Taylor Swift is not only one of the wealthiest musicians alive, but the 12-time Grammy winner is also among the richest women in the entire entertainment industry. Since breaking into the music scene in 2006 with her debut single “Tim McGraw,” Swift has capitalized on her ever-growing fame with 10 No. 1 albums, popular merchandise, record-breaking tours, acting gigs, fragrances, and countless brand deals. Throughout her impressive 17-year career, the 33-year-old superstar has never slowed down or faltered when it comes to releasing critically acclaimed albums and fan-favorite songs, and the steady stream of music has earned her an incredible amount of wealth.
In October 2022, Swift released Midnights, her 10th studio album, which she calls a “collection of music written in the middle of the night, a journey through terrors and sweet dreams.” Before the close of Oct. 21, Midnights broke Spotify’s record of the most-streamed album in a single day, along with Apple Music declaring it their “biggest pop album of all time.” She also made Billboard Hot 100 chart history that month after Midnights was released when she had 10 songs in the top 10, making her the first artist to do so.
On Feb. 13, 2023, Forbes named Swift the highest-paid female entertainer of 2022, stating that she earned $92 million in just one year. As a result, on June 1, Swift’s net worth increased when she landed on the outlet’s annual list of America's Richest Self-Made Women. Notably, the majority of her recent earnings did not come from the blockbuster success of Midnights or her mammoth Eras Tour, which means her 2023 earnings just might skyrocket.
According to Forbes, an estimated 70% of Swift’s 2022 earnings can be attributed to her back catalog (past music), including albums she owns the masters of, like 2020 surprise albums folklore and evermore, and those she’s slowly reclaiming with rereleases. Swift started re-recording her first six albums in an effort to gain back the rights to her songs after the masters to her original catalog were bought to her dismay in 2019. In 2021, she released Fearless (Taylor’s Version) and Red (Taylor’s Version), with never-heard-before “From The Vault” songs, and is continuing her journey in 2023 with the July 7 release of Speak Now (Taylor’s Version). Swift is guaranteeing she’ll own these recordings with this process, which is a smart career move that has also become lucrative because of high sales, record streams, and profits from associated merch.
Swift is also back in tour mode, as her Eras Tour kicked off on March 17 and is currently scheduled to go on until August 2024, with new international dates being added in June. The ticket sales for her first tour in five years caused Ticketmaster to announce they were experiencing “historically unprecedented demand” and would cancel the planned general on-sale. Swift took to Instagram in response to Ticketmaster, writing: “To those who didn’t get tickets, all I can say is that my hope is to provide more opportunities for us to all get together and sing these songs,” she said. She also pointed out that 2.4 million people got tickets for her U.S. shows, which is bound to increase her wealth.
Between the success of Midnights, new “Taylor’s Version” albums, and the Eras Tour, Swift stands to make a whole lot more money by the end of 2023. Let’s take a look at just how much money Swift has made throughout her lifetime.
9 Ways Taylor Swift Makes Her Millions
Swift stands out as one of the bestselling musicians in history, and the data makes that claim indisputable. The “All Too Well” singer has sold 51 million albums and 137.5 million singles in the United States alone. Globally, Swift’s total sales rise to a whopping 200 million. At 32, with so much career left ahead of her, those numbers will likely increase for decades to come.
In 2019, Swift was named Artist of the Decade at the American Music Awards. That same year, Billboard named her Woman of the Decade. Stats certainly back up those honors. On the Billboard Hot 100, the main singles chart in the U.S., Swift ranks as one of the most prolific and successful acts ever. She claims the most Hot 100 hits of all time among female artists and the fourth-most among all acts (coming in behind only Drake, the cast of Glee, and Lil Wayne). Eight of those songs have reached No. 1. She’s also scored 40 top 10 hits, surpassing Madonna (38) and only behind Drake with 59.
Over on the Billboard 200, which ranks the most-consumed albums in the U.S., Swift’s dominance is perhaps even more impressive. With the immediate success of Red (Taylor’s Version), the powerhouse musician has now reached the summit with 10 albums, which is a milestone very few artists have managed to achieve. Swift is now tied with Kanye West, Drake, Elvis Presley, and Eminem for the fifth-most chart-toppers among all acts. Looking at just females, she’s behind only Barbra Streisand, who has 11 No. 1 albums.
Swift likely earned a nice advance when she first signed with Big Machine Records, but it’s important to remember that when she (and her parents) agreed to work with the label, she was an unknown artist. She signed a recording deal with the company in 2005 when she was 15, and her debut album followed a year later. The fact that Swift is either the sole writer or a co-writer on every track she releases has helped her make millions, as that credit ensures she earns royalties whenever her songs are played on the radio or on streaming platforms.
The sheer amount of music she’s written and released (more than 200 songs) — not to mention she’s landed some of the biggest hits in recent memory — means that, unlike some big artists who rely on songwriters to pen their hits, Swift earns the bulk of her money from her art.
