Just a few decades ago, most people would have thought you were crazy if you told them it'd someday be possible to make money playing video games. But that was before Twitch streaming came along and completely changed the game.
These days, many Twitch streamers generate a substantial income by creating live streams of themselves playing games, making music, or creating art. But what exactly is this innovative new platform, and how do streamers make money on Twitch?
You've come to the right place for answers to these questions and more. Whether you recently signed up for Twitch for the first time or already have an established following, we'll break down various revenue streams that you can leverage to make the most of our Twitch channel.
Twitch is a popular live streaming service offering users several unique ways to make money.
Even if you don't yet qualify to become a Twitch partner or even a Twitch affiliate, there are still several ways to monetize your channel.
Partnering with a print on demand service like Gelato is a quick and cost-effective way to create merchandise your fans will love.
In case you're unfamiliar, Twitch is a live-streaming video platform. While video game content has traditionally been the platform's most popular draw, it's since expanded to include other categories such as Music, Food & Drink, Art, and more.
No matter what your passion is, anyone can create a Twitch channel, build an audience, and eventually take advantage of different ways to make money on Twitch. While the concept is similar to creating and monetizing YouTube videos, Twitch is the more popular choice for live streaming, particularly when it comes to gaming content.
Ready to jump right into ways to make money on Twitch? We'll dive right into some of the most popular ways to make money on the platform and then get into several tips to help you make the most of whichever you choose.
Creating your own merchandise can be incredibly lucrative once you build an established and engaged audience on Twitch. Popular Twitch streamers like Ninja and xQc often set up their own online stores where fans can purchase official merchandise.
Many Twitch streamers partner with print on demand (POD) services like Gelato to easily produce merchandise without worrying about product fulfillment, inventory, or shipping. Simply sign up for a free POD account and upload your own designs to customize high-quality products such as:
Connect your POD account to your online store, and when a customer places an order, your POD provider will take care of everything from product creation to shipping. If you're looking for a high-quality, reliable POD service emphasizing sustainability, head to Gelato to start creating merch today.
When you first start streaming on Twitch, you have to work your way up before you can start offering paid subscription tiers. In the meantime, however, you can set up donation options using Paypal or third-party platforms like Streamlabs and StreamElements.
Services like StreamElements allow viewers to log in with their Twitch or other social media accounts and donate money to their favorite streamers. This can be a great way to make money on Twitch, even as a beginner.
Even though you have to qualify to become a Twitch Affiliate before you start offering Twitch-based subscriptions, there's a handy alternative that you can use in the meantime. Patreon is a third-party membership platform that you can use to create your own subscription tiers, regardless of your number of viewers.
To incentivize Twitch users to sign up for your program, make sure you offer plenty of cool perks with each tier. Whether it be exclusive content, shout-outs, or gaming tips, find ways to reward your subscribers for helping you grow.
Promoting your favorite Amazon products while you stream is another great way to make money on Twitch. The Amazon Associates Program allows Twitch streamers, bloggers, and other influencers to promote various products to their audiences.
When you join, you'll provide a link to various Amazon products on your Twitch channel and earn a commission each time a viewer clicks one and makes a purchase. From gear to games, joining the Amazon Associates Program is a fun way to earn money by spreading the word about your favorite products.
While Amazon's affiliate program is among the most popular, it's not the only company allowing you to use an affiliate link to earn money. Companies like NewEgg and gaming retailer NewAsia also have solid affiliate marketing programs.
Zygor Guides, which caters to World of Warcraft fans, even offers Twitch streamers a 50% commission on every purchase they refer to the site. It's worth looking into whether your favorite products offer affiliate options that will allow you to make money selling games, gear, or anything else via links.
While Twitch won't allow you to join its Affiliate Program until you fulfill certain eligibility requirements, the platform will notify you as soon as you qualify. While the requirements are subject to change, at the moment, each Twitch broadcaster must have the following:
Broadcast for at least 500 minutes over the past 30 days
Have broadcast on at least seven days over the last 30 days
Had an average of at least three concurrent viewers during the last 30 days
Have at least 50 followers
Once you reach affiliate status, you'll enjoy more opportunities to monetize your channel. Twitch affiliates can offer different subscription tiers directly through the platform and earn money by receiving cheers in the form of Twitch bits (each worth 1 cent) while streaming.
If you can build a large, dedicated audience through the Twitch Affiliate Program, you may eventually qualify to join the Twitch Partner Program. The qualifications for the partner program are a little more vague. Still, you will need to fill out an application, complete the Path to Partnership, or demonstrate that you have an impressive following to be considered.
