Mediums of Conducting Surveys Explored

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Photo Credit:'s gradyreese

Survey making is an art, indeed. It needs learned skills through knowledge and practice to create a perfect, or, at least, an interesting survey. But practice comes only after gaining accurate knowledge of the process and its requirements. You can only take an action when you know and understand it. Similarly, to execute a perfectly planned survey, you need to know available mediums and types and what sort of assistance a good survey making website, such as SurveyCrest, provides.

• Phone Survey

In the simplest definition, a telephone survey is conducted by calling the respondents and asking a specific set of questions and then recording their replies for the sake of keeping record. In the past, when technology wasn’t that advanced and there weren’t many options for surveyors to reach general population, they used to rely on phone calls to extract valid data for their organizations.

This method is rather successful when one needs to collect data from the general masses. The large scale availability of phone really improves the response rate and the speed of its collection. According to research, almost 96% of Americans have telephone system installed in their homes. Internet usage is common too, but when it comes to reaching the lower income class, telephone surveys become a much more viable source.

Also, the rate of confusion is rather low because complex ideas can be explained by the interviewer. The surveyors are able to control the data quality and elicit authentic responses from the survey takers. There may be time constraints involved in using this medium, but the quality control is normally much higher than other mediums.

Where To Use It?

Many survey websites provide templates for even phone surveys. However, their script can be created easily on your own. Here are some examples of where this medium is most commonly used.

  • To verify voter registration
  • To conduct community surveys
  • Survey environmental issues
  • Customer satisfaction
  • To gauge public awareness
  • To collect demographics

Who Uses It?

The medium is widely used by:

  • Political organizations
  • Volunteer organizations
  • Phone network service provider
  • Internet service providers
  • Hospitals
  • Banks

• Paper-Based Surveys

There was a time when paper surveys were more in fashion than any other medium of conducting surveys. Many organizations still prefer to use them for various reasons, and we will mention those reasons shortly, but on a wider spectrum, it is now mostly considered expensive and slow in yielding results. Also their design limitations make it difficult to incorporate visual content such as photographs and videos in the survey.

The paper-based surveys have a few distinct advantages, though. The readability is always way better because of the black ink used on paper. It provides higher resolution than a computer screen. Moreover, paper survey can consist of lengthy questions that may occupy the entire width of the page, unlike web surveys, which are unpleasant to scroll from left to right.

Where To Use It?

Paper surveys have a history. They have been used extensively in every field and are still common for various purposes, such as:

  • Customer satisfaction
  • Employee satisfaction
  • To find public consensus
  • To collect demographics

Who Uses It?

For the above mentioned purposes, as well as many others, these are some of the organizations which use paper surveys nowadays.

  • Government administration offices
  • Corporate organizations
  • Hotels/restaurants
  • Retail stores
  • Educational institutes
  • Hospitals

• Online Surveys

Internet has revolutionized survey research for good. So much has been said and written about web-based surveys that, I’m sure, most of us already know this subject inside and out. Yet there are many who need proper guidance to understand why this particular medium is favored so much by the general masses. Basic needs to attempt an online survey include a computer with an access to the internet.

Online surveys are known for their design value, speed, and efficiency in collecting a vast amount of data. They incorporate visual content wherever needed. Not only are they cost-effective but also provide free services with quality. Moreover, the marketing, data collection, analysis, and report sharing are also easier in online surveys. All it takes is a simple process to register on a free online survey website, create your survey, choose and invite respondents, and then reap the benefits of this amazing service.

Where To Use It?

Flexibility is one of the main characteristics of online surveys. They can be created keeping the specific language, culture and demographics of an audience in mind. The most common usage of online surveys happens for:

  • Social media
  • Attendee/participant satisfaction
  • Customer feedback
  • Service evaluation
  • Awareness, attitude, and usage assessment

Who Uses It?

In a way, online surveys encompass all fields and industries. Even those which use phone and paper surveys make use of online surveys at one time or another. Often they are used by:

  • Social media platforms
  • Phone apps
  • Websites
  • E-mail
  • Software houses

Which medium of survey do you find most interesteing and relevant to your field of work? Do leave us your thoughts and have a good day!

About The Author

Kelvin Stiles is a tech enthusiast and works as a marketing consultant at SurveyCrest – FREE online survey software and publishing tools for academic and business use. He is also an avid blogger and a comic book fanatic.