Some make $25,000 per year. Some make $25,000 per month. Some make less than $25,000 per year. Some make more than $25,000 per month. The range of how much money cam girls make is extremely wide. It’s the same for cam guys too, by the way.
In this post, we’ll cover how cam girls (and cam guys) actually make money, how the process works, and what our $58/hr average really means.
What most people want to know is how much they would make, and so we created a tool for that: https://www.pandoramodeling.com/private-email-estimates. Just share a few pictures with us and we’ll review them and send you an estimate. It won’t be exact, but we have a lot of experience, and we’ll give you a realistic range of what we think you’d make per hour broadcasting. We’re pretty accurate. And of course it’s private and there’s no commitment involved.
1. Earnings are commission-based.
Webcam models work on a commission basis. Every time a customer spends money in the chatroom, the model makes money (as do the site owners, the affiliate, the credit card processor, and so on). The model is an independent contractor. They broadcast whenever they want.
There is no fixed hourly pay. How much you make depends a lot on how good you are at converting your chatroom visitors into paying customers.
2. $58/hr was the average per-hour income for models at Pandora in 2018.
What that means in reality is that there were a handful of models at the top who made $80-100+/hr, with a few making $200+/hr. Then there were about 20 times more people who made $10-25/hr. And in the middle there were 30-50 people who made $30-80/hr.
The $10-25/hr group: The most common scenario for someone in that sales range is a model who signed up and worked less than 8 hours total before stopping and didn’t broadcast any more. This happens hundreds of times per year and actually ends up being a non-trivial (>1%) amount of our sales.
Other scenarios are just regularly active models whose hourly rates fall in the $10-25/hr range. They make up a lot more of the sales in this range, but there are a lot fewer of them.
The $30-80/hr group: This is the totally standard range that any qualified candidate (qualified meaning we looked at you and placed you somewhere in this range) normally makes. Some people are part-time, some are full-time, but most work 5-15 hours a week, making between $30/hr and $80/hr. The ones with the most hours typically make the highest hourly rate in this range.
The $80-100/hr group: This is elite territory. That’s a lot of work to sustain for an entire year. This range would be earned by the most in-demand models (whether they are part-time or full-time). It’s not at all uncommon, and most of our $30-80/hr models will at times hit this level for a stretch. But to maintain it all year long is something that only a handful of cam models ever achieve.
Over $100/hr is mostly the same story. That’s what our top models earn. The biggest variable between making $100/hr all year and $200+/hr all year is typically finding one or two customers with the capacity and appetite to spend a lot of money on one model over a long period of time.
The sales of the top models tend to over-index and inflate the average hourly rate. But it’s still something we track and brag about because we think it’s fair to count our most successful folks in our stats.
Realistically, among our whole model roster, for those working over 20 hours per week on average, there are two main buckets: $20-30/hr and $40-60/hr, with a small percentage of either of those buckets ever going on to achieve and maintain earnings at the higher levels.
3. What it takes to make $1,000 per week.
When we’re screening cam models to join Pandora and in our training, we look for people we think can make $1,000/week on average. If we don’t believe you have what it takes to consistently make at least $1,000/week, we don’t sign you as an active management client.
That doesn’t mean we think you shouldn’t cam. It just means that for how our business operates, we’d lose money on you as a client. There just isn’t enough activity when the model makes less than $1,000/week for us to be able to provide value. We’re looking for serious, full-time cam models with the ability to make a lot of money. We’ve been able to help models turn $1,000/week into $2,000/week many, many times. But turning $300/week into $1,000/week is a Herculean task that we’re just not up for.
Under Flirt4Free’s sliding pay scale for U.S. models, during any given two-week pay period you’d need to work at least 30 hours and generate $5,714 in customer spending in order to earn a commission of $2,000 (i.e., $1,000/week). If you did that for all 26 biweekly pay periods in the year, you would make $52,000 in commission.
4. Controlling Variables.
There are three primary variables that go into determining a cam model’s earnings:
A. The commission percentage of gross sales that you keep.
There is no one-size-fits all answer for what this ought to be. It depends on the site where you cam. Some sites allocate a higher percentage of money to models and a lower percentage of money to acquiring traffic through affiliate marketing and advertising. Other sites take the opposite approach and aim to get lots of very high quality traffic and allocate a lower percentage to models.
Beyond traffic costs and model commissions, the operating costs for any cam site are relatively fixed.
