Back in early 2017, we published our first ever Festival Merchandise Overview blog post, highlighting the various Festival merch sales trends we had seen over the course of the 2016 Festival Season. We received a tremendous amount of positive feedback from industry folks who found the information enlightening since many of our Festival partners did not have a clear understanding of how healthy (or unhealthy) their merchandise sales were with respect to their peers. For many, it was an eye-opening experience to learn that when one invests in and properly executes, merch can be quite the lucrative revenue stream for their larger business.

In 2017, things got fairly busy around here at atVenu that by the time we had a minute to catch our breath, we quickly realized that we never had the chance to share our top 2017 Festival merch trends.

We don’t want to leave our partners hanging and we promise not to make the same mistake twice. So, back by popular demand and without further ado, here is a look back at some of the key merch trends we saw over the course of the 2018 Festival Season.

Before we dive in, we’d like to call special attention to our Hip-Hop/Rap Festival partners who broke all types of records in 2018. Historically a sluggish genre with regards to merch sales, Festivals like Camp Flog Gnaw, Astroworld, and Rolling Loud came out of the gates swinging in 2018.

Through a combination of innovative, on-trend designs and clever exclusivity strategies, these Festivals put up the kind of gross sales, average transaction sizes and dollars ($) per head numbers typically only seen at the Coachellas, Desert Trips and Bottlerocks of the industry.

In fact, one Hip-Hop Festival averaged $130 per transaction. That’s nearly 3x that of their closest non-Hip-Hop Festival competitor despite selling to a predominantly younger and less affluent demographic.

Let’s dive in.

atVenu by the Numbers: 2018

With respect to Festivals, 2018 was a landmark year for atVenu. We powered the merch for over 100 different Festivals in 2018 alone.

117
Unique Festivals
247
Festival Events
29
In Festival Gross Merch Sales
3000
Artists Settled

2018 High-Level Festival Trends

Curious as to where your Festival merch business stacks up against the industry at large? Below are a few averages across our roster of 117 Festival partners – regardless of size and genre.  (Min of 5,000 tickets sold)

18,370

Avg Attendance Per Festival

$260,300

Avg Total Gross Merch Sales

$14.15

Avg $ Per Head

$38.00

Highest $ Per Head

$2.15

Lowest $ Per Head

$56.00

Avg Spent Per Transaction

24

Avg # of Artists Settled Per Fest

67%

Credit Card Sales

63%

Event Merch Sales as a % of Total Merch Sales

2018 Festival Merch Trends by Genre

Alternative

$12.40

Avg $ Per Head

$191,000

Avg Gross Merch Sales

58%

Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch

$47.50

Avg Transaction Size

Country

$10.00

Avg $ Per Head

$240,000

Avg Gross Merch Sales

68%

Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch

$44.88

Avg Transaction Size

EDM

$10.00

Avg $ Per Head

$158,000

Avg Gross Merch Sales

66%

Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch

$44.60

Avg Transaction Size

Folk/Jazz/Blues

$9.70

Avg $ Per Head

$110,000

Avg Gross Merch Sales

75%

Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch

$41.40

Avg Transaction Size

Alternative
$12.40
Avg $ Per Head
$191,000
Avg Gross Merch Sales
58%
Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch
$47.50
Avg Transaction Size
Country
$10.00
Avg $ Per Head
$240,000
Avg Gross Merch Sales
68%
Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch
$44.88
Avg Transaction Size
EDM

$10.00

Avg $ Per Head
$158,000
Avg Gross Merch Sales
66%
Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch
$44.60
Avg Transaction Size
Folk/Jazz/Blues

$9.70

Avg $ Per Head
$110,000
Avg Gross Merch Sales
75%
Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch
$41.40
Avg Transaction Size

Hard Rock/Metal

$17.00

Avg $ Per Head

$337,500

Avg Gross Merch Sales

39%

Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch

$51.11

Avg Transaction Size

Hip-Hop/Rap

$23.25

Avg $ Per Head

$403,000

Avg Gross Merch Sales

69%

Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch

$81.00

Avg Transaction Size

Pop

$18.35

Avg $ Per Head

$486,350

Avg Gross Merch Sales

63%

Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch

$57.51

Avg Transaction Size

Reggae

$8.00

Avg $ Per Head

$70,000

Avg Gross Merch Sales

66%

Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch

$47.65

Avg Transaction Size

Hard Rock/Metal
$17.00
Avg $ Per Head
$337,500
Avg Gross Merch Sales
39%
Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch
$51.11
Avg Transaction Size
Hip-Hop/Rap
$23.25
Avg $ Per Head
$403,000
Avg Gross Merch Sales
69%
Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch
$81.00
Avg Transaction Size
Pop

$18.35

Avg $ Per Head
$486,350
Avg Gross Merch Sales
63%
Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch
$57.51
Avg Transaction Size
Reggae

$8.00

Avg $ Per Head
$70,000
Avg Gross Merch Sales
66%
Event Merch Sales as % of Total Merch
$47.65
Avg Transaction Size

Now that 2018 has come and gone, we’re ready to ring in 2019 with new festivals and record-breaking merch sales. Who knows which genre will dominate the year to come, but rest assured that atVenu will be along for the ride and we’ll be sure to keep you posted every step of the way.

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