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  • Writer's pictureAnpar Research

Mobile Survey: Everything You Need To Know

Updated: Mar 26

A person providing feedback via a mobile survey on their smartphone

Mobile phones have become a key part of everyone's daily lives and are more extensively used for different purposes than just making phone calls and texting from uploading videos to social media, online search queries or making contactless payments. So, it is crucial to tap into this for feedback and research by conducting a mobile survey to reach and engage with your key audience.

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What is a mobile survey?

A mobile survey is where a targeted group of individuals answer survey questions using a mobile device, whether that is a mobile phone or tablet as long as the survey is optimised to display on mobile devices otherwise known as Mobile First.

Mobile surveys can be accessible to a wide audience who are likely to respond to these surveys as the number of mobile users continues to grow worldwide and who are adopting multiple uses with these devices such as social media or taking pictures.

What is an advantage of mobile surveys?

Accessibility in reaching a large audience is an advantage of mobile surveys but there many more benefits of using a mobile survey, which are highlighted below.

Enables you to access hard to reach groups

As mentioned earlier as there is a growing number of people using mobile devices, you are able to reach younger audiences who are more receptive to technology, so mobile surveys make it easier to contact them whereas it is more difficult reaching this audience via desktop surveys.

Adapts to all screen sizes

Just a follow on from the above point, mobile surveys can be used for all screen sizes providing these surveys are optimised to display on mobile devices. While standard online surveys have tended to be more suitable for laptops or desktop computers but have struggled to appear correctly on mobile devices and certain questions may not work properly especially large visuals.

Easy to use and distribute

Mobile surveys are great in capturing feedback from respondents, while they on the move as this type of survey is compatible with any mobile device, so individuals taking part can complete these surveys at their own convenience and don’t need to be at a computer. Distribution of these surveys is easy to do as well via SMS, email, website pop-up, social media, QR codes and push notifications.

Better response rates

As people carry around mobile phones all the time, it makes it a very convenient way for the surveys to be completed at any time as well as reaching all audiences thus a higher response rate compared to more standard online surveys. This is particularly true if you can make these surveys more engaging with the tools available and even include your own branding, so these respondents have a better user experience when answering your questions.

Faster responses

As mobile surveys are much shorter than traditional surveys, you tend to get a better response as mentioned above but with the additional benefit that you can collect and analyse results in real time rather than waiting, so you can take action sooner.

How are mobile surveys used?

There are a variety of ways mobile surveys are utilised, whether that is for market research or feedback, below are just some examples of how mobile surveys are used by businesses and organisations.

Post product feedback

Where after a short period of time after purchase, customers are asked to provide feedback either via a downloaded app, email or SMS (mobile survey invite) to give their thoughts and review of the new product.

Restaurant and food delivery order feedback

Customers are prompted to give their feedback after mobile payment through a QR code or sent a message regarding the meal, service and delivery time.

Research trackers

For continuous research trackers of consumer product or service brands, mobile surveys are an ideal way to improve response rates and receive results quicker over time, particularly if you are trying reach younger audiences or people in remote areas.

Ad hoc surveys

For these one-off surveys such as concept tests, pricing research, new product development and ad evaluations, using mobile surveys are great for the same reasons mentioned above in reaching all consumers and quicker results.

In-store experience

With the use of QR codes or downloaded apps, you can ask customers their feedback, while they are in the store on their overall experience, reasons why they visited, tag their location and other aspects of their shopping experience.

Video diaries

Recording videos of their experience with a brand such as product reviews and you see visually the products, the shop and copy of their receipts to give context to what they are saying.

Website feedback

This is through pop-ups that come up when visiting a website via your mobile phone and are asked for your feedback about the website, whether it is easy to navigate or the visual appearance of the site along with reasons for visiting and how they heard about the website.

Customer service feedback

This could be based on your experience in-store or over the phone with a sales representative, which tend to be post purchase feedback on the overall service you received.

9 Tips in using a mobile survey

The following are 9 tips to keep in mind when using a mobile survey:

1. Keep the overall length of the survey short

People have a limited attention span especially when using their mobile for a survey, so the ideal length for this type of survey tends to be 3-4 minutes but should be no more than 10 minutes, otherwise you will have many people dropping out.

2. Questions should be short and simple

Questions should be easy to understand and concise especially as there is not much room available on a mobile screen.

3. Ensure the surveys are touch screen enabled

You need to ensure the surveys are touch screen enabled in order to be suitable for different screen sizes.

4. Minimise the amount of scrolling

Limit the amount of scrolling the respondents will need to do in order to answer each question.

5. Avoid large images

It is best to avoid large images otherwise you will not only be able to see the image clearly in portrait view where you need to scroll in any direction but also the file size may prolong download time. If you are having difficulty showing an image clearly, it’s best to add an instruction at the start of the question to ask the respondent to rotate their mobile screen to landscape to see the picture more clearly.

6. One question should appear at a time

Keep it limited to one question at a time as you cannot get away with multiple questions on one mobile screen as you may do with a survey on desktop.

7. Limit the number of open-ended questions

As these types of questions are open for respondents to give their opinion, this can take some time so it’s best to keep the number down to 1 or 2 opened ended questions.

8. Keep away from matrix style questions if you can

It's best to stay away from matrix style questions if possible because these questions may work well on desktop computers but these large grids are not compatible for mobile screen sizes, so it’s best to break this down into smaller chunks for the respondent to digest this information and respond.

9. Make sure to test the mobile survey

It’s best practice to test a mobile survey a number of times before you launch the survey. You can spread the task of testing amongst your family, friends and colleagues to ensure your survey works properly and identify any issues early on to resolve.

Hope you enjoyed reading this article and if you are interested in running your own mobile survey, why not check out the 5 best survey maker platforms to consider using which enable you to do mobile surveys easily and much more.



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