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Sports-related spend to leap as life resumes this summer

With a summer packed full of sport and merriment on the way, brands could soon be seeing a jump in sports-related spending, according to research from eBay Ads UK. Despite this, brands are going to have to pay close attention to how they reach audiences with a range of different attitudes post-pandemic.

35% of the 1,000 UK consumers surveyed by Censuswide, on behalf of eBay, said they were planning to buy tickets to watch live sporting events both indoors and outdoors this summer, while 22% plan to prioritise watching sports in pubs and bars.

On the other hand, 27% of people would like to watch sports in one of these venues, but are still concerned about social distancing. Such concerns mean that 44% of consumers plan to continue watching sports at home this summer and 25% will most likely prioritise watching sports in outdoor COVD-safe settings.

As such, eBay predicts that consumers may look to kit out their homes and gardens with sports-related goodies for viewing parties.

On the day that England beat Panama in the 2018 World Cup, the ecommerce giant saw a surge in interest for outdoor and party equipment. Search for ‘barbeque’ rose 45%, ‘garden furniture’ 41% and ‘red cups’ 86%, compared to the day prior. And a similar trend occurred in summer 2016 around the Euro championship.

eBay has also discovered that there is a desire to invest in sports equipment on the back of events being cancelled, as consumers look to get their fix in some way.

On the day which would’ve been the Wimbledon men’s final last year, searches for ‘tennis shoes’ rose 36%, while searches for ‘tennis net’ and ‘tennis ball’ jumped 31% and 26% respectively, compared to a day earlier. On the same day, which also would’ve been the Euro 2020 final, search for ‘Euros 2020’ were up 29% and searches for ‘goal net’ were up a staggering 131%.

“We know Brits love their sports and we are expecting sporting fever to be even greater this summer as fans make up for what they missed out on last year. In order to make the most of the season, brands should bring their A-game and consider the various ways to engage with fans, whether they’re rushing back to their team’s football ground, or hosting viewing parties at home,” said Harmony Murphy, GM Advertising UK at eBay.

“However, as some uncertainty still remains for this summer and with some consumers more cautious than others, it’s crucial that marketers use fresh data to tap into the nations’ sporting mindsets and engage them with the most relevant marketing. And, just in case restrictions and events change, brands should still be prepared to flex their campaigns as needed.”

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