Data Visualization

Blog of the Data Visualization & Communication Course at OSB-AUB

This is my favorite part about analytics: Taking boring flat data and bringing it to life through visualization” John Tukey

Boosting Sales Performance in Competitive Times

Boosting Sales Performance in Competitive Times


Imagine you have a business of your own. Consider it a dream come true to have it thrive. Now, as an entrepreneur, what would you care about most for your business’s future? As a matter of fact, you can respond to this question with a multitude of answers, and all of them will converge to having a viable business, which becomes so through profits, which are achieved through SALES!

For the purpose of realizing the importance of sales to a business, we dive in this blog into the sales performance of a US based company belonging to the food and beverage sector and operating its three contemporary coffee-shop like stores within the busiest state in the United States, New York.

The company has 4 facilities, 1 main office and 3 customer facing stores (store 2, 3, and 4).

Overall Sales Performance

Our focus is to dissect and understand the sales trends and patterns that have emerged over the past two years, shedding light on the company’s growth, challenges, and opportunities.

The company’s sales trajectory exhibited a notable improvement in the first half of the years 2017 to 2018, indicating a successful adoption of growth strategies during this period. However, an interesting pattern emerged in the latter half of these years. The sales figures, initially showing distinct growth, began to converge towards approximately the same numbers in the second halves of both years. This dichotomy of divergence and subsequent convergence underscores the necessity to dig deeper into the analysis, understanding the underlying factors that led to this trend and identifying strategies to ensure consistent growth during upcoming years.

Sales Performance by Store

To further our understanding of the underlying patterns, rather than aggregating results of all stores, the sales performance of each store is studied separately throughout 2017 and 2018, offering a meticulous examination of sales figures, customer demographics, and quarterly trends. The objective is to uncover hidden challenges and propose a comprehensive action plan for sustained improvement.

Inadequacy of Store 2 Performance

In 2017, Store 2 reported sales of $281,000, which experienced a positive growth trajectory, reaching $322,000 in 2018. While indicative of progress, it’s essential to juxtapose these figures with the more robust performances of Store 3 and Store 4, recording $555,000 and $564,000 in 2017, and $637,000 and $638,000 in 2018, respectively.

In our analysis of growth percentages, Store 2 demonstrated a notable growth rate of approximately 14.6%. This rate is closely aligned with the growth rates of Stores 3 and 4, which reported rates of approximately 15% and 13%, respectively. However, it’s important to clarify that while Store 2’s growth percentage is similar to that of Stores 3 and 4, the key distinction lies not in these percentages, but in the actual growth amounts measured in US Dollars. This crucial aspect will be further explored in our upcoming detailed analysis.

While Store 2 is on a positive growth trajectory, there’s an evident opportunity to fortify its position by strategizing to match the sales amounts of its counterparts.

Customer Demographics and Value

The company’s overarching target demographic is the 40-60 age group, a segment known for its purchasing power and brand loyalty as shown in the below visualization. This age group forms the core customer base across all company stores.

However, when delving into the performance specifics, it becomes evident that Store 2 is underperforming in engaging this crucial demographic compared to its sister stores.

A closer look at customer value reveals intriguing patterns. The consistent presence of 2,131 low-value customers (smaller transactions in amount) across all stores and both years raises the question of whether there’s untapped potential among this segment. Concurrently, the identification of 119 high-value customers (larger transactions in amount) accentuates an opportunity for targeted strategies to cultivate and retain these valuable patrons.

In Store 2, a specific area of concern is the notably weak number of low-value customers compared to other stores. Addressing this issue is crucial for the store’s overall performance.

New Customer Acquisition

Store 2 consistently attracted fewer new customers each month compared to the more robust acquisition rate observed at Store 3. With respect to store 4, it is attracting the lowest number of customers per month; nevertheless, the impressive performance of store 4 suggests it is approaching market saturation, much faster than store 2.

The gap in new customer acquisition at Store 2 signals an urgency to investigate and enact strategies aimed at elevating foot traffic and expanding the customer base.

Monthly Purchase per Visiting Customer

Store 2’s performance in terms of monthly purchase per visiting customer presents a notable area for improvement. Store 2 records the lowest customer contribution among its counterparts. This finding is particularly concerning when juxtaposed with the stronger performance of Stores 3 and 4 in the same metric.

The need for improvement in monthly purchase per customer at Store 2 highlights potential areas for strategic intervention. Focusing on upselling and enhancing the overall in-store experience could be key in encouraging customers to spend more during each visit. Addressing this gap is crucial for Store 2 to not only align with the performance of its sister stores but also to optimize its revenue potential from every customer interaction.

Proposed Solutions Overview

Boosting Store 2’s market presence requires innovative and effective strategies. Here, a three-pronged approach is presented: an engaging social media campaign, impactful influencer collaborations, and a customer-enticing loyalty program. Each strategy is crafted to not only enhance brand visibility but also to deepen customer engagement and drive sales.

1. Social Media Campaign

  • Objectives: Increase brand awareness on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter; drive online traffic to Store 2.
  • Strategy: Post visually engaging content, use polls and quizzes, encourage user-generated content.
  • Schedule: Regular, strategically timed posts; use a unique campaign hashtag for visibility and engagement.

