Comic Con 2016: Geek out to the 15 Biggest Fandoms of the Past Decade

By: Melissa Ojeda, eBay News Team

Hollywood measures success by the box office, but ticket sales are only one indicator of popularity. Thanks to eBay’s vast search data, we’re able to not only find out what people are looking for, but also what they’re purchasing. So while you’ll see no shortage of Stormtroopers at this year’s Comic Con, there’s a host of new superheroes demanding your attention.

Later this week, fans of all franchises – whether they be movies, TV shows, books or comics – will converge in San Diego, CA for the ultimate pop-culture geek fest known as Comic Con International. Ahead of the celebrations, the eBay Data Labs team has decided to take a look at what the best-selling franchises have been over the years on eBay.

For over two decades, eBay has built a reputation as the marketplace to go to for fandom memorabilia, hard-to-get franchise merchandise and rare collectibles. In fact, eBay hosted a record-breaking sale of the most expensive comic book ever sold: this 1938 Superman comic sold for $3.2 million on eBay.

By examining sales data since 2006, eBay has discovered the most devoted fan bases over the last ten years – from Trekkies to Potterheads to Whovians. We’ve also taken a look at the most anticipated franchises presenting at Comic Con this year and how they stack up against one another. Take a look at what we found!

The Force remains Strong

Star Wars is continuing to lead among the largest franchises with the most merchandise sold since 2006, bringing in nearly $600 million in sales. Some of the most valuable and rarest Star Wars action figures have made their way onto eBay over the years – what’s more, we’ve found that one Star Wars-related item is sold every 14 seconds on eBay. Behind Star Wars, Batman ranks number two at $216 million in sales while Transformers sits at number three with $178 million. Here are the 15 franchises that came out on top:

Biggest Franchises of All Time eBay Data2

The Rise of Superheroes

With Captain America: Civil War, Deadpool and Preacher taking the stage in 2016, eBay searches for superhero merchandise have continued to rise. When pitting the popular franchises against each other, we have noticed more shoppers searching for merchandise related to Deadpool and Captain America than traditional classics, Superman and Batman. With the rise in popularity for these superheroes, the question on everyone’s mind is: Are Batman and Superman losing their luster, or is the recent search trend just a temporary fad?

Highest Growth Franchises in Last Year eBay Data2

Go Pokemon Go

Additionally, with the launch of Pokémon Go, there have been over 444,000 views of Pokémon merchandise, establishing it as the #1 trending item on July 18, specifically for the Nintendo Pokémon Go Plus bracelet, available now for pre-order. Since the release of the app in mid-July, one Pokémon-related item has sold every 12 seconds around the world on eBay. This is a 57percent increase from its average selling rate previously. Among Pokémon merchandise, other top-selling items include:

  • Pokémon Go Team Valor Team Mystic Team T-Shirts (example)
  • Anime Cosplay Pokémon Pocket Monster Ash Ketchum baseball cap (example)  
  • Pokémon Game Card (example)
  • Pokémon Pokeball Cosplay Plastic Pop-Up Game (example)

Screen Shot 2016 07 18 at 6.12.56 PM

Want to make sure you survive this Comic Con season? Here is your ultimate survival guide to Comic Con.

*Number of buyers