When new streamers gain some viewers and subscribers, one of the first things they often do is set up a donation system. There are many options to choose from, but which one is the best? How do you set them up, and what risks should you be aware of? Today we will discuss donation tools on Twitch.
The main advantage of donations
Twitch’s paid subscription system is a primary way for streamers to earn money. It provides a predictable and stable income, but it is not very profitable for a broadcaster because only 50% of the money goes to the streamer’s account, with the other 50% taken by the platform.
For example, if a content creator has 100 subscribers and each of them pays $5, the streamer will only receive $250, not $500.
Third-party donation tools, on the other hand, give the streamer 100% of the money earned. The content creator only has to pay a small fee for using the platform, and nothing more. This is more favorable because the streamer loses much less money compared to paid subscriptions.
Therefore, it is important for Twitch streamers to consider the various donation tools available and decide which one is the best option.
Twitch Bits: in-platform donation system
“Cheer100” will send 100 Bits to the streamer.
However, this tool is not very profitable for streamers. Twitch takes a fee of around $0.01 per Bit received, so a streamer will only receive $0.99 for every $1 of Bits donated. In addition, Bits are only available to purchase in large amounts, starting at $4.99 for 500 Bits. This may discourage small donations from viewers.
Overall, while Bits may be a convenient option for some viewers, it may not be the most profitable option for streamers. Other third-party donation tools, such as PayPal or Streamlabs, may offer more favorable terms for content creators.
“Twitch Bits” is a built-in currency on Twitch that can be used as a donation tool. It is not the most convenient option, but it is available for Affiliates and Partners (streamers who have built up an audience on the platform). Viewers can purchase Bits using Amazon Payments and then “cheer” them to the streamer through chat messages. For example, a viewer can type “cheer100 Love your stream!” in the chat to send 100 Bits to the streamer with the message “Love your stream.” One Bit is equal to one cent, so 100 Bits is equivalent to one dollar.
Twitch Bits is a built-in currency used as a donation tool on the platform. Viewers can purchase Bits with real money using Amazon Payments, and one Bit is equal to one cent. Only Affiliates and Partners can use Bits, meaning a streamer must have some audience to be able to use it. Viewers can cheer Bits through chat messages by typing “cheer” and the number of Bits they want to send, along with a message if they choose. Donors who use Bits get ranks, unique emojis, name colors, and badges based on the amount of Bits they send. Streamers can easily set up and control Bits, but the withdrawal process is slow, with Affiliates waiting up to 60 days and Partners waiting 45 days to receive their earnings. Many streamers use Bits as an encouragement tool rather than a primary way of earning money.
PayPal: fast and easy donations
Use a donation panel. A donation panel is a section on a streamer’s Twitch profile page where they can list their donation options, including their PayPal. me link. This way, viewers can easily access the link and make a donation.
PayPal is a reliable and secure platform, so streamers can be sure that their money will be transferred safely. However, PayPal takes a fee for each transaction, which can range from 2.9% to 5% plus a $0.30 fee. This fee can be a significant loss for streamers, especially if they receive many small donations.
PayPal is a good choice for streamers who want a quick and easy way to accept donations and don’t mind paying the fees. It’s also a good option for streamers who don’t meet the requirements for other donation tools, such as having a certain number of followers or subscribers.
To add a donation section to your About page on Twitch:
- Go to your Twitch channel dashboard and click on the “About” tab.
- Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on the “Add a Section” button.
- From the dropdown menu, select “Donation”.
- Enter the information you want to include in the donation section, such as your PayPal. me link or a message thanking your viewers for their support.
- Click “Save Changes” to update your About page with the new donation section.
Remember to always follow Twitch’s guidelines and policies when asking for or receiving donations. This includes disclosing any donations or sponsorships in your streams and not using donations as a means of promoting or selling products or services.
How to create a Donation panel on the About page:
Twitch streamers can use PayPal as a donation tool to easily receive donations from their viewers. To set up a donation panel on the About page, a streamer can follow these steps:
- Click on the channel icon in the top right corner and select “Channel” from the drop-down menu.
- Click on “About” and “Edit Panels”.
- Select “Add a Text or Image Panel”, enter the panel name, donation link, and brief description, and press “Submit”.
