This Is AuburnAUrora

Because You’re You: Factors Influencing Selection in a Digital Sheet Music Collection




Coates, Midge
Coates, Mildred


Alabama Library Association


For this study, we used Google Analytics to evaluate factors influencing user selection of specific works in a collection of digitized sheet music. These factors were: participation in a collaborative index (Sheet Music Consortium), browse list order, inclusion in mini-collections, style of cover illustration, and presence of audio links. Page view data for individual works were grouped by source (the links that directed users to the site) and correlated with the factors being studied. These results were obtained for a sheet music collection but have relevance for digital collections of all types, especially collections of visual materials such as maps, posters, photographs, etc. Works that were listed in the Sheet Music Consortium had more views/work than non-listed works. Works at or near the top of the Consortium browse listing had more views/work than those further down. Works listed in five mini-collections featured on the collection home page had more views/work from users who had access to these mini-collections (not Consortium users). Works with extensive cover graphics had more views/work than works whose cover designs consisted primarily of words, with or without graphic borders. Works with links to audio versions did not have more views/work than works without such links.