- YouTube is launching a new monetization tool as it competes to win over creators.
- The new feature lets fans “donate” money to creators on all eligible video uploads.
- This tipping tool gives creators another way to earn money directly on the platform.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
YouTube is rolling out a new “donation” tool giving creators another way to earn money directly from fans.
The feature, called Super Thanks, allows fans to tip money to creators beyond livestreams and premieres (a scheduled public watch page created for a video before it goes live).
The tool is designed to let fans tip creators on all video uploads that are part of YouTube’s Partner Program (YPP). To join the program, creators must have at least 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours in the past year.
Super Thanks is currently available at four price points between $2 and $50 USD (YouTube takes a 30% cut).
Viewers who use the tipping feature will see an animated GIF and receive a colorful comment to highlight their purchase, which creators can respond to.
Over the past year, YouTube has partnered with creators like Nicholas Ashbaugh (283,000 subscribers) to beta test the feature. Super Thanks now accounts for nearly 15% of his revenue, YouTube said.
Super Thanks is YouTube’s fourth “Paid Digital Good,” joining channel memberships, Super Chat (a paid comment that is pinned and highlighted in a livestream chat), and Super Stickers (a paid digital or animated image that appears in a livestream chat).
In the race to compete with other platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and Snapchat, YouTube is aiming to win over creators by expanding its suite of monetization tools. Recently, donations and virtual tip buckets have become a trending monetization feature among livestreaming and video platforms.
Here’s a breakdown of other tipping features:
- Instagram “Badges”: Fans can tip creators who livestream on Instagram using IG Live (creators get 100% of the revenue).
- Facebook “Stars”: Viewers can tip on livestream gaming videos on Facebook (Facebook’s revenue share that fans pay when they buy Stars varies between 5% and 30%).
- Twitch “Bits”: A virtual good fans can buy and use to “cheer” (tip) their favorite streamers (Twitch takes 50%).
- TikTok “Gifts”: Viewers can purchase a virtual icon to tip creators with during a livestream (TikTok’s conversion between dollars and gifts is complicated, for a full explanation read this.)
Super Thanks is currently in beta and is slowly rolling out to eligible creators in the Partner Program across 68 countries. YouTube said the feature is expected to be available to all eligible creators on desktop and mobile devices later this year.
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