The Mandalorian or Baby Yoda—Which Star Wars Character is Most Popular?

Pattern Data Science

April 26, 2022

There are a lot of popular film franchises out there, but none that have been able to create an unofficial holiday that’s been as popular and enduring as Star Wars Day.

The holiday, celebrated every May 4th — thanks to a pun replacing the iconic Star Wars catchphrase “May the force be with you” with “May the fourth be with you” — was created organically by fans and spread quickly online and through the media.

The first major organized celebration of Star Wars Day took place in Toronto, Canada in 2011, and the holiday has become extremely popular in the years since. Sports teams have celebrated the day with special Star Wars themed uniforms and major brands run special ad campaigns on social media to capitalize on Star Wars fandom.

As the leader in global ecommerce acceleration, we’re constantly analyzing trends in online commerce to help brands understand how various events impact consumer behavior. So, with Star Wars day around the corner, we wanted to discover:

  • Does Star Wars Day generate demand for the franchise?
  • Which Star Wars characters see the most online demand on Amazon and when?
  • Does Star Wars Day drive demand for Star Wars merchandise?

To find out the answers to these questions, our data science team examined several search terms and categories associated with Star Wars and analyzed market demand on Amazon over the past few years.

Does Star Wars Day generate demand for Star Wars?

We started by examining demand on Amazon for a variety of Star Wars related items and terms for each week of 2021. Here’s what we found:

The Star Wars franchise clearly gets a boost on Amazon during the week of Star Wars Day, rising to 10% above the average week throughout the year. It’s not an insignificant bump, but it’s clear that May 4th isn’t enough to bring the weekly demand up to the levels of the year’s other high water marks: The tail end of the Mandalorian Season 2 at the beginning of the year, and the holiday shopping season and premiere of the Book of Boba Fett in December.

But, since we’re examining demand on Amazon, we thought examining Star Wars merchandise would be particularly insightful.

Star Wars Day clearly drives demand for merchandise, but once again, to levels behind the holidays and the excitement that comes with new entries in the franchise.

Which Star Wars characters were the most popular in 2021?

Star Wars is responsible for some of the most iconic characters of all time, so we next wanted to dig even deeper into the data to see which ones generated the most demand, when they’re the most popular, and which ones got the biggest bumps on Star Wars Day.

Let’s start by examining which characters experienced the most demand during all of 2021. Here are some of the top performing terms from our analysis:

Here is where we see the impact of Disney Plus’s smash hit show, The Mandalorian. Baby Yoda was far and away the most popular term, drawing a stunning 243% more demand than the Mandalorian himself.

In third place was the original Yoda, although it’s quite possible that some of those searches were for little baby Grogu as well.

In fourth place was Boba Fett, who not only appeared in the second season of the Mandalorian, but had his own show launched on Disney Plus in December of 2021.

Darth Vader is the first original trilogy character to appear on this list, rounding out the top five.

From there, Kylo Ren and Darth Maul were the most popular characters from the sequel and prequel trilogies, showing the allure of a good villain.

But at the end of the day, it’s Baby Yoda’s world and we’re just living in it.

Which Star Wars characters got the biggest boost from Star Wars Day in 2021?

While there’s no doubting the power of Baby Yoda and the Mandalorian, we wanted to see which characters got the biggest bump from Star Wars Day. To do that, we took daily demand for each character on the week of May 4th and compared it to their average day for the entire year.

It’s no real surprise that the Bad Batch, a scrappy band of Clone Troopers topped this list, as their brand new animated TV series launched on Star Wars Day.

Cuddly favorites Ewoks got the second largest weekly lift, while even Baby Yoda, who is popular year round, got enough of a boost to capture the number three spot on the list.

Star Wars Day clearly has a significant impact on demand for Star Wars characters, as almost every single one in our analysis received at least some sort of increase in demand. Only Boba Fett, who saw the bulk of his 2021 demand come at the end of the year during the launch of the Book of Boba Fett TV series, failed to receive any kind of boost in demand on Star Wars Day 2021.

When is demand highest for major Star Wars characters?

Now that we’ve seen which characters benefited the most from Star Wars Day, let’s close out by examining demand for different groups of major characters to see when demand is highest for them.

2021 started off with sky high demand for Baby Yoda and the Mandalorian, which had just aired its season 2 finale in mid-December 2020. Demand for Luke Skywalker was also up big after the character’s surprise appearance in that finale.

Demand for the Bad Batch surged from basically nothing during the week of Star Wars Day when their new show premiered, then hit a high point midway through the first season.

Boba Fett saw demand surge toward the end of the year with the launch of his show, which premiered on Dec 29th.

