181 Million Americans Expected to Watch Super Bowl XLVIII
Image: Pixabay
January 31, 2014

The most watched professional sport in America will draw an estimated 181 million viewers – 75.4 percent – when the Denver Broncos take on the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday, February 2, 2014 for Super Bowl XLVIII.

According to the National Retail Federation's (NRF) Super Bowl Spending survey conducted by Prosper Insights and Analytics, all of those viewers combined will spend an average $68.27 on gameday grub, athletic wear, decorations and televisions, which is essentially flat with last year's $68.54. Total Super Bowl-related spending is expected to reach $12.3 billion.

"As football fans gear up for the most anticipated game of the season, retailers are making sure they have an ample assortment of accessories, décor, athletic apparel items and even new televisions," said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay.

According to the survey, more than three-quarters of Super Bowl viewers (77%) will purchase food and beverages, 8.1 percent will purchase team apparel or accessories, and 7.2 percent are planning on buying a new television to watch the game with friends and family.

This year, nearly 39 million viewers plan to throw a Super Bowl party and they can expect a high guest turn out, with 62 million eager viewers planning to attend a party. Restaurants and bars will see their share of fans; the survey found 10 million fans will enjoy the game from their favorite local establishment.

There's no denying the game itself is the most important part of the big day for millions of fans, but according to the survey, of those planning to watch the game, seeing friends and commercials also carry some weight: nearly half (47.5%) said the game is the most important part, and 17.3 percent said getting together with friends mattered most.

For those who do have opinions about the commercials, 78.4 percent agree they are entertaining. Viewers also say commercials make them aware of the advertiser's brand (16.9%). But not everyone has favorable opinions: 17.8 percent believe advertisers should save their money and pass on savings to their customers, and 9.3 percent say they make the game last too long.