Internet surveys – How to Maximise Your Response Rate


Online surveys are undoubtedly the most cost-effective way to collect important data such as client satisfaction and employee opinions. However, how do you maximize your reaction rate? This is a problem charged by most businesses starting online surveys, and there is much material available relating to the topic, almost all with varying facts as well as figures about what reaction rate to expect, techniques for growing responses, and what length of study should be used, etc.

In reality, there is no single guideline to follow when undertaking an online study, as each survey possesses its own set of variables affecting the response rate. However, several common techniques are used to boost the likelihood that a potential study respondent will complete her questionnaire.

Having undertaken countless online surveys of customers, employees, companies, membership groups, and celebration guests, I began producing survey response rates plus the types of key variables very likely to affect them. The specifics recorded were:

Whether review invitations were personalized (i. e. Dear John Williams v Dear customer)
Amount of survey (categorized into achievement times of 1-4 minutes, 5-9 minutes & 10+ minutes)
If a reward/prize was supplied
Whether or not the survey was brought to people with a known curiosity about the survey subject (i. e. job related, past customer, linked to social hobbies, etc . )
The stats shown below were created from the data of 143 web surveys, which 49 335 answerers completed. As a general process, probable respondents were contacted double via email to encourage participation in the online surveys.

Take note that most respondents had developed their details to various data sources or were customers involving my clients; therefore, they most likely were aware of the brand/company before receiving the online survey invites. People sending email encouragement to random sub-sets involving contacts should not expect to obtain response rates as high as all those listed below.

Considering the four variables and their options, there have been 24 possible combinations — this will make sense when looking at the actual dot-points below. The mixtures with the 5 highest and 5 lowest response prices have been listed.

Five maximum response rates

Personalized e-mail & 1-4 minutes to accomplish & reward offered and respondents had a recognized interest in the survey topic = 45. 3% typical response rate
Personalized e-mail & 5-9 minutes to accomplish & reward offered and respondents had a recognized interest in the survey topic = 40. 1% typical response rate
Non-personalized e-mail & 1-4 minutes to accomplish & reward offered, and respondents had a recognized interest in the survey topic = 39. 8% typical response rate
Personalized e-mail & 1-4 minutes to accomplish & no reward provided & respondents had the known interest in the review subject = 39. 2% average response rate
Private email & 5-9 short minutes to complete & no prize offered & respondents possessed a known interest in typically the survey subject = 35. 4% average response pace
Five lowest response charges
Non-personalized email & 10+ minutes to complete & zero rewards offered & answerers did not have a known curiosity about the survey subject sama dengan 8. 2% average answer rate.
Non-personalized email, as well as 10+ minutes to complete and reward offered & answerers, did not have a known curiosity about the survey subject sama dengan 15. 5% average answer rate
Personalized email as well as 10+ minutes to complete, no reward offered, and respondents did not have acknowledged interest in the survey issue = 16. 2% common response rate
Non-personalized electronic mail & 5-9 minutes to perform & no reward supplied & respondents did not have a known interest in the review subject = 19. 4% average response rate
Non-personalized email & 10+ short minutes to complete & no prize offered & respondents experienced a known interest in the actual survey subject = nineteen. 5% average response price
So what works best?
The above results show clear correlations between response rates and the variables affecting them. Typically, it appears that the following actions ought to ensure that you gain the highest possible reaction rate when undertaking an internet survey:

Personalize your e-mail invitations. People are more likely to react to emails that address all of them by their name instead of ‘Dear Sir/Madam, Dear Colleague’ or ‘Dear Customer. I have got the names of potential study respondents; use them! This is easily done using simple software programs such as Microsoft Word within a mail-merge format sent through your Outlook account. This links directly to your data source, removing the burden of inputting every single name into every email invitation.
Keep the study as short as possible. Generally, the shorter the study – the higher the reaction rate. Some internet surveys need to be in-depth and cannot avoid being 10+ moments in length; however, try to avoid requesting questions that only gather unimportant information. This is a common offense amongst survey developers while preparing questions for an online survey.
Give a reward. Everybody loves getting a thing for free, so try and give a reward when sending out paid survey invitations. Some experts, for instance, Kurt Knapton, Executive Vice chairman of e-Rewards Market Research, declare that you are more likely to gain a better response rate if you present every respondent with a small prize rather than a chance of winning a sizable sweepstakes prize. His research found that offering four 000 people $2 every to complete a survey accomplished a 19. 3% reaction rate. Offering the same amount of people with an entry right into a $2 500 sweepstakes attract only managed twelve. 2% response rate.
Discover contacts likely to don’t mind spending time on the survey subject. It is no scientific discovery. Nevertheless, response rates are always higher if the potential respondent has some interest in the review subject. Job satisfaction studies always gain high answer rates because employees believe their answers will affect beneficial changes. Likewise, purchasers of a particular product/service will undoubtedly be more interested in some related online survey than an agent who has only used it once or maybe never at all.
Ewan McKenzie, Owner/Senior Consultant of Quick Research, is a quantitative study consultant with extensive experience designing and comprehending online surveys. Working with small and large firms, Ewan has undertaken quantitative research for customer surveys, employee studies, salary surveys, and large-size data analysis.

Ewan’s academics and work history run from Australia to Denmark and the United Kingdom. He has co-authored several statistically structured research publications while cooperating with the Learning & Skills Networking in London, UK.

Easy Study works with businesses to develop survey software, which can then be used to simply and cost-effectively obtain important information. Visit the website to watch online sample surveys and other Easy Study services.

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