If you are an artist or musician looking to be a creator on Patreon or if you want to view content on Patreon, I’ve researched exactly what Patreon offers for free to both creators and patrons.
Patreon is free to set up as there are no upfront fees or sign-up costs. However, you will need to pay Patreon 5% – 12% of the monthly income you earn on Patreon in addition to any payment processing fees from PayPal or credit card companies.
The amount you pay depends on what Patreon plan you are on as well as which tier your Patron chooses, what currency they pay in, and how they choose to make their payment.
In addition to this, Patreon does not offer the ability to create free tiers or allow people to join as a patron for a $0 pledge. Instead, people can follow your Patreon profile for free and view posts that you set to ‘public’ as the creator.
To learn more about the real fees that come with being a creator on Patreon as well as how people can view Patreon posts for free, simply keep on reading, my friend. 🙂
P.S. If you don’t want to use Patreon and would like to see how Patreon compares to other alternatives, check out my article called Patreon Alternatives: How To Pick The Right Membership Platform. 🙂
Patreon Fees Fully Explained
Although Patreon is free to sign up for and get started, any creator planning on using Patreon will need to pay creator and payment processing fees in addition to any costs associated with delivering on what you offer to your patrons.
Patreon’s fees can be easily divided into 2 categories:
- Patreon Creator Fees: a percentage of the monthly income you earn on Patreon (based on the plan you are on) that is to be paid to Patreon
- Payment Processing Fees: a percentage and flat rate of each transaction based on which tier your Patron chooses, what currency they pay in, and how they choose to make payment which is automatically paid out to the payment processing company
For a more detailed look at these different fees, simply keep on reading or check out my full article on Patreon Pricing, Plans & Fees, my friend. 🙂
Patreon’s Creator Fees Explained
Patreon creator fees are a percentage of the monthly income you earn on Patreon (based on the Patreon plan you are on) that is to be paid to Patreon.
Patreon’s Lite plan: charges you 5% of the monthly income you earn on Patreon and gives you very basic features such as a Patreon page and communication tools.
Patreon’s Pro plan: charges you 8% of the monthly income you earn on Patreon and also gives you the ability to create membership tiers and get analytics.
Patreon’s Premium plan: charges you 12% of the monthly income you earn on Patreon and also gives you the ability to add merch for memberships and team accounts.
Patreon’s Payment Processing Fees Explained
Patreon’s payment processing fees are a percentage and flat rate of each transaction that is to be paid out to the payment processing company that your Patron uses to make their payment.
These processing fees are based on which tier your Patron chooses, what currency they pay in, and how they choose to make payment.
For a patron paying in US dollars, you will be charged 2.9% and $0.30 if their payment is over $3 or 5% and $0.10 if their payment is $3 or less.
In addition to this, you will need to pay a 1% surcharge for any payment made from a patron that is using PayPal from outside of the United States.
Does Patreon Offer Free Trials?
Patreon does not offer free trials for creators or for patrons. Creators can sign up and get started free as well as make Patreon posts “public” as a way to offer that to people for free.
Patreon does not provide creators an option to give free memberships, gift memberships, or give free access to any patron-only content.
Can You Offer Free Tiers On Patreon?
Patreon does not offer the ability to create free tiers or allow people to join as a patron for a $0 pledge. Instead, people can follow your Patreon profile to be notified when you create a new post and view posts that are set to ‘public’.
Anyone following you without paying for a tier will not have any access to benefits and will show up in your Patreon’s Relationship Manager as “No tier” patrons.
Only patrons that are pledging at least $1 per month will be able to get access to any benefits including access to any content that you have set as
‘patron-only’ instead of ‘public’, seeing users in the “Supported by…” section of your page or accessing any ‘Featured tags’ content.
Patreon is essentially a content management system and checkout process for recurring memberships, so most of their features are dedicated towards membership and not follows.
Can Patrons See Patreon Posts & Videos Without Paying Anything?
It is not possible for patrons to see posts and videos for free unless the creator has specifically set that post to be ‘public’ on Patreon. Patrons can view any Patreon posts that a creator has set as ‘public’ by visiting the creator’s Patreon page.
When non-patrons view your Patreon page, they will find your 20 most recent posts under your ‘about’ section and will only be able to access posts that are set to ‘public’.
In addition to this, non-patrons can scroll down to the bottom of the page, select ‘See all posts’, and choose to filter out the posts by which are ‘public’.
It is also worth mentioning that any files or attachments in posts that are set to ‘public’ may not be downloadable unless the person is logged into a personal Patreon account.
3rd Party Tools For Viewing Locked Patreon Posts
Although the official Patreon system is set up so that only posts that are set to ‘public’ can be viewed by non-patrons, you should be aware that there are 3rd party tools and websites that aim to make patron-only content freely viewable.
There are some websites that scrape and archive patron-only Patreon posts either automatically or manually by users and it can be possible for people to find patron-only content on torrent websites as well as public and private forums.
Is The Patreon App Free?
The Patreon app is available for free to both creators as well as fans and patrons. With the free Patreon app, you can log in as a creator to create and share posts, leave comments and replies, as well as access analytics and insights.
From the same free Patreon app, users can log in as a fan/patron to stay up to date on your new posts, leave comments and replies, join live chats, as well as discover and follow your Patreon page in the first place.