If you are looking to become a professional streamer on Twitch, it may seem daunting at first with so many other popular streamers taking up what looks like nearly all the viewership. While becoming a Partner on Twitch can be a big help when it comes to making money on the platform, there are actually plenty of regular streamers that have been making money for a long time without a partnership! So, if you’re asking, “Can you make money on Twitch without being a partner?” The answer is Yes! And here is exactly how you do that.
6 Ways You Can Make Money On Twitch Without A Partnership
Below you will find all the answers to the big question, “Can you make money on Twitch without being a partner?”
To do that, we’ve got a rundown of ALL the many different fun ways for Twitch streamers to make money on the platform without being a Twitch Partner.
Easily one of the most popular methods of making money without a payout from Twitch itself is setting up a donation button.
Almost every streamer, including the ones with a large audience, use a donation button that usually links directly to their Paypal or other money-handling service.
Twitch will take you through the easy steps needed to set up the button.
Once it is up, all your viewers will need to do is simply click the button and choose the amount they want to donate.
On the flip side of this, donations are risky to depend on if it is your only source of bringing in funds.
Your viewers don’t get a reward for donating other than a “thank you” on stream.
So, it is really only up to your viewers generosity to generate donations.
For those that have some ties to other companies or have a large enough audience, gaining sponsors is a great way to make money through Twitch.
Doing ad reads for companies looking to get their name out to the Twitch community can be a very lucrative way of making consistent money through streaming. This goes double for those with a podcast connected to their Twitch account.
However, if you don’t have a fairly large audience or already know someone interested in sponsoring you, closing this kind of deal might be difficult.
Sponsors may not hire a streamer just starting out, simply due to their audience size. They need to see an ROI after all.
On the plus side, maintaining a relationship with any third party sponsors can easily get you consistent income.
This can happen even without help from Twitch itself.
Easily one of the best benefits to not being a Twitch Partner is the ability to use other streaming services alongside Twitch, like these guys do.
When you become a Twitch Partner or Affiliate, you enter a contract with them which states you can only stream on their platform.
For streamers with most or all of their audience on Twitch, this is no trouble at all.
That being said, without a contract to abide by, you can stream on Twitch, Facebook, YouTube, and any other streaming service you want!
What’s more is you can use Twitch to help promote your other projects as well.
One way streamers do this is by turning Twitch streams into YouTube videos or promoting their social media pages through their streams.
At first, this could seem like a method that’s a long shot…
But it’s most certainly not!
You would be surprised how easily some companies will pay you to add affiliate links in your chat. Many will let you sign up with hardly any existing audience base.
All kinds of services offer these affiliate programs:
- Energy drink companies
- Web hosting
- And many, many more…
This kind of marketing allows the streamer to be paid based on the amount of clicks or purchases the company gets on their link placed in your chat.
If you get a fair amount of clicks from your audience, this might even lead to full-on sponsorships which can help catapult you into long-term money making on Twitch.
Sell Your Merchandise
One of the best ways to make as much money as possible on Twitch is to sell your own merchandise.
Naturally, you can just use your own stream to promote it.
For things like t-shirts or buttons, there are all sorts of websites that offer “print on demand” services, like RedBubble.
This means you don’t need to have any inventory of your merch, because they print it as it’s ordered online.
Streamers can sell their merch for a huge profit. Plus, people wearing your t-shirts or pins is more free advertising for your stream and personal brand as a whole.
Start A Patreon
Starting up a Patreon is something not only beginning Twitch streamers do, but also YouTubers, streamers, and content creators of all kinds.
Patreon is essentially a website that allows someone to set up a special kind of donation page. This allows donors to set up a monthly contribution, in exchange for goodies and benefits that are not published or doled out for free.
Patreon encourages long-time donors and fans, which is great for all streamers, even those that have a small but dedicated fanbase.
However, for those that do not have a long time audience, it may be better to stick to the donation button on Twitch.
Many viewers will not go through the extra steps of heading to Patreon when they can simply donate through Twitch itself.
Becoming A Twitch Affiliate
The next step for streamers that manage to gather an audience is becoming a Twitch Affiliate.
In order to become eligible for Twitch Affiliate status, you will need to hit these numbers with your streams:
- At Least 50 Followers
- At Least 8 Hours of Total Stream Time
- At Least 7 Different Days Streamed
- An Average of At Least 3 Viewers
The eight hours of total stream time and the seven different days of streaming are fairly easy to hit.
In fact, the ones who are serious about streaming will usually hit these hallmarks within a week.
Having 50 followers and averaging at least three viewers are, for most, the hardest ones to achieve on the road to becoming an affiliate.
