Twitch's top 50 streamers earned $11M during lockdown, here's how you can make a quick buck while gaming
On average, Twitch boasts of 4M broadcasters each month and 17.5M average daily users and its viewership figures increased by almost 50 percent during lockdown
While the pandemic lockdown may have caused a lot of disruptions in our everyday life, it hasn't fallen short on entertainment. Streaming platforms have reportedly experienced a substantial uptick in the number of subscribers and views as compared to the pre-lockdown times, and the same goes for the gaming industry.
The lockdown had allowed streamers to post regular content while homebound, which has in turn contributed to a significant boost in the gaming industry. Twitch, the interactive streaming site for gamers and eSports, in particular, has experienced a drastic rise in its popularity. It is the go-to platform for professional gamers who flock to the site to stream their live games and attract a fan base comprising millions of fellow gamers. Live-streaming gameplay has facilitated money-making opportunities for many Twitch users, who have gone on to establish full-time careers.
In fact, Casumo, an online casino industry, recently analyzed the earnings of the top streamers on Twitch, seeing that the platform's viewership figures had increased by almost 50 percent. At the onset of the coronavirus lockdown in March, the total viewership estimate was 49M hours. Two months later, in May it had increased to 74M hours. Furthermore, the data also narrowed the platform's Top 50 most subscribed and highest-earning streamers, who have been cashing in their earnings through gaming since the beginning of lockdown.
What is Twitch and how do you earn money here?
Twitch is the world's leading live-streaming platform, predominantly catering to the gaming audiences. On average, Twitch boasts of more than 4M broadcasters each month and 17.5M average daily users. Gamers stream themselves playing video games online, while viewers and gaming enthusiasts tune in to choose and support their favorite streamers by subscribing to their channel. Viewers who subscribe to channels unlock certain perks, like exclusive access to chatrooms, emoticons and even merchandise discounts. Monthly subscriptions are categorized into three tiers starting at $4.99, with $9.99 and $24.99 options available as well. The higher the tier, the greater the perks from a subscription.
Affiliates receive a specified portion of each subscription. While streamers that have under 10,000 subscribers earn 50 percent of each subscription, those crossing that threshold earn 70 percent. Streamers also earn from one-off donations to their streams, where subscribers and users who would like to render monetary support can make donations via PayPal or a third-party app like Streamlabs. Advertisements placed at the start of their load-out screen can also garner streamers with revenue.
Highest-earning Twitch streamers during the lockdown
Casumo's survey compiled a list of 50 top ranking twitch streamers based on their subscriber count and their YouTube earnings. According to Casumo, the world's Top 50 most subscribed Twitch streams earned a combined revenue of $11,084,482 through streaming and YouTube amid the coronavirus lockdown period.
The top spot for the highest-earning Twitch user is claimed by 23-year-old TheGrefg (real name David Cánovas Martínez), who earned a whopping $851.8k during the lockdown period playing 'Fortnite', combining his Twitch ($99.2k) and YouTube ($752.6k) earnings. At $596.7k in total earnings is Raúl Álvarez Genes aka AuronPlay. The 31-year-old Twitch star made $152.9k playing 'Minecraft' via the live-streaming platform while in quarantine, and his YouTube videos drew in $443.8k. Summit1G or Jaryd Lazar, 26, is third in the list of highest earners during lockdown period with a total income of $543.1k.
He is the top-paid gamer on Twitch at the moment, cashing in $531.5k while his YouTube earned him $11.7k. Félix Lengyel better known by his username xQc0W bagged the fourth spot on the list of top earners during the quarantine period with a total income of $477k playing 'Overwatch'. The 24-year-old streamer made $359.2k in Twitch earnings and $117.8k in YouTube earnings. In addition, the analysis finds that Pokimane (real name Imane Anys) is the highest-earning female streamer, popular for playing 'League of Legends'. She earned a total income of $255.5k through gaming since the beginning of lockdown, which is more than any other female streamer. Her Twitch live streams have earned her $154.8k, while her YouTube earnings amounted to $100.7k.
Casumo incorporated Twitch Tracker to source the Top 50 most subscribed channels on the streaming platform, considering only gaming channels in the rankings. The time-frame in focus spans from the beginning of April to the present day. All the streamers in the final list have over 10,000 subscribers (ie, earning 70 percent of their subscription fee). However, earnings through advertisements were not considered in the study due to being unobtainable. Tier 1 of the subscription comprised Prime, gifted and unshared subscriptions. YouTube earnings were sourced from each channel's average 'last 30 days' on Social Blade and converted into dollars.