How the Super Bowl Impacts Demand for NFL Team Gear

Pattern Data Science

February 2, 2022

It’s almost time for the biggest Sunday of the year. It doesn’t matter if you’re a lifelong Bengals fan, settling in to see your franchise win its first ever championship, or you’re a Los Angeles Rams fan eager to see the Vince Lombardi trophy come to the City of Angels, or maybe you’re just looking forward to good food and some fun commercials – there’s no denying the power of Super Bowl Sunday.

Last year saw a total of 96.4 million people tuning in to watch the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the Kansas City Chiefs, and while that was the lowest number of viewers since 2007, it was still easily the most watched television program of the year.

As we approach Super Bowl LVI, we wanted to take a look at our data to learn more about how the big game impacts consumer demand for team gear. Which teams were the most popular last year? Do sales spike for teams in the Super Bowl? And if so, how long does the Super Bowl bump last?

Our data science team analyzed market demand for NFL team merchandise over the past few years to answer these questions and more.

Which NFL teams were the most popular in 2021?

To set a baseline, we wanted to take a broad look at the past year to see which teams were the most popular when it came to consumer demand for their gear on Amazon.

We started by analyzing searches for each team name. Here’s what we found:

The nickname “America’s Team” appears to still hold true – nearly a quarter of demand for NFL team gear on Amazon in 2021 was for the Dallas Cowboys.

In second place was the Buffalo Bills, with 10.5% of all NFL team related searches, while last year’s Super Bowl runner-up, the Kansas City Chiefs, came in at number three.

Tampa Bay, the reigning Super Bowl champs, fell just outside of the top five at number six with 5.9% of the combined market share for NFL team related searches.

This year’s Super Bowl teams were far from the most popular in 2021. The Bengals were the 26th most popular team, and the Rams were tied for the second-to-last most popular team.

In addition to analyzing general searches for team names, we also took a look at consumer demand for team jerseys and team hats to see if specific types of gear moved the needle differently for each team.

Here’s how demand for team jerseys shook out in 2021:

The Cowboys claimed the top spot on this list as well, but demand was more evenly distributed among most teams.

The Steelers saw a huge jump in demand in this view, enough to claim the number two spot. The Buccaneers were the third most popular jersey, which comes as no surprise as Tom Brady was consistently the top selling jersey in the league according to the NFL shop.

The Chiefs were the fourth most popular jersey, further confirming the theory that a Super Bowl appearance brings a big boost in popularity. Which is good news for the Rams and Bengals, who were both once again in the bottom half of the league.

Let’s wrap up this view with a look at team hats.

The Cowboys complete their clean sweep, claiming the top spot in this view as well.

Raiders Nation, meanwhile, appears to look to hats more than jerseys or other types of merchandise when it comes to supporting their team, they lept all the way up to the number two spot for consumer demand for team hats.

The Buccaneers made it into the top five, while the Chiefs claimed the number seven spot. And, once again, the Rams and Bengals fell in the bottom half of the list, with the Bengals sitting all the way down in the bottom five.

Now, it’s obviously too soon to say if Super Bowl LVI will shoot the Rams and Bengals to the top of the list, but let’s dig a bit deeper and see how Super Bowl LV impacted demand for the Buccaneers and the Chiefs.

How much does a Super Bowl appearance impact demand for NFL teams?

Common sense tells us that, yes, we should absolutely expect to see demand for Bengals and Rams gear increase significantly as Super Bowl Sunday approaches. But we wanted to dive deeper into our data to see just what kind of impact a Super Bowl appearance has had on teams in the past.

Let’s start by taking a look at weekly demand for NFL gear over the past two years:

Interestingly, Super Bowl Sunday does not represent a high point for NFL gear demand. This makes some sense as by that point there are only two fanbases left who are eager to buy their team’s gear.

Instead, it appears that the holiday shopping season represents the typical high-point when it comes to demand for NFL team gear. The next most significant spikes occur during the opening weeks of the regular season and the start of the NFL Playoffs.

To contrast, let’s first look at weekly demand for Kansas City Chiefs gear, as they participated in each of the last two Super Bowls.

Demand for Chiefs Gear absolutely skyrocketed during the 2019-2020 playoffs, peaking during the week of the AFC Championship game that sent the Chiefs to Super Bowl LIV. It then fell sharply in the weeks following their Super Bowl victory, but there does appear to be a slight long-term boost.

The next year once again saw demand peak during the week of the AFC Championship game, although with a much lower crest and a much sharper drop off in the wake of the Chief’s Super Bowl loss.

Comparing average monthly demand over the past 3 years paints a clearer picture of the long-term impact of a Super Bowl appearance and victory:

The 2018-19 playoffs saw the Chiefs reach the AFC Championship Game, but it was the team’s first Super Bowl win that brought an astronomical leap in average demand. That excitement clearly lingered, as the 2020 offseason saw demand increase by 260% compared to the 2019 offseason.

As we saw in our weekly view above, demand dropped during the 2020-21 playoffs compared to the previous year, even before the Chiefs eventually lost in the Super Bowl. This could be the result of COVID-19 restricting in-person attendance at games, or simply fewer fans jumping on the bandwagon, or a combination of factors.