7-10% goes to credit card processing and chargebacks. 15-20% goes to the network for their staff, infrastructure costs, profit, etc. And the other roughly 70% gets divided between the cost to acquire traffic and commissions for models. Note that these are all estimates, as no sites disclose these allocations publicly. But these are generally understood by those of us in the know to be the prevailing percentages.
Some popular sites pay their models a flat 50% rate on all sales. This would likely mean that around 20% of revenue is allocated for acquiring traffic. Other sites have a more even split, with 35% to models and 35% to traffic acquisition. In our experience, the 35/35 split ends up being better for the models, because high-quality traffic translates to higher levels of customer spending.
B. The total sales you are able to generate.
Back when Pandora started, we didn’t really think or care that much about percentages. We just figured they were what they were and that was that. The only thing we measured was how many actual dollars went into our models’ bank accounts, and our focus was and always has been on growing that.
When we say $58/hr, that number should freak everyone out. Because we’re talking about a company-wide average that includes all of our misfires as well as our successes, with tens of thousands of live hours broadcast in the year. If that was the average per-hour income on any of the major webcam networks, they’d be Fortune 500 companies.
Pandora’s models generate a lot of sales.
We do it by contributing to a healthy ecosystem on the Flirt4Free network. The network spends a LOT of money on buying high quality traffic, with the vast majority of their customers being U.S. based. For Pandora’s part, we put a lot of effort into attracting high quality models and making sure they have everything they need to succeed. These awesome customers meet these awesome models on Flirt4Free and stellar sales figures occur.
Another way to measure that $58/hr in model earnings is that it represented an average of $174/hr in customer spending for every hour broadcast, by all models in Pandora, all year long in 2018.
So when one of our models opened their laptop and pressed “Start Chat” in the Performer App, an hour later someone had spent $174. Maybe it wasn’t always that effortless, and it definitely didn’t feel effortless. But adding it up at the end of the year, the numbers didn’t lie.
Great traffic = great sales. And that’s the arrangement we’ve found with Flirt4Free. The customer demand for private shows seems impossible to saturate. It’s so predictable that we can give almost anyone an insanely accurate estimate for what their hourly rate is going to be, because Flirt’s traffic is so predictably high in quality, all the time.
C. The number of hours you broadcast.
This to us is the most important variable. So many people analyze camming into oblivion. What site is best, what hours are best, what to wear, what, what, what. And then end up camming for 200 hours in a year because they never felt confident everything was optimal.
Meanwhile, the model who picked one site and cammed 1,000 hours in a year, made a good living.
The biggest leak in any model’s game is not broadcasting enough hours. Your total reach (how many customers see you) is influenced primarily by hours broadcast. And that number trickles down to every other stat. If 1% of people who see you spend money on you, and you can be seen by 5 times as many people by being online more, you’ll probably make 5 times more money.
Beyond those simple stats, the ranking system of any site (your position on their main page and how much traffic you get) is heavily weighted towards full-time, high-earning models. The rich get richer on every cam site. We see time and time again that a cam model who makes $30/hr working 10 hours/week, can make $50/hr by working 20 hours/week. That’s $300/week versus $1,000/week.
Hours broadcast, life circumstances notwithstanding, is the variable that models have the most control over. So much of camming is a partnership: you rely on the site to provide a stable, safe environment, filled with high-quality traffic. So that you can simply log in to broadcast, perform, and convert. The site in turn relies on a wide range of different partners/vendors to service that infrastructure: their employees, affiliates, credit card processors, banks, lawyers, accountants, and so on.
What every one of those partners agrees on is that margins would be better if models broadcast more hours on average.
To us, $1,000/week is the introductory level to camming. If you can’t make $1,000/week going all in, it’s going to be hard for you to sustainably make a living camming. The variance for full-time models who make between $250 and $750/week is incredibly high. You are at tremendous risk of not being able to make ends meet if a relationship with a single customer ends. At those earning levels, many hours are spent in open chat, not making any money, and it’s really hard to maintain energy and motivation during those long, dull hours.
If you’re camming part-time (20 hours/week or less) to supplement your income from another job, then it might be more likely that you earn in that range, and that might be totally suitable for you.
But if you’re going all in and camming full-time but making less than $500/week, we would be strongly recommending that you find an alternative source of income as fast as possible.
Some cam models - both girls and guys - make an insane amount of money: $5-10k/week, hundreds of thousands of dollars per year.
Most don’t. Most qualified models camming 15-20 hrs/week will end up making $70,000-120,000 per year.
Our opinion is that making that much money sitting in your bedroom video chatting with people you never meet and taking your clothes off sometimes is pretty damn cool.