How Much Do Twitch Streamers Make? We Did the Math

For Twitch streamers to generate money, they need to understand the variety of methods available to them. There is much more to it than just playing games in front of your camera. 

Continue reading to learn more about how streamers earn money and become so popular.

How Much Do Twitch Streamers Make?

how much twitch streamers make

Successful streamers can earn anywhere between $3,000 and $5,000 monthly on average from subscriptions alone However, the top broadcasters make far more than that.

So, how do Twitch streamers make money? Twitch streamers can generate money by combining donations, sales with customized merchandise, tournament winnings, affiliate links, and sponsorship. Up until recently, sponsorships from online casinos were a huge source of income for some streamers, but the situation has changed due to Twitch restricting and regulating gambling streams.

Although any Twitch streamer technically has access to all of the above sources of income, you’d need to have a decent audience (or be an extraordinarily skilled gamer) to actually start earning from them.

For starters, here are the top 10 stats about Twitch streamers and viewers:

Twitch Viewership Stats

Anyone who watches your live stream will be counted as a viewer. The number of viewers changes as people leave and join your stream, and here are a few stats to show you how much people actually watch.

1. In the Q2 of 2021, 6.51 billion hours were watched on the platform.

(Statista, TwitchTracker)

This is the highest level of audience participation with the streaming platform to date. 

Moreover, the platform has 64,846,230 hours watched daily, which is a weekly average at the time of writing. It also has more than 2 million total hours watched in October 2021.

2. In 2017 and 2018, Twitch was roughly the 30th most-viewed site.

(Social Media + Society)

Twitch has become a crucial aspect of the platformed Internet while being less well-known than Facebook or Twitter. Currently, Twitch holds 89.7% of the global streaming platform market.

Because Twitch has very few specific laws and restrictions, it allows for continual innovation and change within the greater structure of the live stream.

3. As of July 2021, League of Legends has over 42.55 billion total views on Twitch. 


As a result, it is the most viewed Twitch stream. Currently, the other five most-watched games on Twitch are: 

  • Fortnite
  • Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
  • Grand Theft Auto V
  • Dota 2
  • Hearthstone

4. Twitch had an average of 3.01 million concurrent viewers in the second quarter of 2021.


In comparison to the previous quarter, the number of viewers has increased by 3%. 

Furthermore, there were 1.04 million viewers in the second quarter of 2018 and 1.27 million in the second quarter of 2019.

Twitch Streamer Statistics

On the platform, there are many well-known streamers, but a great number of them started small. After all, the beauty of Twitch is that you don’t have to be a celebrity to start broadcasting.

5. Twitch streamer statistics show that in 2020, there were 6.90 million monthly Twitch broadcasters.


And this year, the number of monthly broadcasters is 8.84 million. 

Also, Twitch statistics show that number of partnerships has increased over the years. More specifically, in 2019, it was 35.6K, and in 2020 and 2021 — 51.5K. 

6. Twitch had around 8.07 million active streamers in September 2021.


This was down from 9.89 million in January of the previous year, the highest figure ever recorded on the platform. 

These 8.07 million streamers using the platform actively show only a 4% increase from the same month a year ago.

7. Only about 10% of streamers reach the top.

(Gaming Shift)

So, the next time you ask yourself, “What is the success rate of being a streamer?” keep in mind that anyone can sign up for Twitch and start streaming straight away. Still, finding viewers is much harder than some might anticipate. Of course, streamers that are part of the most popular esports teams have an inherent advantage, as they already have a following and have proven their gaming skills beforehand, finding it significantly easier to accrue viewers.

8. The best time to stream on Twitch is between 7 a.m. and 11 a.m. in your time zone.

(Stream Scheme)

This is because you will face the least competition, increasing your chances of attracting new viewers. 

The most active streamers usually go live in the early evenings, and when they aren’t streaming, their fans are more likely to browse and discover new creators.

Top Twitch Streamers and Earnings

If you’ve ever asked yourself — how much do Twitch streamers make? — the stats below will give you an idea. Being popular is rewarding in the world of Twitch, but these stats will also show you that the competition is fierce.

