Twitch Extensions let you create interactive stream overlays that are visible to anyone watching (on desktop, for now). You can use them to show live player stats, match info, and more. There are many reasons you should be using them, but today we’re going to focus on 5 reasons why they’re good for your business.
1) They help educate new viewers
Streaming has established itself as one of the main marketing avenues for any new game, which means a lot of players will discover your game on Twitch. Twitch Extensions are immensely useful for user onboarding, deepening user engagement, and preventing churn by giving viewers visibility into highly important features of the game that are not shown on stream.
You can use them to guide new players through gameplay basics, explain why streamers take certain actions, and show the best quality-of-life game mechanics that can drastically improve their experience. Once those viewers start playing, they’ll have less to learn and can get to the fun parts of your game quicker.
How we’d use them: GTA Online has many hidden mechanics that are crucial to the game but not obvious to new players (and invisible to stream viewers). Vehicle tracking & insurance (how to protect your car), property types and the missions they unlock (how to make money), passive mode (how to avoid getting griefed repeatedly), etc. All of these can easily be explained to viewers in convenient contextual overlays.
2) They help you control the experience
Twitch Extensions are a great way to make sure your game has a consistent look and feel throughout the streaming ecosystem. Any stream of your game can look like a high end production, even if you don’t hire professional streamers.
Even if you are paying influencers to market your game, you can’t guarantee they’re going to consistently say everything you want them to say. And even then, viewers are constantly tuning in and out of streams – someone may start watching immediately after an important part of your game has been explained by the streamer. Twitch Extensions allow you to make sure a basic amount of information is always available to viewers so they can access it if needed.
If your game is played competitively, you can use Extensions to provide a consistent feel between esports competitions and casual streams of your game. Use them to show the same advanced stats that esports fans care about on any stream.
How we’d use them: With Valorant, Riot Games let any streamer drop beta keys to their viewers, essentially turning all streamers into micro-influencers (good move, Riot). With Extensions on every Valorant stream showing Agent abilities, weapon details, and maps, Riot could have gone a step further and turned Twitch into its own marketing department.
3) They showcase the best parts of your game
Let’s face it – every stream has its ups and downs. For every pentakill, there’s a 10 minute shot of an empty DX Racer chair or a loading screen that takes way too long. Twitch Extensions let you highlight the best parts of your game on stream, even when something less interesting is happening! They also let you show off things like player skins in situations where they wouldn’t be visible to stream viewers (for example, if the player is playing in first-person mode).
This is one of the most powerful features of Twitch Extensions. You can use them for user acquisition (show awesome stuff) or reactivation of old players (show new awesome stuff)!
How we’d use them: PUBG is a fun action-packed battle royale interrupted by 5-10 minute spells of cross-country running through the woods. In that downtime, Twitch Extensions can provide stream viewers with fight recaps, stats (distance covered, enemies killed, etc.), and a look at the player’s in-game swag – and where to buy it 😉
4) They turn passive viewers into active viewers
If someone is watching your channel – are they really watching or do they just have it open? How closely are they watching? Many games reward Twitch viewers with ‘drops’ – which results in a lot of minimized Twitch streams watched by nobody. Giving your stream viewers things to interact with and click on is a way to turn these passive viewers into active ones. Active viewers are more receptive to your messaging and marketing, making them far more valuable to you (and your brand partners).
Twitch also lets you track interaction with an extension, so you can get a better idea of how engaged your audience is.
How we’d use them: We’ve used extensions in the past to show everything from live player stats to minimaps and scoreboards for various games – and a lot of people click on them. Generally speaking around 60% of viewers interact with our extensions!
5) They make watching streams more fun
Ultimately, the best reason to use Twitch Extensions is that they make streams more fun. They offer new, unique experiences for games of all types and can encourage both individual interaction (looking at stats) and group interactions (cheering, polls, etc.).
At StatsHelix, we’ve been working with Extensions since the launch of the Extensions Program in 2018. Our SDK lets game developers effortlessly add Twitch Extensions to all streams of their games and integrates easily with Unity and other engines. You can learn more about it at statshelix.com/sdk.
If you have questions about using Twitch Extensions for your game, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.