-display ad that appears either as an overlay on the bottom of the video, as a 300x250, or as a TrueView in-display unit in the list of recommended videos, or a combination. These are sold to advertisers via the Google Ads auction. 
So your revenue from overlay ads will be some fraction of your display ads revenue, keeping in mind that overlay ads only display on desktop. For my channel that is less than 5%, so this change will be no great loss.

(Note that this page shows YouTube Revenue. Your revenue will be a percentage of that, depending on your revenue sharing agreement with YouTube. You can add "Estimated Revenue" as a second dimension to see your cut of the revenue.)

Set Default Ad Formats

YouTube Partners can set default ad formats in the Settings in YouTube Studio. 

1. Sign in to YouTube Studio (
2. On the left menu click Settings
3. Click the Upload Defaults option
4. Click the Monetization tab

You can then choose which types of ads will display on your monetized videos by default. 

Ad formats can also be selected during video upload or by editing the monetization settings for individual videos. 

After April 6, 2023, the Overlay Ads option will no longer be available. 

Learn More

Announcement: Optimizing ad formats - overlay ads are going away in April

YouTube Help Center: YouTube advertising formats (for creators)

YouTube Help Center: How ads show on the videos you monetize

YouTube Help Center: About video ad formats (for advertisers)