2. Music In Her New Era With Republic Records
Swift’s career can be split into two chapters: 1) her aforementioned Big Machine Records era and 2) the era after she left Big Machine to gain more control over her work. After her contract with the company expired, Swift announced in 2018 that she had signed a lucrative deal with Republic Records. Now, with Republic, the credits and copyright on her recent album and video releases simply list her name (i.e. “© 2021 Taylor Swift”) She is now under a deal that gives her 50% of all royalties earned by her new releases. That’s nearly unheard of, even for the biggest artists, especially ones signed to major labels. In comparison, Forbes estimates that when she was signed to Big Machine, Swift was taking home somewhere between 10% and 15% of all royalties.
During the three years under the Republic Records deal, Swift has delivered five albums: Lover, Folklore, Evermore, Fearless (Taylor’s Version), and most recently, Red (Taylor’s Version). All of them have gone straight to No. 1 on the charts, and they’ve moved millions of equivalent units and helped increase Swift’s net worth considerably. Forbes estimates that by the spring of 2021, Swift earned $14 million just from sister albums Folklore and Evermore.
From here on out, Swift will be making enormous sums of money for each new song and album she creates. Her re-released albums are performing very well, but whether fans of her older material will only stream the new versions is yet to be seen. If her six re-recorded albums only enjoy short shelf lives (unlikely), Swift will still score a healthy payday for each one, making them financially worth her time. If fans only press play on her music labeled “Taylor’s Version” instead of the original versions, the money will pour in as few musicians in history have experienced.
Swift has headlined five massively successful global tours — and shows no signs of stopping yet. Each new trek she embarks on sees her increasing her total grosses thanks to larger audiences at each stop. In short, the amount of money she’s made on the road is legendary. For the five tours tied to the albums Fearless, Speak Now, Red, 1989, and Reputation, Swift has sold nearly $950 million in tickets. But for her next outing, she could be close to making the same amount in just one tour.
In November 2022, Swift announced the Eras Tour, her first trek in five years. She initially planned 27 stadium shows across the U.S., kicking off March 17 in Arizona, which soon ballooned to 52 dates due to demand. Swift stands to become a billionaire from the U.S. dates alone, with Billboard predicting that the shows will gross $590 million, which would make her surpass Madonna as the highest-grossing female touring artist of all time. This total doesn’t factor in international dates, which Swift has promised to announce “as soon as we can.” If shows in other countries gross even half of that amount, the Eras Tour could become a billion-dollar tour, or at least come very close.
Regardless of how much the Eras Tour winds up grossing on its own, Swift is nearly guaranteed to hit the $1 billion ticket sales threshold across her touring career. She would have hit it in 2020 with her planned Lover Fest dates, which were all canceled amid lockdown restrictions. That sum also doesn’t take into account any of her private concerts, one-off performances, or music festival showings. For years now, Swift has likely earned at least $1 million per night while touring, based on what other musicians at the top of their game collect per night. Exactly what she collects is difficult to parse out, as there isn’t always a per-show fee.
Most musicians create and sell merchandise, but few do it like Swift. Her online store doesn’t feature only a few T-shirts and her most recent album, but rather a rotating line of new items that super fans (known as Swifties) count as must-haves. Swift sometimes releases several collections per year, with clothing items, accessories, and more themed merch aligning with the launch of a new album, a song, an anniversary of a beloved title, or a holiday.
In 2021, Swift didn’t just release general merchandise tied to her Red (Taylor’s Version) album, she unleashed a swath of products that connected to individual lyrics and songs. It’s expected that she will continue to do this with the release of Midnights. Tee-shirts, sweatshirts, and even a “Bejeweled” bracelet are already available for excited fans to purchase ahead of the album drop.
What Swift has earned in merch sales isn’t publicly available, but it’s surely into the millions of dollars by now. Making these products even more attractive to the musician is the fact that she likely takes home almost all the profits, whereas with her music she has to share the royalties.
Like many musical superstars, Swift leveraged her celebrity to launch a fragrance line that bore her name, and for a while, it seemed to go fairly well. Across several years, the singer produced five perfumes, starting with Wonderstruck in 2011. She followed that up with the similar Wonderstruck Enchanted in 2012 and the simply-titled Taylor in 2013. In 2014, Swift released two new products, Taylor by Taylor Swift Made of Starlight, and Incredible Things.
Her partnership with Elizabeth Arden ended in 2014, as the fragrance titan saw the celebrity sector of its business wasn’t performing as it once did. The perfume part of the business dropped by double digits, and the conglomerate admitted that “the decline in sales of celebrity fragrances, particularly the Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift fragrances, was steeper than anticipated.”
Swift has worked with countless brands, sometimes in humorous ways poking fun at herself, her fame, or her love of cats. The bankable singer has partnered with some companies simply for a check, while at other times it was in service of something else such as the release of an album, single, or tour. Always thinking ahead and trying to make the most of every opportunity, many of the campaigns and advertisements she’s taken part in have featured her songs, making these deals a promotional opportunity for her own Taylor Swift brand.
