Sometimes an online (web-based) survey is the quickest, most efficient and cost-saving method for getting input from customers or constituents. The important thing to remember is that any survey needs to be well written and designed in order to succeed. Here are a few tips to improve your next online survey:
- The Ask—Your invitation to take the survey sets the tone at the start. Make it feel inviting, assure respondents that their input is helpful, and tell them what you'll be doing with the information you gather.
- Survey Length—Keep the length of the survey itself reasonable. Before sending it out take a hard look at the questions and ask yourself if you would be willing to take your own survey. Better yet, conduct a quick test with the target audience to get their reaction. Don't overload the survey with multiple-part questions.
- Guarantee of Confidentiality or Anonymity—Studies have shown that if a survey is conducted anonymously the response rate is higher. Do not request personal information unless it is critical to the survey, and if possible, use a third-party that is unbiased to conduct the survey.
- Response Incentive—There are positive and negative aspects to including an incentive with a survey. If it's short enough and to the point, an incentive should not be necessary.
- Reminders—Halfway through your survey timeline send a quick reminder to those who have not responded. This always helps boost your numbers.