A few years ago it seemed like everyone had their own website. That isn't the case now--many people have opted to maintain a dozen social media accounts instead--but Streamlabs believes streamers ought to set up their own sites instead of exclusively relying on social platforms. That's why the company today announced the Creator Sites website builder alongside a new Streamlabs Prime service that offers new features for the company's various products.
Streamlabs has spent the last few years building a streaming empire. The company first rose to prominence because its service made it easy for streamers to display notifications for subscriptions, donations, and the like. Then it expanded with a broadcast tool called Streamlabs OBS, and from there its portfolio grew to include streaming-specific systems co-branded with Intel, augmented reality features, and other auxiliary services.
Now the new Creator Sites can be added to the list. The service works a lot like Shopify, Weebly, and other platforms that make it easy to set up websites. Streamlabs naturally included features specifically for streamers: Creator Sites can be integrated with streaming platforms like Twitch, YouTube, and Mixer as well as social platforms such as Twitter Facebook, and Instagram. The sites also have embedded streams and chat features.
Creator Sites was accompanied by a new Streamlabs Prime service that costs $149 a year. Streamlabs said that subscription provides:
- Domain with information protection and enterprise-grade security
- 1-click custom email setup on personal domain
- Integrated commerce and monetization
- Website builder for beginner to advanced users
- Content Creator specific, drag-and-drop building blocks
- Website theme gallery with content from top industry designers
- SEO friendly websites with 100% user control and ability to add custom headers
- Content aggregation across all major platforms
- Cross-platform stats aggregation
- Unique website layouts optimized for both desktop and mobile
It's also supposed to offer new features in existing Streamlabs products, but the company didn't say what those features are, ostensibly because Creator Sites were supposed to be the focus of this announcement. Hopefully those features are compelling; paying $150 for a website builder is a big ask. (Even if it's as specialized as Creator Sites is for streamers.) We expect to hear more about Streamlabs Prime in the months ahead.
Pricing aside, it's not hard to see the appeal of Creator Sites. Online platforms are notoriously finicky, especially when it comes to discovering specific creators, as the news industry learned after it relied too much on the likes of Facebook and Twitter. A separate website offers a bit more control over how people discover and interact with a creator's work. It can also serve as a central hub to make finding someone on multiple platforms a bit easier.
Does that mean we're back to the days of everyone having their own website? Probably not. But for people who make a living online, having a separate website from an outside platform is a safe bet. Companies pivot, algorithms change, and platforms are shut down. While that would still prove disastrous for streamers even with Creator Sites, at least there's starting to be a degree of independence in that growing industry.