10 Important features to include in your questionnaire

The online questionnaire features you must consider are very important. Without these, you may find that your questionnaire is far less successful. Let’s take a look at the 10 most important online questionnaire features.

  1. Keep you online questionnaire as short as possible. People don’t like to spend a lot of time answer questions, but want to have things completed as soon as possible.
  2. One of the most important online questionnaire features is that the questions are easy to understand. This means you have to know who your audience is and what sort of language they use. Jargon in a questionnaire, for instance, is ok if you are surveying senior managers, but not if you want to survey young children shopping in a toy store.
  3. Good online questionnaire features also including making the first questions the most interesting. This will grab your audience’s attention much quicker, keeping them engaged and interested.
  4. A well designed online questionnaire features no leading questions at all. If you have leading questions, you will force your respondents into a certain way of thinking, completely invalidating their responses.
  5. Generally, an online questionnaire features multiple choice questions. These are fine, but try to limit the number of choices that you give people.
  6. An online questionnaire features as few open-ended questions as possible. These leave respondents feeling confused and unwilling to continue.
  7. Your questions should be very well arranged, so that they make sense to your respondents.
  8. One of the things that your questionnaire should never feature is a spelling mistake. These immediately take away the confidence the people you interview have in your abilities.
  9. Following from the spelling mistakes, make sure you always check your questionnaire so that you know there are no other errors.
  10. Lastly, you have to make sure there is extreme clarity on a range of different issues within your questionnaire. This includes discussing confidentiality, why you want to know certain things and what you will do with the results once you have them.

These all seem like very straightforward issues, but you may be surprised to see the number of questionnaires and surveys out there that do not meet these simple rules. What this shows is that people do not take the time to really think about what they are trying to achieve by rolling out a questionnaire. The recommendation is to start at the end – what is it you want to achieve? You then have to think about how that can be done. Think about the types of questions that you could ask, how you will collate the data and what the data will tell you. There is no room for errors in surveys, because any error invalidates the results in full, meaning you may as well not have taken the time to ask it. The five “P”s, as they are known (proper preparation prevents poor performance) apply in all walks of life, including the design of an online questionnaire. Be organized and be clear on your goals.

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