October 27, 2023
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Growing a YouTube channel is one of the best ways to make money online, and there are many ways YouTubers can earn money. Many creators use “tools,” i.e., apps, products, and services, to manage their channels and growth. In this post, let’s compare two of the most popular YouTube tools, i.e., VidIQ and TubeBuddy. We’ll review their features, benefits/drawbacks, pros/cons, alternatives, and which one you should use for your YouTube activities.
Do YouTubers Need Third-Party Apps?
YouTube Studio (formerly Creator Studio) is a web and mobile app managed by Google. It allows you to manage your content, monitor and analyze performance, engage your audience, and monetize videos. However, YouTube Studio falls short in many critical areas, including competitor analysis, keyword research, channel and video search optimization, thumbnail generation, etc. Those shortcomings have many YouTubers asking about alternatives in online communities, such as Reddit and Quora.
It gets harder each year to succeed on YouTube. YouTube previously said that over 400 hours of content are uploaded every minute. So, creators must compete against hundreds of hours of new content each time they upload videos. Additionally, YouTube continues to make video monetization more challenging with updates to eligibility criteria for its partner program. Therefore, third-party apps can help YouTubers with various activities and overcome many obstacles.
TubeBuddy Versus VidIQ
TubeBuddy is a powerful browser extension, web, and mobile app with features on top of YouTube’s website. It offers channel optimization tools, video SEO, keyword research, tag management, analytics, productivity, bulk processing, marketing, and more.
VidIQ offers growth tools to help creators and marketers grow their channels and brand awareness. Its Chrome browser extension features video scoring, SEO, keyword research, tag management, analytics, and more.
TubeBuddy and VidIQ are excellent YouTube channel growth, productivity, and management tools. However, TubeBuddy has more features (62 to 25) and better pricing than VidIQ. TubeBuddy also outshines or ties VidIQ in every major feature category, except for channel/video analytics and demonetization management. Therefore, I recommend TubeBuddy to grow your channel, increase views and subscribers, optimize your content, and outperform your competitors. Also, Tubebuddy is worth the money, safe for your channel, and constantly releases new features.
Analytics and Data
TubeBuddy and VidIQ provide analytics through their browser extensions and web apps. The data comes directly from YouTube Studio and Google.
TubeBuddy gives users advanced analytics for channels and videos. Its Channelytics feature displays live stats, views, and uploads for any channel for the last 30 days. Also, you can compare your channel to others and see what tags a channel uses. In addition, Videolytics provides in-depth insights into videos. It highlights total views, comments, performance, search optimization, tags, and social media metrics.
VidIQ’s Scorecard panel gives you a high-level view of your and other videos’ performance. Overview and channel sections highlight views, subs, and watch time. Its SEO score determines the likelihood of your video appearing in search results and related videos. A separate real-time stats bar shows views for different time intervals. Finally, the historical tab gives a timeline of how a video has performed since the minute it was uploaded.
VidIQ’s Channel Audit tool displays your month-over-month views, subs, and watch time percentages on the left-hand side of a YouTube webpage. In addition, it indicates what videos to “double down on” based on views per hour and subscribers gained. It also highlights top search terms and videos that need work.
TubeBuddy’s web app has four data sections.
- Health Report: View statistics for views, uploads, subs, comments, traffic sources, engagement, and audience.
- Channel Valuation: Connect your channel to SocialBluebook.com and have your suggested prices for branded content automatically displayed.
- Retention Analyzer: Improve your overall retention rate by identifying trends in audience viewership.
- Usage Stats: monitor your actions, time, and savings with TubeBuddy’s software.
VidIQ’s analytics tab features stats for views, subs, comments, traffic sources, engagement, and audience. Review your top search queries, embedded URLs, viewer countries, videos, trends, and the best time to post.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
AI and machine learning software capabilities are growing in demand. TubeBuddy and VidIQ satisfy those desires.
TubeBuddy’s AI title generator offers title variations for keywords. You can also get suggestions for channel growth based on video performance and analytics with the Opportunity Finder feature. Finally, Click Magnet offers advanced AI-driven analytics for video, thumbnail, and title performance for producing the highest CTRs.
