These Are The Most-Watched YouTube Videos Of All Time


YouTube has been the dominant force in video streaming for well over a decade, with music being a huge driver of the platform’s growth.

However, there seems to have been a demographic shift in YouTube’s audience over the years.

As Visual Capitalist’s Freny Fernandes details below, while commercial music videos once dominated the rankings of the most-viewed videos on YouTube, they have since faced stiff competition from an unlikely source: nursery rhymes and children’s educational videos.

This graphic pulls up the 20 most viewed videos on YouTube, revealing the rising demand for kid-focused content and videos as of August 2023.

Now Streaming for Children

Launched in 2016 by Korean education brand Pinkfong, the catchy “Baby Shark (do-do, do-do-do-do)” dance video became the first music video ever to cross 10 billion views in January 2021.

Nine of the top 20 most-viewed YouTube videos today offer content geared toward children:

Rank YouTube Video Channel Views (August 2023)
1 Baby Shark Dance Pinkfong 13.0B
2 Despacito Luis Fonsi 8.2B
3 Johny Johny Yes Papa LooLoo Kids 6.7B
4 Bath Song Cocomelon 6.3B
5 Shape of You Ed Sheeran 6.0B
6 See You Again Wiz Khalifa 5.9B
7 Wheels on the Bus Cocomelon 5.4B
8 Phonics Song with TWO Words ChuChu TV 5.4B
9 Uptown Funk Mark Ronson 4.9B
10 Learning Colors – Colorful Eggs on a Farm Miroshka TV 4.9B
11 Gangnam Style Psy 4.8B
12 Masha and The Bear – Episode 17 Get Movies 4.5B
13 Dame Tu Cosita Ultra Records 4.4B
14 Axel F Crazy Frog 3.9B
15 Sugar Maroon 5 3.9B
16 Roar Katy Perry 3.8B
17 Counting Stars OneRepublic 3.8B
18 Baa Baa Black Sheep Cocomelon 3.7B
19 Sorry Justin Bieber 3.6B
20 Waka Waka (This Time for Africa) Shakira 3.6B

With total views of 13 billion today, “Baby Shark” surpasses the music video for Luis Fonsi’s “Despacito” (previously the most-viewed YouTube video) by almost five billion views.

And other popular child-focused music videos are close behind. “Johny Johny Yes Papa” (#3) and Cocomelon’s “Bath Song” (#4) nudged Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You” and Wiz Khalifa’s “See You Again” down to the fifth and sixth rank in the list of most-viewed YouTube videos.

Catchy or Educational?

While many attribute the popularity of kid-focused videos to repetitive lyrics, familiar nursery rhymes, or otherwise catchy music that can’t get out of your head, research says otherwise.

A study by the Pew Research Center found that YouTube plays a key role in providing content for children. 81% of parents of kids aged 11 and younger allow their children to watch YouTube, with 35% of these kids using the platform regularly.

And this has become a lucrative business too. In 2021, the company behind Cocomelon and other popular kids channels was acquired for around $3 billion.

If these trends keep up, we may see more kid-focused content climb up this Top 20 list in the future as well.


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Las Vegas News Magazine

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