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The Growth of Anime in Western Culture: Online Communities and Retail Opportunities

Imagine a world filled with vibrant colors, intense emotions and captivating stories; that is anime! Over time, this Japanese art form has transcended geographical and cultural barriers, becoming popular within Western culture. This piece explores this incredible journey – its acceptance in Western society; online communities that fuel this expansion; as well as retail opportunities which have arisen as a result.

The Rise of Anime in the Western Market

Beginning in the 1960s, when “Astro Boy” first made its way onto Western television screens, an anime fanatic’s journey has come full circle. That introduction ignited an inexhaustible love of anime that has not wavered since; not just limited to shows; now includes video games, comics, costumes and even learning Japanese so fans can better comprehend their favorite shows!

Conventions such as Anime Expo and Otakon draw thousands to their conventions each year in the US, according to Grand View Research’s estimates of global anime market size at USD 20.47 billion for 2018 with an anticipated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) rate of 8.8% from 2019-2025. Western audiences have played a central role in this growth – particularly within the US where its market size exceeded USD 2 billion for 2017 alone!

Online Communities Play an Important Role

But how has this cultural shift taken place? Anime was first popularised in Japan but has found its way around the globe through online communities that share an affinity with different anime events and comic-cons have played an instrumental role in this cultural revolution.

On these platforms, fans from all backgrounds come together to discuss, debate and express their passion for anime. These platforms also serve as an open forum where passionate viewers can explore various anime genres, series and movies moreover they help shape trends by shaping what becomes popular in the West – one rave review for an obscure series on intranet  could very well become the catalyst that leads to its widespread adoption in other countries.

Retail Opportunities Boast of Anime’s Popularity

As anime continues its rise, its retail opportunities also expand significantly. Once considered a niche market, anime merchandise now dominates retail shelves – T-shirts featuring beloved anime characters or stores dedicated solely to manga can now be found everywhere! The merchandise market for anime was estimated at USD 11 billion in 2019, and is projected to continue growing further.

Exploring Walmart Affiliate Program

One retail opportunity that stands out among others is Walmart’s affiliate program. Just imagine earning while promoting anime merchandise! That is exactly what this program offers.

Impact Radius’ Affiliate Marketing program offers an easy yet effective solution: Affiliates joining can place text links or banner ads for products on their websites and when anyone clicks one and makes a purchase on through those links or banners, an affiliate receives a commission payment. With its hassle-free approval process managed by Impact Radius, joining is straightforward for affiliates looking to join.

Walmart provides anime merchandise ranging from clothing to action figures, making it an attractive platform for anime fans looking for additional income while sharing products they genuinely care about. According to Master The Blogging, commission rates range between 1%-4% but conversion rates can still be high given anime’s widespread appeal.

Synergy between Online Communities and Retail Opportunities

Online communities and retail opportunities come together perfectly here. Imagine you’re an anime fan who also happens to belong to an online community such as Youtube or Twitch while being an affiliate with Walmart’s Affiliate program – in this situation, taking full advantage of this synergy is ideal! 

By using affiliate links you can promote anime merchandise while offering recommendations while earning commission – creating a win-win scenario which encapsulates how anime has spread throughout Western culture, leading to numerous mutually beneficial opportunities that come together perfectly here!

Human Side of Anime Communities

A anime’s power goes beyond its entertainment value or commercial opportunities; its real power lies in how it impacts individuals and builds communities. Each anime series with its unique characters and intricate plotlines draws audiences into another realm; sharing this experience together fosters a sense of solidarity among anime fans.

From heated debates over who the strongest anime character is to sharing in the emotional turmoil of a series finale, these moments can create lifelong bonds. For instance, fans of ‘One Punch Man’ often debate about the threat levels of the OPM’s monsters, which range from Wolf to God​​. Finding someone with whom you share an interest for certain series or characters can bring immense pleasure, often transcending digital realms; many online friends actually meet at anime conventions or other events.

Impact of Anime on Western Culture

Anime has had an immense effect on Western culture. From broadening horizons to providing audiences with new forms of storytelling that has captured them all the way to altering popular culture from fashion to music; even showing its influence through Western animation shows such as “Avatar: The Last Airbender.”

Retail Opportunities Have Evolved Over Time

Anime’s growing popularity has also forced businesses to adapt. Walmart, for instance, has expanded their merchandise range to accommodate growing consumer interest in anime products; their affiliate program is an example of this shift; fans don’t just passively consume anime products but can act as passionate promoters for them too!


Anime’s rise to Western culture is the product of passion and community. A unique art form from Japan found an audience thousands of miles away, forging connections across cultures while opening new avenues for income and expansion.

As we look to the future, it’s clear that anime shows no signs of abating; on the contrary, its waves appear only to be growing larger, fueled by strong online communities and vast retail opportunities. As cultures continue to merge together and borders become less defined, we can expect anime to play an increasingly influential role in shaping global cultural landscape. After all, its possibilities are as vast as their imagination!


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