In this article you will learn how to:

Look to Engage

Clear, engaging surveys get the best results. Here is our guide to designing the perfect survey in Upsiide.

Start with an Exciting Introduction

Consumers are happy to provide their opinions, especially in categories they are passionate about. Help them feel excited to participate in your study right from the start.

  1. Let them know they were specially selected to participate

  2. Remind them that their opinion is important to you, and you want to hear it!

  3. Frame their “mission” – what are they going to see in your survey, and what will they be asked to do? Try to make it sound fun and exciting!

  4. Feel free to include images, or gifs to set the stage

Set the stage with an engaging introduction

Keep it Fresh

Upsiide makes it easy to include different question types, including a carousel-style grid question, emoji question, and open-ended questions, as well as swiping exercises. Include different types of questions to keep the survey from feeling monotonous.

Keep it Short and Focused

Give some thought to exactly what you are looking to get out of your study and challenge yourself to include only questions that are vital to that research objective. Leverage advanced screeners, as they will enable additional data filters without adding bulk to your study. Ask open-ended questions thoughtfully and sparingly (ideally fewer than 3) as these can be particularly taxing for respondents.

Use Images and Text Formatting

Upsiide includes the ability to easily add images to questions or answer options, as well as text formatting call attention to the most important question elements.

Use text formatting to make questions clear

Use images in question or answer text

Optimize Question Design

1. Don’t ask leading questions

Avoid question wording and answer scales that give more “real estate” to certain answers, as this will bias your results.

  • Don’t assume category usage, unless already established. For example, when asking frequency questions, include “if any” (e.g., “How many times a week (if any) do you drink coffee?”) this ensures all possible responses to be captured.

  • Ensure option scales are balanced to include a full range of answers and do not have more positive than negative responses.

To bring an objective perspective to your research, show your questionnaire to other people in your organization - they can help you identify where your question might be leading to a specific outcome.

2. Avoid “Double Barreled” questions

Ensure all questions measure only ONE thing, as double-barreled questions can be impossible to answer with a single answer set. For example: instead of asking “Would you purchase and eat this?” consider: “Is this something you would purchase?”.

3. Ensure question lists are exhaustive and do not overlap

Answer lists should be exhaustive of all possible scenarios (including never/none).

When in doubt, add an “Other specify” option to ensure the full breadth of answers are captured. “I don’t know/I don’t recall” answer options may also be relevant in some cases.

Ensure answer options do not overlap, this is especially important when defining time frames, for example: “When was the last time you purchased espresso coffee to make at home?”

  • Last week

  • Longer ago than last week, but within the past month

  • Longer ago than a month but within the past 6 months

  • Longer than 6 months ago

  • Never

4. Ensure questions are detailed and answerable

For example, questions like: “How much did you spend on cooking products for your kitchen last year?” are far too broad for consumers to answer meaningfully. Consider numerical open-ended answer types to capture numerical data and set a range for acceptable answers.

5. Use conversational, consumer language

Avoid industry jargon and keep it conversational, avoiding research terms:

  • Instead of “Do you intend to purchase?” try “Would you buy this?”

  • Instead of “shelf-stable snack foods” try “packaged snacks”

Review your survey

The BEST way to improve your survey is to put yourself in the respondent’s shoes and take the survey.

Upsiide makes it easy to preview your study, either from the screener, from the beginning of the main survey, or from any specific question onward. Don’t worry – none of the test responses will be collected, but it will give you a great sense of flow, clarity, and engagement.

In Upsiide you can also send the survey to others to test using the link sharing option. Send the survey to others for feedback, especially those who have a unique point of view on the topic and might have some ideas you had not considered.

Did this answer your question?