First, VidIQ’s AI title generator offers other title ideas. Next, its AI description generator only needs keywords related to your video to create a description. Third, Daily Video Ideas uses AI to recommend content opportunities. Lastly, the AI Coach is a ChatGPT-like chatbot offering information about YouTube growth.
TubeBuddy supports Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Microsoft Edge. Opera can also be used with an additional extension to add support for Chrome extensions. VidIQ supports Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.
The more videos you have, the more time-consuming it will become to manage them. That’s where bulk processing and editing tools come in handy.
TubeBuddy facilitates bulk updating, copying, and deleting of cards, end screens, and playlists. Moreover, you can find, replace, append, and make bulk changes to your metadata. For example, suppose you want to update a social media link that you include in all your descriptions. TubeBuddy will scan all your videos, find the link, and replace it with a new one. That will save you a bunch of time. VidIQ, on the other hand, supports bulk copying and editing to cards and end screens only.
Chapters and sections in videos help viewers to navigate videos and consume the content they want. TubeBuddy supports that with its chapter editor feature. You can add chapters to your video without switching between the video and the description box. VidIQ doesn’t offer this feature.
Comment Management and Formatting
TubeBuddy has six tools to help you manage viewer comments.
- Canned responses allow you to create prewritten messages to use frequently, for example, “Great comment!” I will look into this.”
- Comment filters enable you to manage large amounts of comments with advanced filtering options.
- Comment spotlight helps you to identify comments from your Patreon supporters and recent subscribers.
- Notification commenting allows you to reply to comments directly from the YouTube notification window.
- The comment word cloud gives you a visual representation of what people say about your videos.
- Export video comments to a CSV file to manage.
- Apply bold, italic, or strikethrough formatting to your comments and replies.
VidIQ’s comment templates are equivalent to TubeBuddy’s canned responses. But, unfortunately, that is the only comment feature it has.
Analytical data for both tools carry over to competitor insights. TubeBuddy’s Videolytics and VidIQ’s Scorecard provide the same data points for other channels. Their Chrome extensions provide channel/video data and graphical comparisons. Their web apps support direct channel-to-channel comparisons by entering a URL or ID. You can assess total and weekly averages for views, subs, and uploads.
TubeBuddy will notify you whenever a competitor uploads a new video. Notification options include email, app notifications, and text messages. In addition, VidIQ displays your competitors trending videos for different time intervals.
TubeBuddy automatically audits and checks to ensure you’re following YouTube’s recommendations. Its demonetization audit finds words that could penalize your videos. Users can also discover demonetized videos on their channels and submit them for manual reviews via its demonetization double-check tool.
VidIQ’s controversial keywords feature identifies words and phrases in your metadata that might be inappropriate for advertisers. For example, the title, “How to Shoot Great Pics with Your Smartphone,” would be considered troublesome because “shoot” could refer to tragedy and conflict.
One of the most critical activities for creators is keyword research and tag management. TubeBuddy and VidIQ offer robust capabilities in those areas.
TubeBuddy’s Search Explorer side panel showcases several data points for a search query. For example, suppose you search for the term “passive income.” The Keyword Score tab indicates search volume, monthly searches, competition, and overall competitive score. The Keyword Stats tab specifies the top videos’ most and least views and the number of keywords in titles, descriptions, and tags. Related searches and frequently used tags are also visible.
On the Videolytics side panel, the Search Rankings tool lets you see where a video ranks for all its tags on a YouTube search.
The Keyword Explorer is available in the web app. It provides similar data to Search Explorer. In addition, users get rising related queries, trending and historical interest, and map figures via Google Trends.
The Keyword Ranking Tracker is another neat feature. It lets you track your videos’ (and competitors’) ranking across YouTube and Google searches. Performance reports can be set to generate automatically.
The SEO Studio tool can help you craft the perfect title, description, and tags to get your video seen.
