by: Fausto Fratelli
Oct 14, 2021
8 min read

How to Create Online Market Research Surveys that Get Respondents Hooked


Online market research surveys are one of the quickest and most efficient methods of collecting actionable data and insights for your business.

As a brand, you’ll likely want to send out multiple online market research surveys during the development stages of your products, services or creative campaigns to ensure you’re keeping your target audience and their opinions at the forefront.

In order to do this successfully, however, you need to create surveys that consumers will actually want to complete – not only in the first instance, but time and time again. That way, you can remain right by their side throughout the customer journey.

In this blog, we’ve shared our expert top tips on how to write truly enticing surveys that your participants won’t be able to resist.

Recommended: How to use insight tools for better decision making

Here are seven tips for creating online market research surveys that’ll keep reeling your respondents in:

1. Give your survey an enticing name/title

Much like the subject line of an email marketing campaign or the headline on the cover of a magazine, the title of your survey is likely to be the first thing your respondents will see. 

So, make sure you spend some time making this as engaging (yet still informative) as possible. A few tips we would recommend implementing here include: 

  • Making your headline no longer than six words – According to Buffer, we only tend to absorb the first three words, so you need to make these count. 
  • Phrasing the header as a question  This is because a question “initiates cognitive processes associated with recall, accessibility, and elaboration of information.” 
  • Using the words “you” and “your” – This ensures that you remain customer-centric 
  • Accompanying the header with a relevant image – This will help participants understand your most important messages right at the start.
  • Using actionable words – This has been found to help to incite curiosity.

Here are just some examples from the OnePulse app:

2. Keep it short and sweet

Today’s consumers are exceptionally busy and often struggle to make the time to complete surveys. However, they still want the opportunity to be heard by their favourite brands! 

The solution here is to keep your surveys as short as possible. Shorter surveys are consistently found to have higher completion rates in the first instance. According to research by Survey Monkey, completions rates vs number of questions is approximately as follows:

  • 10 questions: 89%  
  • 20 questions: 87% 
  • 30 questions: 85% 
  • 40 questions: 79%

What’s more, they found that the more questions that are asked in a survey, the less time respondents spend answering each one, meaning that they’re less likely to be fully representative.  

So, being the busy people that they are, if your respondents know that your surveys will be short when they next crop up, they will be far more likely to want to fill them out again! This is why we keep our surveys here at OnePulse no longer than three questions per Pulse.

3. Gamify the process

Gamifying your surveys is a great way to not only increase your participants’ engagement in the process, but also make it a highly enjoyable and fun experience. Naturally, the more respondents enjoy your surveys, the more they’ll want to complete them!

There are a number of ways you can gamify your surveys. For example, you can include:

  • progress bars to demonstrate how close a participant is to finishing a survey 
  • leader boards to show off who has completed the most survey 
  • completion badges (such as after completing the first 10, 50, 100 surveys) 

Here at OnePulse, we’ve gamified our survey app by giving respondents “experience points” (XP) for each survey they complete. Participants “level up” and the greater the level they reach, the more cents they receive per survey.

Also, (although this probably goes without saying), offering rewards for your surveys is a sure-fire way to bring participants back time and time again!

Rewards that build up over time is a particularly effective method; for example, as mentioned above, as participants “level up” in the OnePulse app, the monetary rewards that they receive also increase.

4. Make your surveys user-oriented

Earlier on, we mentioned the importance of using “you” and “your” within your survey headlines to make them customer-centric. This is something you should also bear in mind throughout the rest of your survey if you want to keep your participants coming back!

Within your survey questions, ensure that you maintain a focus on your audience and their wants, needs and desires, as opposed to your brand’s.

For example, instead of saying:

“How can our designers make this packaging more appealing?”

You should say:

“How would you change this packaging to make it more appealing to you?” 

As a result, your participants will feel more important and valued by your brand. And they’ll be far more likely to continue supporting your brand by completing additional surveys in the future.

5. Use straightforward language

While using industry-focused words may make sense to you and your colleagues, this kind of jargon or terminology can be off-putting for participants who experience your products and services from the outside.

Therefore, communicating with your target audience in their everyday language will help you to build stronger, more trusting relationships with them.

What’s more, short, simple and clear questions will make it much quicker and easier for your audience to supply their answers, which will encourage them to continue filling surveys out.

For example, if you were conducting a study aimed at a younger audience around their thoughts on a fashion advertising campaign, instead of asking:

“Out of these different advertising materials created by our designers, which concept resonates with you the most?” 

 You should ask: 

“Which of these fashion posters do you like best?” 

6. Incorporate humour 

 Research has consistently shown that, in the appropriate context, humour boosts response rates in surveys, particularly among young adults. Therefore, don’t be afraid to give this a go! 

Some examples of using humour in your surveys include the following:

  • Puns – For example, “This question risks taking the biscuit, but… do you prefer custard creams or ginger nuts?” 
  • Alternative measures for scales – Instead of “On a scale of 1 to 10”, say “On a scale of “Eugh, no way” to “YES to all of this” 
  • Funny answer selections – so instead of answering “Yes” or “No” to the question “Do you know this brand?” you could have “Well, obviously!” or “Um… who?”

7. Share the results

As human beings, we frequently compare ourselves to others. This concept of “social comparison theory” is also an important consideration in your online market research surveys. To improve engagement over time, start by enabling participants to see the research results!

Again, this is something that can be easily achieved with the OnePulse solution, as it displays survey results via interactive pie and bar charts immediately after participants have answered all your questions.

Respondents can browse through results at the tap of their thumb and discover what percentages of people gave the same or different answers as them.

In summary, there are plenty of ways you can create online market research surveys that’ll get your respondents hooked.

What’s more, if you truly master these methods, you may even find that participants enjoy taking your surveys so much that they recommend them to friends and family, and subsequently expand your reach even further!

However, this does mean finding an online market research survey tool that will enable you to apply all these tips in the first place.

Throughout this blog, we’ve shared just a handful of the features the OnePulse consumer opinion solution With it, you can create truly enticing surveys that your respondents won’t be able to get enough of.

To learn more about OnePulse, book your free demonstration with our team today, or sign up so you can start creating irresistible Pulses right away!

Why wait to hear what your customer is thinking?