Make Sure the Proposal Responds to Your Objectives
Low- or no-cost online survey services are attractive because budget dollars are hard to come by. Although you need to make sure to maximize every penny spent, you risk collecting inaccurate information if the survey process isn’t handled correctly.
Most online survey services merely provide you with a vehicle to conduct your survey. Full-service research companies, on the other hand, help you understand the implications of research options, guide you through the process, and minimize common problems that plague surveys.
In addition, you have years of experience at your disposal when you work with a company that specializes in survey research. Below are some reasons to stick with a full-service research company:
Guidance in Objective Setting
The development of survey objectives is critical to the success of your study. This is especially true if the results will be used to base important decisions. Neglecting to set concrete objectives can sabotage your survey and leave you with inaccurate data. Because research experience is essential when trying to hone in on what you truly need to discover, rely on the insights of experienced researchers.
Understanding of Method Implications
By keeping a critical eye on issues such as response rate, non-response bias, and maximum sampling error, a research firm can help ensure that the results you gather actually tell a story. Don’t assume that researchers will always say the most expensive option is best. A savvy research company can advise you on the best way to balance your budget and your information needs.
Designing an effective questionnaire takes a lot of consideration and years of practice. Researchers know what questions to ask and how to ask them so that they capture information that will help you meet your objectives.
Analysis of Data
At the conclusion of the survey, you require data that addresses your objectives. Don’t rely on exported data to tell you the whole story. The analysis from the perspective of a research professional can bring subtle insights to the forefront. With a full-service research company, segmenting the data by different member categories is simple, not impossible. Means and medians are readily available to you and do not require additional effort on your part.
Professional Third-Party Credibility
When you use an unbiased, third-party research company to conduct your survey, your results have increased credibility in the eyes of anyone that will use the data to base their decisions. Research firms aren’t willing to tarnish their reputation for providing impartial, quality research in order to help results go a client’s way.
While some in-house research departments have the skills and tools to conduct a reliable survey using an online data collection service, many companies will have a better chance of survey success if they rely on a full-service market research company. By leveraging their experience and insight you’ll end up with results that are accurate, representative, and credible.