However, it is certainly possible and fairly easy to become an affiliate if you put the time and effort in. Most say it is possible to do it from scratch within a few months.
What’s the Difference Between a Twitch Affiliate and a Twitch Partner?
While both Twitch Affiliates and Partners have close to the same perks, some perks are reserved only for Partners.
Here’s a quick Twitch Affiliate vs. Twitch Partner breakdown.
Cheering with bits is something that is available to both but Partners are the only ones that can use custom cheermotes with their bits.
Both Affiliates and Partners have access to sub emotes:
- Affiliates only have 1 sub emote.
- Partners get 50.
These two examples are basically the only two differences between monetization.
Essentially, there is no difference in how much money the two will make off of bits and subs, but the Partner will have much more customization to theirs.
- Video Tools
Transcode, which greatly helps with the stream’s video quality, is offered only as available to Affiliates (with priority over non-Affiliates).
Unfortunately, this can mean some dips in video quality if the streamers internet slows.
Partners have full access to transcode and will hardly ever encounter stream lag or dips in video quality.
For VOD storage, Affiliates only get 14 days where they can store VODs of previous streams. Partners get 60 days to store VODs of older streams.
Is It Worth Becoming A Twitch Affiliate?
When it comes to being an Affiliate on Twitch, some streamers may feel like they are stuck.
These streamers may even find that they had a better situation with more streaming freedom.
Feeling like you have not made progress with your streaming career can be tough to handle, but staying an affiliate is, in most cases, far better than giving it up.
This goes especially for those looking to make Twitch their long-term home for streaming.
Being an Affiliate is the best way to gain Partnership in the future and can provide more consistent money than no Affiliation at all.
Note: Every situation is different, of course. For instance, those that have a larger audience already on a platform like YouTube or Facebook streaming, it may be better for them not to enter into a contract with Twitch. That way, they can keep their existing fanbase on the previous platform, while using Twitch as an extra marketing platform.
A Few Helpful Ideas To Start Making Money On Twitch
Now that you have all of the ways you can make money off of the platform, it is time to get started on how you’re going to build your audience.
Building a fanbase for your streams is by far the hardest part of starting a Twitch channel.
It will require some creative thinking for you to stand out from the existing streaming crowd.
So, here’s a few ideas that have worked consistently for others in giving you that little push that you need to get started on Twitch.
1. Play the Popular Games
This may strike a chord with some of you that want to become a streamer of a single game but, I’ll be very real with you here, playing the popular games will get you noticed much quicker.
Streamers that only do one game are, usually, one of the best in the world at that game and people watch to see just how great they are, or to learn tips and tricks of the trade.
New games go through blips of popularity on Twitch. Some notable examples over the years being Fall Guys, Among Us, and Fortnite.
I’m not advising you to be a bandwagon hopper, but adding a popular game to your repertoire is a great choice (and maybe even necessary) when you’re first starting out.
2. Do Podcast Streams
Many people tend to associate Twitch as a video game streaming site but some of the most popular streams are actually podcasts.
Podcasts are a fantastic way to both connect with your audience and take a break from the grind of gaming for hours on end.
A Twitch streamer’s bread and butter is their back and forth with their chat and starting a “Just Chatting” stream is a great way to focus on that.
Plus, you can get some great ideas for future streams from your audience, which is a win-win for everyone.
3. Have On Guests
Bringing a guest onto your stream is a great way to grow both your audience and your guest’s by having a fun collaboration between the two of you.
Whether it’s playing a two-player game together, having a competition, or simply talking to each other, having another person on stream can make life a lot easier for you and take some of the pressure off as well.
Also, and this is huge…
The bigger the guest, the more new people they’ll bring over to you.
To get a high quality guest, be patient and polite and consistent with your streaming. The rest will take care of itself. In time, you will be the high quality guest someone else is looking for!
Twitch has been a booming streaming site for years now. It has taken over as one of the go-to places for those looking to become an online influencer.
Can You Make Money on Twitch Without Being a Partner?
These days, it may seem impossible to start from square one on this huge platform and make any kind of waves as a streamer.
Like anything else online with competition, it can be difficult to start out from nothing and find your own audience.
BUT, here’s the good news…
The more you stream, the more your audience will come back and watch, again and again and again. If you have the passion and a little patience, and if you put in the time, starting from nothing can certainly become a whole lot of something.
That something, of course, is a real job that can bring in a whole lot of money, which doesn’t just come from Twitch, but sponsors, donations, and merchandise, too.
Twitch Partnership can seem like a mile away for someone just starting out but, thankfully, you don’t actually need a partnership to make money on Twitch.
The world of video games, platform gaming, and online streaming is your oyster.
Now get out there and start Twitching!