How To Create Engaging Surveys?

Blocksurvey blog author
Jan 17, 2024 · 4 mins read

This article is a part of BlockSurvey Academy, a go-to resource for anyone who wants to learn more about surveys. If you are a business owner, a research student, a marketing professional, or anyone needing to run surveys, this article will help you.

Surveys show that surveys never lie. - Natalie Angier

How often have you received very few responses to your survey? I am sure you have experienced this often. Receiving sufficient answers for a survey is a challenge in itself. The ideas discussed in this article will help you create engaging forms and surveys.

This article discusses do’s and do-nots while creating engaging surveys.

1. What to do for engaging surveys?

In this first section, I will discuss points you should consider while creating engaging surveys.

1.1 Interactive design

It usually feels monotonous to answer surveys with only textboxes and multiple choices. A gamified version of your survey will improve engagement.

How do you gamify your survey? Using interactive elements like sliders and drag-and-drops will gamify your survey. Sliders help answer rating questions, and drag-and-drops help answer ranking questions.

Adding a welcome screen at the beginning of the survey and a thank you screen at the end appeals more to the respondents.

BlockSurvey provides a range of interactive elements to make your survey more engaging. I suggest you explore your BlockSurvey builder to discover all the interactive features available.

1.2 Progress indicator

Now, Imagine a survey with 10 questions. The respondent fills out the survey till the 9th question. Then, he assumes the survey may have more than 20 questions.

He feels overwhelmed about the length of the survey and aborts it. He just needs to take the 10th question to complete the survey.

In the above scenario, how will the respondent know the survey length in advance? How does the respondent get the big picture of his survey? The solution to this problem is a “Progress Indicator”.

Progress indicator help you find where you are in the survey. By default, all surveys have progress indicators in BlockSurvey.

1.3 Personalization

All walks of life require personalization, and surveys are no exception. The one-size-fits-all approach does not work anymore. Asking generic questions to your target audience often leads to survey fatigue and disengagement.

To me, the future is personalization . - Marissa Mayer

By leveraging demographic data like name, age, location, profession, etc., you can ask your target audience more personalized questions.

You can reuse the answer to the previous question in the current question. This level of personalization is possible with the recall option in BlockSurvey.

Use skip logic, and not everyone has to answer all the questions in the survey. For example, you can skip all marriage-related questions if the response to the previous question is unmarried.

With personalization, the respondents will feel they belong when they take the survey.

1.4 Incentivize participation

When you provide incentives to respondents, it can improve engagement as it rewards their time and effort.

The incentive can be a discount, gift card, or cash reward. A few examples are a 10% discount on their next purchase, an Amazon gift card, an e-book, a cash prize, or free one-month access to your product. This encourages them to take the survey.

However, it is essential to ensure that the value of the incentive aligns with the time and effort required to complete the survey. If the survey is long and complex, a larger incentive may be necessary to motivate respondents.

By offering incentives, you can increase the number of respondents and the completion rate, leading to more valuable data for your research or business.

1.5 Mobile Optimization

The next important one to remember is Mobile Optimization. Also, ensure that the mobile user interface is intuitive and friendly.

Almost all websites created these days are responsive to mobile. The websites are responsive for any device, whether desktop, mobile, or tablet.

Also, the increased usage of Mobile phones ensures more people take your surveys.

BlockSurvey is fully mobile responsive, which means all your surveys work best on any device. They are device agnostic. BlockSurvey also has a mobile app.

Mobile surveys help receive more in-the-moment responses, increasing the response quality.

1.6 Branding

Engaging visuals enhances the look of your surveys. Use your brand assets like logo, brand colors, and brand font while designing the survey. This makes the survey attractive and creates trust among your respondents.

Your brand is a story unfolding across all customer touch points. -Jonah Sachs

When a survey is hosted on a domain associated with your brand, respondents are likelier to take it seriously and complete it. They are more likely to trust the security of the survey hosted on the branded domain.

The inclusion of brand-related elements is crucial to maintain a consistent brand identity. Branded surveys are more professional, which can help increase engagement.

1.7 Feedback

Feedback allows respondents to understand the survey results immediately, which can trigger their interest and increase engagement.

For example, providing a score at the end of a quiz can make respondents feel accomplished and valued for their time and effort.

Similarly, giving answers to an assessment immediately after it's completed can help respondents understand where they stand and what areas they need to improve on.

Additionally, including fun facts or quotes relevant to the survey topic can make the survey more enjoyable, surprising, and engaging.

It's all about providing value to the respondents; feedback is a great way to do this.

