Season ticket sales for the Buffalo Bills are trending the wrong way. In 2008 they sold over 56 thousand season ticket packages. That was down, mostly due to the economy, in 2009 to 55,000, and this year they expect to have a hard time selling even 50 thousand season ticket packages. With only seven games at their home stadium that means the Bills could leave a lot of revenue sitting on the table. Now we can use these facts to draw several different conclusions about how the Bills are operating their team, and take a little peak inside the finances of a NFL team.
The laws of supply and demand would seem to suggest that that with only seven games at their home stadium, that tickets for all of those games would be in more demand. Since the Bills have shipped one of their home games north to the Rogers Center in Toronto, they should have no problems selling tickets to the other seven. However, football fans want to buy a season ticket and see eight home games. They do not appear that interested in paying such a high price for only seven games.
Of course another issue here is the Bills have raised season ticket prices by a little more than 15%. That means the cost of seeing the Bills went up about 60 dollars. That may not seem like a lot, but apparently it is having an effect. I think the mix is off. More money for less football is no way to sell people on a big ticket expenditure.
It is unclear if season ticket packages include the eighth game in Toronto, but even if it did who would pay top dollar to drive north, get a passport to watch a NFL game in Canada. On top of that we are talking about a NFL team that has failed to make the playoffs over the last decade, and isn’t terribly competitive week to week.