Getting the most out of Survey Data Collection cvr

Mastering Survey Data Collection: Strategies, Channels, and Analytics

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In the dynamic landscape of today’s information-driven world, decision-makers rely heavily on data to guide their choices. Survey data collection stands as a cornerstone in this quest for valuable insights. Whether for market research, academic studies, or organizational improvements, surveys provide a structured method to gather information directly from the source – the people. In this blog, we delve into the intricacies of survey data collection, exploring its significance, methodologies, challenges, and emerging trends.

What is survey data?

Survey data is a collection of responses obtained from individuals or groups who participate in a structured set of questions designed to elicit specific information. These responses, often numerical or categorical, are then analyzed to draw conclusions, identify trends, or make informed decisions. The types of questions in a survey can vary widely, encompassing everything from demographic information to opinions on specific topics.

There are several channels available that can be used to gather feedback and survey data from your target demographic or pool of respondents. For a holistic research process, researchers typically prefer using multiple channels for survey data collection. These channels can be face-to-face, online, or over the phone. Typically, channel usage depends on the demographic you wish to survey, with each segment responding differently to various channels. 

The effectiveness of the data you gather can depend on several factors – 

  • How did you contact your respondents? 
  • How much information do respondents have about the survey? 
  • What channel did you use for which demographic?

Methods of survey data collection based on channels

Initially, surveys were paper-based, with people filling in their responses manually. With advancements in technology, researchers could get feedback via telephone (CATI Surveys), and then via online surveys. Online surveys could be divided into email surveys, standard online surveys, app integrated surveys. Each survey has varying levels of effectiveness depending on the demographic they’re employed with.

Survey response rates also depend on the channel used as well as the respondent demographic. Researchers must choose their channel according to the target demographics’ characteristics.

Getting the most out of Survey Data Collection

Let’s look into how to collect survey data using these three methods.

01. Online Surveys

Online surveys are one of the most widely used methods for researchers to collect feedback. They are the most cost-effective solution and can reach the largest number of respondents as well. They excel in scenarios where respondents are unguided and need to answer multiple questions.

Today’s online survey software allows for complex branching logic, which can help refine the quality of feedback one can get from a survey. They typically take less time to answer and complete and require a smaller investment (although that can vary on a case-by-case basis).In the digital age, online surveys have become a cornerstone of data collection. Platforms like Voxco, SurveyMonkey, Google Forms, and Qualtrics facilitate the creation and distribution of surveys through the internet. Online surveys offer several advantages:

  • Reach: They enable researchers to reach a broad audience quickly and cost-effectively, transcending geographical boundaries.
  • Convenience: Respondents can participate at a time that suits them, fostering higher response rates.
  • Automation: Online platforms often offer automated data collection and analysis, streamlining the research process.

Voxco’s online survey platform allows researchers to view results in real-time, which can help them make decisions and judgments on the fly. 

An example of an online survey in use would be when a buyer is prompted to partake in an NPS® survey or CES survey after a transaction with an e-commerce website. With the right feedback management platform at your disposal, online surveys are safe and can synchronize data seamlessly with your servers.

02. Telephone Surveys

Telephonic or CATI surveys may require more investment than online surveys but can deliver exact results. Telephonic surveys typically require less effort, manpower, and financial backing than face-to-face surveys. 

In fact, this survey methodology has proven to be extremely effective since the Covid-19 pandemic started. People in isolation, desperate for human contact, were far more receptive to participating in CATI surveys than they would be previously. These surveys require a skilled interviewer, but with arranged, one can get respondents to divulge feedback, which they would otherwise be unwilling to do via other mediums. 

Despite the rise of online methods, telephonic surveys remain a viable option. This method involves researchers contacting respondents via phone calls to conduct interviews or administer surveys. Key advantages include:

  • Direct Communication: Telephonic surveys allow for direct interaction, enabling researchers to clarify questions and gather more nuanced responses.
  • Accessibility: This method is suitable for populations with limited internet access or technological proficiency.

Telephonic surveys are more conversational in nature and, therefore, can be extremely useful for social research.

03. Face-to-face surveys

This is an excellent technique for researchers to get honest feedback directly from respondents. People are usually willing to open up to professionals and provide honest responses. Skilled interviewers can understand when people are uncomfortable answering certain questions and can guide them through the process. 

However, face-to-face surveys are extremely manpower intensive and are costly as well. Depending on the target demographic of respondents, researchers may need to train and acclimate themselves in order to get better feedback. For in-depth data collection, face-to-face interviews provide a personal touch. Researchers meet with respondents in person to administer surveys or conduct structured interviews. This method offers:

  • Depth of Insight: Face-to-face interactions allow for more comprehensive responses, especially in qualitative research.
  • Flexibility: Interviewers can adapt the survey based on the respondent’s reactions and body language.

