Why you should disclose it is not an anonymous survey

Blocksurvey blog author
Sep 6, 2023 · 4 mins read

Surveys have long held a revered place in the arsenal of researchers, marketers, and businesses alike. These tools, designed to tap into the collective consciousness of groups, reveal insights from consumer habits to employee sentiments and beyond. For years, the prevailing thought was simple: to gain the most genuine and unbiased responses, a survey must protect the anonymity of its participants. This belief rested on the premise that anonymity encourages forthrightness, reducing the fear of any potential repercussions for one's answers.

However, as we transition into an era where transparency and open dialogue are increasingly prioritized, a new perspective is emerging. A wave of professionals and researchers are now championing the merits of non-anonymous surveys. This raises a compelling question: Why this shift? And what advantages can be gleaned from participants knowing their responses aren't hidden behind a veil of secrecy?

Join us as we delve into the nuances of this trend, exploring the unexpected benefits of non-anonymous surveys and why this approach may offer deeper, more meaningful insights than we've previously imagined.

Benefits of Disclosing Non-Anonymity

1. Boosted Credibility

  • Building Trust with Respondents: When organizations are upfront about the nature of their surveys, it communicates honesty and integrity. This trust is foundational. If participants feel that an organization is straightforward from the beginning, they are more likely to engage genuinely with the survey.
  • Ensuring Participants of Proper Use: By stating outright that a survey isn't anonymous, organizations can proactively address concerns about data misuse. This can be done by detailing the purpose of collecting certain data and how it will be used, ensuring participants that their responses won't be used against them or in any malicious manner.

2. Improved Quality of Responses

  • More Accurate and Thoughtful Answers: Anonymity can sometimes be a cloak for insincerity or even mischief. By removing that veil, respondents tend to be more thoughtful and precise in their responses. They're more accountable for their answers, which often results in more reliable data.
  • Counteracting the "Troll" Effect: Online platforms, in particular, are often subject to 'trolling' where individuals deliberately provide false or misleading information for amusement. By removing the mask of complete anonymity, this behaviour can be significantly reduced.

3. Higher Response Rates

  • The Psychology of Accountability: People are naturally more committed to tasks when they know they're accountable for them. This translates to surveys too. When respondents know their identity is linked to their answers, they might feel a greater sense of duty to complete the survey.
  • Case Studies Showcasing Increased Participation: Recent studies have shown that organizations that are transparent about the non-anonymous nature of their surveys tend to have better participation rates. This is especially true when respondents understand the rationale behind the survey and its non-anonymous nature.

4. Better Follow-Up Opportunities

  • Personalized Feedback and Queries: When respondents aren’t hidden behind the curtain of anonymity, it allows for the possibility of direct follow-ups. If a respondent brings up a unique concern or offers a specific insight, the organization can directly address or explore that point further.
  • Creating Avenues for More In-depth Discussions: By knowing who has given what feedback, organizations can organize more personalized discussion sessions, focus groups, or interviews. This deepens the engagement and can lead to richer insights.

In sum, while the immediate instinct may lean towards preserving anonymity in surveys, there's a compelling case for the opposite. It’s not just about collecting data, but about establishing connections, fostering trust, and diving deeper into the collective mindset of your audience.


The age-old debate on anonymity has often left organizations tiptoeing the line between transparency and discretion. However, as the digital realm evolves and expectations around trustworthiness and transparency heighten, the scales seem to tilt towards revealing the non-anonymous nature of surveys.

Through the benefits of boosted credibility, improved response quality, higher participation rates, and enriched follow-up opportunities, it becomes clear that the power of transparency holds a significant advantage. This isn't just a strategy to get more answers but a shift towards a more engaged, accountable, and honest feedback mechanism.

In an era that heralds openness and values trust, perhaps it's time for organizations, researchers, and professionals to rethink the way they approach surveys. By fostering a culture of clarity, we not only gain more authentic insights but also bolster the foundation of trust with our respondents, leading to more meaningful, impactful exchanges.

Why you should disclose it is not an anonymous survey FAQ

Why is it important to disclose that this survey is not anonymous?

Disclosing that this survey is not anonymous showcases our commitment to transparency and accountability.

What does it mean when it is not an anonymous survey?

It means that the information you provide can be attributed to you, ensuring the credibility of the data collected.

How does disclosing the non-anonymous nature of the survey enhance expertise?

By disclosing that the survey is not anonymous, it demonstrates our expertise in understanding the importance of accurate and traceable data.

Why does disclosing the non-anonymous nature of the survey build trustworthiness?

Disclosing that the survey is not anonymous builds trust by assuring participants that their responses will be handled responsibly and with integrity.

How does the non-anonymous nature of the survey establish credibility?

The non-anonymous aspect establishes credibility by allowing us to attribute responses to specific individuals, ensuring the information's authenticity and validity.

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blog author description

Vimala Balamurugan

Vimala heads the Content and SEO Team at BlockSurvey. She is the curator of all the content that BlockSurvey puts out into the public domain. Blogging, music, and exploring new places around is how she spends most of her leisure time.


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