2. Influencer Collaboration

  • Criteria: Select local influencers aligned with Store 2’s image.
  • Terms: Offer exclusive promotions for influencers’ followers; request content showcasing products.
  • Performance: Track success using referral codes/links and engagement metrics.

3. Loyalty Program

  • Components: Points system for purchases, exclusive discounts, personalized offers.
  • Launch: Announce via social media, email, and in-store materials; use in-store signage for visibility.
  • Staff Involvement: Train staff to engage customers about the program and provide technical support.


Elevating Store 2’s success hinges on a mix of dynamic strategies: targeted seasonal marketing, establishing a customer feedback loop, forming strategic local partnerships, leveraging data-driven decision-making, and enhancing the in-store experience. These approaches aim to boost sales, expand the customer base, and improve overall satisfaction. This segment delves into how each method can effectively transform Store 2’s business approach.

1. Seasonal Marketing Strategies

Develop seasonal marketing campaigns to capitalize on peak shopping periods and mitigate sales fluctuations. Tailor promotions and incentives to match customer behaviours during different quarters.

2. Customer Feedback Loop

Establish a robust feedback loop to gather insights from customers on their seasonal preferences and expectations. Leverage this feedback to tailor products and services to seasonal demands.

3. Collaborative Partnerships

Explore partnerships with local businesses and influencers to create synergies that drive foot traffic and broaden the customer base.

4. Data-Driven Decision Making

Invest in data analytics tools to gain deeper insights into customer behavior. Utilize this data to make informed decisions on product placement, pricing, and marketing strategies.

5. In-Store Experience Enhancement

Investigate and enhance the in-store experience, considering factors such as store layout, ambiance, and product presentation. An inviting and immersive environment can positively impact customer perception and satisfaction.

Unveiling the Global Struggle: Insights into Poverty Across the World

Unveiling the Global Struggle: Insights into Poverty Across the World

Through strategic partnerships and targeted interventions, we can dismantle the barriers of global poverty, unlocking a future where prosperity is shared by all.


The Global Landscape of Poverty: A Complex Challenge

Global poverty, a complex and multifaceted issue, continues to be a significant obstacle to human development and equality. It affects billions, limiting access to basic needs, education, and opportunities. Despite global efforts, poverty remains persistent, underscoring the need for a deeper understanding and more effective solutions.


Mapping Poverty: A World of Contrasts and Challenges

Our journey into understanding global poverty begins with a striking global map visualization, where a spectrum of colors from intense blues to intense reds illustrates the varying levels of poverty across nations. This visual disparity is profound: regions awash in blue signify lower levels of poverty, while those in red reveal the depth of poverty’s grip.

Augmenting this, our bar chart analysis provides a comparative view of average poverty rates by country, underscoring the regional differences and highlighting areas where the challenge is most acute.


Blueprint for Change: A Holistic Approach to Poverty Alleviation

Tackling poverty requires a comprehensive approach, one that addresses its root causes and provides sustainable solutions. This involves not just short-term relief, but also long-term strategies aimed at systemic change. Key areas of focus include improving access to quality education, ensuring healthcare availability, and creating economic opportunities through job creation and support for small businesses.


Dual Dynamics: Local Action, Global Support in Poverty Reduction

In grappling with the challenge of how less affluent regions can embark on poverty reduction, we see a dual approach at play.

Internally, nations with scant resources can reassign budgeting towards essential sectors such as education, health, and economic infrastructure. Even modest investments in primary education, for instance, can generate long-term returns in lifting communities out of poverty.

Externally, the role of international aid is paramount. Support from developed countries, global agencies, and NGOs can provide the necessary springboard for initiatives that are beyond the financial reach of struggling regions.


Paths to Progress: Success Stories in Poverty Reduction

To demonstrate this, our trend line visualization spotlights five countries – China, Belarus, Thailand, Pakistan, and Azerbaijan – as examples of nations that have successfully reduced their poverty levels over the years. These trend lines offer a narrative of progress and hope, suggesting that with the right mix of policies and support, the trajectory of poverty can indeed be reversed. This validation is not just in numbers but also in the improved quality of life and increased opportunities for their citizens.


Roadmap to Resilience: Strategies for a Poverty-Free Future

As we conclude our exploration, it’s clear that while the challenge of poverty is formidable, it is not insurmountable. With a global commitment to targeted, data-driven strategies, we can address the diverse facets of poverty more effectively. Our recommendations are clear and focused:

  • Prioritize Quality Education: Education is the key to unlocking potential and catalysing change. By ensuring access to quality learning, we open doors to opportunities and development.
  • Accessible Healthcare for All: Emphasize prevention and treatment in healthcare to ensure it is universally accessible. Good health is a foundation for prosperity and progress.
  • Targeted International Aid: Direct international aid strategically to build sustainable capacities where they are most needed.
  • Harmonize Cross-Sector Policies: Align policies across various sectors to create a cohesive and comprehensive approach to eradicating poverty.
  • Share and Learn Globally: Collaborate and share successful strategies on a global scale. Learning from each other’s experiences is vital in this collective endeavour.

These recommendations are steps towards a world where poverty is a thing of the past, and prosperity is within everyone’s reach.

Together, we can advance closer to achieving Sustainable Development Goal 1: No Poverty, creating a world where everyone has the opportunity to thrive.