How Does Discord Make Money



Discord is a popular communication platform that has rapidly grown in popularity since its launch in 2015. What started as a simple voice chat application for gamers has transformed into a versatile platform used by communities, businesses, and individuals around the world. With its user-friendly interface, robust features, and a dedicated user base, Discord has become a dominant player in the market.

In this article, we will explore how Discord makes money and sustains its operations. While Discord offers its services for free, it also offers various premium features and subscription services to generate revenue. This allows the company to continuously innovate and provide an enhanced experience to its users.

Discord’s success can be attributed to its unique freemium business model. This model allows users to access a wide range of features for free, while providing additional benefits to those who choose to upgrade to a premium subscription. Let’s delve into the specific ways Discord generates its revenue and the strategies it employs to monetize its platform.

It’s important to note that the methods outlined in this article are based on publicly available information and observations and may not encompass all of Discord’s revenue streams.


Overview of Discord

Discord is a communication platform that provides a seamless and immersive experience for users to connect, chat, and collaborate. Originally designed for gamers, Discord has expanded its reach to cater to a wide range of communities, including hobbyists, professionals, and educational institutions.

One of the key elements that sets Discord apart is its user-friendly interface, which allows for easy navigation and customization. Users can create or join servers, which are dedicated spaces where people with similar interests can gather and communicate. Each server can have multiple channels, offering a convenient way to organize discussions and topics. In addition to text-based communication, Discord offers high-quality voice chat and video call functionalities, ensuring a versatile communication experience.

Discord’s platform is available on various devices, including desktops, smartphones, and tablets, enabling users to stay connected on the go. The platform also supports integration with other applications and services, allowing for seamless collaboration and enhanced productivity.

One of the reasons behind Discord’s widespread adoption is its focus on privacy and security. Discord utilizes end-to-end encryption for voice and video calls, ensuring that conversations remain private and secure. Additionally, server administrators have the ability to customize their server settings, control user access, and implement moderation tools to maintain a safe and inclusive environment.

Discord’s robust feature set extends beyond communication. It offers a range of additional features, such as screen sharing, file sharing, and voice activity detection, enhancing the user experience and facilitating collaboration.

The platform’s flexibility and versatility make it an attractive option for various communities and organizations. Whether it’s for team collaboration in a professional setting or connecting with like-minded individuals in a hobbyist community, Discord provides a comprehensive solution.


Freemium Business Model

A significant aspect of Discord’s revenue generation is its freemium business model. Freemium, a combination of “free” and “premium,” refers to a pricing strategy where a product or service is offered for free, but additional features and benefits are available through paid subscriptions or purchases.

Discord offers its core communication and collaboration features for free, allowing users to create servers, join communities, and engage in text, voice, and video conversations without any cost. This approach has helped Discord amass a massive user base and establish itself as a leading communication platform.

However, to generate revenue and sustain its operations, Discord offers premium features that can be accessed through its paid subscription service, Discord Nitro. Nitro provides users with enhanced functionalities, such as higher quality voice and video, increased file upload limits, custom Discord tags, and animated server icons.

In addition to the standard Nitro subscription, Discord also offers Discord Nitro Classic, a more cost-effective option that provides similar benefits, but without the added perks of free games and additional boosts. These subscription plans are available on a monthly or yearly basis, allowing users to choose the option that best suits their needs.

By implementing the freemium business model, Discord is able to attract a wide user base with its free offering, while monetizing its services through the premium subscription plans. This model gives users the freedom to enjoy Discord’s basic features for free, while providing an opportunity for those who desire enhanced functionality to support the platform and gain access to additional perks.

The freemium approach also encourages user retention and engagement. By providing a valuable free service, Discord fosters a strong user community and allows users to experience the platform’s benefits before committing to a paid plan. This helps build trust and loyalty, making users more likely to become paying subscribers.

