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Quick Tips for Creating Online Surveys

by Amishi Takalkar on January 11, 2011

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In my last blog post, I listed easy ways to conduct market research for your business. One of them was using surveys. An online survey can give you powerful customer insights for setting long-range plans and for making small, incremental changes in how you’re running your business or organization. However, it is very easy to make mistakes when you start to build out a survey.

Here are some quick tips to help you out:

  1. Define what it is that you want to learn before you start writing a survey. Do you want to measure your customer satisfaction or brand perception? Do you want to probe for new features for your product? Do not try to meet all your objectives in one survey.
  2. It is important to keep the survey brief and focused on important questions – ideally not more than 10 questions. This will ensure that there is no respondent fatigue and the quality of responses is good.
  3.  Questions should easy to understand. Use simple language and do not include any technical jargon that respondents will have trouble responding to. Avoid double barreled and leading questions.
  4.  Do not ask too many open-ended questions. Most likely, you will not receive many responses. It’s best to use open ended questions sparingly and strategically. For example, first focus the respondent on a particular issue by using a Yes/No or multiple choice question, and then ask them to follow-up with an open ended question.
  5.  When asking a close-ended question, make sure that you cover all possible responses. However, too many choices can confuse individuals and only complicate the post-survey analysis – limit them to 10 or fewer.

Keep these tips in mind while designing your next survey, and reap the benefits that timely, relevant information can provide to each and every aspect of your business.

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