Twitch as a platform has been around for over a decade and has grown in popularity over the years as a way to watch gamers play live and for users to interact with their favorite creators.
In the first year of the pandemic, their membership grew about 80%. As a result, it’s harder for some creators to get noticed.
Can you get banned for buying Twitch followers to increase your visibility? The answer is, sort of. Buying fake followers, or bots, violates the Twitch terms of service. Buying real, legitimate followers, however, is not a violation.
Keep reading below and I’ll explain the concept of buying followers and dive a little deeper into some of Twitch’s policies.
Twitch’s Policy on Buying Followers
Twitch’s community guidelines policy states, “Any content or activity that disrupts, interrupts, harms, or otherwise violates the integrity of Twitch services or another user’s experience or devices is prohibited.” Included in that activity is “tampering,” which includes artificially inflating follow or live viewer stats.
The keyword there is “artificially.”
Plenty of programs exist online for streamers to purchase bots or fake followers. This is expressly against the community guidelines.
Twitch works hard to reduce fake engagement and bots, and they are very serious about cracking down on fake accounts. Violating Twitch’s community guidelines can result in a suspension or ban from the platform.
However, some services say they allow you to purchase batches of genuine Twitch followers. While the morality of this is dubious, it also isn’t expressly against Twitch’s terms and conditions.
Why Streamers Buy Followers (and Why They Shouldn’t)
The idea behind buying followers seems to be that if you have more followers, your streams or accounts will be recommended more often. Essentially, the belief is that if you have more followers, the front page algorithm will favor you. However, this is not always the case.
While having a large number of followers doesn’t hurt your rankings, what really matters is how many of those followers are viewing your stream at any given time and how much interaction there is.
A streamer with 2,000 followers but only has five viewers at a given time won’t be boosted as high as someone with 1,000 followers and 50 viewers.
Essentially, the community element of Twitch is more important than pure numbers. Twitch needs to see that followers actively engage in your content by participating in chat, subscribing to your account, and donating.
Purchased accounts may make your follower count look nice, but they don’t view streams. They don’t subscribe. They don’t donate. Purchased accounts, whether fake or “real,” don’t help you gain favor with the algorithm, and they don’t get you paid.
How To Organically Grow Followers
When you purchase Twitch followers, at worst, you’re setting yourself up to be banned, and at best, you’re wasting money on followers that aren’t going to help you. Instead, you should focus on growing your community organically.
Produce Quality Content
Regardless of how many followers you have to start with, your stream needs to be high-quality to succeed. This includes not only what viewers see when they watch your stream but also the way you manage your stream.
If someone clicks into your stream and the quality of the visual and audio is terrible, they’ll click away. No one wants to listen to a microphone that’s staticky or too quiet or has feedback.
Likewise, if the gameplay is choppy or hard to see, they won’t stay.
In the same way, the management of your stream needs to be up to standards. Viewers don’t want to get attached to your stream only to discover you stream at random. Consistent streaming and good communication are also essential to retaining viewers and followers.
Twitch shouldn’t be the only platform you use for communicating with your followers online. Having social media presence in other places is essential. This can include:
|Retweet gaming news; post your streaming schedule|
|YouTube||Long-form clips from your stream|
|Tiktok and Instagram||Short-form clips from your stream; live streams|
|Create a fan page to share your schedule and clips of content|
Play What’s Popular and Participate in Tournaments
There’s a fine line between playing a game that’s popular and a game that has oversaturated the front page. Ideally, you want to play a game that’s trending, but also choose one where you have a shot at standing out.
Twitch often hosts events and tournaments. While there are no guarantees, if you’re participating in one of these and happen to be doing well, you have a chance of making it to the front page and drawing in more viewers and followers.
Utilize Your Community
Twitch offers Community Challenges to its user base. For example, a challenge called “Boost This Stream” allows your viewers to pool together their channel points they’ve accrued to boost your stream to parts of Twitch, like the front page, where you’re more likely to be seen.
Other Things That Can Get You Banned on Twitch
When you stream on Twitch, you’re expected to adhere to their Terms of Service and Community Guidelines. Other things that can get you blocked on Twitch include:
- Breaking local laws
- Self-destructive behavior and violence
- Threats, hateful conduct, and harassment
- Unauthorized sharing of private information
- Impersonating another person or organization
- Spam and scams
- Sharing harmful misinformation and conspiracy theories
- Nudity, pornography, and sexually suggestive content
- Copyright or trademark violations
- Misleading content labels
- Linking to gambling sites
- Cheating in games
- Violating publisher and developer-enforced embargos and NDAs for betas and pre-release games
- Severe illegal conduct, including hate group and terrorist affiliation, sexual assault, and child grooming
- Choosing a username that violates any of these terms
All Twitch streamers hope for a large following, but it’s best to avoid buying followers. Purchasing bots can lead to being banned from Twitch. Even if you purchase real accounts, they won’t help you in the long run. Instead, to boost your Twitch channel, grow your followers organically and build a community.