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YouTube vs Twitch – The Ultimate Comparison

YouTube and Twitch are two platforms used by MILLIONS of people each month. Video streaming has become much more popular in the past couple of years compared to uploading pre-recorded videos. Many Twitch streamers started off on YouTube as popular gaming channels that wanted to grow and expand their audience. Nowadays, Twitch and YouTube provide their creators with many benefits and perks. In this article, you will read about the differences between YouTube vs Twitch in order to help you understand why both platforms are so important for creators.


YouTube is a social media platform and also the second biggest search engine used by billions of people worldwide for content creation and entertainment. There are vlogging channels, reacting channels, gaming channels, and many more. With the rise of the gaming community worldwide, Twitch, a company now owned by Amazon, was released in 2011 for gamers to stream their gameplay live. Twitch was immediately extremely popular upon release because it was a new and innovative way for creators to engage with their audience. YouTube released their YouTube Gaming live streaming platform in 2015 to compete with Twitch’s market takeover. Since then, most creators have chosen YouTube over Twitch because they can both upload videos and stream all on one single platform. YouTubers even have the opportunity to upload their streams to their channel afterward to pull in even more views.

Big Data

Non the less, Twitch is slowly catching up to the number of visits that YouTube receives. Currently, Twitch receives about ~800 million visits each month compared to YouTube which receives about ~22 billion visits. Although Twitch does not receive as much traffic, the platform has been increasing its user base rapidly and will continue to grow with time in the near future.

Here’s Twitch vs YouTube in numbers: 

Metric YouTube Twitch
Year started: 2005 2011
Monthly active users: 1.8 MMM+1 100MM+2
Daily active users: 30MM+1 15MM+2
Creators: 50MM+1 2.2MM+2
Average watch time per user: ~21 min4 ~6 min4
Demographics Age: 18–491 Age: 18-342
Male/Female Users 62%/38%*1 81.5%/18.5%3

Fun Fact:

  • 25% of the world logs into YouTube each month

Streaming vs Pre-Recorded Videos

Still, streaming is not as common today on YouTube as it is on Twitch. YouTube allows streaming but mainly consists of pre-recorded videos. YouTube features videos from all different types of genres and topics, whereas Twitch features mostly gaming streams. It is estimated that half of the twitch users spend more than 20 hours per week on the site with an average of 95 min daily watching live gaming.

Length of Videos vs Streams

Videos and live streams have different lengths on YouTube vs Twitch. YouTube videos vary in length and do not need to fit a minimum length in order to be uploaded. YouTube’s streaming videos can be shorter which may be easier for streamers to use. Twitch is different, streams should preferably consist of a bare minimum of 2-3 hours and can go up to 48 hours of streaming. Twitch has thousands of streamers for you to watch whether you choose to watch them for a couple minutes or a couple hours. It is very likely that a streamer will still be there streaming even if you check back a couple of hours, sometimes even days later 😁 

Why Consider Twitch as a YouTuber? 🤔

Twitch offers a more innovative live streaming platform as opposed to Youtube’s predominant focus on pre-recorded videos and video sharing. Although YouTube put out a YouTube gaming site on Aug. 26, 2015, that allows channels to live stream their gameplay in order to compete, Twitch is still the more popular site for streaming. 

New Opportunities

Another reason that many YouTubers consider Twitch for live-streaming is that Twitch often treats their creators more fairly. Income can often be more steadily compared to the ever-changing YouTube CPM. Twitch can generate a consistent income stream for streamers through subscription fees and donations from viewers during the stream. Furthermore, YouTube’s management does not inform content creators reliably about new changes on the platform that could affect the YouTuber’s career. However, YouTube has had superchat and sponsorships (now called memberships) for gaming channels since 2017.

Earning money on YouTube vs Twitch

On Twitch there are quite a few ways for creators to monetize. Creators can earn money through donations, subscribers, bit cheering, brand/partnership deals, merchandise sales, and/or ad revenue sharing. On the other side, YouTube creators earn money through donations, merchandise sales, and/or ads but also from brand deals, superchat and memberships, in fact, YouTube owns the largest brand deal platform, famebit. If you wish to find out how much money you could be making as a small to medium-sized creator there are quite a few subreddits on Reddit covering this topic. Below is just one of many helpful posts of people sharing their own experiences with Twitch: 

A Look at Income From Twitch/YouTube and Why I’m Not Full-Time from Twitch


Another reason why you should consider Twitch as a creator is that you could potentially meet your next collaboration partner on there. Collaborations are key to a successful YouTube and Twitch channel. However, finding other YouTubers and Streamers with similar channels and working with them to create something new can sometimes be a challenge on both platforms. At the moment neither YouTube nor Twitch offers a collaboration tool that facilitates the process of collaborating with other YouTubers or Streamers…

Innovative tools like SideKick Collab and VlogFund can help. Sidekick Collab made it their mission to help smaller Twitch streamers and YouTubers grow through collaboration, whereas VlogFund is a brand new way of crowdsourcing YouTube collaborations.

You can try our free ‘create a collab’ tool to try and plan what would happen in a collab between two YouTubers or between yourself and your favorite creator. When pitching a collaboration it’s important to have an idea, preferably several ideas. These ideas will be your foot in the door with more popular YouTubers, if you manage to catch their attention 😉 So don’t forget to share your collab once it’s live.

Do you have an idea for a YouTube collab? If you do, you can submit your dream collaboration on today.


1 YouTube Global Internal Data

2 Twitch Internal Data

3 comScore Sept 2017

4 similarweb July 2018




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Joseline Magallon

Hey I wAnna become a YouTuber

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