An overview of question types and relevant uses available in the Survey Tool.
When building your survey, you’ll need to decide which question types best fit your project. Use the dropdown menu on the right of your screen to change the question type. Below is a summary of the types of questions we offer and when they’re best used. Follow the links below for more detail on each type.
Single-select: respondents select a single response from a list.
Multi-select: respondents select multiple responses from a list.
Statement: present a message to your respondents.
Open text: respondents enter the answer in their own words.
Number: respondents enter only a number.
Ranking: respondents rank options relative to the other.
Opinion scale: respondents indicate how compelling individual features or options are from a set scale.
Matrix: present a group of questions together in a grid format, under a single header. Each row can be configured to be single or multi-select.
Additional Key Features
Images and video: Engage your respondents with rich media. You can add an image or video to most question types. You can even include images as response choices on single-select and multi-select questions.
Randomize: Randomize your response options to avoid option order bias.
Timer: Set a minimum amount of time before respondents can progress to the next question.
Question Logic: Set Skip or Display logic to create custom paths in your survey.
One of the most widely-used question formats, single-select asks respondents to select a single response option out of a list.
An important tip is to ensure there’s no overlap between numeric-based response options. Each numeric-based multiple-choice response option should have clear, defined boundaries. If you’re writing a text-based multiple-choice question, consider adding an ‘Other - key in’ field if you believe there may be responses that fall outside of your provided options. Your provided response choices should be the most likely selections.
We also recommend keeping the list of answers to less than 15. This helps to ensure respondents can easily read through and consider all options.
The randomize function can help to avoid any selection bias within your response choices.
Pro tip: Want to randomize some but not all response choices? Use the “Pin option” feature. Access it from the drop down arrow on the right-hand side of any response choice.
Onto our second-most popular question type, multi-select. This question format allows you to collect aggregated data about a respondent’s preferences and experiences in relation to a single topic. Need to specify a selection count? E.g. select your top three choices? Set a ceiling or floor using the min and max features provided in the side pane. You can also add in an “Other” option at the end to avoid boxing respondents in with your provided response choices.
Statements are useful to take a moment to communicate directly to your respondents. These can be helpful providing transition language between assessment topics or to isolate any images or videos you’d like to share.
Open text questions allow respondents to type out their answers to your question. Whenever possible, be sure to ask very direct questions. This will help keep your respondents engaged and your data useful.
Pro tip: when possible, you should design for a few words, not a few sentences. Respondents prefer to provide something top of mind, as opposed to drafting you a long form message.
Collecting responses from Audience Panel? To keep our respondents happy and engaged, we ask that you do your best to limit your survey to two open text questions. Before adding multiple open text questions, decide if your question can be achieved by offering a list of options instead. From the side panel, you can use our “Automatic choices” feature on most questions types to help you dream up scaling and response choices.
If you simply need respondents to enter a number, then use this question type. Make sure to include Min and Max validation so that respondents are only entering numbers in the most applicable range.
Ranking questions are great for gathering comparative data. This format allows respondents to determine what response choice is most compelling relative to all response options in descending order of importance. Researchers often use ranking questions to determine what potential product features are most impactful, which can later inform product design and revision.
Utilize “Limits” if you only want people to rank a certain number of choices, such as their top three.
To garner the most value from your ranking questions, limit the number of response options to 5-7 per question. Asking respondents to rank too many options can quickly become a frustrating experience -- and when respondents are frustrated or confused, they disengage.
Opinion scale questions give respondents the opportunity to indicate how compelling something is on a set intensity scale. This provides more context than a binary yes/no question.
Common scales are 1-5 or 0-11. Opinion scales are commonly used in question formats such as... How likely are you to consider a product or service?. 1 = Unlikely and 5 = Very likely.
Matrix questions can be useful in establishing the intensity of respondents’ behaviors and attitudes. With that said, be careful not to overuse matrix sets.
Because each line of a matrix requires individual input from a respondent, we consider each line of a matrix an individual question. Not to worry though: we understand that not all question formats are created equally which is why we take into account both the question count and estimated time to complete the survey when pricing survey responses collected from Audience Panel.
Pro tip: you can break a long list of matrix questions into multiple pages using the “Rows per page” option. We recommend no more than 7 rows per page to maximize respondent focus.
It’s best practice to present the matrix rating scale in a progressive order, such as Strongly Disagree to Strongly Agree reading left from right. Be consistent in your rating scales throughout your survey, whether they read from low to high or vice versa.