No matter how you slice it, though, there’s no doubt that success on the field translated to huge boosts in demand for Kansas City gear.

Now let’s take a look at last year’s Super Bowl Champion, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers:

Unlike the Chiefs, who have had several years of playoff success, the Buccaneers stormed onto the stage as unlikely champs last season after the off-season addition of Tom Brady in 2020. In fact, demand for Buccaneers gear was almost zero until the week of March 15th, 2020, which is when the legendary quarterback joined the team.

The week of the NFC Championship game when the Buccaneers upset the top seeded Green Bay Packers, demand for Tampa Bay gear absolutely skyrocketed. Demand that week was up by over 1,200% compared to the weeks before the playoffs began.

While that spike throws off the scale of the chart quite a bit, you can still see the clear impact that Super Bowl win had on demand throughout 2021. Demand at the start of the season and during the mid-December holiday shopping rush were both much larger in 2021 than those same weeks in 2020.

Here you can see the clear impact of a surprise Super Bowl appearance. Fans were so excited after the Buccaneers Super Bowl win that the 2021 offseason saw average monthly demand actually outpace that of the 2020-21 regular season.

This is strong evidence that we should expect to see similar extreme increases in demand for both Bengals and Rams gear after the results of this past weekend’s Conference Championship games.

Bengals vs. Rams – which team has had the more passionate fans so far?

We don’t have the data yet to see how both team’s big victories on Conference Championship weekend has impacted demand for their gear, but we couldn’t finish this piece without at least taking a look at demand for our two Super Bowl teams to see which one is trending ahead of the other so far:

The 2020-21 season saw Bengals fans start the season buying more gear than Rams fans, but by the holidays, demand was higher for Rams gear.

Both fanbases were definitely more passionate this season, but Bengals fans definitely have had the edge all season long. Particularly the most recent week in which we have data, which was just before the playoffs started.

We expect to see incredible surges in demand from all weeks of the playoffs, but early trends so far suggest that Bengals fans have the early edge coming into Super Bowl Sunday.

Has COVID-19 impacted demand for NFL gear?

It’s abundantly clear that a trip to the Super Bowl results in near and long-term increases in demand for that team’s gear. But before we wrap up our analysis, we wanted to take a quick look back at the past few years to see if the COVID-19 pandemic has had any impact on demand for NFL gear.

Unlike the NBA, which experienced a stoppage in play during the height of the pandemic in 2020, the NFL has seen their seasons go uninterrupted, although they have experienced various restrictions on in-person attendance of games since the pandemic began.

Interestingly, we see that in the immediate wake of the early COVID-19 shutdowns, demand for NFL team gear was actually up compared to the 2019 offseason. That increase was short-lived, however, as September 2020 fell far behind the pre-pandemic season opener.

Same goes for December’s holiday shopping season, which was down in 2020 compared to 2019 – although 2019 also represented a significant drop compared to 2018.

Interestingly, though, January 2021 actually saw demand outpace the same month in 2020 and 2019, which suggests that the pandemic had little to no impact on consumer demand for team gear during the NFL playoffs.

It will be interesting, then, to see if January 2022 sees yet another increase in demand compared to previous playoffs.

A lesson for brands

Our analysis shows that while the holiday shopping season typically drives the most overall demand for NFL team gear, a Super Bowl appearance is more than enough to drive significant increases in demand for that team’s gear.

With the Bengals and the Rams on their way to Super Bowl LVI, we expect gear for both teams to start flying off the digital shelves as the big game approaches. And whichever team wins the big game is almost guaranteed to see a healthy long tail in boosted demand.

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, get in touch today.