It’s important to note that while the freemium model forms the foundation of Discord’s revenue generation, it is not the sole source of income for the platform. Discord employs various other monetization strategies, which we will explore in the following sections.


Premium Subscription Services

One of Discord’s primary revenue streams is through its premium subscription services. Discord offers users the option to upgrade to a paid subscription plan, known as Discord Nitro, which unlocks a host of exclusive features and benefits.

Discord Nitro provides subscribers with enhanced functionality, including higher quality voice and video streaming, larger file upload limits, and the ability to use custom animated emojis across servers. This subscription also offers the option to boost servers, which can improve the visibility and performance of a user’s favorite community.

Users can choose between two different Nitro plans: Discord Nitro and Discord Nitro Classic. Discord Nitro is the full-featured premium offering, offering all the benefits and features previously mentioned. Discord Nitro Classic, on the other hand, provides similar perks but does not include the additional boosts, game access, and other exclusives offered in the standard Nitro plan.

Subscriptions to Discord Nitro are available on a monthly or annual basis, giving users the flexibility to choose the duration that suits their needs. The subscription fees contribute to Discord’s revenue and help fund ongoing operations and development.

By offering premium subscriptions, Discord gives users the opportunity to further customize their experience and support the platform. These paid subscriptions not only provide additional features, but also help Discord maintain and improve its infrastructure, ensuring a seamless and reliable service for all users.

It’s worth noting that Discord Nitro is entirely optional, and users can continue to enjoy the core features of Discord without subscribing to the premium service. The availability of Discord Nitro appeals to users who are willing to pay for a richer and more enhanced experience while contributing to the sustainability of the platform.

In addition to the subscription-based models, Discord also offers occasional promotions and discounts on Nitro subscriptions, allowing users to access premium features at a reduced cost. These limited-time offers provide an incentive for users to upgrade to a paid plan and experience the benefits of Discord Nitro.

Overall, the premium subscription services offered by Discord provide additional value to users and are a significant source of revenue for the platform. The availability of exclusive features and benefits in the paid plans encourages users to support Discord financially and enjoy an enhanced communication experience.


Nitro Boost and Server Boosting

Another revenue-generating feature of Discord is Nitro Boost and server boosting. Nitro Boost is a premium feature that allows users to enhance their favorite servers and unlock additional perks for both themselves and other members of the community.

When a user Nitro Boosts a server, they contribute to its level and unlock various benefits. These benefits include improved audio quality for all members, increased upload limits for files and images, and the ability to add custom server emojis. Additionally, the server gains a higher priority in voice server queues, ensuring smoother and more stable communication.

Server boosting is not restricted to only the server owner or administrators. Any user with Discord Nitro can choose to boost a server of their choice, helping to improve its overall performance and giving back to the community they enjoy being a part of.

In return for boosting a server, users receive special perks for their generosity. These perks can range from receiving a special Nitro Boost badge next to their username, to gaining access to exclusive chat channels or even getting a higher level of visibility within the community.

Server owners and administrators can also benefit from Nitro Boosting in other ways. Depending on the number of Nitro Boosts a server has, it can unlock additional server features such as an animated server icon, larger banner images, and even a vanity URL.

Nitro Boosting and server boosting serve two main purposes for Discord. Firstly, it rewards users who choose to support their favorite communities by enhancing their experience and granting them exclusive perks. This creates a sense of appreciation and recognition for those who contribute to the growth and success of a server.

Secondly, Nitro Boosting and server boosting provide a source of revenue for Discord. Users who wish to boost a server need to have an active Discord Nitro subscription, meaning they are paying for the privilege to enhance their favorite communities. The revenue generated from Nitro Boosts helps support Discord’s ongoing development, maintenance, and infrastructure costs.

Discord also periodically runs events and campaigns where they offer limited-time boosts or incentives for users to boost servers. These promotions encourage more users to participate in server boosting, contributing to Discord’s revenue and helping communities thrive.

