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Asakusa shop data ...

Posted by Dave Bull at  10:43 AM, July 12, 2015 [Permalink]

In the Asakusa shop, we don't have a traditional cash register; I think those things are expensive and outdated. We use an iPad outfitted with 'register' software and a credit card reader, and this handles most of what we need. Most customers of course pay by cash or card, but we also have some who wish to pay via Paypal or Bitcoin, and for those we have a computer standing by with the appropriate software running to handle such transactions.

All the sales information flows through the iPad into a database, so it's easy for us to get readouts of interesting data.

Here's an image showing the accumulated sales since we opened last fall (officially on November 1st, but with one Print Party happening the afternoon before …)

You can see that we had an initial burst, which turned out not to be sustainable. This was presumably 'pent up' demand waiting for us to open, but for the next few months the winter 'tourist slump' shows clearly.

You can then see the spring 'Sakura Bubble' when the streets were flooded with visitors from overseas. This lasted a few weeks, and things then settled down again.

We have yet to see a full year pattern, but I guess that through July and August we are going to see pretty steady growth. Autumn is also a busy season in this district, and we will perhaps then become quiet again through the winter. Our 'plan' (such as we have one) will be to study the yearly pattern, and then try to encourage local demand during the times when foreign visitor numbers are low.

The bottom left graph is of course the weekly pattern. We're (usually) closed on Tuesdays as you can see, but the interesting thing is that the Tuesday business is simply shifted to Wednesdays! So we're not really losing anything by having a closing day, I think. Visitors to Tokyo are simply scheduling their visits around our pattern. (Maybe we should close six days a week, and concentrate all our efforts on one spectacularly busy day each week!




Added by: Margaret Maloney on July 16, 2015 11:32 AM

It's neat to get a bit of a window into what the ebb and flow of the shop traffic is like. Thanks for sharing!


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