Ewoks are a good example of a character who relied much more heavily on Star Wars Day, as the characters weren’t featured in any new properties last year and saw their big boosts come on Star Wars Day and the holiday shopping season.

When we look at the change in monthly demand since 2019, we can see the tremendous impact that the launch of a new movie or TV series has on demand for specific Star Wars characters.

December 2019 brought a surge in demand for Baby Yoda as the character was introduced to the world for the first time. Kylo Ren also received a big boost that month with the release of Rise of Skywalker.

December 2021, however, failed to drive nearly as much demand as the previous two years, suggesting that the Book of Boba Fett, while enough to drive a sizable increase for its title character, wasn’t quite the monumental hit of The Mandalorian or the release of a mainline series movie.

One character who had an interesting surge in demand was for Cara Dune, another character from the Mandalorian.

Demand shot up by over 500% in the weeks following the announcement that Gina Carano, the actress who portrayed the character, was being fired from the show after a series of controversial tweets.

The surge in demand was clearly short lived, however, and has remained at basically zero for the majority of the rest of the year.

How does Star Wars Day impact demand for Star Wars Merchandise?

Finally, let’s take a look at how Star Wars Day impacts sales for the franchise’s merchandise.

Star Wars Legos were clearly the toy of choice when it came time to celebrate May 4th. Demand surged by 80% on the week of April 18th, and stayed around that high through the week of Star Wars Day.

The holiday is so big for Star Wars Legos that it was well above even the holiday shopping season.

Lego Star Wars, which is a popular video game series, didn’t receive nearly as significant an increase as the physical toys it’s based on.

The Millennium Falcon, the most iconic ship in the series, received the next largest bump in demand during the holiday with an 8% increase, a clear boost for that time of year, but one that lagged well behind the holiday shopping season.

Light sabers, another extremely popular piece of Star Wars merchandise, did see demand rise week over week on May 4th, but that holiday is absolutely dwarfed by the demand surge during Halloween and Christmas.

A lesson for brands

Our analysis shows that Star Wars Day is far more than just a silly pun or a made up fan holiday. It’s a day that drives real demand for one of the biggest intellectual properties in the world. Star Wars Day is so big, in fact, that it competes with major events like Christmas, Halloween, and even the release of actual Star Wars movies.

Understanding the factors that influence consumer behavior can help brands better understand how to forecast demand for their products on online marketplaces, and even inform product design and marketing strategy.

To stay up to date on consumer behavior and ecommerce news, info, and trend analyses, be sure to subscribe to Pattern Insights on the right.

And, if you’d like to learn more about how you can best leverage our data to help your brand win online, holiday or not, schedule a demo today. May the 4th be with you!

