It is extremely important to double check your online survey before launching in order to catch any mistakes
When launching your online survey you need to thoroughly review all aspects of your survey before it goes “live.” Although the bulleted list of steps below may seem like common sense steps, it’s the simple things we miss that can cause issues in the data collection process. With data accuracy on the line, it is important to be as thorough as possible when launching your surveys.
Over and over again, because we are in such a rush to collect data, we continue to hastily administer surveys before double checking for obvious errors in the format, design, and content of our surveys. The best way to break ourselves from this pattern is with the use of a detailed checklist.
Here is a check list you can use as you get ready to launch your next online survey in Snap Survey Software.
- Thoroughly test your survey to ensure all routing (skip logic), text substitution (piping), response validations, randomization, and quota controls are working correctly. If you are seeding data into your online survey, ensure data from external databases is populating correctly.
- Check your email text to ensure there are no spelling errors.
- When scheduling email invitations and reminders, thoroughly review the times you have scheduled the online survey to administer, including taking time zones into consideration. You certainly don’t want your respondents’ Smartphones buzzing at 2:00 AM. That certainly doesn’t make for happy respondents. Additionally, ensure that your own time zone is properly set in the online survey management system.
- Proofread your entire survey several times. It is best to have a second or third pair of eyes review your survey to search for grammar and spelling mistakes, and also format and functionality mistakes.
- Ensure all questions where you require an answer are set to a required answer field. You don’t want to miss out on data that is most important to your research.
- Pre-test your survey by sending a test email invitation to a select internal group. Have your colleagues review not only the survey, but also the text of the email. Also, make certain that you have included a subject line.
- Before you administer the live survey, double check your respondent database list to ensure that it is the correct list.
- Always include contact information in your email invitation including your organization’s name, website, and an email address so respondents can quickly and easily contact you should they have any questions.
- Always check to make sure your survey is “live.” Double check the dates you have set for your survey to remain active. You can easily lose many quality respondents if they receive a message that the survey is no longer active.
The slightest of oversights could harm the credibility of your surveys, and more importantly, the credibility of your entire organization. Before you proceed with administration of your next online survey, be sure to go through this list as a precautionary measure to avoid making unnecessary mistakes. It is better to take a little extra time to review your survey rather than have to clean up a mess after your data has already been collected.
What other items are on your online survey checklist? Leave a comment in the comments box below.
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