Snooker has been popular in the UK for many years, but how has its popularity developed over time, how many people watch the sport and how high is the participation rate in 2021? This article explores these questions and more.
Snooker Statistics UK 2021: The Short Version
We have summed up our key findings from our research here. More in depth analysis and research can be found further on in the article.
- Snooker is the 6th most popular sport in the UK in terms of search volume, generating 119,000 searches per month in the UK.
- During the past 12 months, home Snooker setups have been more popular than Snooker Clubs, with 15,100 and 3,300 average monthly searches in the UK respectively.
- Popularity of Snooker peaks when the Snooker world championship takes place each year (Usually in April).
- Ronnie O’Sullivan is the most popular Snooker player in the UK, generating 105,000 searches per month.
How Popular is Snooker in the UK in 2021?
We conducted a keyword analysis with KWFinder and discovered that the term “Snooker” is searched for 119,000 times per month on average in the UK, making it the 6th most popular sport in terms of search volume. We also analysed the search volume over time and highlighted what affects the popularity of the sport. This is detailed in the below graphic.
Number of monthly searches for the term “Snooker” every month since June 2015. Search volumes were discovered through the keyword analysis tool KWFinder.
The interest in Snooker appears to be at its highest in April each year. This is when the Snooker World Championship usually takes place with exception to the World Championship in 2020 which took place in August due to Covid-19 restrictions in the april.
In 2021, the Snooker world championship had a peak live viewership of 4.1 million people which is much higher than the number in 2020 which generated a peak of 2.9 million live viewers. However this is far from the peak viewing figures for Snooker in the UK, as in 1985, 18.5 million people which at the time was a third of the UK population tuned in to watch the World Snooker Championship final.
How Many People Play Snooker in the UK in 2021?
Once again we conducted a keyword analysis using KWFinder to discover the search volumes for terms which indicated specific intent to play Snooker. These terms included “Snooker Cue”, “Snooker Table”, “Snooker Club Near Me” and “Snooker Balls”. The search volumes are listed in the table below.
Average Monthly Search Volume (UK)
Snooker Club Near Me
The term “Snooker Table” indicates searches who are looking to purchase a table for their home and potentially those just getting into the sport. The term is searched 15,100 times which is the most of the 4 terms that we analysed, indicating the greater demand for home snooker setups than clubs. Furthermore, this also highlights the number of people looking to get into the sport and begin playing, rather than those making a somewhat recurring purchase such as a cue or balls.
Searches for “Snooker Balls” imply that the intent is from people who already own a Snooker table and/or a Snooker club, indicating that they already play reasonably regularly. The number of searches for these items is 4,600 per month in the UK which is over three times lower than that of “Snooker Table”. Snooker balls do wear away due to friction with both other balls and the cue, which is the main reason why they have to be replaced and are more of a recurring purchase than that of a table. It is said that the balls should be replaced every 1-3 years depending on the quality of the ball and the amount of time playing snooker.
The keyword “Snooker Cue” will also be searched by those that are already playing Snooker and play regularly. However the search intent is slightly different as this implies that they are either using their new cue either at home or at a Snooker club. The term is searched 8,600 times per month which makes it the second largest searched term that we analysed. Similarly to Snooker Balls, the Snooker Cue also wears out, however, the whole cue does not need to be replaced as it’s just the Cue Tip that has to be replaced. The Cue tips are usually replaced every 6 months and the term “Snooker Cue Tip” is searched 720 times in the UK each month.
Finally, the number of searches for “Snooker Club Near Me” display the intent of somebody who is interested in the sport looking to begin playing it at a club in their area. The keyword generates an average of 3,300 searches per month in the UK. However, we expect that this figure is much lower than usual due to the Covid-19 pandemic which has caused clubs to be forced to close their doors. This is evidenced as in February 2021 (middle of nationwide lockdowns) there were only 1,300 searches for the term whereas in August 2020 (limited social distancing restrictions) there were 9,900 searches for the term. However, this also coincides with the 2020 World Snooker Championship.
Who is the Most Popular Snooker Player in the UK 2021
We conducted a keyword analysis using KWFinder to find which Snooker players are the most popular in the UK based on the number of average monthly searches. We analysed the top 50 Snooker players in the WST world rankings. Compiled below are the top ten most frequently searched players in the UK.
Average Monthly Searches in the UK
Ronnie O’Sullivan is the most popular Snooker player in the UK in terms of number of monthly searches, generating 105,000 per month. In comparison, the current world ranked number 1 player, Judd Trump generates more than 4 times less the number of searches than O’Sullivan. Furthermore, the player with the second most monthly searches, Neil Roberton, only gains 44,300 monthly searches which is less than half that of Ronnie.
Summary: Snooker Statistics UK 2021 Roundup
To conclude, while Snooker may not be at the height of its popularity in the UK, it still remains one of the most popular sports in the country, with widespread participation and viewership. Unsurprisingly, Ronnie O’Sullivan is the most popular player by quite a margin even though he is the third highest ranked player in the world. The effects of Covid has led to an increased demand to play Snooker at home rather than in Snooker clubs.
We hope this article has aided your understanding of the scale of how popular Snooker is in the UK.