Companies spent an estimated $25 billion on exhibiting at trade shows and expos in 2017 according to the Center for Exhibition Industry Research's latest "How the Exhibit Dollar is Spent" report 2017.
The online survey results are based on a study conducted by CEIR in the summer of 2017, polling a sampling of exhibitors from lists provided by exhibit service providers such as Fern, Freeman, GES, Hargrove and Shepard Exposition Services.
According to the results, the breakdown of overall trade show expenses is as follows:
- Exhibit Space: 37.9%
- Show Services (setup, electric, A/V, etc): 12.8%
- Exhibit Design including Graphics: 11.4%
- Travel & Entertainment: 10.9%
- Shipping & Exhibit Transport: 8.9%
- On-Site Promotional Materials (giveaways & brochures): 5.2%
- Off-Site Promotional Expense: 3.9%
- On-Site Sponsorship/Advertising: 2.9%
- Lead Management: 2.7%
- Pre-Show Promotions: 1.7%
- Exhibit Staff Training: 0.7%
- Other: 1.0%
Many of these percentages fit industry best practices such as the long held advice that your overall trade show budget should be 3 times the amount of the booth fee.