Raw ratings drop again to series-low for a non-holiday, key metrics including alarming drop in key demos (w/Keller’s Analysis)

By Wade Keller, PWTorch editor

WWE Hall of Famer, Beth Phoenix, set for WWE Raw


WWE Raw dipped to a new series low rating for a non-holiday edition last night (4/20) with a 1.31 rating, down from last week’s 1.40. The previous low was the Dec. 23, 2019 rating of 1.35, although that was essentially a holiday coming the day before Christmas Eve. Raw also drew a 1.31 rating on Dec. 31, 2018. It also drew a 1.22 rating on Dec. 24, 2018.

The first hour drew 1.940 million viewers, this second horu drew 1.866 million viewers, and the third hour drew 1.720 million viewers.

One year ago this week in the key demographic of 18-49 year olds, Raw drew a 1.05 rating. Last night it drew a 0.56 rating in that demo.

In the male 18-34, it’s even worse for Raw. They drew a 0.89 rating one year ago this week, and a 0.34 rating last night.

As bad as that sounds, Raw held the top two places among all cable programs in the key 18-49 demographic and the third hour finished no. 4 behind “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta” on VH1.

Keller’s Analysis: The drop in Raw viewership drop is in part people not enjoying the empty-venue wrestling atmosphere. It’s also surely in part due to the stripped down roster which is a result of travel restrictions and self-quarantining by wrestlers, which is sending a signal to viewers that this is a post-WrestleMania lull.

For years, WWE has treated stars of the past as a bigger deal than stars of the present, and they’re paying a price for that now without Undertaker, Steve Austin, Batista, Goldberg, Edge, and other special attractions from the past helping them.

Last night’s show also lacked Becky Lynch, A.J. Styles, Randy Orton, Kevin Owens, or Samoa Joe, all past PPV main venters. There are a lot of creative (and safe) things WWE could be doing to make these shows more dynamic and novel such as incorporating fans at home into the broadcast (perhaps on the video towers at ringside reacting to the action) to create a sense of community, having big names of the past join announcers remotely for guest commentary, countdowns built into the show featuring funny or big-time moments with current and past wrestlers, and live interactive polls people can participate in on Twitter. The shows could use some extra pizzaz and a sense of the unexpected to add a different kind of energy since fans aren’t present.

If there was ever a time to be creative and flexible with the rosters, this would be the time. For instance, WWE could run a poll asking fans to approve a “four week trade” of a wrestler to team from each brand to move to another brand, or to vote for a “dream team” or an “odd couple team” made up of two wrestlers from separate brands who would then have a chance to earn a title shot. Just shaking things up and giving people a sense that chances are being taken and new ideas are being tried, along with good matches, promos, and angles, is probably at the point of being at the “what’ve we got to lose?” level right now.

It’s tough, though, because no matter what they do, it’s still lacking that fan energy and it’s still a stripped down roster that wasn’t very deep to begin with.

I wouldn’t rule out some people aren’t watching because they’re simply uncomfortable watching WWE be so needlessly cavalier about social spacing with announcers and during interview segments.

RECOMMENDED: WWE Smackdown dip to a series low viewership level on Fox, key metrics and what’s planned for next week (w/Keller’s Analysis)

1 Comment on Raw ratings drop again to series-low for a non-holiday, key metrics including alarming drop in key demos (w/Keller’s Analysis)

  1. Empty arena shows have proven to be just ok to downright boring.

    One story that is not discussed here, though, is that TV viewership is down overall. The shelter-in-place orders were initially thought to be a positive for TV viewing, but for many entertainment shows (other than the Fox News commentary shows) the opposite has happened.

    What is probably happening is that more and more people are just turning to on-demand (Netflix, Prime, etc) and just leaving the packaged cable stations.

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