The WNBA experienced a historic season in 2023, with the most-watched regular season in 21 years. Viewership across national television partners such as ABC, CBS, ESPN, and ESPN2 increased 21 percent compared to the previous year. The league also reached new highs in digital platforms, social media engagement, and sports betting.
One of the highlights of the season was the increase in viewership. Combined viewership across ESPN Networks and CBS Television Network rose 21 percent, averaging 505,000 viewers. The WNBA on ABC had the most-viewed regular season in 11 years, averaging 627,000 viewers. The 2023 AT&T WNBA All-Star Game on ABC was the most-watched All-Star Game in 16 years, with an average of 850,000 viewers.
Attendance in the WNBA also saw significant growth, with a 16 percent increase compared to the previous year. The average attendance per game was 6,615 fans, the highest since 2018. The league had its highest total attendance in 13 years, drawing a crowd of 1,587,488.
Social media engagement also played a vital role in the season’s success. The league generated a record-breaking 373 million video views across all @WNBA social media handles, a 96 percent increase from the previous year. The WNBA’s digital platforms, including the relaunched app and out-of-market live game package, experienced substantial growth in downloads and subscribers.
Sports betting on the WNBA also saw a significant increase in activity. On FanDuel Sportsbook, the number of bets on the WNBA more than doubled compared to last year. The league launched the WNBABet tab, featuring content from various partners and providing fans with more opportunities to engage with the game through betting.
The 2023 season also highlighted the WNBA’s community impact, with a focus on women’s health advocacy, particularly in Black, Brown, and LGBTQ+ communities.
Overall, the WNBA’s record-breaking season showcased the growing popularity and interest in women’s basketball. With increased viewership, attendance, and engagement, the league continues to make strides in promoting gender equality in sports.