Finding The Right Respondents For Your Online Survey

Philip Cleave
May 10, 2017

Finding the right survey participants for your online research can be the key to its success. However, it’s not that simple. Collecting data that will provide you with valuable feedback depends on a number of factors. It includes asking the right questions, unbiased and straightforward, choosing the optimal number of questions and of course, finding the right people to take part in your questionnaire. We have assembled some of our top tips for finding the correct respondents…

Tips for getting respondents for your online survey

By following best practice guidelines for creating and sending surveys, you can collect meaningful data that will help your organization improve processes, employee engagement and increase customer satisfaction.

Online Survey Tip #1

Targeting the correct group of people is one of the first factors to consider. By selecting the right audience, you will get a higher response rate and results will yield useful information. Start by identifying the survey objective; some general reasons for conducting surveys are:

  • Learn more about what your customers’ likes and dislikes are, what their pain points are and if they would recommend you to friends
  • Receive feedback on products, events or services. By acting on feedback you can improve company processes and become more profitable
  • Encourage two-way conversation to build productive relationships with customers. If you show them that you are listening, they are more likely to trust you and spread the word that you offer a good service.

Online Survey Tip #2

Finding the correct respondents for your online survey also means trying to get the balance right in order to get the most representative data. For example, a company considering an online survey for its customers should take into consideration the percentage of men and the percentage of women customers, as well as the percentage of adults, the percentage of teenagers, etc. and reflect these percentages in the respondent samples.

Online Survey Tip #3

Have you considered using, what we term in the business as, a Live Audience? This can sometimes be the easiest and most convenient method of finding relevant respondents. Online panels are groups of respondents who have been pre-screened by completing relevant profiling questionnaires and are willing to take part in online surveys.

How to purchase a survey audience:

  1. Create your survey/questionnaire.
  2. Access the Collect Page of your survey.
  3. Click on Buy Responses.

An order form will open, allowing you to select your target audience criteria i.e. where they live, what age, gender, income, marital status, even down to what mobile device they use!

These online consumer panels contain millions of participants from a host of different countries, so it is possible to find the right respondents to answer a specific online questionnaire.

Online Survey Tip #4

Another method of carrying out surveys online is to use Facebook advertising directly from your Facebook business page! The Facebook advertising page allows you to promote custom ads, to a specific audience.

How to send your survey via Facebook:

  1. Choose your objective – such as raise awareness
  2. Select and customize your audience – based on location, age, interests…
  3. Decide when and how often to run your ads

Survey teams can post their ads, embed their survey link and invite people to take part. To attract more respondents, you can offer incentives for filling in the survey.

In modern market research, online panels are a rapidly expanding phenomenon as they have come to bridge the gap between companies and their customers. They facilitate the process of finding the right groups of respondents.

It’s in your best interest to get people to take part in your survey, so why not incentivise or reward them? Remember to let them know the purpose of the research and what you are going to do with the results, people are more likely to take part if they know it is going to make a difference. And don’t forget to respect their privacy by sending surveys at appropriate times and by the channel of their preference.

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in October 2012 and has been revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.


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