VidIQ’s Scorecard side panel highlights the average and highest views, the top creator, and the number of keywords in titles and descriptions. Its keyword score helps gauge the difficulty of ranking among the top results. Related queries, interest over time, and trending video stats are also available.
Trend Alerts enable you to monitor keywords, categories, and competitors. It’s an excellent tool for keeping tabs on trending and breakout videos. Set up notifications by views per hour and email frequency.
The Keyword Inspector displays related keywords, trending videos, scores, and reports. Click on highlighted terms to get more insights.
TubeBuddy and VidIQ allow you to download all your video metadata for safekeeping and manage it in Excel and Google Docs.
TubeBuddy’s mobile app is free to download and use. However, some features may be limited unless you have TubeBuddy Mobile Unlimited to access everything. You can pay $2.99 monthly to get Mobile Unlimited or use it with any paid plan. Most of the features focus on tag and comment management.
VidIQ’s mobile app is free to download and use. Most of the features focus on SEO, keywords, and tags.
Social Media Marketing
Both companies enable you to cross-promote and share your videos on Facebook. TubeBuddy also supports social sharing on Twitter. TubeBuddy and VidIQ monitor engagement stats on Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit.
TubeBuddy will recommend and rank tags for you to use when you upload a video. Videolytics shows the tags used for every video, and those terms can be copied to use for your videos. For efficiency, create lists for quick access to frequently used tags. Its tag sorter allows drag, auto-sort by rank, and reordering terms.
When you upload a video, VidIQ will recommend and rank tags for you to use. It shows the tags used for every video, and users can copy the terms to use for their videos. Bulk SEO and channel-wide tags target high-ranking terms to implement across your videos. Finally, you can create a keyword template for commonly used terms to save time.
Both apps enable creators to make thumbnails and save templates for future use. With TubeBuddy, create professional-grade thumbnails using still frames from your videos. You can choose a background, add text/designs, preview, and publish. Alternatively, VidIQ offers much of the same, i.e., a custom thumbnail editor that allows you to add text, shapes, and images.
Tips and Insights
Both companies have robust YouTube channels and blogs that offer hundreds of videos featuring tips, ideas, tutorials, strategies, interviews, live streams, Q&A, YouTube news, and promotions. VidIQ offers online courses through its academy.
TubeBuddy integrates with several apps, including Patreon, Social Bluebook, MagicLinks, Twitter, Facebook, and Amazon Alexa. VidIQ connects to Facebook only.
Paying TubeBuddy customers can access over ten deals and discounts from video, audio, and graphics companies. For example, you’ll get 30 percent off PlaceIt by Envato.
VidIQ Rewards offers free products, discounts, and exclusive deals on audio, graphics, video, and other tools. Deals and offers will depend on the customer’s plan. For example, you’ll get 25 percent off PlaceIt by Envato.
TubeBuddy offers support through different options, including a forum, a knowledge base, and support/helpdesk tickets. The support link on VidIQ leads to a help center/knowledge base. Virtual assistance is available through a chat prompt. Clicking on “Contact” activates the same chat prompt for one-on-one support.
Ease of Use
TubeBuddy and VidIQ are easy to use and foolproof. After you install their plugins, it’s only a matter of reviewing analytics and using the features you want. Both companies have robust resources to support their apps, including how-to videos, tutorials, blogs, and more. Many YouTubers and bloggers have similar content about using and getting the most from both extensions.
Other Noteworthy Features
- Schedule videos to be hidden and removed from playlists.
- Use cards and end-screen templates.
- Create multiple default upload profiles for each type of video you make.
- Manage and get ideas for future video topics.
- Add professionally transcribed captions to your videos.
- Split and A/B test titles, thumbnails, tags, and descriptions to find what works best.
- For a contest or giveaway, randomly select a user who has commented.
- Promote one of your videos in the descriptions of all your other videos.
- Get a breakdown of languages spoken by your channel’s audience.
- Translate titles, descriptions, and tags into other languages to increase your global viewership.
- Celebrate, download a certificate, and share your channel milestones and achievements on social media.
