Establishing Questionnaire Flow & Layout
Market Researchers are well aware that development of a questionnaire is a key to building mutual understanding and agreement between interviewer and respondents. Better the rapport, better are the chances of the interviewer to get good results. Also, the respondent’s answers will be carefully thought out and detailed.
Given below are some guidelines to develop the questionnaire flow.
Identify Respondents – Most processes of data acquisition today employ sampling methods. This is to identify minimum number of respondents for their questionnaire and yet cover various types and get good results. For instance, a study on food focuses on users of some specific brands. A study on cosmetic brands targets urban women depending on the product type.
Opening questionnaire – After identifying key respondents, start the questionnaire with question that builds respondent’s interest. The initial questions should be simple, interesting and not private like respondent’s age, income. Private questions are considered threatening and make the respondents defensive.
Flow of the questionnaire – The questionnaire should proceed in a logical fashion. General questions should be covered first which will make the respondent think about the concept, company or product. Then the questions should include specifics. For instance a questionnaire on shampoo may begin with
“Have you purchased a hair shampoo within the past 3 weeks? “
Then the questions should lead the respondent asking about
“The frequency of using shampoo, brands purchased in the last few months, satisfaction dissatisfaction with the brands, characteristics of ideal shampoo”.
Layout – Ask questions that continue to maintain respondent’s interest and commitment to motivate them to finish the survey. The questionnaire should be designed with short encouragements at strategic locations in the questionnaire.
Sensitive, private questions should be positioned at the end. Embarrassing questions should be covered near the end, this will ensure that most questions are already answered before the respondents become defensive. Moreover, rapport has been established at this point increasing the chances of a completed questionnaire.
– Prasha Mishra (13PGP101)