9. In April 2021, Ninja, the most popular Twitch streamer, had 16.6 million followers on Twitch.

(Statista, FTW, First Sportz, The Loadout)

It’s no surprise that the Ninja brand is almost universally recognized among the younger population, with 16.6 million Twitch and almost 25 million YouTube followers at the time of writing.

Richard Tyler Blevins, or Ninja, got famous mainly due to playing Fortnite when it was at its peak. He did so with many celebrities, like Harry Kane, Dele Alli, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Drake, and Travis Scott. 

What’s more, Ninja is one of the richest Twitch streamers, with a net worth of $25–$35 million. 

10. Tfue is Twitch’s second on the list of biggest Twitch streamers in terms of followers.


Turner Tenney has more than 10.5 million Twitch and over 12 million YouTube followers. 

He also got famous due to playing Fortnite, even though he streamed while playing many other games before it. And let’s not forget how popular the game is — the total amount of time spent playing Fortnite is almost 10.4 million years.

11. The third most popular Twitch streamer is Auronplay.


Raul Genes has the most popular Twitch channel in Spain. He has a Twitch follower count of almost 10 million.

Some of the other most popular Twitch streamers, along with the number of their followers at the time of writing, can be found in this table:

9.787M+ followers9.522M+ followers9.191M+ followers8.185M+ followers8.030M+ followers7.728M+ followers7.341M+ followers


This is according to a Wall Street Journal review of data exposed in a high-profile hack. Based on the data, the highest-paid Twitch streamers have earned over $5 million this year. 

So, next time you ask yourself: “how much do Twitch streamers make?,” make sure not to underestimate them.

13. Twitch affiliates earn half of the subscription price. 

(Credit Donkey)

So, how much do Twitch streamers make per prime sub? If a streamer has become an affiliate, they get $2.49 for each subscriber. Affiliates are paid a monthly salary per subscription as long as their viewers remain subscribers.

14. Twitch streamers get $1 for every 100 bits cheered.


This differs from subscriptions, in which the value offered to the streamer varies depending on the platform’s agreement with them.

In exchange for bits they get from their fans, streamers get paid in real money. So, how much do streamers get from bits? Twitch partners and affiliates are paid $0.01 for each cheered bit on their channel.

15. Twitch stats on subs note that the world record for the highest number of paying Twitch subscribers is 283,066. 


So, who has the most subscribers? His name is Ludwig Ahgren. 

The above-mentioned Ninja established the previous record for most subscriptions, with 269,154 subscribers in 2018. 

16. Ludwig Ahgren is also responsible for the longest stream on Twitch


For 31 days, he streamed nonstop, creating the longest Twitch stream. According to the New York Times, he planned to stream for 24 to 48 hours at first, but as the number of viewers increased, so did the length of his live stream.


Out of the total of 3.1 billion gamers worldwide, for those that enjoy the social aspect of gaming, Twitch is the place to be. On their Twitch channels, some of the world’s best gamers demonstrate their skills for their fans. 

After reading these stats, we can say the best Twitch streamers have a fan base and earnings that are no joke!


How much do small Twitch streamers make?

A streamer with 100 viewers can earn up to $1,500 per month. Additionally, more professional streamers can typically earn around $3,000–$5,000 monthly.

Who is the highest-paid Twitch streamer?

CriticalRole is the highest-paid Twitch channel, earning $9.6 million since 2019. The channel belongs to a team of voice actors best known for streaming Dungeons & Dragons.

How do you get 3 Twitch viewers on average?

In order to do so, you’ll need to take a few steps:

  • Promote your stream on other platforms
  • Ask others to host your streams
  • Build your network
  • Choose the right games
  • Stream regularly
  • Engage with your audience
  • Have fun

Of course, some things might work better than others, and it might take some time for you to see results. However, with patience, effort, and determination, you will get more than 3 viewers in no time.

How many viewers do you need on Twitch to make a living?

To start making consistent money on Twitch, you’ll need around 500 concurrent viewers. In other words, you’ll need approximately 500 people actively watching your channel.

How much money do Twitch streamers make?

Subscriptions alone can earn streamers between $3,000 and $5,000 per month on average. Some earn significantly more than that, but there are also many who earn substantially less.