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Top 10 tips for setting up your own survey

  • Before you start, be clear about what you really need to know and focus on this before you start writing out a list of questions
  • Always use plain English but also make sure it is appropriate for each of your audiences, you may need to word things slightly differently for different audiences.
  • Make sure you have a logical flow in your questions, don’t bias the answer to one question by the ones you have asked just asked, don’t using leading language and don’t make it obvious what you would like people to say.
  • Think about the format of the question i.e. it is better to rank or rate each option rather than just asking for a single preference. If you have clarity on what the likely options are, have a list but if you are less certain, give people the opportunity for free text responses.
  • Don’t asked double barrel questions i.e. how happy were you with the speed and quality of response? I might have been impressed with one but exasperated by the other.
  • Think about how you may want to analyse the data as this may impact how you ask the question.
  • Use visual scales (e.g., smiley faces) if they add value but make sure they are relevant and appropriate for your audience.
  • Don’t forget to capture relevant demographics. e.g. age, gender, relationship with you, length of relationship, location etc.
  • Make sure to test it thoroughly with those who weren’t involved in its development.
  • Finally choose the right distribution channel – online may be the most obvious and cost-effective choice but is it the right medium accessing for your audience i.e. internet penetration drops off significantly by age.

Any more questions on developing or setting up surveys please get in touch.