(Spring 2012) Data Driven Interactive Journalism Complex storytelling using data

Yellow Tag Sale: Best Buy to Close 50 Big Box Stores, Open 100 Mobile Phone Stores

by Martin Burch

Amid a dismal earnings report, Best Buy announced the locations of the 50 stores it will close this year. The company’s home state of Minnesota will see 5 store closures (18% of stores in the state) and also take the brunt of 400 layoffs expected at the corporate and retail levels. The other clustering is in Chicago, where six stores will close, but this really isn’t a huge move for the company — it has over 1,100 locations in all 50 states, except Wyoming.

The company has been recently shaken by the departure of the CEO who organized this round of closures, but one part of Best Buy’s business is growing: the company has plans to open 100 Best Buy Mobile stores this fiscal year, more than doubling the number of tiny stores dedicated to selling mobile devices.

Check out the map below to see if there are any store closures in your area — there’s one in New York City. If you’re a bargain-hunter, discounts up to 20% off are expected at the stores.

If you’re a classmate, perhaps you are more interested in how this was put together?

Methods and Sources

Pie chart data sources: ReferenceUSA, Best Buy Co.
Map data sources: Best Buy Co., ReferenceUSA, Google (state boundaries map, geocoding via Fusion Tables)

Pie chart visualization created with Highcharts and jQuery. Source code available via JSFiddle.

Map visualizations created with Google Fusion Tables (points, states) and displayed via Maps API with javascript code adapted from Michelle Minkoff. Source code available.


8 Responses to Yellow Tag Sale: Best Buy to Close 50 Big Box Stores, Open 100 Mobile Phone Stores

  1. Ichi Vazquez says:

    Very awesome, well-presented project… guess I’ll be headed to the Best Buy store in Union Square soon to take advantage of the discounts!

  2. eliza says:

    Awesome! You may want to move the button under the pie chart to a more obvious place – above the chart?

  3. Kat Lee says:

    great work! one thing: your source list could be placed on the bottom, instead of in the middle-ish?

    • Martin Burch says:

      For a normal story, I would agree, but but the point of this post is to show how the visualizations were made.

  4. Carla Astudillo says:

    Great job! However, it’s hard to read the lighter numbers set against the gray on the map legend. Consider changing it to black?

    • Martin Burch says:

      Yeah, I think the legend needed work. I resized the font and changed the border and padding too. Better now?