Visitor logs are useful for businesses and private offices, public tourist sites and attractions, as well as cultural institutions and nonprofits. Keeping a visitor logbook can provide crucial information for reporting to fund donors and other parties, as well as for focusing future programming and offerings. Visitor logs are also commonplace at weddings and funerals, and become part of a family's memorabilia.
For a visitor log to serve its purpose, it must be easily accessible to all visitors. At an indoor site, a visitor log might be placed at the front reception desk or ticket counter. At an outdoor site, the log might be found at an information booth or covered kiosk near the entrance.
In addition to a column for visitors' names, a visitor log should include columns for the date and time of arrival. Optional columns, based on the nature of the event, might include visitors' affiliation, contact information and comments and feedback. A pen or pencil should also be provided.
Maintaining the Logbook
Monitor visitor logs regularly to assure continued function and convenience. Maintenance checks might include adding extra pages, replacing pens/pencils, assuring that the logbook is protected from weather conditions (in outdoor locations) and repairing any damage sustained. Provide a brief header alerting visitors about how any information they provide will be used and any privacy considerations you're observing, such as not sharing or selling the information.
Analysis and Followup
Collect visitor log data at scheduled intervals, so that results can be consolidated into a database and analyzed. Information can then be reported to those who fund the organization and other parties, as well as for developing future programs or events; in addition,steps can be taken to initiate contact with attendees who requested followup communications.
Ann Pedtke has been writing about science and the environment since 2001. Her work has appeared in "Isotope," "Green Prints," "The Hudson River Almanac," "The Conservationist" and other publications. Pedtke holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Kenyon College and works in environmental education in New York City.