The impact of colleges and universities on local business

Colleges and universities are everywhere. Big cities, small towns, in every corner of the United States, there’s bound to be a degree-offering institution nearby.

In this groundbreaking study, we selected hundreds of cities and towns that are home to colleges and universities of all sizes. We then analyzed revenue and transaction data at local business in the following categories:

  • Restaurants (this includes full-service restaurants, takeout restaurants, delivery restaurants, etc.)
  • Bars and lounges
  • Lodging places
  • Retail businesses

How to navigate this study

Each college and university we analyzed has its own page. Simply choose the college or university in the dropdown menu below:

On each page, you can see how a specific local industry is impacted by the following major college events:

  • Spring break
  • March Madness
  • Finals week and commencement
  • Back to school
  • College football
  • The summer and holiday breaks

We analyzed local businesses’ revenue during these major events and compared it to baseline averages during the rest of the year.

Ever wondered whether restaurants near your favorite university see huge days when the football team is playing? Want to know if spring break means more or less revenue for local businesses in your college town?

Just choose a college or university from the dropdown above. You might be surprised by what you learn!



Womply analyzed daily revenue for over 41,000 retail shops, 36,000 restaurants, 4,000 lodging places, and 2,200 bars, in all 50 states, for all 365 days of the 2019 calendar year. Businesses were only included in the analysis if they qualified as small businesses, Womply had a full year of transaction history, and the business recorded multiple transactions per day, on average.

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