A breakdown of TikTok rankings – how do they work and what can you earn?

TikTok rankings seem to be a minefield for anyone who isn’t placed at the top. It seems like a top secret club that no one can access because all the slots are filled. However, in theory, anyone could rank on TikTok, and it could see you earn a lot of money.


Number one ❤️❤️❤️#weeklyrankings @brettboyy @Markusemz @brettboyy_backup

♬ original sound – Toni Trustnoone Smith

Within TikTok the money lies in rankings. You need to rank highly on the platform to be in with a chance of earning large amounts of money. The higher you rank, the more you earn. These rankings are based on just views and followers though. They’re based on the amount of diamonds a creator has – which, is a whole other element.

Essentially, a TikTok creator needs to earn diamonds in order to be able to appear on the rankings. When a creator ranks within the leaderboard, they’re then given rewards by the platform. TikTok don’t specify the rewards, but they’re monetary based we know from creators who have placed on the leaderboard previously.

What are TikTok rankings?

TikTok rankings are leaderboards for each country. They share the best performing creators of that week. Creators earn their place depending on how popular they are. You can access TikTok rankings and see a list of creators who are at the top through searching the hashtag weeklyrankings. It will display videos of the top creators that week.

For most creators on the platform, their aim is to rank on TikTok. This will gain them more exposure and it’s likely their follower count will increase. Once a creator has ranked, they’ll likely be able to place again another week due to the amount of views they’ve received since then. It’s a great way of popular creators becoming even more popular.

How does a creator rank on TikTok?

Essentially, it comes down to an accounts popularity. The more viewers and followers you have, the more chance you’ll qualify for rankings. To be able to rank on TikTok a creator will need to have diamonds. Creators are ranked by the amount of diamonds they have received by 12am daily. The more diamonds given by viewers, the more chance they’ll rank.

Those with the most diamonds collectively throughout the week will appear on the leaderboard. However, what is a diamond? A diamond is a gift given through TikTok either within standard videos or lives. Those receiving a diamond through a normal video will get 1 cent, or 1p in the UK. However, those who receive it through a live video will get half of this.

How does a creator earn diamonds on TikTok?

By creating content to put it simply. The more content you create, the more opportunity you have of earning rewards. However, these rewards are provided by people watching your content. So, you’re relying on the generosity of your viewers. If you’re a frequent poster, you’re more likely to earn diamonds from those following you.

Your viewers will need to purchase coins through the TikTok app. Once they have coins, they can use these to turn into gifts. These gifts are then sent to creators via lives or normal video content. Often creators will thank individuals for their gifts during the lives as they appear. This helps build the creator and fan relationship which may result in more diamonds.

Creators can earn more than just diamonds. Gifts come in a whole range of styles; diamonds, roses, rockets and even lions. They all vary on price point. Content creators are able to turn these gifts into money and withdraw the money into their account. This is why you might see creators asking for gifts where people can.

What rewards can a creator earn from TikTok rankings?

The more diamonds, the more chance of ranking. We’ve covered that part. However, what happens when a creator ranks within the top 10? Depending on where they place they will get different rewards. For all placed creators, they can expect an increase of followers and certainly views. There are a lot of TikTok uses who pay a lot of attention to the leaderboard.

Being in the top 3 will mean your content appears more on user’s FYPs (For You Pages). They’ll also have an announcement appear every time they are live. It will share with their viewers that they are in the top 3. Those who come in the top 10 will have their videos shared on the Explore page. Along with this, they’ll have a label placed onto their content displaying their rank which will act as a reward in itself.

Users are more likely to watch content if they know it’s a popular creator. All of the top 20 viewers on TikTok will be notified each time one of the top 20 creators goes live on the platform. But, aside from views and more viewers – the leaderboard will get money when they rank. They need diamonds to rank, once they rank they’re likely to be sent more diamonds by viewers. Then they can cash these out and this is where the money comes from.

TikTok take a huge cut of creator earnings

It’s thought though that despite some creators earning £8,000 roughly from diamonds, once TikTok take their cut of these gifts, they might only walk away with around £2,400. However, with gifts, subscriptions and the Creative Fund, TikTok stars are said to be making around £164,000 per year (before tax). Perhaps some even earn more than this.

The video below by Michael Giblin has explained this really well. He has broken down one particular high ranking UK TikToker’s earnings. You’ll see how the money is split, what cut TikTok takes and where the money comes from. You will also be able to see how much this TikToker sees in the final figures.


Replying to @Debstarry You wanted to know how much #ChelseaLeeArt made last week? Here’s my thoughts. #rootsdarling #paulbreach #tiktoklive #weeklyranking #uktiktok

♬ original sound – Michael Giblin
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