However, it’s important to be aware that PayPal takes a fixed fee of $0.49 plus 2.89% for each transaction. This can be a significant amount for streamers who receive small donations. To avoid this, many streamers set a minimum level for accepted donations. In addition, PayPal often fulfills requests for refunds, which can be a problem if the streamer has already withdrawn the money. To avoid this, experienced streamers recommend waiting a few months before withdrawing donations. Despite these drawbacks, PayPal remains a popular choice for Twitch streamers to receive money from their viewers.
The guy lost all this money and had to pay all the fees from his own pocket. We don’t know if that was a cunning move from the “donator,” but instead of earning money, the broadcaster lost $400. It’s unsettling.
Fortunately, the story had a happy ending. This post on Twitter was spotted by Ninja, the #1 streamer on Twitch. And he made a $5800 donation to AverageJonas to lift his spirits.
Moreover, if a streamer has already withdrawn the money, there may be many problems when PayPal makes a refund. That’s why experienced streamers recommend waiting a few months before withdrawing donations.
PayPal is still a popular tool for streamers to receive money from viewers on Twitch. However, broadcasters need to be aware of its drawbacks when using it. As a result, it is not usually the only tool used for receiving donations.
Streamlabs and other all-in-one tools for streamers
Most top streamers use special software, like Streamlabs, to collect donations from their viewers. Around 60% of top broadcasters use this tool to manage their tips.
All-in-one tip pages, like Streamlabs, are easy to set up and use. They allow streamers to accept donations through various methods, including PayPal, direct credit card payments, and other systems.
There are several advantages to using Streamlabs and other similar tools:
Platforms do not cut streamers’ revenue. Most of them are free. For example, Streamlabs has paid options for content creators, but the free donation tool is designed to promote the brand and motivate broadcasters to work with them. Users only have to pay standard fees. All necessary payment methods are gathered on a single page, which can be customized by the streamer. Donors do not have to deal with complicated payment systems and can make a donation with just a few clicks. Streamlabs also offers monthly auto payment and faster transaction processing, taking just a few hours instead of up to five days.
Twitch streamers can use various tools to collect donations from their viewers. One of the most popular options is Streamlabs, which is used by almost 60% of top broadcasters. All-in-one tip pages like Streamlabs are easy to set up and use, and allow streamers to choose from various methods for receiving donations such as PayPal, direct credit card payments, and other systems.
Some of the advantages of using tools like Streamlabs include:
- Streamers retain a higher percentage of their revenue, as these platforms often do not cut into their earnings. Some platforms may offer paid options, but the fees for using their free donation tools are typically standard.
- All necessary payment methods are gathered on a single page, which can be customized to the streamer’s liking. This makes it easier for donors to make payments without having to deal with complicated payment systems.
- Monthly auto payment is often available, which means that transactions are processed faster than with other donation systems — often taking just a few hours rather than several days.
To set up these tools, streamers simply need to follow the same steps as they would with PayPal, resulting in a single link that can be added to the About section, designed as a button or stream overlay, or posted in the chat. Many all-in-one projects also offer integrations with platforms such as Patreon, providing a comprehensive way to manage earnings from streaming. There are more than ten examples of donation solutions available, including Streamlabs, Streambits, Donorbox, Muxy, Gaming for Good, PeachPay, and Own3d Pro. Streamers can try out different options and choose the one that works best for them.
Cryptocurrencies: Donations 2.0
Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies can also be used as donation tools for a Twitch channel. However, it’s not very popular — about 2.5% of broadcasters in the top 300 list have ever used cryptocurrencies to receive donations.
But it still works. A broadcaster must create a cryptocurrency wallet and post the link. That’s all. There are many different cryptocurrencies available — about 13,000 — so a streamer needs to choose the most popular ones such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin.
The main advantage of this kind of tip is the low fees.
Twitch streamers have several options for collecting donations from their viewers. The most popular option is Streamlabs, which is used by about 60% of top broadcasters. This all-in-one tool allows streamers to accept donations through PayPal, credit card payments, and other systems. It also offers integrations with platforms like Patreon and has a customizable donation page. Other options for streamers include Streambits, Donorbox, Muxy, Gaming for Good, PeachPay, and Own3d Pro.
Cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin, can also be used as donation tools, but this option is not as popular — only about 2.5% of top broadcasters have used it. Cryptocurrencies have low fees, but they are not as stable as traditional currencies and are not commonly used by Twitch viewers to donate. Streamers can create a cryptocurrency wallet and share the link for donations, but it is not advisable to push this option too heavily in chat or overlays. The best option for streamers is to choose donation tools based on their audience’s preferences — for example, PayPal is more popular in the US, while direct transactions are more common in Ukraine.