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There are many ways for this research to happen, like providing avenues for people to reach out, using analytics, and using resources like census data. Another is to simply ask!
Surveys allow businesses across all industries to efficiently collect honest feedback, opinions and responses from their desired population, and use that information to improve anything from operations to product development. They can have confirmation on the effectiveness of their offering and make informed decisions about the future. Considerable time, money, and effort go into designing surveys and identifying the right target group to take them.
Then there is the matter of reaching the desired target group.
Once they know what they want to ask and who they want to hear from, businesses need to find a way to reach people. Where traditional methods like mail-in surveys, hard paper surveys, phone surveys, and in-person interviews can be tedious and often inconvenient for the respondent, online surveys can be taken at any time and from anywhere. Online surveys can reach people across the globe while offering respondents flexibility and convenience.
It’s not enough simply to reach people though - they also have to start and finish the survey. People have different motivations for responding to surveys:
Thus, a win-win system is set up, where businesses have deeper insights into people, and people receive rewards and payouts for their contributions.
Why would a business opt for an incentivized survey over an unpaid one? It’s true that not all surveys are incentivized. In some situations, offering an incentive could skew the results - not everyone in the target population might respond to an incentive equally. There are several advantages to incentivizing surveys that make them a trusted tool for businesses and researchers:
There are two sides to every coin. As with most things, there are disadvantages to online surveys and offering incentives to respondents for taking surveys. Respondents are faced with navigating hard-to-use platforms and differentiating between credible surveys and scams run online. For information on the disadvantages to respondents, please check out our Resource on Surveys: Before You Begin.
In this Resource we discuss the disadvantages faced by companies.
This is the biggest challenge. Just as respondents are targetted by fraudulent companies, companies that offer incentivized surveys often have to deal with disingenuous responses. This can be from legitimate respondents clicking through answers at random in order to finish faster and take more surveys. There also exist survey farms that set up multiple accounts for individuals to take the same survey over and over again for a repeated payout, or use bots to complete surveys.
People are notified of new and available surveys via email or text. With the exponential increase of emails and SMSs over the past few years, it’s easy for people to overlook an invitation to take a specific survey, incentivized or not. A business’s online survey might end up being completely missed by a large number of potential respondents.
Certain populations are less likely to have internet access and to respond to online questionnaires. Drawing samples is harder based on email addresses or website visitations.
Incentivized online surveys work, but they are not without their pitfalls. So how can both companies and respondents avoid them?
We are market research experts. The latest addition to the various verticals in our wheelhouse is Panel Recruitment and Management, through which fulfill our founding mission of making sure that the result of incentivized surveys - getting legitimate and accurate data that can be used to gain valuable insights - is met. We help real companies get their surveys to real respondents by taking care of the vetting process on both sides. In order to consistently and quickly set up healthy panels, we invest heavily in providing respondents on our platform with a safe, comfortable, and positive experience. Operating with transparency and efficiency, we help all members of the incentivized survey ecosystem carry out their roles as optimally as possible.
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