Netflix changes how it measures viewership

The SVOD plans to begin reporting the number of viewing hours for shows, rather than household views, later this year—and will do so more often.
October 20, 2021

In a bid to measure its programming more like traditional television and offer better data transparency, Netflix will soon release viewership statistics by total hours watched during a program’s first 28 days on the platform. This is a departure for the streamer, which has traditionally only reported the number of households that watched a piece of content for at least two minutes—a measurement method that has been criticized for not providing a complete audience picture.

As part of its Q3 earnings report, the SVOD said in a shareholders letter that the new measurement process is “a slightly better indicator of the overall success of our titles and member satisfaction.” The strategy also “matches how outside services measure TV viewing and gives proper credit to rewatching.”

In addition, Netflix plans to make its programming metrics more readily available outside of quarterly earnings reports so its subscribers and the industry at large can more effectively measure the success of titles on its platform.

For years, kids content producers have been calling on the streamer to share more viewership data to help them secure toy deals and align content launches with consumer product rollouts. Netflix’s measurement change comes at a time when the company is building out its own consumer products strategy. It recently partnered with Walmart to launch Netflix Hub, its first digital storefront with a national retailer. The e-store currently offers exclusive products including dolls and playsets inspired by shows like Waffles and Mochi, CoComelon and Ada Twist, Scientist.

As for the rest of the streamer’s Q3 results, it reported a revenue increase of 16% to US$7.5 billion, as well as 4.4 million new subscribers, bringing its global total to nearly 214 million members. Netflix also noted that animated family film Vivo (pictured)—which has been viewed by 46 million households—was one of its most popular movie titles overall in the third quarter. The platform’s current animated film record is 53 million household views for Sony Pictures Animation’s The Mitchells vs. The Machines, which was released in Q2 2021.

About The Author
Jeremy is the Features Editor of Kidscreen specializing in the content production, broadcasting and distribution aspects of the global children's entertainment industry. Contact Jeremy at



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