Would someone who takes part in a survey on a mobile phone while on crowded train have the same level of survey engagement as they would sitting in their home office on a computer? While the answer seems pretty obvious, there’s no denying that the growth in online market research services correlates closely, not only with increased broadband and computer use, but with the take-up of tablets and smart phones in households across Australia.
Stable Research’s Online market research: A focus on accuracy and engagement white paper looks at a number of elements associated with respondent engagement and reliability in an online environment. Issues covered in the paper include panel consistency and accuracy in online surveys, participant preferences, protocols for maintaining panel quality and the importance of online survey structure and design.
Malcolm Gladwell’s short synopsis of New Coke in his number one best-seller Blink, is referenced to show how elements combined in the nineteen eighties to disastrously influence market research outcomes. These elements become more complex in an online environment.
Market research companies have identified research structure and design elements like survey length and complication level as key elements influencing online engagement. These findings complement Stable Research’s Respondent Survey that found completing prequalifying questionnaires and never being contacted again, completing surveys and failing at the end and irrelevant repeated questions were also research engagement turn-offs.
Stable Research has adopted a number of protocols to maintain panel and data quality for online surveys which include the Do Not Use Register, increased participant identity requirements for online and face to face, panel and sample management strategies and a focus on growing a strong panel over a number of years.
While the Online market research: A focus on accuracy and engagement white paper raises a number of issues it is certainly a moveable feast and ripe for increased industry debate and reflection that keeps pace with technological development and changing participant preferences.