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Sept 27, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 27th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon drives renewable energy push with 71 new projects Amazon is planning to add 2.7 gigawatts of clean energy capacity through a couple of new projects as the company attempts to use 100% renewable energy by 2025. The ecommerce business will soon have a total of 329 renewable energy projects, generating 50,000 gigawatt hours of clean energy, which is equivalent to powering 4.6 million US homes every year. [Read more on Reuters]( Amazon launches Prime Early Access Sale Amazon is launching a new 2-day shopping event for its Prime members only, beginning on the 11th of October. Across 15 countries, Prime customers will have access to the shopping event, with thousands of deals on offer globall, ranging from fashion to electronics to essentials. The event has the purpose of giving Prime users the chance to spread the cost of items over the winter months, 6 weeks ahead of Black Friday. [Read more on Charged Retail]( --- Other Marketplace News --- Shopify unveils new localisation tool Shopify is launching a new localisation tool, called Translate & Adapt, which works with Shopify Markets to offer localisation for sellers who are looking to expand into new markets. The tool translates a user’s online store into different languages, including product pages and information pages. Merchants are also able to create different shipping terms for each market using the new tool, which allows international expansion and offers a more localised consumer experience, unveiling new potential. [Read more on Ecommerce News]( Etsy is set to invest hundreds of millions into its marketing platform Etsy CEO claims that the company is on route to spend more than $570 million USD on marketing this year. Even during a time of macroeconomic pressure, inflation and rising interest rates, the company is preparing itself and its sellers for the upcoming holiday season and is focused on retaining interest from buyers. [Read more on Yahoo News]( --- Other Ecommerce News --- Meta looks to cut costs by 10% in the coming months Meta employees are facing job redundancies as the company plans to cut its costs by 10% over the next few months. Meta reported a 22% YoY increase in costs and expenses, totalling over $20 billion USD. The cuts are expected to come in the form of job redundancies as a result of department reorganisations rather than formal layoffs. [Read more on Charged Retail]( DHL teams up with Quadient to offer smart locker deliveries in the UK DHL and tech company, Quadient, have partnered to offer smart lockers parcel pick-up throughout the UK. The new contactless, secure locker stations will give recipients more choice and flexibility to receive their parcels at a time and location best suited to them. The partnership plans to install 500 locker stations across the country by the end of 2022. [Read more on Charged Retail]( The online fashion market is set to be worth nearly $170 billion USD in 2025 The European online fashion retail market is set to grow 50% by 2025, with an online turnover of $170 billion USD, which is 33% of the retail branch’s total. Cross-border marketplaces prove to be the largest drivers of this growth, with online websites and apps like Vinted largely pushing the market’s online growth. Zalando recently became the largest cross-border fashion retailer/marketplace, responsible for 11.7% of the online market’s share. [Read more on Ecommerce News](
Sept 22, 2022

How an Amazon SEO Agency Should Be Serving Your Brand

If you’re in the global ecommerce space, you are most likely aware of Amazon, and probably selling your products on the marketplace. With over $470 billion in sales in 2021 alone, Amazon stands as the third largest company in the world based on revenue. The ecommerce giant is a household name in the U.S. and working hard to grow its market share across five continents worldwide.

Having your products available on Amazon and being competitive there, though, are definitely two different things. If you want to really succeed on Amazon, you’ll need specialized insight into how Amazon works and how to make it work for you. So, for many brands, it’s a great idea to work with an Amazon Search Engine Optimization (SEO) agency.

At Pattern, Amazon SEO optimization service is one of our key competencies. We understand that technology, data-driven insights and expertise  are the most important tools brands can leverage to win top listing spots on digital marketplaces. With expert teams and years of experience, we help brands conquer the Profitability Death Spiral as they compete with other products and sellers online. We offer Amazon SEO agency services as a core solution to brands that need more resources to get ahead. 

What is an Amazon SEO Agency?

An Amazon SEO agency serves brands by improving their products’ rank and listing performance on Amazon. They make strategic decisions about ad spending and placement that lead to higher traffic, conversions, and revenue for ecommerce brands.

A great Amazon SEO Agency partner will:

Prioritize Your Success

Unfortunately, many Amazon SEO agencies profit in unfair ways from your brands’ perceived success based on the ROAS numbers they provide. This is done through including branded search terms in ROAS reports, which naturally skew listing performance

Let’s say, for instance, your brand is called “Annie’s” and you sell lollipops. Your brand has a very high likelihood of winning the top listing spots on Amazon for lollipop search terms that are paired with “Annie’s,” your brand name. So, SEO agencies will spend your ad money on those terms and report a very high ROAS. 

To avoid scenarios like these, it’s best to look for an agency that either calculates their profits on metrics other than your ROAS scores or weighs branded search terms differently in the performance metrics reports. Regardless of your Amazon SEO agency’s cost structure, you should align onbranded search terms before committing to a scope of work.

Provide Detailed Competitive Insight

A great indicator of a high-quality Amazon SEO agency is the level of insight they can provide into your competitors’ listing positioning and how it compares to yours. Data fanaticism is so important at Pattern that we’ve developed proprietary technology to display this exact information with precise detail for every brand we work with. In fact, you can find our free version here to see how you compare to some of your top competitors based on ASIN.

It’s certainly possible to improve your Amazon search performance with blind spending strategies. But a truly great solution will help you to know where your dollars are at their most powerful and competitive.

Reduce Your Ad Spend Over Time

Amazon’s A10 algorithm prioritizes customer satisfaction—it wants to show consumers the best products that align with their search intent to improve conversions and sales. So, the best way to gain momentum on Amazon is to work on incremental wins. 

Improving your performance on more obscure search terms that align with your customers’ search intent is a great way to increase ROAS for the long term. A10 will reward your success with better rankings on higher-volume search terms and the virtuous cycle can help you conquer your most-coveted listing spots. And the best part? This process of gaining momentum, if done right, will naturally decrease your ad spend over time as Amazon recognizes your value and works with you to keep your products at the top of consumers’ search results.

Amazon SEO Optimization and More

As an Amazon SEO specialist, Pattern knows how to help your brand win better success for long-term profitability on Amazon. With our data-driven tools and brilliant teams of ecommerce experts, we help brands with listing management, content optimization, Amazon ad strategies, and more.

Contact us to learn more about our SEO optimization services.

Sept 20, 2022

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