I'm working on an AE project for my customer, something like 3 or 4 seconds long.
So I chose YouTube 264 preset and pressed start on AME.
I got 2 hours estimating time?! Are you kidding me?!
Is that's even heavier than a AAA 3D animation or max setting on Dark Soul III?!
And the blue bar is not moving!
Your description is usefull in the same way that if you would say:
I have a car with a trailer and I have some stuff on that trailer and when I try to go from my home to my friends home that is only a mile away almost 1 hour and it burns huge amount of fuel.
Without knowing what car you have, without knowing how much stuff you have on your trailer, and without knowing if you know how to use your car (let say that it is a car with manual transmission) properly.
So if you came here and wish to get any usefull info about how to fix your issue - please provide us with some more info about your workstation specs and your project (what is in it).
Try getting to H264 in two passes.
Use the After Effect Render Queue at Best Settings - Lossless. This will still take some time, but will likely faster than AME.
Then drop the resulting file into AME to create the YouTube H264.