Pros & Cons of Online Surveys

Pros & Cons of Online Surveys

Online surveys are much more affordable than offline survey methods

Now, it costs significantly less to conduct your survey and develop its panels on the internet and e-mail, rather than making phone calls or sending postal mail surveys. 

People are more likely to answer online surveys 

In addition to that, emails have a higher incidence rate than other survey methods. Incidence rate is the percentage of survey participants. In other words, people are much more likely to answer online or e-mail surveys because they can complete them at their own pace, unlike phone surveys. 

Websites can build their contacts through e-mail surveys

Another advantage that comes with e-mail surveys is that a company can generate its contacts through its own website when offering customers to sign up or subscribe to their email newsletters. A company can use that email contact list to send surveys to existing customers that they want to target.

Surveying is a great way to remind people of the product 

Surveys are powerful, but also subtle when it comes to its promotional tools for the product, or service that is being researched. For example, by asking questions about the positive things of a product “How important is the good taste of Coke?”, you grow a positive association in your consumer’s mind. Moreover, when you survey existing customers, you can easily remind them of a product they already enjoy and like, but have completely forgotten about it, until you reminded them again.

With the right preventative measures, survey fraud can be completely eliminated for more accuracy

The biggest disadvantage of online surveys is survey fraud, however this can be avoided through several security measures, while also maintaining high panel integrity. The accuracy of survey statistics depends on panel integrity. Here’s a list of what you can do to eliminate fraudsters:

  • Invitation-only: The consumer receives an e-mail invitation to participate in the online survey. This offers the company a chance to verify the e-mail and ensure that the same person (through their name and contact information) isn’t assigned to another email address in the system.
  • Require a mailing address: To send reward points and coupons, ask for a mailing address. If the same mailing address comes up for multiple email accounts, that is your indication that you probably have a cheater.
  • Offer a minimum time frame: Set a minimum time for completing the online survey. This helps eliminate cheaters that randomly answer questions. 
  • Block “straight line” answers: Get the software to automatically remove surveys that are returned with the same letter or number chosen for every question. 
  • Block IP addresses: If you catch a cheater, block his/her IP address from submitting more surveys in the future. You may also limit the number of surveys returned from a specific IP address to prevent multiple submissions.
  • Demographic consistency: Begin the survey with demographic questions throughout that every now and then confirm the participant’s sex, age, income leve, and so forth. If the answers aren’t consistent to the different demographic profiling questions, the user should be immediately blocked. 
  • Ask open-ended questions: Consider including at least one short-answer, essay-like question that allows room for thoughtfulness. If you have a cheater, they won’t take the time to answer such questions multiple times with different responses. 

Survey templates are readily available online for your use

Preparing your online survey questions using a survey template can help you get started. There are many websites out there that offer survey templates to download once you purchase a plan, including 360 Angles, the first online platform for surveys in the Arab world. 

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