Whether you’re collecting data on your own for the first time or have hired a professional consultant, the validity of your research is dependent on the validity of your survey and its implementation. Below are 5 tips for obtaining useful and valid information.
1. Keep the words simple: Use words that are one or two syllables in length. Keep the use of technical or industry terms to a minimum. When you do use a technical or industry term, give a brief definition of it; do not assume that everyone you are surveying understands it.
2. Focus each question on one issue: You do not receive precise and actionable data from one question that deals with two or three issues.
3. Design some questions and answers with number values: Such questions lead to greater statistical analysis and validity.
4. Make the questionnaire look good: You may have a wonderful questionnaire that asks all the right questions, but if it looks crowded or the type is very small, most of your respondents will simply not answer it.
5. Sampling: Surveying a sample instead of your entire population allows you to obtain valid information at a reasonable cost. Plus, you can target a different group in the next survey.