Source Publication (e.g., journal title)

20th National Online Meeting

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Pricing based on the number of simultaneous (concurrent) users is an attractive pricing option for many academic and public libraries. Anticipating the needed number of simultaneous usage ports, however, often requires guesswork. If too few simultaneous users are allowed, patrons may be frustrated; too many and the library is paying for unused access. Usage patterns for academic and public libraries help take the guesswork out of the simultaneous user calculation. Six months of usage data (July-December) from a random sample of approximately 200 academic and public libraries that access online databases from a major database aggregator show similarities and differences in simultaneous use depending on time of day, day of the week, and month. Averaged usage patterns reveal that consistent peak usage in all types of libraries occurs, on Mondays and Tuesdays, mid-day, and in the month of November. Simultaneous users vary from zero (the mode) to dozens, but over 99% of use in almost all cases can be met by providing access to five simultaneous users.

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