If accepted to the partner program, you'll enjoy opportunities to make more money than the average Twitch affiliate. You'll still be able to make money from Twitch subscriptions, but you'll also get to customize your Cheermotes and Bit Badges and earn advertising revenue if you decide to run ads on your channel.
Brand sponsorships can be one of the most lucrative ways to make money on Twitch, especially if you have a large fan base. Brand sponsorships can take many forms, such as receiving free products or even money from companies in exchange for promoting their products in your Twitch streams.
Just make sure you thoroughly understand Twitch's Terms of Service, which require you to include a disclaimer. Basically, you just have to let any Twitch users who may be watching know that you (not Twitch) are responsible for endorsing or promoting the product.
Once you master your own Twitch account, you might consider earning money by teaching other streamers how to make money on Twitch. Plenty of different agencies and freelancers now earn a steady income offering other streamers advice on everything from video ads and lead generation to how to start your own Twitch store.
If you go this route, ensure you're incredibly familiar with Twitch ads, subscriber-only streams, and all the other monetization options Twitch offers. If you specialize in certain topics, like how to become a Twitch affiliate or how to offer great Twitch subscriptions, don't be shy about mentioning it!
While using multiple platforms may initially sound counterproductive, there's a reason that popular Twitch streamers like Ludwig Ahgren regularly upload content to Youtube. By turning the best parts of your Twitch stream into a Youtube video, you can earn additional ad revenue with Youtube ads and attract more viewers to your Twitch channel.
While attracting new viewers on Twitch is an art in itself, Youtube videos stand a better chance of being recommended to viewers watching similar content. YouTube can also be a fun place to upload compilations, gaming tips, or shorter content.
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to make money on Twitch, from ad revenue to creating subscription perks like access to exclusive chat rooms. But things may not always feel so easy when you first start streaming.
Identifying your goals and mapping out a solid strategy can go a long way toward achieving success. Whether you're new to making money on Twitch or looking to up your income, here are some tips to get you started.
Hey, you can't please everybody, right? It's going to be a lot easier to grow as a Twitch streamer if you choose a specific niche to focus on, whether it's video gaming, cooking, or arts and crafts.
By keeping the theme of your Twitch streams consistent, viewers will know what to expect when they tune into your channel. Hopefully, they'll also spread the news to other users who enjoy the same type of content.
Once upon a time, in a land before Netflix, people had to tune in at a specific time to enjoy the latest episodes of their favorite shows. Creating a regular schedule for your Twitch account can be a helpful way to let your viewers know when they should log on for your next live stream.
Be sure you also take advantage of the fact that Twitch's Go Live Notifications are customizable. Including a meme, personal message, or info about your latest broadcast can be a fun way to get followers to tune in.
No matter how good you are, few people will tune in to watch you silently play video games all day. Make sure you add value to your broadcasts by interacting with your viewers, sharing information, and including shout-outs to new Twitch subscription members.
Many successful Twitch streamers take the time to cultivate a strong online presence on multiple platforms. Let your followers know where to find your Youtube channel, your accounts on other social media platforms, and your website.
Another great way to make extra money is to collaborate with another Twitch streamer. Get to know other streamers in your niche and look for opportunities to do joint broadcasts that can help you both expand your audience and grow your platforms.
From earning virtual currency like Twitch bits to making money with ads, Twitch now offers streamers many different ways to monetize their channels. Want to make money on Twitch by selling your own merch?
Sign up for a free Gelato account today to create high-quality, custom merchandise for your Twitch account. We offer creators a reliable, sustainable approach to selling one-of-a-kind merch to fans worldwide.
How much money you can make on Twitch depends on several different factors, from how many followers you have to your affiliate or partner program status. Some of the most successful streamers pull in hundreds of thousands of dollars, while others make much less.
How many views you'll need to make money on Twitch highly depends on your monetization strategies. You do need a certain number of followers and views to join the Twitch partners and affiliate programs.
But you can technically start making money selling t-shirts or third-party subscriptions as soon as you find viewers willing to buy them. The more viewers you get, the more money you can make from things like ad revenue.
While it's possible to make money on Twitch, it isn't likely to happen overnight. There's a lot of competition when it comes to earning money from ad revenue, game sales, or even merch.
Making real money streaming takes a lot of time and effort, not to mention the upfront equipment costs. While it's never a bad idea to take advantage of monetization options, don't lose sight of the fun of sharing your favorite video game or hobby with other streamers worldwide.