4 Replies Latest reply on Oct 6, 2016 7:56 AM by Ray Mullins

    Making sense out of Superstore Dataset

    DP P

      Hello, I am working with the Superstore dataset. I am having a difficult time making sense out of the data for both the Superstore excel spreadsheet and the superstore extract provided. Here is an example of a particular data record:


      Order ID:             87463

      Item:     Fellowes Mobile Numeric Keypad, Graphite

      Discount:             8.00%

      Product Base Margin:     66.00%

      Profit:   $280

      Order Quantity:                3

      Sales:    $131

      Shipping Cost:   $17

      Unit Price:           $43


      It is difficult to make sense of the financial data. For instance, for is profit calculated here? It does not appear to be able to be determined from the sales and other information.


      Also, are the profit, sales, etc listed per item for are for all 3 items in total?


      I would appreciate your insight. Best regards.

        • 1. Re: Making sense out of Superstore Dataset
          Jonathan Drummey

          Superstore Sales is a manufactured data set. It might have been based on some real data, but it has been modified over time (for each major release of Tableau) and has some specific scenarios in it that Tableau trainers user. I'd never noticed this before, but you did find one of the 369 records (in the Tableau v8 Superstore Extract, if that's what you were looking at) that has a profit greater than sales. That might have been created on purpose for a training scenario, or may be an artifact of some programmatic modification.

          • 2. Re: Making sense out of Superstore Dataset
            Dustin Smith

            Hi DP P,


            Jonathan is 100% correct here in that Superstore is a sample manufactured data set that has gone through many iterations over the years.  We've worked really hard to keep it as realistic as possible without making it too big or complex while still trying to build in trends and patterns that tell a story in the data over time, etc.


            Even with all that attention though, there are some anomalies that exist, like the one you have pointed out.


            We lovingly we refer to that as "the example of fraud in the Superstore."  Congratulations, you just used Tableau to uncover bad accounting practices.



            • 3. Re: Making sense out of Superstore Dataset

              Hi DP P,


              May be your data can modified by others.  Extract new data source and then use it.



              Muthu Krishnan. M

              • 4. Re: Making sense out of Superstore Dataset
                Ray Mullins

                DP P raises a great point here.


                If we are using the data set to prove out a concept then it is not useful at all, and can quickly discredit the work as soon as the anomalies are spotted. Is there anything better available now?


                Regards and thanks,