Manage mid-roll ad breaks in long videos

On monetized videos that are 8 minutes or longer, you can also turn on ads during the middle of the video (known as "mid-rolls").

By default, mid-roll ads are automatically placed at natural breaks in your videos to balance viewer experience and monetization potential for you. If you don’t have mid-roll ads turned on as the default for new uploads, you can turn them on for individual videos.

Use the ad breaks tool to create, preview, and edit automatically placed mid-roll ads, or to place ad breaks manually in videos. You can use the tool regardless of your channel-level upload default.

If eligible, you can also trigger mid-roll ads for your live streams.

Using Mid-roll Ads in Long Videos

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The ad experience for viewers may be slightly different depending on the type of device they're using.

  • On computer: A 5-second countdown will surface before a mid-roll ad.
  • On other platforms: Yellow markers will surface in the video progress bar to indicate when an ad may show up.
Frequently asked questions

How do I know whether I should use mid-roll ads?

While YouTube can automatically find the best placement for mid-roll ads, you may want to turn off mid-roll ads if not appropriate. For example, meditation videos may not be suitable for mid-roll ads. If you do choose to use them, we recommend automatically placed mid-roll ads to find natural breaks in your content to avoid an interruptive viewer experience.

How do automatically placed mid-roll ads work?

Automatically placed mid-roll ads aim to balance the viewer experience and creator revenue potential. YouTube’s advanced machine learning technology looks over a large volume of videos and learns to detect the best places for mid-rolls. This is done by evaluating factors like natural visual or audio breaks. User studies indicate that automatically placed mid-roll ads are two times less interruptive than manually placed mid-roll ads.

Aren’t mid-roll ads annoying for viewers?

Some viewers might find mid-roll ads annoying or interruptive. But, to improve viewer experience, we take care of predicting the best ad placement for minimal interruption. We aim to balance the needs of viewers, advertisers, and creators on our platform.

Can I still change automatically placed mid-roll breaks?

Yes. When automatically placed mid-rolls are turned on, you can go to the monetization settings for any video and change the ad break placements manually.

Manage ad breaks in YouTube Studio

Mid-roll ad placement can affect the viewing experience and the likelihood of ad serving. If mid-roll ad breaks are manually placed at disruptive points in a video, our ad system may serve fewer ads.

There are 2 ways to place mid-roll ads:
  • Automated ad breaks: You can turn on automatically placed mid-roll ads, which means we find the best ad placement and frequency, creating a more balanced experience for viewers.
  • Manual ad breaks: If you choose to manually place ad breaks, try to place them at natural breaks for the best results. Avoid placing mid-roll breaks at disruptive points, such as mid-sentence or mid-action. If you’ve created your content to build in natural ad breaks, you can use manual ad breaks to make sure ads show when you want.

Automatic placement

You can automatically set mid-roll breaks for one video:

  1. Sign in to YouTube Studio.
  2. From the left menu, select Content.
  3. Choose a video, then select Monetization .
  4. If you haven’t already, turn on monetization for the video.
  5. Check the box next to “Place ads during video (mid-roll)”.

Manual placement

You can manually set mid-roll ad breaks:

  1. Sign in to YouTube Studio.
  2. From the left menu, select Content.
  3. Choose a video, then select Monetization    
  4. If you haven’t already, turn on monetization for the video.
  5. Check the box next to “Place ads during video (mid-roll)”.
  6. Select REVIEW PLACEMENT.
    • Add an ad break: Click   AD BREAK. Enter the start time of the ad, or drag the vertical bar to the desired time.
    • Delete an ad break: Click Delete  next to the ad break.
  7. In the top-right, click Continue and then Save.

Place ad breaks when uploading a new video

You can place your ad breaks when you upload a new video: 

  1. Sign in to YouTube Studio.
  2. Upload a video that’s 8 minutes or longer.
  3. On the “Monetization” tab, turn on monetization.
  4. Check the box next to “Place ads during video (mid-roll)”.
  5. Once your video is done processing, select REVIEW PLACEMENT.
    • Add an ad break: Click   AD BREAK. Enter the start time of the ad, or drag the vertical bar to the desired time.
    • Delete an ad break: Click Delete  next to the ad break.
  6. In the bottom-right, click Next.
  7. Complete the upload flow.

Place ad breaks when editing a video

While you’re editing a video, you can also place ad breaks: 

  1. Sign in to YouTube Studio.
  2. From the left menu, select Content.
  3. Click the video that you’d like to edit.
  4. From the left menu, click Editor.
  5. Next to     Ad breaks, select EDIT.
    • For manual placement: Click  AD BREAK and enter the start time of the ad, or drag the vertical bar to the desired time. 
    • For automatic placement: Click PLACE AUTOMATICALLY.
    • Delete an ad break: Click Delete     next to the ad break.
  6. To delete an ad break, click Delete next to the ad break.
  7. Click SAVE.

Preview and change mid-roll ad placement

You can preview the placement of your mid-roll ad breaks and change them.

  1. Sign in to YouTube Studio.
  2. From the left menu, select Content.
  3. Choose a video, then select Monetization.
  4. Select REVIEW PLACEMENT beneath "Place ads during video (mid-roll)".
  5. Select Play  on the video player.
  6. Drag the cursor to reach a specific part of the video.

Manage mid-roll ad breaks for one video

You can turn mid-roll ad breaks on or off for an individual video:

  1. Sign in to YouTube Studio.
  2. From the left menu, select Videos.
  3. Choose a video, then select Monetization.
  4. Check the box next to “Place ads during video (mid-roll)” to turn mid-roll ad breaks on or off. When turned on, mid-rolls are automatically placed by default.
  5. Select SAVE.

Manage mid-roll ad breaks for multiple videos

You can turn mid-roll ad breaks on or off for multiple videos:
  1. Sign in to YouTube Studio.
  2. From the left menu, select Content.
  3. Choose multiple videos, then select “Ad settings” from the Edit menu.
  4. Check “Place ads during video (mid-roll)” to turn mid-roll ad breaks on or off. When turned on, mid-rolls are automatically placed by default.
  5. Choose whether you want to only update videos without ad breaks or replace any existing ad breaks.
  6. Select UPDATE VIDEOS and follow the steps displayed to confirm this change.
  7. Complete this change by selecting UPDATE VIDEOS.

Change the channel upload default for mid-roll ad breaks

You can change the upload default settings for your channel to feature mid-roll ad breaks for future uploads. If you want, you can also turn off this setting:
  1. Sign in to YouTube Studio.
  2. From the left menu, select Settings.
  3. Select Upload defaults and then Monetization.
  4. Check the box next to “Place ads during video (mid-roll)” to turn mid-roll ad breaks on or off. When turned on, mid-rolls are automatically placed by default.
  5. Select SAVE.

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