Overall, Nitro Boost and server boosting are mutually beneficial features for both users and Discord. Users can show support for their favorite communities while enjoying exclusive perks, and Discord gains revenue to improve and expand its platform.


Game Distribution and Partnerships

Discord has expanded its services beyond communication and community building by delving into game distribution and forming various partnerships within the gaming industry. These initiatives not only provide value to gamers but also generate revenue for the platform.

One of Discord’s notable ventures is the establishment of the Discord Store, a platform where users can purchase and download games. Discord Store offers a curated selection of games from various developers and publishers, allowing users to discover and buy their favorite titles directly from the Discord platform. This not only provides convenience for gamers but also creates a new revenue stream for Discord through game sales.

Discord has also collaborated with game developers and publishers to offer exclusive content and perks to its users. These partnerships often result in limited-time promotions where users can access free games or receive in-game items and bonuses as a reward for their support. By partnering with game developers, Discord can attract more users to its platform and incentivize them to engage with the gaming community on Discord.

Furthermore, Discord’s partnerships extend beyond game distribution to include collaborations with influencer and streamer communities. These partnerships result in events, tournaments, and exclusive content that bring value and entertainment to Discord users. Additionally, these collaborations provide marketing opportunities for developers, streamers, and content creators, creating a win-win situation for all parties involved.

Through the game distribution and partnerships, Discord not only diversifies its revenue streams but also reinforces its position as a hub for the gaming community. By providing a platform for gamers to connect, discover new games, and engage with their favorite creators, Discord becomes an integral part of the gaming ecosystem and solidifies its presence in the industry.

It’s worth noting that while Discord has made strides in game distribution and partnerships, it continues to evolve and explore new opportunities to expand its offerings, anticipating the ever-evolving needs and preferences of its user base.

Overall, game distribution and partnerships play a significant role in Discord’s revenue generation strategy. By offering a platform for game distribution and collaborating with developers and influencers, Discord ensures that gamers have access to a vibrant and engaging gaming community while capitalizing on opportunities to generate revenue and grow its platform.


Game Development and Publishing

In addition to game distribution and partnerships, Discord has ventured into game development and publishing, further expanding its presence in the gaming industry. Discord has established its own game development and publishing arm to create unique gaming experiences and provide a platform for independent game developers to showcase their talent.

Discord offers a program called “Discord Verified Games” where selected independent game developers can receive support and promotion for their games. Through this program, Discord helps these developers gain visibility, reach a wider audience, and potentially monetize their creations. This initiative not only benefits the developers but also enriches the gaming ecosystem on Discord by introducing a diverse range of games and experiences for users to enjoy.

Moreover, Discord has introduced a platform called “Discover” that highlights and recommends indie games to its user base. Discover serves as a hub for game discovery, allowing players to explore and find new and unique titles from talented developers. By featuring these indie games, Discord provides exposure to smaller developers and helps them connect with players who are passionate about exploring innovative and lesser-known games.

Discord’s game development and publishing efforts align with its mission of providing a platform that fosters creativity and empowers developers. By supporting independent game developers, Discord reinforces its commitment to nurturing a vibrant gaming community and offering unique gaming experiences on its platform.

In addition to supporting indie game developers, Discord has also pursued in-house game development projects. One notable example is its venture into developing its own game, “First on Discord.” The game served as an incentive for users to subscribe to Discord Nitro, offering exclusive access to a curated lineup of indie games.

The foray into game development and publishing underscores Discord’s dedication to providing an all-encompassing gaming experience. By offering a wide range of services, including communication, community building, game distribution, and game development, Discord solidifies its position as a platform that caters to the needs and interests of both gamers and game developers.

It’s important to note that while Discord’s game development and publishing initiatives contribute to its revenue streams, they also serve as a means to enrich the gaming ecosystem within Discord, fostering creativity, and promoting unique gaming experiences.

Overall, Discord’s foray into game development and publishing demonstrates its commitment to empowering game developers and enriching the gaming community. Through these efforts, Discord continues to cement its position as an influential player in the gaming industry and provides users with a comprehensive gaming platform.


