As mobile devices become more widely adopted worldwide, a staggering 91.68% of the population owns mobile phones, with an impressive 85.74% of them opting for smartphones. These versatile devices have seamlessly evolved into one-stop solutions, catering to a myriad of needs—ranging from online shopping, social interactions, and online banking to making restaurant reservations. However, their impact goes beyond personal conveniences, as mobile devices emerge as one of the most transformative tools in market research. The shift towards mobile surveys is undeniable within market research, with nearly 50% of surveys being completed on mobile devices, ensuring speed, reliability, and convenience for participants. This shift not only breaks barriers in data collection but also provides researchers with dynamic and engaging opportunities to connect with audiences and gather valuable insights.
Staying ahead in the market research landscape requires embracing methodologies that adapt to the preferences of today’s consumers. Given the substantial increase in surveys conducted through mobile devices, ensuring their mobile-friendliness is paramount. While mobile surveys offer unparalleled accessibility and convenience, acknowledging their limitations is important throughout the programming process. Factors such as screen size, data entry challenges, and potential distractions necessitate thoughtful considerations during survey design.
Our Global Head of Survey Programming, Miriam Haynes, and US Director of Quantitative Programming, Beth Waugh, at M3 Global Research weighed in on the fundamentals of mobile programming and provided their top five considerations to help optimise your surveys to be mobile-friendly. Building upon their expertise they explore considerations that should be taken to deliver responsive surveys, limit screen outs, and avoid survey abandons.
- Strategic Survey Design
- Mobile-optimised Question Types
- Progressive Profiling for User Convenience
- Attention to Load Times
- Responsive Testing Across Devices
The foundation of a successful mobile-friendly survey lies in its design. Miriam and Beth emphasise the importance of strategic survey construction, taking into account the constraints of mobile devices. This involves concise and clear questions, easy navigation, and a visually appealing layout that adapts seamlessly to varying screen sizes. A well-designed survey not only captures respondent attention but also minimises the risk of screen outs.
For an in-depth guide to survey design, explore our steps here.
Diversify your question types to suit the mobile environment. Utilising mobile-optimised question formats, such as slider scales, drag-and-drop, and tap-based responses. By aligning question types with the intuitive features of mobile devices, you enhance respondent engagement, reducing the likelihood of survey abandons.
Recognising the importance of user convenience takes centre stage, our experts advocate for progressive profiling. Rather than overwhelming respondents with lengthy surveys, employ a progressive approach by gathering essential information progressively. This not only ensures a smoother user experience but also decreases the chances of respondents abandoning the survey midway.
Mobile users value speed and efficiency. Miriam and Beth stress the significance of optimising survey load times. Large graphics and extensive multimedia content may slow down the survey, leading to frustration and potential drop-offs. Prioritise quick-loading elements to maintain respondent interest and prevent premature survey exits.
Beth and Miriam underscore the necessity of thorough testing across various mobile devices. From smartphones to tablets, ensuring that your survey functions seamlessly across different platforms is crucial. Conduct rigorous testing to identify and address any compatibility issues, guaranteeing a consistent and reliable experience for all respondents.
As we navigate the intricacies of mobile-friendly surveys, Miriam Haynes and Beth Waugh's insights provide a compass for researchers seeking to craft impactful and adaptive research methodologies. Strategic survey design and programming considerations outlined above serve as the foundation for a future where mobile devices play a central role in shaping the landscape of market research. In a world where nearly 92% of the global population owns mobile phones and a significant portion opts for smartphones, the need for mobile-friendly research methodologies is more pressing than ever.
By integrating strategic survey design principles, considering mobile-optimised question types, embracing progressive profiling, optimising load times, and conducting responsive testing across devices, researchers are not just adapting to the present but are actively shaping the future of market research. These considerations, rooted in a deep understanding of mobile user behaviour and preferences, lay the groundwork for more efficient, engaging, and reliable data collection.
Talk to our experts about optimising your survey for mobile.