The Visitor Experience: Shared and Explained

19/01/2023 By Jon Young

Our dream team, Jon Young and Diana Meterna recently shared insights and analysis from over 200+ mystery visits to attractions across the UK during our recent webinar.

Staff proactivity was found to be a strong driver for a positive overall experience which is supported by Tripadvisor reviews showing that when a staff member is mentioned by name, a higher score is achieved. Our collated results found that staff regularly achieved outstanding scores in visitor-led areas but low in proactive areas such as promoting membership, asking questions on arrival and engaging during the visit.

Sustainability and accessibility are areas reviewed by mystery visitors and continues to grow in importance, for both attractions, their staff and visitors. Attractions using Euan’s Guide to share information on accessibility scored highly whilst results showed improvements in sustainable practises are still required.

Most of the sustainability challenges our mystery visitors found at the sites are easily fixed. Through our work with BVA Nudge Consulting, we know the general public care about sustainability issues. When we asked people who they are most likely to listen to on issues of environmentalism The National Trust and The Woodland Trust were the highest ranked (after David Attenborough); Venues have the opportunity to lead the agenda and conversation, not just comply with legislation.

Our research shows participating sites are reacting to the Mystery Visit scores and feedback. With over 250 visits conducted in 2022 and a huge range of scores collated, we felt it was important to celebrate some attractions that achieved perfect scores, these included The Scottish Dolphin Centre, The Helix Visit Centre and Hill House. Based on audience feedback during the webinar we will explore creating a library of best practise examples to share with participating attractions.

Developments scheduled for this year’s Mystery Visits programme include an updated and more challenging assessment, more sites participating and an awards system for different categories based on performance.


To learn more, please get in touch.