Boston City Foot Traffic


Foot traffic data refers to the measurement and analysis of the number of people moving into and out of a particular location over a given period of time. This information is commonly collected through various means such as cameras, sensors, and other forms of technology. The data is used by businesses, governments, and researchers to understand patterns of movement, assess the effectiveness of marketing campaigns, evaluate the popularity of certain locations, and for a variety of other purposes.

Boston Foot Traffic Data Insights by Geography

The average monthly foot traffic per venue for Boston in the last 12 months was 12,167, this is a 36.8% decrease from the previous 12 months. Though foot traffic in Boston is decreasing overall, zip code 02145 has seen a steady increase. West Fens, Jeffries Point and Back Bay neighborhoods experienced the highest total foot traffic for Boston. These 3 neighborhoods constitute over 21% of the total foot traffic experienced from 09/01-2022-08/30/2023. Conversely, the Allston, Winter Hill, and North End neighborhoods experienced the lowest total foot traffic for the same period of time.

Methodology – Boston foot traffic data was pulled from the Foot Traffic Trend Value module on a monthly basis. The metric Person Count was averaged by zip code by month and simple linear regression was applied to generate trend lines for Foot Traffic. When visualizing the data, the total foot traffic by zip code was plotted on a map and colored by total foot traffic. To analyze specific points of interest, data is aggregated at theCensus Block Group geographic level. Additionally, Census Track level data can be used to investigate the surrounding area to any point(s) of interest.

Boston Foot Traffic Data Insights by Season

Boston saw the highest average monthly foot traffic (21,232) April 2022 through August 2022 with February 2023 having the lowest average foot traffic of 10,201 average visitors. July 2022 had the highest average foot traffic (22,866) for the total time frame analyzed (06/01/2021-08/30/2023). When considering only the past 12 months, the foot traffic pattern changes displaying no seasonality. Further analysis would provide insights into this change in visitor behavior.

Methodology - The metric Person Count was summed by zip code by month to generate Foot Traffic. To analyze change in foot traffic by quarter, Person Count was summed by zip code by quarter and the percent change was calculated between quarters.

Boston Foot Traffic Data Insights by Industry

Utilizing the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes available in the foot traffic trend value module, consumers can gain valuable insights on 84 unique industry sectors found in Boston. The top industries include: Supermarkets, Book Stores, Children’s Clothing Stores, Hotels, and GeneralMerchandise Stores. While the industry specific foot traffic patterns generally mirror the overall foot traffic pattern of Boston, there is a notable difference in the hardware store industry. While the foot traffic trend inBoston is decreasing, the hardware store industry is experiencing an increase in average monthly foot traffic. Additionally, there was a larger than expected increase in foot traffic in the hardware store industry in April 2023. Deeper analysis of foot traffic data for specific brands in the hardware store industry could illuminate potential causes for this uptick.

Methodology – The NAICS codes were grouped to create broader Industry level classifications. The Person Count metric was then averaged by industry by month to calculate foot traffic. The data was then visualized for individual industries.

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Boston Foot Traffic Data Insights by Brand

Foot Traffic data is available for 621 unique brands in Boston allowing consumers to create detailed brand analysis as well as head-to-head comparisons between two or more brands. The most highly trafficked brands in Boston include: Dunkin’ Donuts, Starbucks, CVS, Au Bon Pain, and Stop & Shop.Taking a deeper dive into the foot traffic data available for the 61 Starbucks locations in Boston, we find that 3% or 2 locations are experiencing an increase in foot traffic. For the time period 09/01/2022-08/30/2023, Logan Airport has the highest average foot traffic pattern with 141,382 visits per month. TheWest Fens area had the highest total foot traffic for Boston Starbucks locations with 3,694,568 visits.This can be explained by the zip code 02115 being home to 5 Starbucks locations in total. The total foot traffic at the 1 Harborside Dr location is decreasing, it is the most visited Starbucks boasting approximately13.3% of all Starbucks foot traffic in Boston. Conversely, the 75 Spring Street location accounts for only0.02% of the total Boston Starbucks foot traffic.

Methodology – The Boston data was filtered to only consider the brand Walmart. The metric Person Count was summed by zip code by month to calculate Foot Traffic. To analyze change in Foot Traffic by quarter,Person Count was summed by zip code by quarter and the percent change was calculated between quarters.For location level data, Person Count was summed by Street Address. Foot Traffic Percentage was calculated by taking the sum of foot traffic for street address and dividing the resulting value by the total Foot Traffic forBoston in the selected date range.

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