How to design mobile surveys: dos and don’ts

mobile survey

When designing a mobile survey, it’s important to move away from traditional online survey methods – they need to be short, direct and easy to complete on any mobile device. Respondents taking a mobile survey are likely to be on-the-go with a limited attention span; If they find your survey too long, they’ll give up, resulting in a low response rate.

The smaller screen size of mobile devices also has all sorts of implications for your mobile survey design. For example, you shouldn’t display a long list of items under a single question so that respondents need to scroll down to see all the options. And, if you’re producing surveys for online and mobile, they need to be formatted according to the device so that questions are displayed correctly to ensure accurate responses.

What’s best practice for designing mobile surveys?

As well as survey length and format, there are a number of other factors to consider when designing mobile surveys – take a look at this list of essential tips, and what to avoid:

Essential mobile survey design tips

  • Keep it short – a mobile survey should have less than ten questions, and take no more than five minutes to complete
  • Use clear buttons that are readable and easy to use when they’re scaled down.
  • One question per page – don’t make respondents scroll through a long list of questions
  • Use routing to only show respondents questions that are relevant to them

Mobile survey design mistakes to avoid

  • Only use images when absolutely necessary – images take up valuable space on a screen and may take longer to load
  • Avoid long questions – keep your questions direct, respondents won’t want to spend a long time reading the question
  • Don’t include the survey title on every page
  • Minimise the number of open ended questions – they can take a long time to answer and you’ll lose respondents’ attention.
  • Don’t use complicated question styles – they may take longer to load, or display properly on some devices, and they can be harder to complete.

Survey software for mobile surveys

Survey software can be used to produce dynamic, engaging, and adaptive surveys – Snap Surveys software can manage multi-mode survey projects that include mobile, online and paper surveys.

You can also use the Snap XMP Offline Interviewer app to conduct mobile surveys without the need for a continuous internet connection. Snap XMP Offline Interviewer can securely store responses, and then sync the data when an internet connection is available again.

This post was originally published 30/07/2019 and was updated 18/09/2019. 

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