A handful of Swift’s brand partnerships stand out as more involved or more lucrative than the rest, and what she has earned for teaming up with major companies is truly mind-blowing. Probably her largest brand deal is with Diet Coke. Swift was reportedly paid $26 million for the Diet Coke partnership, which included commercials over the span of several years. At one point, Diet Coke collaborated with Subway to put her face and its brand on Subway cups globally.
In 2015, Swift called Apple Music out in an open letter for not paying artists and songwriters fairly as potential users of the streaming platform enjoyed free trial periods before deciding to subscribe: “Music is art, and art is important and rare. Important, rare things are valuable,” Swift wrote. “Valuable things should be paid for.” Eventually, the tech giant changed its controversial policy. After Swift and Apple Music ended their beef, the two powerhouses teamed up, with Swift undoubtedly making quite a bit of money from the streaming platform. Swift starred in a funny commercial spot for the platform, which also paid for the exclusive rights to a concert video for Apple Music users, which likely cost a pretty penny.
American Express created an interactive “Taylor Swift Experience” as part of its Unstaged program to promote her single “Blank Space” and win a major award in the process. Swift likely earned a check that numbered in the millions. The financial behemoth and the pop star teamed built an app that allowed fans to explore the mansion featured in the music video for the smash hit. The project ended up collecting an Emmy for Outstanding Creative Achievement In Interactive Media in 2015, which now sits on Swift’s trophy shelf.
Swift has also worked with brands to help promote or sponsor her albums and tours. It’s possible she made some money directly from these deals, but it’s entirely possible that all the funds went into making her releases and global treks bigger, which eventually lined her pockets further in other ways. She’s employed this strategy to push albums such as Speak Now (with Target), Reputation (alongside UPS), 1989 (Target again), and especially Red (AirAsia, Cornetto, Papa John’s, Qantas Airlines, and Walgreens). Other major players like Comcast and Verizon have been involved in sponsoring her global tours, enjoying a presence at each stop.
Additionally, during her 15 years in the spotlight, Swift has collaborated with all of the following brands in some way: American Greetings, AT&T, Activision, Capital One, Covergirl, DirecTV, Eos, Fujifilm, Glu Mobile, Macy’s, Sony, Starbucks, Toyota and even the city of New York.
7. Film & TV
Swift is an Emmy winner (for her “Blank Space” app) and a four-time Golden Globe nominee (for songs she’s written for The Hunger Games, One Chance, Cats, and Where The Crawdads Sing), but somewhat surprisingly, Swift hasn’t invested much time and effort into diving into the film and TV industries. That’s not to say she hasn’t been involved in movies and programs on the small screen, but when she can be seen, it’s usually as Taylor Swift, as opposed to a character.
Swift has appeared in an episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and movies like The Giver and The Lorax. She appears in David O. Russell’s film Amsterdam. The musician’s largest payday for any film may have been for the mega flop that was Cats. To portray the animal Bombalurina, Swift may have been paid as much as $3 million. She also earned some praise and a Golden Globe nomination for the Cats original song “Beautiful Ghosts” she penned alongside Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber.
She’s also expressed interest in stepping behind the camera in the future. “I would love for the right opportunity to arise because I just absolutely adore telling stories this way,” she told Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) CEO Cameron Bailey in September 2022. “If it was the right thing, it would be such a privilege and an honor.”
On top of her many brand deals mentioned above, Swift has partnered with companies in the clothing industry. One standout money-making deal involved Keds. Swift appeared in at least one major ad campaign for the sneaker firm, and though it’s not clear exactly what she earned for her time, it was likely a large chunk of the brand’s $20 million budget.
Swift has never made a serious venture into the fashion world, and most of these one-off projects likely haven’t been huge money-makers. Throughout the years, Taylor Swift-branded clothing lines have been produced by JD.com (available in China only), Keds (a handful of sneakers), L.E.I. (for her signature sundresses), and even Stella McCartney. The last line was inspired by her album Lover, and it brought her to the luxury market for the first time.
9. Real Estate
Swift has spent quite a bit of her earnings on real estate. The “Wildest Dreams” singer currently owns homes in Los Angeles, New York City, Nashville, and Rhode Island. Her entire portfolio is estimated to be worth at least $81 million. Swift has made a few extra bucks by turning a profit on locations she used to lay claim to, upping her net worth even more.
After buying a mid-century modern home in L.A. in 2012 for $1.8 million, Swift turned around and sold it for $2.7 million in 2018, earning nearly $1 million from the investment. She repeated that success in Beverly Hills, where she bought a home for $3.6 million and eventually made $400,000 after selling it to another family. Collecting $1.4 million in profit would be a huge win for anyone else, but for Swift, that’s a drop in the bucket. But every penny counts.
What Is Taylor Swift’s Net Worth?
As of June 2023, Forbes puts her net worth at an astounding $740 million, an increase of nearly $200 million from the previous year. The outlet attributes her growth to her Midnights album release, continued re-recordings, and the record-breaking ticket sales from the Eras Tour. However, no official Eras Tour grosses have been reported, and given how she’s added more tour dates through August 2024, her net worth only stands to grow tremendously before the end of next year.
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