The Australian Museum digital team conducted a user-evaluation survey on the Trailblazers Kids Mobile App to determine if it was intuitive, engaging and valuable to our end users.

The process involved asking visitors to the Trailblazers exhibition to complete a survey, who were from our target audience and had used the application in the exhibition.

Each visitor was asked to answer a range of questions, they were also asked to rate the application tasks based on difficulty. In a number of cases visitors were interviewed in groups as it became apparent the app was used simultaneously by multiple users.

Primary take-aways

The user-evaluation process has highlighted two key points:

1. High Level of Engagement

85% of visitors surveyed collected all the items showcased within the app. 28% completed the game twice. This reflects a high level of user engagement, supported by app statistics.

2. Clear UX and Engaging Design

All users surveyed articulated they understood the UX of the app, reflected in the successful collection of at least one item. The design of the illustrations were also warmly received, indicating successful visual engagement with our key audience.

Secondary take-aways

The process highlighted two key areas requiring action:

3. Beacon Strength

The majority of respondents (72%) found beacon strength was sufficient to collect items. 28% of participants surveyed indicated they had trouble collecting some items. After further monitoring beacon strength was increased and the issue has now been resolved.

4. Wifi Offering & App Discovery

All visitors interviewed downloaded the app using their own data and were not aware the AM offered free Wifi. This could be resolved by clearly promoting Free Wifi on all App advertising within the museum.

Product discovery came through a number of channels – the poster at the exhibition entrance; the AM website; and advertising at front of house. This highlights the need for cross promotion.

A key feature worth nothing, the checkpoint feature, was an aspect of the app we were interested to see the results of. Initially we were concerned it could act as a deterrent if users timed out when trying to locate checkpoints in the gallery.

However after speaking with the target audience they communicated the checkpoint feature was a highlight and created a great sense of urgency and fun. They even asked for more unique checkpoints to be added to extend the length of the game. A very exciting finding!

App Analytics

Google Analytics was implemented in the application to measure the level of user engagement and the number of interactions with beacons in the Trailblazers exhibition space.

This application has been our most successful to date in regard to average session time for an in-gallery mobile experience. These numbers support the results from the user-evaluation survey, which reported a high level user engagement. This is reflected by our key finding - the majority of participants sampled collected all 18 items.

Google analytics stats
- Avg Session Duration: 18:14 mins

The average session duration is the best performance for user engagement from all museum apps produced to date.

I’m very excited with these findings as it confirmed the project teams original hopes that the app was a highly engaging and fun addition to the exhibition. From my experience using beacons at the museum, creating experiences much like this uses beacons to their best potential. And has the most potential for growth across the entire museum and exhibition spaces.

Trailblazers Kids App screengrabs.
Trailblazers Kids App screengrabs. Image: Illustration
© Australian Museum