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Nike Dominates 2021’s Best-Selling Sneaker List, But Brooks Grabs Two Prime Spots — Here’s What People Are Buying

While the list of the top selling sneakers for the first half of 2021 was dominated by Nike, Brooks continues to prove itself a worthy competitor to the Swoosh.

Two Brooks silhouettes earned spots on the list of the 10 top selling sneakers in 2021 so far, according to a July 30 report from Matt Powell, senior sports industry adviser for The NPD Group Inc.

The Brooks Ghost 13 and Adrenaline GTS 21, which both retail for $130, ranked ninth and 10th, respectively, on the list that orders the top 10 pairs according to dollar rank. The 10 top selling sneakers also included six silhouettes from Nike, the Jordan 1 Mid and the Adidas NMD R1.

The Nike Air Force 1 Low (on Nike.com for $90) which includes the Nike Air Force 1 ’07 Low and Air Force 1 Low, was the top selling sneaker of the year so far. Other Nike pairs on the list included the Nike Air Max 270 (on Nike.com for $150), Nike Air Vapormax Plus (on Nike.com for $200), Nike Air Max Excee (on Nike.com for $90), Nike Air Max 90 (on Nike.com for $120) and the Nike Revolution 5, (on Nike.com for $65).

Brooks joined the top 10 selling sneaker list for the first time in January, when the Ghost 13 secured the ninth spot in dollar rank order for that month. At the time, Powell said that Brooks beat out Nike to become the No. 1 women’s running shoe brand in the U.S. that month.

A general running and walking boom, especially among women, has helped propel the success of certain running brands. Hoka One One, Brooks and Skechers have all seen positive gains in their women’s businesses in recent quarters. Meanwhile, footwear giants Nike and Adidas have lost share in their women’s athletic footwear business to competitors including Skechers, Brooks, Vans and Converse, many of which already had huge shares of the women’s market.

Brooks has seen success thanks to its focus on targeting beginner runners and its location in stores where women go shopping, Powell previously told FN.

“Both [Nike and Adidas] have stated publicly that they’re banking on the women’s business to be a growth category for them. And while the business is growing, it’s just not growing nearly as quickly as it is with smaller brands, so they’ve got some ground to make up for sure,” Powell previously told FN.

Athletic footwear sales grew more than 35% in the first half of 2021 versus 2020, the report said. Women’s athletic footwear grew by about 40% compared to 2020.

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