Monday, March 05, 2012

So What Was the Best Day To Go Shopping?

Alright, let's be done with this.

Just a quick reminder - what I did was collect Foursquare check-in data for various shopping centres around the UK, in the hope that the data might show something interesting.

Previous blog posts on this data collecting - Best Day to Go Shopping, Panic Saturday, Christmas Eve.

Anyway, I've been collecting data for over 3 months now. And that seems like quite enough.

Here's a graph of (normalised) averaged check-ins on each day of the week for 4 periods:
DecAv (blue) is 21st Nov 2011 to 18th Dec 2011
ChrAv (grey) is 19th Dec 2011 to 1st Jan 2012
JanAv (orange) is 5th Jan 2012 to 2nd Feb 2012
FebAv (green) is 6th Feb 2012 to 4th Mar 2012

Aside from the two weeks either side of Christmas (grey) - when people, apparently, did their shopping more midweek - the pattern is basically the same.

For further clarity, here's the average of those three averages (excluding Christmas)
And here is the order of days, from least to most busy ('relative busyness' in brackets):

1) Wednesday (1.00)
2) Monday (1.01)
3) Tuesday (1.03)
4) Thursday (1.11)
5) Sunday (1.15)
6) Friday (1.24)
7) Saturday (1.78)

Note that the differences between Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday are not statistically significant - they're essentially the same, and are likely to be as busy as each other/not noticeably different.

So, to answer the title question - Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday are the best days to go shopping. At least, in as much as they're the days shopping centres are likely to be least busy. And, as you'd expect, Saturday is, by far, the worst/most busy.

And the last thing to point out is that these are the averages over 20 shopping centres for a ~3 month period - numbers for specific locations, and at different times (eg holidays) are likely to deviate from the averages.

And, basically, that's that.

If you're interested, you can see the raw check-in data here.


[That was definitely worth the effort.]

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