How Much Can You Really Make as a Twitch Streamer? A Detailed Look at the Income Potential

As an avid gamer, you may dream of making a career out of streaming your gameplay and reactions on Twitch. But how much can you realistically earn as a Twitch streamer? In this in-depth guide, we’ll analyze the income potential for streamers at all levels.

The Vast Majority Earn Under $500 Per Month

The reality is that most Twitch streamers earn supplemental income from streaming at best. According to a StreamElements report, over 76% of surveyed streamers earned less than $100 in their last month on Twitch. The most common monthly income range reported was $1 – $100.

Only 6% of streamers surveyed made over $500 per month, and less than 1% made over $3000 per month. The streaming business has a massive upper tail of high earners, but very few make it big. For most streamers, Twitch remains a fun hobby, not a career.

Chart showing 76% of streamers make under $100 per month

Top Streamers Can Make $5,000 to $15,000+ Per Month

At the highest levels, Twitch streaming can become extremely lucrative. But how much do the top Twitch stars really make?

According to leaks of top streamers‘ earning, here are some monthly income figures:

  • CriticalRole: $140,000+ per month
  • xQc: $80,000+ per month
  • NickMercs: $50,000+ per month
  • Pokimane: $38,000+ per month
  • TimTheTatMan: $30,000+ per month

The very top personalities on Twitch bring in 5 to even 6-figure incomes per month. However, this level of financial success is only possible for a tiny fraction of Twitch‘s over 7 million streamers.

Income Sources for Twitch Streamers

For those lucky few who do make big money on Twitch, where does that income come from? Here are the main revenue sources for high-earning partners:

Subscriptions – Up to $2.50 Per Subscriber

Loyal fans can subscribe to their favorite streamers‘ channels for $4.99 to $24.99 per month, with streamers getting a cut. Affiliates get only 50%, but Partners can negotiate 70% or more on higher subscription tiers. Top streamers easily clear over $100k per year from subs.

Advertising – Varies Greatly Per Stream

Partners get a 55% to 70% cut of ad revenue from commercials running during streams and VODs. This varies greatly – anywhere from $2 to $10 per 1,000 ad impressions. Popular streamers can easily get over $30K per year from ads.

Bits Cheers – $0.01 to $0.02 Per Bit

When fans "cheer bits" during a stream, the streamer gets $0.01 to $0.02 per Bit. Depending on engagement, top streamers can make $20K+ yearly from bits.

Sponsorships – $500 to $10,000+ Per Deal

Sponsorship deals with brands are hugely lucrative. Depending on follower size, top streamers can command between $500 to over $10,000 per sponsored stream or video.

Merchandise Sales – 10% to 25% Royalties

Popular streamers like Pokimane make big bucks off branded merch. With an engaged audience and quality designs, merch royalties can become a sizable revenue stream.

Donations, Platform Deals and More

Finally, streamers also earn income from viewer donations, exclusivity deals with platforms, and other business ventures outside Twitch.

Minimum Requirements to Monetize on Twitch

To unlock monetization features on Twitch, you must first reach Affiliate status by meeting these requirements:

  • 50+ Followers
  • 500+ minutes broadcast in last 30 days
  • 7+ unique days streamed in last 30 days
  • Average 3+ concurrent viewers

The next level is Twitch Partner, which unlocks even more money making potential:

  • 500+ Followers
  • 25+ hours streamed in last 30 days
  • 12+ unique days streamed in last 30 days
  • Average 75+ concurrent viewers

Reaching these milestones gives you access to subs, bits, and expanded monetization tools.

Final Thoughts – Hard Work But Big Potential

Becoming a full-time professional streamer on Twitch takes massive dedication and persistence. For most streamers, it will remain a hobby. But with hard work and a bit of luck, there is real money-making potential on Twitch. Top personalities easily make 6-figures yearly from their loyal audiences.

While the odds are stacked against you, with incredible talent, work ethic, and great content, you could be one of the few to make big money entertaining the masses on Twitch.