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Global Guitar Trends By Brand (2004-2024)

global guitar trends
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Which guitar brand is the most popular? To find out we examined search trends going back two decades to find out…



The guitar industry has witnessed significant changes over the past two decades, with various brands vying for the attention of musicians and enthusiasts worldwide.

This report examines the search interest trends for five prominent guitar brands – Gibson, Fender, Ibanez, PRS, and Epiphone – from 2004 to 2024, providing insights into the evolving preferences of guitarists and the dynamic nature of the industry.

Global Guitar Trends: Which Brand is Most Popular?

jimmy page 1971 Gibson EDS-1275 double neck guitar

The Dominance of Gibson and Fender (2004-2009)

Numbers represent search interest relative to the highest point on the chart for the given region and time. A value of 100 is the peak popularity for the term. A value of 50 means that the term is half as popular. A score of 0 means that there was not enough data for this term.

In the early years, Gibson and Fender emerged as the clear leaders in search interest, with Gibson experiencing a remarkable spike in February 2004, reaching a search interest value of 100.

Fender consistently maintained a strong presence, with search interest values hovering around 30-40 throughout this period.

Ibanez, PRS, and Epiphone remained relatively stable, with search interest values in the range of 10-20, 4-5, and 7-10, respectively.

Fluctuations and Notable Spikes (2010-2015)

Global Guitar Trends By Brand (2004-2024)

Key Observations:

Trends Over Time:

  • Gibson shows relatively high peaks and troughs, indicating strong fluctuations in search interest. It had significant spikes around mid-2004, early 2008, and early 2013.
  • Fender, similar to Gibson, also shows variability but with a more stable overall pattern. There are noticeable peaks, such as in mid-2005, late 2009, and mid-2015
  • Ibanez and PRS display less dramatic fluctuations compared to Gibson and Fender. Their search interest trends are relatively more subdued, with PRS showing gradual increases in interest over the years, particularly noticeable post-2012.

Comparative Analysis:

  • Gibson and Fender consistently dominate in terms of search interest, which could suggest stronger brand recognition or a larger fan base. Their peaks often overshadow those of the other brands.
  • Ibanez, PRS, and Epiphone have lower overall search interest, but the steady interest in PRS suggests a solid and growing niche market.
  • Epiphone, often considered a more budget-friendly alternative to Gibson, shows the least variability and maintains a low but steady interest level.

The period from 2010 to 2015 saw some intriguing fluctuations in search interest for the guitar brands.

Gibson experienced a significant spike in July 2010, reaching a search interest value of 74, possibly due to a notable product release or a major event.

However, overall search interest for Gibson and Fender began to decline gradually during this period, while Ibanez, PRS, and Epiphone remained relatively stable.

Stabilization and Convergence (2016-2020)

Global Guitar Trends By Brand (2004-2024)

From 2016 to 2020, the search interest for all five guitar brands began to stabilize and converge.

Gibson and Fender continued to lead the pack, with search interest values ranging from 17-29 and 16-19, respectively.

Ibanez, PRS, and Epiphone maintained their modest but consistent search interest levels, with values around 4-6, 3-4, and 3-4, respectively.

This period marked a more balanced and less volatile phase in the guitar industry.

Global Guitar Trends By Brand (2004-2024)

In recent years, the search interest for all five guitar brands has remained relatively stable, with minor fluctuations.

Gibson and Fender continue to dominate, with search interest values in the range of 15-20 and 15-18, respectively.

By 2033, the market was estimated at US$ 23.29 billion. There is an increasing popularity of music-related leisure activities, which is one of the key factors driving the market’s growth.

Future Market Insights

Ibanez, PRS, and Epiphone have maintained their niche positions, with search interest values around 3-5, 3-4, and 2-3, respectively.

Looking ahead, the projected search interest data suggests that Gibson and Fender will maintain their leadership positions, with occasional spikes in interest.

The search interest for Ibanez, PRS, and Epiphone is expected to remain consistent, indicating a stable and mature market for these brands.

Market Drivers and Opportunities

The guitar market is driven by several factors, including the increasing demand for acoustic guitars, technological advancements in the music industry, and the growing popularity of music-related recreational activities.

Guitar Market Size Value in 2024US$ 11.09 billion
Guitar Market Forecast Value in 2033US$ 23.29 billion
Guitar Market CAGR Global Growth Rate (2023 to 2033)7.6%

Online retailing has also emerged as a significant trend, providing consumers with a wider range of products and increased visibility.

The market presents opportunities for growth, such as the rising demand for customized and eco-friendly guitars.

The popularity of live music events and the continued growth of rock and metal music genres are also expected to drive the market during the forecast period.

Category-Wise Insights

The electric guitar segment is expected to register a CAGR of 8.3% during the forecast period.

Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) is a business and investing specific term for the geometric progression ratio that provides a constant rate of return over the time period

Acoustic guitars, on the other hand, dominate the market in terms of share and are expected to record a CAGR of 7.6% during the forecast period.

Acoustic guitars are versatile and widely used in various music genres, including folk, country, blues, jazz, and pop.

Country-wise Analysis

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The United States is a significant market for guitars, with a projected CAGR of 8.9% during the forecast period.

The growing concept of live music and the increasing number of music concerts contribute to the market’s growth in the country.

Germany is another notable market, driven by the emergence of innovative products, the growing use of online platforms for guitar shopping, and the rising demand for designer guitars.

China is estimated to account for the largest share of global guitar sales in 2023, with a revenue of US$ 9,253.00 million.

The presence of leading musical instrument manufacturers and the annual international trade fair for musical instruments in China contribute to the market’s growth in the country.

Closing Thoughts / Data Set Limitations

Fender Meteora vs Fender Telecaster

The analysis of search interest trends for guitar brands from 2004 to 2024 reveals a dynamic and evolving landscape.

Gibson and Fender have consistently dominated the market, with occasional fluctuations and notable spikes in interest.

Ibanez, PRS, and Epiphone have carved out their niche positions, maintaining a stable presence throughout the years.

The dataset used in this report is based on global Google searches, so while it is a fairly large dataset, it isn’t perfect – no dataset ever is. The idea here, rather than to show all brands, was to focus on the macro trends for the Big Five Guitar Brands over the past two decades. 

It does not include information about other, smaller boutique brands like Schecter, Charvel, Harley Benton, Electrical Guitar Company, and a host of other notable guitar brands that are now also popular options. 

Legacy brands will always hoover-up the vast majority of search, as these are the brands that most – rightly or wrongly – strongly associate with guitar. Like when you think of a tablet, most people think of Apple and its iPad. 

With guitars, when you think of an electric guitar – if you’re not a complete gear-head – most people will think of either Gibson or Fender. 

Personally, we’re much more interested in smaller, more boutique brands here at ELECTRIKJAM.

Schecter is perhaps one of our biggest loves of recent years and, for the more budget conscious and/or beginner, brands like Squier and Harley Benton are really raising the bar with you’d expect from a “budget” beginner’s guitar. 


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