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The impact of colleges and universities on local business 2020:

Kansas State University


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. And, subsequently, a whole lot of students nearby as well.

There are an estimated 18 to 20 million students enrolled in public and private colleges in America today. And in many communities, those students make up a huge portion of the local economy.

In this groundbreaking study, we analyzed data at local businesses in Manhattan to see what kind of impact major events during the school year at Kansas State University has on local businesses.

NOTE: You can view other industries by selecting them from the dropdown at the top of each section in this report

The average year at local businesses in Manhattan

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Before we examine major school year events like spring break and the college football season, let’s take a look at the year as a whole.

Annual sales at retail shops in Manhattan from week-to-week.

#1 #2 #3 #4 #5

12/3/19

12/4/19

5/24/19

Memorial Day Weekend

9/10/19

12/5/19

Football

Tuesday Wednesday Friday Tuesday Thursday

Above are the top five days of the year for Manhattan retail shops. This means that on these days, more total dollars were spent at retail shops in Manhattan than on any other day of the year.

Spring Break

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As the weather warms up and students get to take the week off, how are local retail shops around Kansas State University impacted by spring break?

Do enough students leave town to see sales dip? Or do sales go up with an influx of vacationing students? We crunched the numbers to find out:

Avg. revenue: spring break Avg. transactions: spring break Avg. ticket price: spring break
+24%
vs avg day
+23%
vs avg day
+0%
vs avg day
+29%
vs avg day during March
+20%
vs avg day during March
+6%
vs avg day during March

During the week of spring break, retail shops in and around Manhattan earned 25% more than an average day throughout the year, and 29% more than on an average day during the month of march.

 

March Madness

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March Madness is easily one of the biggest sporting events of the year across the United States. And you’d assume that would go double for college towns.

But does the fervor surrounding the Big Dance translate to big sales numbers for retail shops around Kansas State University?

To find out, we analyzed revenue at retail shops in Manhattan on game days for each round of the tournament and compared it to the average revenue those Manhattan experienced on similar days of the week during the rest of the year.

Throughout the entire tournamment, on days when games were being played, retail shops earned 2% more than on similar days. Examine the chart above to see how revenue was impacted during each round of the tournament

Finals Week

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The end of spring semester is perhaps the most-anticipated time of the year for college students around the country.

When final exams are in the rear window, do students celebrate by spending at local businesses? Does the extra revenue of family members visiting to attend commencement make a difference?

Let's find out.

Avg. revenue: finals Avg. transactions: finals Avg. ticket price: finals
-8%
vs avg day
+1%
vs avg day
-9%
vs avg day
-6%
vs avg day during May
-4%
vs avg day during May
-2%
vs avg day during May

During the week of final exams, retail shops in and around Manhattan earned 8% less than an average day throughout the year, and 7% less than on an average day during the months of April and May.

 

Finals week was the number 25 week of the year for Manhattan retail shops. Examine the chart above for a closer look at how much revenue was impacted throughout the week of finals.

Back to School

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As summer ends and students come flocking back to Kansas State University, do local retail shops see a major boost in sales?

Here's what we learned

Avg. revenue: back to school Avg. transactions: back to school Avg. ticket price: back to school
-7%
vs avg day
+10%
vs avg day
-16%
vs avg day
+2%
vs avg day during August
+2%
vs avg day during August
+0%
vs avg day during August

 

The week that classes began at Kansas State University saw Manhattan retail shops earn 8% less than an average day throughout the year, and 2% more than on an average day during the month of August.

Examine the chart above for a closer look at how much revenue at retail shops were impacted during the first week of classes at Kansas State University. (Classes resumed on Monday, August 26)

Football

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In most parts of the country, the college football season is the highlight of the year for students and locals alike.

But does college football fever in Manhattan translate to big bucks for local businesses?

Let’s take a look at the numbers:

Avg. revenue:
Saturdays during football
Avg. transactions:
Saturdays during football
Avg. ticket price:
Saturdays during football
+5%
vs avg Saturday
-14%
vs avg Saturday
+23%
vs avg Saturday

On Saturdays throughout the college football season, Manhattan retail shops earned 5% more than an average Saturday during the rest of the year.

In fact, college football was big enough for retail shops in Manhattan that 7 of the top 10 days of the year were during college football weekends.

Of course, there is some overlap between the college football season and the holiday shopping season, which is also huge for local retail shops around the country.

Summmer and Holiday Breaks

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Finally, we wanted to look at the two times of year when school is out and many students head home during the break.

Do the summer and holiday breaks result in a dip in sales for retail shops around Kansas State University?

Here’s what we learned:

Avg. revenue: summer break Avg. transactions: summer break Avg. ticket price: summer break
-6%
vs avg day
-1%
vs avg day
-5%
vs avg day

From the end of spring semester until the start of fall semester, Manhattan retail shops earned 7% less than the annual average.

Avg. revenue: holiday break Avg. transactions: holiday break Avg. ticket price: holiday break
-17%
vs avg day
+0%
vs avg day
-16%
vs avg day

During the weeks of the holiday break, meanwhile, Manhattan retail shops earned 17% less than the annual average.

Methodology

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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