- Promote your videos in the descriptions of your other videos (Vid2Vid Promotion)
- Explore TubeBuddy’s recommended service providers for consulting, training, classes, and YouTube-related apps.
- Track and share your milestones for subscribers, views, uploads, likes, hours watched, and comments.
- Promote one of your videos in the descriptions of all your other videos via “description campaigns.”
- Daily Ideas uses artificial intelligence to recommend your channel’s most relevant creative opportunities. Suggestions are refreshed daily.
- A dark theme mode for a different view.
TubeBuddy Pricing and Plans
TubeBuddy has five plans: Free, Pro, Star, Legend, and Enterprise. In addition, coupons and discounts are available for annual billing, multiple channels, and nonprofit entities. For example, the Pro plan costs $3 monthly but can cost as little as $1.92 with a discount. Learn more about TubeBuddy pricing, plans, and coupon codes to save up to 36%.
|TubeBuddy Plans||Monthly Billing||Annual Billing (20% Off)||Features|
VidIQ Pricing and Plans
VidIQ has five plans: Basic, Pro, Boost, MAX, and Enterprise. In addition, discounts are available for annual billing and multiple channels. For example, the Pro plan costs $10 monthly but can cost as little as $7.50 by paying annually.
|VidIQ Plans||Monthly Billing||Annual Billing (Up to 25% Off)||Features|
|Enterprise||Request a demo||25+|
TubeBuddy and VidIQ have high-paying affiliate programs that pay affiliates for referring new customers and sales. They pay up to 30 and 25 percent, respectively. TubeBuddy’s commission tiers are based on app installs, whereas VidIQ uses sales, making it easier to earn more with TubeBuddy. They run their programs with in-house affiliate marketing software and send commissions via PayPal. In addition, TubeBuddy supports affiliates with monthly newsletters, training videos, and workshops, whereas VidIQ lacks support.
Feature Comparison Recap
- Analytics and data: VidIQ
- Artificial intelligence: VidIQ
- Backup: tie
- Browser support: TubeBuddy
- Bulk updates: TubeBuddy
- Chapter editor: TubeBuddy
- Comment formatting: TubeBuddy
- Comment management: TubeBuddy
- Competitor research: tie
- Demonetization prevention: VidIQ
- Keyword research: tie
- Mobile app: VidIQ
- Social media: tie
- Tag management: tie
- Thumbnail generation: tie
- Integrations: TubeBuddy
- Member Perks: TubeBuddy
- Customer support: TubeBuddy
- Ease of use: tie
- Other cool features: TubeBuddy
- Plans and pricing: TubeBuddy
- Affiliate program: TubeBuddy
Reasons to Choose TubeBuddy Over VidIQ
TubeBuddy offers more features, supports more browsers, has excellent customer support, and has better pricing than VidIQ.
Reasons to Choose VidIQ Over TubeBuddy
VidIQ provides slightly better analytics, a user-friendly dashboard, a better mobile app, and more insightful blogs and demonetization tips than TubeBuddy.
Alternatives to TubeBuddy and VidIQ
TubeBuddy and VidIQ dominate the YouTube channel management app market with very little competition. It’s very much an oligopoly, but a couple of alternatives exist.
Social Blade is a public database showcasing user statistics for various social media sites, including YouTube, Twitch, Twitter, and more. It’s an excellent site for competitor insights but not much else.
Tubics offers fewer than ten features, including competitor insights, video ideation, SEO, and reporting. However, its target market is marketing managers and agencies, not YouTubers. Pricing starts at $100+ a month.
Another alternative is single-purpose apps that support one activity or function, for example, YouTube tag generators.
TubeBuddy and VidIQ are excellent tools, and users can use them simultaneously. However, TubeBuddy is more feature-rich and affordable than VidIQ. Also, TubeBuddy outshines or ties VidIQ in every major category except for analytics and demonetization prevention. Therefore, I recommend TubeBuddy over VidIQ to grow your channel, analyze performance, increase views/subscribers, and dominate YouTube.