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Sept 6, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 6th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon announces new inventory and distribution service, AWD Amazon has launched Amazon Warehousing and Distribution (AWD), providing inventory and distribution services to its sellers as a means of addressing current supply chain issues. AWD is now available for sellers using Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA), i.e. outsourcing their fulfilment to the platform. Amazon has plans to expand the service outside the platform in 2023. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/02/amazon-introduces-new-service-to-help-solve-supply-chain-challenges/) Amazon Web Services (AWS) launches in the UAE AWS, Amazon’s cloud-computing platform offering, has launched its second region in the Middle East and now provides its services in the UAE. The move will now allow anyone in the UAE who utilises cloud technologies to harness AWS’s advanced platforms and APIs. An estimated $11 billion USD is expected to be added to the UAE’s GDP thanks to the implementation, with an average of 6,000 external vendor jobs to be created annually. AWS is now available in 87 zones across 27 regions, with sights set on expanding further across Australia, Canada, India, Israel, New Zealand, Spain, and Switzerland. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/30/amazon-web-services-launches-region-in-uae/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Lazada to launch in Europe Alibaba-owned ecommerce platform Lazada is set to launch in Europe, marking a refreshed internationalisation push from the company. The move follows toughening economic conditions and performance in Southeast Asia, advancing the need to tap overseas markets. In Europe, Lazada will face tough competition from giants like Amazon and Zalando. Lazada’s exact entry strategy is to be confirmed and will be reliant on macroeconomic and market conditions, according to Lazada CEO James Dong. [Read more on DigitalCommerce360](https://www.digitalcommerce360.com/2022/09/01/alibabas-lazada-to-take-on-amazon-zalando-in-europe-push/) Chinese ecommerce giant Pinduoduo to launch cross-border platform in the United States Pinduoduo, a Chinese ecommerce giant rivalling Alibaba and JD, has announced it will be launching a new cross-border ecommerce platform. The marketplace is set to launch in the United States next month, as part of the company’s larger push into new markets. Pinduoduo found success in China thanks to its rock-bottom price offerings and harnessing of social commerce marketing, emulating strategies similar to fast-fashion giant Shein. [Read more on Yahoo Finance](https://uk.finance.yahoo.com/news/pinduoduo-launch-international-e-commerce-034129263.html) Alibaba launches its biggest B2B sales event, ‘Super September’ China ecommerce giant, Alibaba, has now launched its month-long B2B sales event ‘Super September’. The event provides 40 million buyers and 200,000 suppliers with the ability to connect on the platform, showcasing a ‘virtually unlimited’ number of products. The event hopes to foster new cross-border business relationships to tackle supply chain challenges currently faced by businesses. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/01/alibaba-launches-super-september-b2b-sales-event/) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Klarna’s losses quadruple in first half of 2022 BNPL provider, Klarna, has reported losses of $581 million USD for the first half of 2022. This figure is almost four times larger than a year earlier, where $129 million USD in losses were reported. The company attributes the losses to employee costs, technology investments, and rising credit losses. Klarna’s figure reporting comes amidst worsening economic conditions, fresh legal and regulatory scrutiny, and pressure from Big Tech competitors. [Read more on The Financial Times](https://www.ft.com/content/483451db-9221-4ca4-83a6-b4ddc6bfcfbb) [Read more on the Guardian](https://www.theguardian.com/business/2022/aug/31/klarna-losses-more-than-triple-as-consumer-spending-slows) One fifth of Snap employees to be laid off amidst poor financial performance Social media platform Snap (‘Snapchat’) has announced it will be laying off 20% of its employees and closing out a number of projects following a year of poor financial results.The move will see 1,200 employees globally lose their jobs, saving the company an estimated $500 million USD in costs. Snap is currently valued at $20 billion, an 84% decrease from its valuation of $130 billion last year. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/01/snap-to-lay-off-20-of-its-workforce-and-wind-down-a-number-of-projects/)
Aug 30, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 30th August 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon set to shut down Amazon Care Amazon is closing its telehealth service, Amazon Care, which launched in 2019 as a trial program for its headquartered employees. Later the service was rolled out nationwide for employees and other companies. The ecommerce giant has now made the decision to move away from the healthcare space, believing it was not the right long-term solution for its enterprise customers. [Read more on CNBC](https://www.cnbc.com/2022/08/24/amazon-is-shutting-down-amazon-care-telehealth-service.html) Peloton closes new deal to sell on Amazon Following a recent deal, Amazon customers will soon be able to buy Peloton fitness equipment on the marketplace, marking Peleton’s first move outside a direct-to-consumer model. According to Peloton’s CCO, there are already around half a million searches on Amazon for Peloton products every month, despite having no presence on the marketplace. Some key products include the original Peloton Bike, retailing for $1,445 and Peloton Guide for $295. