Creating a survey is not always easy, but when you look at a perfectly crafted Survey, they look so simple, don’t they.
Nothing contributes to the success of your survey as much as the right survey questions. So, it’s important to spend time crafting your questions. The questions and answer options in your survey will define the accuracy and reliability of the results. Right questions provide you with high quality, reliable data.
On the other hand, poorly structured questions lead to incomplete surveys, unfocused responses and biased results. Such responses will render your research incomplete, inaccurate and ineffective.
Here are a few tips on how to write effective survey questions:
Write clear and concise questions
Use simple language to make the questions easier to understand. The goal is to ask questions that the reader will grasp without having to read it again.
The best way to achieve this is through the use of common language that you use in your everyday life.
Each question should be concise and to the point. Clear questions elicit clear and relevant responses.
Write questions that are direct to the point
Don’t ask disconnected or obscure questions. Such questions can confuse your participants and make them frustrated. Confusing questions can cause your participants to drop-out or abandon the survey. Keep your questions short and direct.
Don’t write leading questions.
Questions that are suggestive in nature can taint your answers and introduce bias into your results. It would be best if you avoided words that lead your participants towards one or the other option. Frame questions with accuracy and keep in mind the objective of your survey.
Use neutral language.
Don’t use loaded or emotive words in your questions. Emotive words can stir an emotional response, which again creates a bais. Neutral language makes sure that the response is purely based on the participant’s experience and not because of the choice of words in your question.
Avoid double-barreled questions.
The double-barreled question consists of two different aspects or topics but can have only one answer. Double-barreled questions are also known as or a compound, double-negative or double-direct question. These questions tend to confuse the participant, while they can be instrumental in some situations survey is not one of them. In a survey, these questions generally occur due to human error. In fact, it is quite easy to prevent such questions and avoid getting unreliable data. Ensure that you have sufficient quality controls incorporated into your survey design and development process.
Instead, use branching for convenience and clarity.
Don’t use absolute words.
Stay away from absolute words such as all, best and ever because these words force respondents to fully agree or disagree with your questions. Take a more nuanced approach in order to obtain more specific responses.
Writing effective survey questions leads to higher participation and better data — and that’s what it’s all about.