Dwell Time

So much skill, time, effort, and money is spent crafting exhibitions to make them as compelling and engaging as possible. We go to such lengths because we want visitors to be captivated and to spend quality time with our wonderful collections.

But does it work?

Because time spent is a reasonable indicator of how engaged you were, it's common to ask visitors how long their whole visit was (although studies show that visitors have poor recall of time). But it's far less common to track and measure the 'dwell time' in a particular room, zone or even at a specific exhibit.

MHM has pioneered this micro-tracking methodology creating fascinating, detailed engagement maps that reveal previously unseen patterns in visitors' in-gallery behaviour. Using this micro-data, we can identify exhibits that are exceeding expectations and those that are failing to engage as many visitors as deeply.

When exhibits and galleries are not working, sometimes the only solution is a significant re-imagining and re-display and that can be costly. But often the answers are far simpler and cheaper: minor ergonomic changes; altering a label or changing signage; improving the lighting or eye line; or slightly repositioning an object or cabinet. The results of these small changes can be disproportionate, sometimes even doubling engagement rates.