3 Simple Ways to Reduce Survey Drop Out Rates

Annette Smith

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Grayling Ferguson

    We all know about the importance of surveys in the market research world. This makes it even more important to keep an eye on survey quality - from many angles. Today, I am looking at a few hand-picked aspects, namely: accessibility on touch-screen devices, visual layout as well as respondent effort and engagement.

    1. Making Surveys Accessible

    With the prominence of online surveys an increasing number of participants like to fill in their responses on a type of touch-screen device, be it a smartphone, tablet or similar. Making sure your survey is optimised for such devices is important and should not be underestimated. Respondents should not be faced with non-optimised sites, technical barriers or tiny radio buttons that are hard to navigate on a touchscreen device.

    2. Consider Aesthetic Design

    Naturally, surveys should be pleasing to the eye. Using inconsistent design elements, changes in scale directions or similar make it unnecessarily difficult for respondents. Keep it consistent, logical and, yes, pretty. We have all seen visually uninspiring surveys - I just wonder why? We have got great tools at hand to make them visually attractive (e.g. with branding, consistent fonts/colour schemes and designs).

    It's the respondents that deliver your feedback. You want them to be as enthusiastic and engaged with your survey as possible. And no, I am not talking about incentives at this point.

    3. Engage Participants

    Reduce drop-out rates and keep the respondent's mind engaged in the answer to your questions. The SurveyMR tool is already packed with interactive question types such as sliders for scale questions, image ranking and image, audio and video stimuli. The latest addition of Drag & Drop questions (Mono-Drop, Multi-Drop and Flexi-Drop) makes it even easier.

    Drag & Drop tools go beyond respondents picking options - the core value of Drag & Drop is that it allows respondents to sort, group and rank options in an efficient and intuitive manner. You improve the quality of your questions, reduce speeders, make surveys generally more fun and you can create new styles of questions, e.g. a question concerned with an association of taste with seasons.

    Pictures appeal to the eye and if you can replace, for example, an otherwise boring grid question with a visually attractive and easy on the eye and mind Drag & Drop question, then your participants will thank you for it.

    Keeping your respondents' interest, engagement and motivations in mind, paired with innovative and engaging question designs, such as Drag & Drop, combined with the benefit of reducing drop-out rates and straight lining effects will deliver great results each and every time.

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