Measurements That Matter: Tracking Your Public Computing Success


Want to learn more about measuring the success of your public computing initiatives? Download our white paper, “How to Plan & Measure the Success of a Kiosk Deployment”. 

If your organization has been looking for an undistracted platform to interact with customers in a physical location, kiosks could be the solution you’ve been looking for. Public computing solutions like kiosks offer open, engaging user experiences in an uncluttered environment. But how do project teams know if the kiosk is working? How can they tell if users are interacting with their beautifully-designed public computing experience? There are a variety of ways to implement measurements that matter:

5 Classic Methods of Measuring Success

While technology can be a beautiful thing, there are some tried-and-true methods that project teams can use to determine their success. Transactional data can be fairly simple to get. That’s because nearly every public computing interface will have some type of transaction, from purchasing merchandise to filling out a form. Project teams can then use analytics to discover meaningful patterns in this data. Leveraging real user data can help determine which parts are working, which ones aren’t, and where to make impactful changes during revision cycles.

Help buttons and support lines offer meaningful data on how customers are using public computing, too. By providing a help button, project teams can track when and how it is used – support lines can also be implemented to generate measurable data on usage and experience. Because these mechanisms are widely understood, they can be simple to implement and track, and easy for users to interact with.

Finally, the world of video tracking is wide open, especially with today’s high definition cameras. Project teams interested in determining who’s using the device can potentially use video to create demographic profiles of users. Mood tracking is another potential use of video tracking. In this case, however, the camera is embedded within the device itself and is used to study the facial movements of a user, determining user satisfaction.

4 New Technologies for Creating Measurements

Of course, while older measurement capabilities are still valuable, today’s new technologies have opened up a treasure trove of additional user measurements. For example, Apple’s iBeacon indoor proximity sensors can be embedded in a kiosk, counting passersby and tallying the duration of time engaged users spend near the kiosk.

Project teams looking for a solution that’s not specific to iOS may be interested in Near Field Communication (NFC) technology. Because it’s widely used in smartphones, kiosks can track traffic and quantify engagement. Another smartphone option, Bluetooth, exchanges information over short distances. While it, too, can count users, Bluetooth can also pair personal technology, such as smartphones, with public computing to extend the user experience beyond the product in the current interaction.

Finally, heat mapping technology can offer a plethora of options for understanding how users interact with kiosks. Heat mapping creates a “heat signature” that can be analyzed to see where users are touching and tapping with the software interface.

Finding Measurements That Work For You

Discovering which type of measurements to use depends on your project team, your budget, and the questions you have to answer. For example, you may want to test how many people pass your retail kiosk each day to uncover which percentage of passersby stop to engage. In this case, NFC technology combined with transactional data could give you what you need. However, a doctor’s office that wants to know if users are having trouble finding relevant information may wish to combine mood tracking with help button data to see where to make their software interface easier to use.

Regardless of what you’re planning to use public computing for, knowing how to measure various metrics is key to a successful kiosk deployment. Deploying one or more methods of tracking can help you to ensure you’ll have the measurements you need to answer questions that matter.

Learn more about how to measure your next kiosk deployment in our new white paper, “How to Plan & Measure the Success of a Kiosk Deployment”.