Hulu’s Ad Strategy: Why Does Hulu Have Ads?

Hulu’s Ad Strategy: Why Does Hulu Have Ads?

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If you’re a Hulu user, you’ve undoubtedly noticed the ads that play before and during your favorite shows. But, why does Hulu have ads? In this blog post, we’ll take a look at a few of the reasons behind Hulu’s ad strategy and how to watch Hulu without ads.

Key Points

  • How Much Does Hulu Cost
  • Why Am I Seeing Ads on Hulu
  • When Will I See Ads When Watching Hulu
  • Are Hulu Ads Targeted
  • Why Does Hulu Have Ads Even Though I Pay
  • How to Get Rid of Ads on Hulu

How Much Does Hulu Cost?


Hulu is a subscription video-on-demand service that offers ad-supported and commercial-free TV shows and movies. Hulu prices vary depending on your preferred subscription tier and add-ons. We took it upon ourselves to break it all down for you. Let’s start with Hulu plans. Add-ons will be discussed later, so keep an eye out. 

Hulu With Ads

This plan comes at a monthly rate of $6.99 and features an entire library of ad-supported movies and shows. If you’d like to try this plan at no cost, you can get a month of Hulu free trial.

Hulu (No Ads)

Subscribing to Hulu without commercials costs $12.99 per month. It is one of Hulu’s premium plans, and it offers an ad-free experience for most movies and shows included in the basic, ad-supported plan. However, it’s important to note that some shows will still have ads even with this plan. This subscription plan offers a month’s worth of Hulu free trial as well.

Hulu With Ads + Hulu Live TV

For $69.99 per month, you can get access to the basic, ad-supported library, Hulu Live TV, and additional content on ESPN+ and Disney+. 

Hulu (No Ads) + Hulu Live TV

This is the most expensive Hulu premium plan, costing $75.99 per month, but it comes with live TV channels and the on-demand content available with the Hulu (No Ads) plan. It also comes with additional Disney+ and ESPN+ content. However, as is the case with other Hulu plans, some of that content will still have ads.

Hulu for Students

The student discount applies only to Hulu with ads, bringing the price down to only $1.99 per month. Hulu has partnered with SheerID to help students verify their enrollment status. Unfortunately, Hulu does not offer Hulu (No Ads) student discounts.

Why Am I Seeing Ads on Hulu?


First and foremost, ads are a source of revenue for Hulu. By allowing companies to advertise on the platform, Hulu can offset the costs of providing free content to its users.

Secondly, ads in movies and shows allow Hulu to target specific messages to specific audiences. This helps create a more customized experience for users and enables Hulu to better monetize its user base.

Finally, ads help Hulu promote its brand and drive users to its website. By placing ads on popular shows, Hulu can reach a broad audience and remind them of the great content they can find on Hulu.

When Will I See Ads When Watching Hulu?


Why does my Hulu have ads, and when will they play? The answer to these questions depends on a few factors, including the type of content you’re watching and your geographic location. Bear in mind that Hulu is, theoretically, available only in the US and Japan. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it from another part of the world. Just get yourself a good VPN and start binging!

Now, let’s go through which Hulu plans and programs have ads here and there.

Excluded Shows

Because of streaming rights, some shows on Hulu’s streaming library will have ads no matter which subscription plan you choose. The list is often changing, so make sure to check the Hulu website for the latest info.

Hulu Premium and Partner Add-ons

Hulu has several add-ons that will add to your monthly Hulu cost. This content will not have ad breaks, but they may feature promotional content that’s usually played before a video to show other shows that comes with the add-on. 

Premium Add-ons

These premium channels are available at an additional monthly cost: STARZ ($8.99), Cinemax ($9.99), SHOWTIME ($10.99), and HBO Max ($14.99).

Partner Add-ons

The ESPN+ add-on costs $6.99 per month, while you can add Disney+ to your existing Hulu plan for only $2.99 per month. Some content on the ESPN+ add-on has ads. 

Network on-demand

If you’ve subscribed to Hulu No Ads or No Ads + Hulu Live TV, you can stream numerous on-demand content on top of Hulu’s ad-free library. That’s why Hulu (No Ads) still has ads.

Hulu Live TV

This is an excellent option for cord-cutters who want to ditch their cable subscription but still want to watch live TV. However, why does Hulu Live still have ads?

The promotional content that plays on Live TV includes information on plans and add-ons on Hulu and movies and shows that come with your subscription. 

Additionally, you may see brief ads before and after a show, similar to what you see on traditional television, but overall, you’ll see far fewer ads while watching Hulu Live TV than you would if you were watching regular TV.

Cloud DVD recordings

Why does Hulu still have ads on recorded content? If you’re a fan of Hulu’s cloud DVR feature, you may be wondering how commercials work with it. The answer is simple. When you record a show on Hulu, all of the commercials will be recorded as well.

Are Hulu Ads Targeted?