Advertising and Sponsorships

Another avenue through which Discord generates revenue is through advertising and sponsorships. Discord offers opportunities for advertisers and brands to reach its large and engaged user base by displaying targeted advertisements within the platform.

Discord employs a selective approach to advertising, ensuring that the advertisements displayed align with the interests and preferences of its users. This targeted advertising strategy enhances the user experience by presenting relevant and engaging advertisements. By connecting advertisers with the right audience, Discord maximizes the effectiveness of advertising campaigns while providing value to both advertisers and users.

In addition to advertisements, Discord also offers sponsorship opportunities for brands and organizations. Sponsors can partner with Discord to promote their products, services, or events to the platform’s user base. These sponsorship agreements often involve collaborations, events, or special promotions that create excitement and engagement within the Discord community.

Discord takes care to ensure that advertising and sponsorships do not disrupt the user experience or compromise user privacy. Advertisements are displayed in a non-intrusive manner, and user data is protected in accordance with Discord’s privacy policies.

Furthermore, Discord maintains a balance between generating advertising revenue and preserving the user experience by avoiding excessive or overwhelming advertisements. The platform aims to provide a seamless and enjoyable communication environment for its users, without sacrificing the quality of their experience with intrusive advertising.

It’s important to note that Discord’s approach to advertising and sponsorships is constantly evolving and subject to change. They continually assess and refine their strategies to align with user feedback and industry best practices, ensuring a positive and relevant advertising experience.

By incorporating advertising and sponsorships into their revenue model, Discord is able to offer free access to its core features, providing a valuable service to users while generating revenue to support ongoing operations and development.

Discord’s advertising and sponsorship initiatives present a viable revenue stream while ensuring a balanced approach that respects user privacy and maintains a high-quality user experience. Through careful curation and selective partnerships, Discord ensures that advertising and sponsorships add value to its platform and benefit both the advertisers and the users.



Discord has proven to be a remarkable communication platform that has revolutionized the way communities interact and collaborate. Despite offering its core features for free, Discord has successfully implemented various strategies to generate revenue and sustain its operations.

The freemium business model forms the foundation of Discord’s revenue generation. By offering a comprehensive set of communication and collaboration features for free, and providing additional benefits through premium subscription services like Discord Nitro, Discord has attracted a vast user base while monetizing its services.

Nitro Boosting and server boosting offer users the opportunity to enhance their favorite communities while contributing to Discord’s revenue stream. By boosting servers, users unlock exclusive perks and benefits, while also supporting the platform financially.

Discord’s ventures into game distribution, partnerships, and game development further expand its revenue streams and solidify its position in the gaming industry. The Discord Store and partnerships with game developers offer users a convenient platform to purchase and discover games, while also providing opportunities for developers to showcase their creations. Discord’s game development and publishing initiatives not only enrich the gaming ecosystem on its platform but also contribute to its revenue generation.

Advertising and sponsorships offer another avenue for Discord to generate revenue while connecting advertisers and brands with its engaged user base. Discord’s targeted advertising approach ensures that users are presented with relevant advertisements, while maintaining a seamless and non-intrusive user experience.

All of these monetization strategies work together to support Discord’s ongoing development, maintenance, and innovation. By providing a balance between free access to its core features and premium offerings, Discord ensures that users can enjoy a high-quality communication experience while also offering options for those who desire enhanced functionality and are willing to support the platform financially.

Discord’s ability to generate revenue while providing a valuable service to its users has solidified its position as a dominant player in the communication and gaming industries. Its commitment to user privacy, dedication to fostering strong communities, and continual innovation demonstrate why Discord has become a go-to platform for millions of users worldwide.

As Discord continues to evolve and adapt to the ever-changing landscape of technology and user preferences, it will undoubtedly continue to find innovative ways to provide value to its users while sustaining its operations and driving further growth.

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