The Westmoreland sought to improve its museum shop which was underperforming relative to industry standards. In order to obtain a 360° view of the shop’s potential we conducted in-museum observations, visitor intercepts, telephone interviews, and surveys among the museum’s constituents and community members.
By understanding how people felt about the shop and its merchandise, the role of purchases as visit memories, and the shop’s relationship to the overall museum, we were able to make concrete recommendations that directed substantive changes in the shop’s design and layout, merchandising strategy and offerings, and marketing efforts.
Within a very short time the percentage of visitors making shop purchases rose from 14% to 30% and profits increased over 40%, more than tripling the unrestricted income transferred from shop to museum. Our work also led to shifts in the museum’s overall marketing strategies, resulting in increased museum attendance.