Live streaming on Twitch should always be fun and enjoyable first and foremost. But the fact is, everyone would love to earn a few extra dollars while their at it.
A lot of streamers will say they have no interest in earning an income on Twitch and I'm cool with that. But I say, if you are putting in the work and your content is high-quality, then you should have no qualms about monetizing your stream.
In 2016, there are several ways to monetize that go beyond donations and subscriptions. And this is great, because only 1% of all broadcasters are partnered yet there is a huge percentage of people that produce high-quality content that deserve to earn something for their time.
This post will outline some of the more prominent options you have as well as some more obscure ones.
Sub Button Alternatives
This is one of the most important aspects of monetization for non-partners. Here are some options to tide you over until you have that elusive purple button.
Patreon is basically a sub button alternative. This platform allows you to receive monthly contributions from your fans by setting up your own profile page with rewards. You can set different levels based on the contribution size. Here is a snippet from their website:
“Making ends meet as a creator can be stressful. Revenue from sales, ads, and sponsorships is rarely predictable, and an income that’s consistent month-to-month can seem unattainable. As a creator on Patreon, you can have a source of income you can depend on. Whether it’s per month or per creation, patrons can give you the consistent support you need.”
I think Patreon is a great option for both Twitch partners and non-partners. As well, they only take a 5% cut from your contributions which isn't too bad considering how awesome their platform is.
GameWisp is another sub button alternative but with more integration with Twitch. Unlike Patreon, this platform is designed specifically for Twitch streamers both partnered and non-partnered. You can setup on screen alerts and varying price points as well. GameWisp seems to be growing alongside the community so I would expect them to add more and more features as time goes on.
Affiliate programs are a great way to subsidize your stream. They won't necessarily be stuffing your pockets but can often bring in a nice little monthly sum on top of everything else. Here are some that are being used throughout Twitch but I highly recommend you search for unique affiliate programs that you can exclusively offer your fans as they can often become over saturated and ineffective.
KontrolFreeks – Get your own unique discount code and earn 10% commission on gaming gear.
SteelSeries – Highend Gaming Gear.
Nvidia – High-end Video Cards
Amazon – Post your PC build so people can buy the same parts and you get a commission.
GreenManGaming – Offer games at a discount and earn a commission.
Origin – High-end Gaming PCs
ThinkGeek – Apparel, Toys, Gadgets and more!
AstroGaming – Headsets and audio equipment.
Merito – Help your viewers earn extra cash while they are AFK.
Razer – High-end gamer gear and hardware.
Newegg – Get your fans to buy their computer parts through your link and get a commission.
CSGods – CSGO Betting and more.
G2A Goldmine – One of the most popular affiliate programs in the Twitch community.
Kinguin – Nice commission and quick payouts for promoting games, skins and more.
OnlineKeyStore – Keys, Games, Skins etc.
GamesPlanet – Game sales out of the UK.
R2Games – Mobile Games!
StreamAcademy – Help other streamers grow with these courses!
MMOGA – Games, Fifa Coins, Gold, Keys, Skins
LearnTheLeague – A LoL guide with 50% commission
TinyBuild – Indie Games!
GameServers – Game and Voice/Chat Servers
BONUS – TreatStream – A fun way for your fans to treat you to food delivery and other gifts
Affiliate programs will always be second to direct contribution (donations and subs) but still play a critical role for those who depend on the income they earn from Twitch.
Some people scoff at affiliate programs especially when everyone starts using the same ones (like G2A and Kinguin) so it is important to stick to just a few and even moreso that you believe and trust the companies you are promoting.
As always, if you have any suggestions, ideas or methods that we missed…post them in the comments and we will add it with a link back to your Twitch stream (include your url). Same goes for any companies that we missed that think they deserve to be on this list!