WWE Needs To Increase Viewership Over 25% To Meet Fox Goals
WWE is moving Smackdown LIVE to Fox next fall, and with that the broadcast network is looking for numbers for the program to be a lot of higher than the WWE is currently getting
Dave Meltzer noted today that FOX is currently seeking 3.3 million viewers for Smackdown on FOX. This number is a lot higher than what the WWE has done over the last two years. In 2017 the WWE average 2.5 million viewers for Smackdown, and in 2018 the WWE has done 2.36 million year-to-date according to Neilsen data we have compiled.
The WWE would need to bump their viewership 27% in order to gain the amount of viewers FOX is seeking. FOX is available in more homes than USA Network, and according to Meltzer he expects a bump of 25% in viewership once the program leaves USA Network and heads to broadcast television.
Looking at last Friday’s numbers for FOX from 8:00 to 10pm, Last Man Standing pulled 5.43 million viewers, The Cool Kids did 4.35 million viewers and Hells Kitchen did 2.68 million viewers.
There is also talk that WWE will have a pre-game and/or a post-game Smackdown show on FS1, which is the FOX sports cable channel. The WWE’s first episode of Smackdown on FOX is scheduled for October 4th, 2019.