The U.S. is the world’s largest sneaker market, and shoewear sales from the top sneaker triad — Adidas, Nike and Under Armour — climbed in 2013 to a total of more than $25 billion, a 47 percent jump since 2009.
So who’s winning the sneaker game? You guessed it: Nike. In the U.S., the big Swoosh accounts for a staggering 90 percent of all basketball-sneaker sales. But what Americans buy, and why, might surprise you.
Below are 10 of the top-selling sneakers in August, listed with their average sale price, according to sports industry analyst Matt Powell.
Nike Air Jordan 3 ($165.29)
The top-selling Air Jordan 3, seen here in the Retro “Infrared 23” colorway, was first released in 1988, when Michael Jordan received his first NBA Most Valuable Player award. The sneaker has remained one of the Jordan brand’s perennial best-sellers, and has been re-released, “retro”-ed (and even re-“retroed”) several times over. Even with the high price tag, it nailed the No. 1 spot (to the point that some sneakerheads feel it’s been played out).
Nike AIR FORCE 1 LOW ($88.70)
Named for the plane that carries the president (and later celebrated by Nelly), the Air Force 1 has remained an icon. Its low-top version is a popular seller for men and women, and heavily customizable: The pictured version features a rainbow gradient in the sole.