1.8 Call to action

A clear call to action (CTA) at the end of a survey is helpful. It guides respondents on what they should do next, which can increase engagement and participation.

A CTA can motivate respondents to take additional actions, like visiting a website, signing up for a newsletter, or sharing the survey with others.

Survey CTA for accessing related resources can provide respondents with an opportunity to learn more about the topic.

CTA makes the experience more satisfying for the respondents and gives a sense of closure to the survey.

2. What not to do for engaging surveys?

In this section, I will discuss things you should avoid while creating engaging forms and surveys.

2.1 Lengthy Surveys

Would respondents complete your survey if it took an hour? Give it a thought. Lengthy surveys usually have a very low completion rate.

Unless your feedback or research survey requires a lot of questions, only go for a short survey.

Always remember to reduce the number of questions in your survey to the maximum possible extent. Your Survey respondents will be happy to take shorter surveys.

Shorter surveys have a higher completion rate. Keep your surveys short and to the point; you will begin experiencing a higher completion rate.

2.2 Complex Questions

Let’s say you own a restaurant. Now, you want to run a customer feedback survey on the quality of food and dining experience at your restaurant.

While creating this feedback survey, if you include restaurant-specific terms like Dead plate (A dead plate is a food that is not served due to poor appearance or quality), Totes (Totes are plastic containers used to deliver fish), etc., in your survey question, you will have a lower completion rate.

I say lower completion rate because your customers are people who just dined at your restaurant and cannot understand restaurant lingos. The respondent will have a hard time understanding the restaurant lingo and may become puzzled.

So, the point here is always to use simple layman's terms that anyone taking the survey can easily understand.

2.3 Leading questions

Leading questions leave the respondents confused or surprised. Data collected through leading questions often leads to skewed results. Leading questions are created based on assumptions. It also paves the way for lower survey completion rates.

Let’s take the same restaurant survey example once again.

In this survey, a question like, “Why do you like our Bread Toast?” is an example of a leading question. This question is created with the assumption that the customer already likes their Bread Toast.

Instead, the question should be, “Do you like our Bread Toast?” which is more straightforward and is not created under any assumption. To achieve higher survey engagement rates, avoid leading questions.

2.4 Inadequate Options

Multiple option question types should be created with adequate responses. When you ask the same question, “Do you like our Bread Toast?” with the options “Yes” or “No”, which is inadequate in most cases. The respondent may like to answer, “Prefer not to say”, which should also be one of the options.

Also, the “Other” option with a text box is helpful in most cases. For respondents who would like to answer “A little salt needed” or “Should be a little spicier”, or any other custom comment, the other option is handy.

In this way, the respondents will continue to take the survey with more interest, with the assurance that they are being heard.

So, provide adequate response options, considering all possible scenarios under which respondents take the survey.

2.5 Many open-ended questions

Open-ended questions indeed tend to give comprehensive answers. But the point here is too many open-ended questions lead to lower engagement rates. The reason behind this is that open-ended questions take a longer time to respond.

Too many open-ended questions mean respondents need more time to complete the survey. This naturally leads to lower engagement.

Usually, including only one open-ended question that is placed last in a typical feedback survey is safe. Dissertation surveys can have more than one open-ended question for their academic purposes.

Make sure you use open-ended questions only if required. This strategy will pave the way for higher survey engagement.

Test your knowledge on Engaging Surveys

Final Thoughts

I hope you got a good grasp of all the points discussed in this article. I encourage you to read it once again if needed. This article should give an idea of things to follow and things to avoid on your journey to create engaging surveys.

Remember, the key to a successful survey is making it enjoyable, easy to understand, and valuable for the respondents.

How To Create Engaging Surveys? FAQ

What is the importance of creating engaging surveys?

Engaging surveys help gather valuable insights and increase response rates, leading to more accurate and meaningful data.

How can I make my surveys more engaging?

Incorporate visually appealing designs, use clear and concise language, provide an incentive for participation, and personalize the survey experience.

What types of questions should I include in a survey?

Use a mix of multiple-choice, open-ended, and rating scale questions to capture different perspectives and gather in-depth information.

How can I ensure my survey questions are clear and understandable?

Use simple language, avoid jargon, provide clear instructions, and conduct thorough testing to ensure questions are easily comprehensible.

Is it necessary to keep the survey short?

Yes, shorter surveys tend to have higher completion rates. Prioritize essential questions and avoid unnecessary or repetitive ones.

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blog author description

Sarath Shyamson

Sarath Shyamson is the customer success person at BlockSurvey and also heads the outreach. He enjoys volunteering for the church choir.


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