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/24/peloton-strikes-deal-to-sell-fitness-equipment-on-amazon/) --- Other Marketplace News --- 60% of Malaysians are buying from local sellers on Shopee A recent survey of nearly 3,500 respondents found that nearly half of the shoppers prefer to purchase from local sellers due to shorter delivery times. Other shoppers decide to shop locally due to the quality of the products made in Malaysia and an interest in keeping the economy running. As a result, smaller local merchants have been able to grow their businesses, and shoppers benefit from shorter delivery times, products of high quality and supporting local businesses. [Read more on The Malaysian Reserve](https://themalaysianreserve.com/2022/08/25/around-60-malaysians-are-buying-from-local-sellers-on-shopee/) Flipkart’s social commerce platform Shopsy crosses 100 million users Flipkart launched a social commerce arm, Shopsy, in July of last year, which has now surpassed 100 million users, ahead of its target timeline being the end of 2022. This acquisition of new users has made Shopsy one of the largest platforms of its kind in the country, and is expected to onboard a further 100 million by the end of 2023. The platform is centred around boosting local entrepreneurship and powering ecommerce for consumers across tier 2+ regions where users face challenges around trust and navigation when shopping online. [Read more on Business Standard](https://www.business-standard.com/article/companies/flipkart-s-social-commerce-platform-shopsy-hits-100-million-users-1220828006851.html) Meta joins Amazon and Walmart in bid for Indian ecommerce market Amazon mentioned earlier in the year that it would be building a logistics division in-house through its purchase of a 51% stake in Ecom Express, an end-to-end logistics firm, to make ecommerce deliveries more efficient in the country. Walmart operates Flipkart in India and is set to continue its investment in the marketplace. In an effort to compete in the Indian ecommerce market, Meta has partnered with Indian ecommerce company, JioMart, to offer customers a grocery shopping platform within its WhatsApp chat feature. [Read more on Pymnts](https://www.pymnts.com/news/retail/2022/meta-joins-amazon-walmart-indian-ecommerce-market/) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Ecommerce in Spain worth €57.7 billion in 2021 Spanish ecommerce saw 11.7% growth compared to last year, largely attributed to cross-border sales. In the final quarter of 2021, ecommerce sales in Spain were at €16.9 billion euros, at least 60% of which came from cross-border sales. Transactions from foreign locations to Spain generated a turnover of €1.56 billion in Q4, a growth of 27.7% compared to Q4 a year before. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/ecommerce-in-spain-was-worth-e57-7-billion-in-2021/)
Aug 23, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 23rd August 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon to add mental health support to primary-care service Amazon is set to move into mental health therapy with its primary-care division, following its recent acquisition deal of One Medical. The plan is to partner with virtual behavioural therapy service, Ginger, to offer its Amazon Care users with on-demand access to mental health services, licensed therapists and psychiatrists. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/11/amazon-plans-to-add-mental-health-support-to-primary-care-service/) GMB union calls for £15 an hour minimum pay at UK Amazon warehouses Amazon recently offered its warehouse workers a 3% pay rise, which in comparison to the June inflation rate of 9.4% left employees disappointed. Following this, hundreds of Amazon warehouse workers stopped work last week, protesting against the minimal pay increase, seeking a minimum of £15 an hour. Recent protests consisting of employee walkouts and sit-ins aim to get a better offer out of Amazon. [Read more on The Guardian](https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2022/aug/09/gmb-calls-for-15-an-hour-minimum-pay-at-amazon-warehouses-in-uk) Amazon third-party sellers have received their first-ever holiday fee hike Amazon’s third-party marketplaces account for close to half of the company’s online sales. The company introduced a 5% fuel and inflation charge to its third-party sellers earlier this year, and has now implemented another inflation increase charge. Commencing 14 October, any seller who uses Amazon’s fulfilment service is subject to the price hike, which is set to be an additional 35 cents per item for products sold in the US and Canada. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/17/amazon-third-party-sellers-have-received-their-first-ever-holiday-fee-hike/) Amazon puts a pause on UK grocery shop roll-out as the cost of living increases Amazon has slowed down on its UK roll-out of till-free Amazon Fresh grocery stores following disappointing sales and the rise in cost of living. Allegedly, the company is no longer looking for potential sites to expand and if more stores are opened, they will likely no longer use a till-free system, as consumers become more cautious about spending. [Read more on The Telegraph](https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2022/08/21/amazon-pauses-uk-grocery-shop-roll-out-following-disappointing/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Shopee overtakes Alibaba across international markets Shopee has surpassed Alibaba and taken the top spot for sales outside of China. Singapore-based marketplace saw a year-on-year increase of 51.4% at the end of Q2 of this year, while Alibaba saw a 3% drop during the same time period. This can be seen as a promising development for start-ups and their ability to compete with some of the largest ecommerce giants in the market. [Read more on Exchange Wire](https://www.exchangewire.com/blog/2022/08/18/shopee-surpasses-alibaba-in-international-sales-amazon-searches-for-entertainment-exec/) H&M reopens its official store to Alibaba’s Tmall ecommerce platform It has been nearly 18 months since Alibaba removed H&M from its Tmall platform, following H&M’s criticism of human rights abuses in Xinjiang. It is estimated that over a million people, predominantly minorities in the area, have been unlawfully detained in camps across the city. Brands including Nike, Adidas, Burberry and Converse were swept up in the controversy, however H&M was one of the first to be targeted for speaking out about the issue. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/16/hm-returns-to-alibabas-tmall-platform-16-months-after-xinjiang-controversy/) Klarna launches new feature allowing UK consumers to view full online order history Buy-now-pay-later company, Klarna, has launched a new feature on its shopping app, which allows UK consumers to view their full online order history, regardless of whether they purchased the product using Klarna. The feature also shows delivery tracking and aids consumers in managing their online purchases more conveniently. [Read more on The Industry](https://www.theindustry.fashion/klarna-launches-new-feature-allowing-uk-consumers-to-view-full-online-order-history/) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Online marketplaces responsible for £280 billion business turnover in the UK Nearly 900,000 UK businesses are currently selling on online marketplaces, generating an estimated £282 billion worth of sales each year. This figure represents 6% of the UK’s annual business turnover, highlighting the notable contribution that marketplaces make to the UK economy, along with the potential for further growth in this area. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/08/09/online-marketplaces-responsible-for-280-billion-business-turnover-in-uk/)