This IKEA Infographic Is Extremely Easy To Understand

BoingBoing has an infographic from IKEA that seems like a good idea at first, but then makes your brain hurt if you look at it for too long.

BoingBoing Reader Matt says:

This is a picture of Ikea’s “Optimal” shopping hours. At first glance, it seems like a good idea, and a good chart to follow. If you actually try to figure it out though, it makes no sense. It appears to be a 12 hour clock, but it also appears to reference 24 hour time. What?

Why did they choose this format? It sucks. We’ll translate:

M-F 10-9, sorta busy from 7-9.
S 9-9, Busy as hell. Show up before noon(ish).
Sun 10-8, Busy as hell. Show up before noon.

We posit that anyone who has ever tried to set foot in an IKEA after 12pm on a weekend is in possession of this information.

Bad info-graphic: Ikea shopping hours chart [BoingBoing]

UPDATE: A BoingBoing reader offers this revision.


Edit Your Comment

  1. AlexPDL says:

    LOL The biggest problem is that too many people don’t have analog watches anymore. So having an analog graphic seems strange to most.

  2. who the hell shops for furniture at 9 o’clock on a Saturday night? Apparently a moderate amount

  3. Odwalla says:

    @alexpdl: It’s because so many people understand analog watches that this is a problem. Ikea is putting 12 hrs of information on a diagram that most understand…due to analog watches…to indicate a 24 hr cycle. You can logically read the first chart like this:

    9-10am – closed.
    10am – 7pm open. not busy.
    7pm-9pm open. busy.
    9-10pm closed.
    10pm – 7am open again. not busy
    7am-9am open. busy.

    (lather rinse repeat)

    Only being closed 2 hrs out of 24 is awesome. How ever do they keep the store stocked, though?

  4. rouftop says:

    I think it’s OK to assume that the store is not open from 9 PM to 9 AM any day of the week. The chart makes perfect sense to me.

  5. Chicago7 says:

    It seems pretty plain to me.

  6. urban_ninjya says:

    It’s a 12 hr clock, not a 24 hour clock.


    2. What are your opening hours?
    We are open daily from 10am-10pm.

    So interpret it this way.. M-F they are closed an hour early, Sundays they are closed 2 hours earlier than normal.

  7. alice_bunnie says:

    It makes sense to me. However, it would have been better if Saturday were consistent with M-F and Sunday and included the ‘closed’ times.

  8. faust1200 says:

    I just got the weirdest craving for some pie.

  9. FLConsumer says:

    Ross Perot would be proud.

  10. coreyander says:

    I think the pie chart is perfectly clear as it is… the bar graph version is much less intuitive as far as I’m concerned.

    But maybe I’ve just been brainwashed by all my cheap Swedish furniture…

  11. marsneedsrabbits says:

    I went to Ikea for the first time ever last Friday morning. The store was practically empty & I had entire sections practically to myself.
    I went back Saturday to pick up some tables and it was a different place altogether. Incredibly busy and just packed with people. Not a fun experience at all.
    Now, even though Friday was my first trip, I could have guessed at their busy hours and would have been pretty close to right without ever going there.
    I guess it’s nice that they provide the handy dandy chart, but maybe if they focused more on other aspects of shopping there, it might make things easier. Like: add bathrooms to the back of the store, for when you’ve been there 3 hours & don’t want to follow the bread crumbs all the way back to the front. And: bring your lighting up a bit – parts of the store reminded me of being in a cave.

  12. The irony of this is that if everyone follows the chart and comes to IKEA during the “green” times, then the green times won’t be low volume anymore.

    This is corporate stupidity for you.

  13. sko58 says:

    You’re kidding me with this post, right? While the charts certainly aren’t flashy by any means, they make sense. Was this a slow day at the ol’ Consumerist? Give me a break.

  14. JayDeEm says:

    Now if only there were a chart explaining the optimal number of Swedish Meatballs one should order during visit to Ikea.

  15. getjustin says:

    Guys, guys, guys! They’re a Swedish company. The sun doesn’t set so they have a nutty clock.

  16. EtherealStrife says:

    Well of course it’s going to be green from 10pm to 7am! They’re closed! :-P

  17. mattbrown says:

    there’re 24 hour ikeas? awesome! :?

  18. spryte says:

    @discounteggroll: Come on, man, that’s what
    the cool kids are doing these days! Seriously though, I went in at 5
    once and didn’t leave until almost 8. Never helping that friend
    redecorate again!

    Like others have said, most people with even partial brains would
    probably know that weekend afternoons are gonna be busy. The IKEA near
    me gets so damn crowded on weekends that after being open
    for…ummm…some months, they built a parking garage that is bigger
    than the freaking store.

    Probably still fills up sometimes, too.

  19. I’m still confused as to why the clock is confusing. I’m not trying to be snarky, I just don’t get it!

  20. Nytmare says:

    Because it uses circles to represent something linear, and there are no start and stop points marked. AM and PM are totally blurred.

  21. Arlahna says:

    @nytmare: AM and PM are totally blurred.

    Perhaps, but does it truly take that much brain power to figure it? I’m sick and it was still easy. Just don’t think of that closing time as rigid. Think outside the box! Or circle… or whatever. This is a clock and a store, not rocket science.

  22. axiomatic says:

    Dr. Peter Venkman: “Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together – mass hysteria.”

  23. bbbici says:

    Boing Boing reader Matt’s brain is a little scrambled; where does the graphic “reference 24-hour time”? No wonder he can’t understand a simple chart.

  24. @nytmare: But there are never AM and PM specifications on clocks. Ack, maybe I’m just weird.

  25. hapless says:


    It’s not stupid at all. Evening out customer volume would be great for everyone involved. Green areas wouldn’t be green, red areas wouldn’t be red.

  26. girly says:

    It’s a 12 hour timeframe. It just happens to cover 10am to 10pm.

    So the clock ‘starts’ at the ten, when you hit noon, it switches to pm

  27. Her Grace says:

    @alice_bunnie: They’re open 12 hours, so there’s no space for any closed section.