Who visits the British Museum?

The annual presentation on the results of the visitor survey, Who visits the British Museum?, was presented this year by Hannah Boulton, Head of Press and Marketing, Charlotte Kewell, Marketing Manager, and Stuart Frost, Head of Interpretation.

The British Museum regularly undertakes visitor market research, and carried out 2000 face to face interview with visitors in the past year. The benefits of market research such as this, is that it allows the museum to make informed decisions on strategy and operations, enables us to reach the right audiences, and allows us to monitor our own performance. It also enables the museum to accurately report back to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport.

Visitor numbers were slightly down on the previous year, which was attributed to various factors including the weather and the London Olympics. Still, excluding school groups, the BM saw 5.4million visits, and 4.7million visitors in 2012/13, and importantly, 97% of visitors rate their experience at the BM as ‘excellent’ or ‘good’.

25% of visitors were from the UK, and 75% were from overseas, and there was a decline in the number of visitors for whom English is their first language. This represents a number of challenges to the institution, and as a development on previous years, the use of ipads enabled us to offer the survey in a greater range of languages.
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