Survey Software Logic II
If you ask people to rank a series of items, sophisticated survey software will let you prevent people from picking the same answer twice – so no one can give the same rank to two or more items. There are two ways this could work. One is to ask people the number of the rank they wish to assign to each of several items and prevent the same number from being used more than once. If you’re doing a web survey, another option is to present the items to be ranked in a form in which they can be dragged and dropped into the desired order.
If you ask people to enter a series of numbers, you may find it helpful to have a logic instruction that checks the total of those answers. For example, if you ask people what percentage of their income they spend on X, Y and Z, it would be valuable to have your program check that the total of the answers do not add up to more than 100. Or if you ask farmers how many acres they farm and then how many acres they plant of corn, wheat and soybeans, a sophisticated program could check that the total of the acres of each crop do not exceed the total number of acres farmed.
Another valuable logic feature is the ability to limit which answer choices are shown for a question based on choices picked in an earlier question. For example, you could show people a list of health clinics and ask which they have visited in the past year. You could follow that up with a second question that shows only the clinics they didn’t pick and ask which of those they have ever visited. Or alternatively, you could ask people to rate the clinics they visited using a grid which only shows rows for the clinics they said they visited.
Yet another feature that can be very valuable in certain situations is the ability to perform calculations. These should be very flexible to let you meet a variety of needs. One example is creating an online test with calculations which add up the number of right answers to a series of questions.
These are just a few more of the ways in which sophisticated survey software can help you collect better data. A future blog will describe logic features specifically for advertising in concept testing.