Hulu’s ad personalization is made possible by a technology called demographic targeting. This involves using user information, such as age, gender, and location, to identify groups of people with similar interests. Hulu targeted ads help create a more customized and enjoyable experience for Hulu users.

By taking your viewing history into account, Hulu can show you ads for products and services that you’re likely to be interested in. For example, if you have watched many cooking shows, you may see more ads for kitchen appliances and cookware.

Why Does Hulu Have Ads Even Though I Pay? 


Hulu offers a variety of content at different price points. The basic level of service, which is ad-supported, is free. However, there are two paid options for those who don’t want ads: Hulu (No Ads) and Hulu (No Ads) + Live TV.

However, why are there ads on Hulu even on paid subscriptions? This is because Hulu uses ads as a way to create revenue and be able to provide a wide range of content to its users at competitive prices. 

Some content also has ads because of streaming rights. Additionally, Live TV will have ads because on-demand content from networks has ad breaks. 

How to Get Rid of Ads on Hulu


If you’re sick of seeing ads while watching your favorite shows on Hulu, you may wonder how to watch Hulu without ads. There are a few ways to remove or reduce the ads you see on Hulu. 

You can sign up for a Hulu (No Ads) + Live TV subscription, which will give you access to mostly ad-free content. Alternatively, you can use an ad blocker, which will block ads on Hulu and all other websites. Some ad blockers have a Hulu ad skip feature that will mute and fast forward through any ads detected. Finally, you can try using a VPN, which will route your internet traffic through a different server and may help to block ads. However, before signing up for any VPN service, double-check that they do block Hulu ads. 

Whichever method you choose, follow the instructions carefully to ensure that you don’t inadvertently disable any important features or security settings. If you’re ever unsure, don’t hesitate to contact customer support for help.

Can I Fast-Forward Through the Ads on Hulu?

On average, viewers on Hulu are subjected to about five minutes of ads for every 30 minutes of content. Specifically, that’s usually one ad before and two ads during the episode. That can be a lot to sit through, especially if you’re binge-watching a show.

If you want to know how to skip Hulu ads or at least fast-forward through them, the answer is that, unfortunately, you can’t—at least not for the majority of the live shows, especially on the basic plan. 

However, if you record something on Hulu’s Cloud DVR, you can fast-forward through the ads while watching the recording. You weren’t able to fast-forward through Hulu ads before 2021 without purchasing an Enhanced Cloud DVR upgrade, but as of 2022, Hulu has included these features for free with Hulu + Live TV plans.

Why Does Hulu Have Ads: Our Takeaway


Hulu is a streaming service that relies on advertising dollars to generate revenue and provide quality content at lower price points. Ads help offset the cost of licensing content from studios and networks. Without ads, Hulu would likely have to raise its prices, limit the content, or introduce new subscription tiers. For many users, ads are a fair trade-off for a lower monthly fee.

So, there you have it. The next time you’re wondering why Hulu (No Ads) still has ads, remember that they’re helping to keep the lights on and bring you great content.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a way to avoid Hulu ads?


There are a few ways to avoid Hulu ads. The first way is to sign up for Hulu’s No Ads plans, which have shows that have limited or no commercials. Another way is to use a VPN to help you bypass some of Hulu’s targeted ads. Finally, you can use an ad blocker.
While there is no guarantee that these methods will work 100% of the time, they should help you reduce the number of ads you see when streaming movies and shows on Hulu.

Why does Hulu have so many ads?


If you have ever wondered why Hulu has ads even on paid subscriptions, it is because, without the ads, Hulu would not be able to offer its users a wide selection of content. So, while it may be annoying to sit through a few commercials, it is essential to remember that they help keep Hulu affordable for everyone.

Are the ads on Hulu annoying?


Ads can generally be annoying, but Hulu users particularly complain about Hulu ads being too loud. Although the Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation or CALM Act that was passed in 2010 prevents ads from being louder than the average volume of the channel it is aired on, Hulu has found numerous ways to circumvent this law. It also doesn’t help that the FCC doesn’t really closely monitor online streaming sites. 

Like any other ads, Hulu ads are designed to be attention-grabbing, which is why they have it at a higher volume than the shows you watch. To prevent your ears from being assaulted, you can adjust your TV’s volume during ads or file a complaint on the Hulu website.

Why does Hulu have commercials and Netflix doesn’t?


First of all, Hulu is a streaming service that offers TV shows and movies, while Netflix started as a DVD rental service. As a result, Hulu has always been more reliant on advertising revenue than Netflix.
Secondly, Netflix has more subscribers than Hulu, giving them more negotiating power with studios and networks. This means they can pay less for content and still turn a profit.
Finally, Netflix invested heavily in original content early on, which helped attract and retain subscribers.
Okay, but what about Hulu originals? Why does Hulu have ads despite also offering original content? Well, while Hulu also provides original content, they have not invested as heavily in this area. As a result, they rely more on advertising to make up for monetary losses from paying licensing fees.