Black Friday’s Foot Traffic in Union Square

Nov 29 2012

San Francisco’s Union Square is a prime shopping location year round, so it comes as no surprise that Black Friday led to an increase in pedestrian traffic in Union Square as shoppers came out in droves to take advantage of discounts and deals. There was an increase in pedestrians per block per hour around midnight, when a number of larger chain retailers, such as Macy’s, Urban Outfitters, and Old Navy, opened their doors for the most dedicated midnight shoppers. Numbers of pedestrians passing by retailers declined in the following hours, as shoppers spent time inside stores racking up holiday deals. Most other Union Square retailers opened their doors between 8 and 10 am, which led to another increase in people moving from store to store.

 

Friday Activity in Union SquareWe have mentioned that statistical sampling is an unreliable means of assessing pedestrian activity and the 5 to 6 pm hour is a great example of why this is the case. If a hand count had been performed during that hour alone each Friday for the month of November, one could extrapolate that November 2nd had a higher pedestrian turnout than Black Friday (which is, obviously, incorrect). Similarly, vehicles counts by themselves are often insubstantial when determining the impact of sales and marketing campaigns in high foot traffic areas. Due to limited parking, shoppers in Union Square often park cars and move around on foot. A comparison of pedestrian and vehicle activity from Black Friday is shown below.

Black Friday Activity in Union Square

The combination of vehicle and pedestrian counts are vital to understanding when and how people are moving throughout shopping areas such as Union Square, San Francisco. It is by continuously gathering information that one can ensure the most accurate and reliable data analysis. This holiday season, view trends over time and know the true impact of marketing campaigns and sales. Don’t settle for adequate – get the entire picture with Motionloft data.

 

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