100+ question types, white labeling, advanced logic, multiple distribution channels, and more robust functionality.

Best practices to ensure successful survey data collection

Knowing different types of survey data collection and analysis methods can help you avoid errors and gather valuable feedback. However, it is best to learn how to make a good survey and ensure successful data collection. 

01. Make the survey design appealing

Respondents know that modern survey tools make it easy to design interactive and attractive surveys. If you want to have a high response rate, it’s essential to make the survey designs visually appealing. 

Leverage a platform like Voxco that allows you to design branded surveys and apply CSS customization to tailor the surveys to your own purpose and needs. 

02. Ask the right respondents

In order to gather the data you are seeking, it’s important to distribute the survey to people who fit your target audience. Whether you survey the actual group or representative group using an MR panel, like Voxco Audience, it’s essential that you identify and establish the right respondents based on the survey objective. 

For example, suppose the objective of your survey is to evaluate customer satisfaction with a particular product. In that case, you only need to survey the customers who bought the product instead of the whole customer base. 

03. Pay attention to your questions

The questions you ask are the key to helping you gather reliable and accurate data. You need to choose your survey questions wisely and make sure to word them properly. 

  • Don’t use ambiguous words. 
  • Don’t use technical jargon or acronyms. 
  • Ask one question at a time. 
  • Use neutral language to remove biased and leading questions. 

04. Use a survey platform that offers features to design exceptional surveys

To ensure a successful survey, it’s important to leverage survey data collection software that offers functionalities to enhance your research capabilities. For example, Voxco offers three survey modes – online, telephone, and offline. Each mode offers robust capabilities that improve research efficiency.

Determining survey method of data collection

While there are more types of survey data collection methods, we have explored three significant and most popular methods in our blog. Here, we will look into how to determine the best method of data collection and see what makes these three the best choices. 


  • Establish what you want to learn from your research and how the data will help you. 
  • Identify the ideal respondent population and create a representative sample. 
  • Determine how to collect survey data. 
  • Decide the type of survey questions to use based on the type of data you want to gather (qualitative or quantitative). 
  • Narrow down the list of questions and employ survey logic to make your survey relevant to each respondent. 
  • Test the survey to identify errors and flaws in the survey.

Methods of survey data collection based on the frequency of surveys

Depending on the frequency of your survey distribution, there are 3 types of surveys

01. Longitudinal surveys

There are surveys that can help researchers make observations and gather responses over an extended time period. Longitudinal surveys are both quantitative and qualitative by nature, and survey owners have zero say or influence in responses.

02. Cross-sectional surveys

These surveys are an observational technique for research. With cross-sectional surveys, researchers analyze data collected at a certain point in time from a sample demographic/population or pre-defined respondent base. This method collects survey data that can help researchers understand how and what respondents are feeling about the topic at hand. It is great for understanding opinions about situations, products, laws, etc. 

03. Retrospective surveys

In this type of survey, respondents are asked to report their recollections of events that have happened in the past. Retrospective surveys provide deep survey data in a short time frame. For example, asking travelers about their experience at a particular monument or tourist trap is a retrospective survey.

Analyzing data after survey data collection

Gathering data from respondents is only one-half of the equation. Analytics is what helps researchers make sense of the data and uncover insights. Voxco’s analytics tools can help researchers view survey data and generate reports for key stakeholders. 

A few methods for survey analytics are:

01. Trend analysis: 

This is a form of statistical analysis. It provides researchers with the ability to go through survey feedback collected over a set period of time. Trend analysis helps analysts and researchers gauge response data over time and draw a trend line of any changes noticed about the topic.

02. Conjoint analysis: 

With Conjoint analysis, researchers can analyze every variable behind a consumer’s purchase habits and behavior. With this method, one can easily understand what factors are important to customers and their considerations before purchasing. 

03. Cross-tabulation: 

Crosstabs are one of the most popular methods for data analysis. Researchers can use a basic tabulation framework to help them make sense of data. It is a statistical analysis method – it divides respondent data into rows and columns, making them easily understandable. This can help researchers observe similarities among varying attributes of their research. 

04. SWOT analysis: 

SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. It is a widely used statistical method for analysis. SWOT analysis infers insights from collected survey data and finds data that shows the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of the topic at hand. It allows analysts to understand how their product, service, or company stacks up against the competition. SWOT analysis helps organizations plan business strategies.

05. MaxDiff analysis: 

The MaxDiff analysis method is very similar to conjoint analysis, with the key difference being that it is easier to implement. It is used to understand customer preferences regarding a product or a service. Multiple parameters or attributes are considered in MaxDiff analysis. It is often referred to as the “best-worst” method.


The choice of survey data collection method significantly impacts the quality and reliability of gathered data. Each method discussed in this guide has unique strengths and weaknesses. Therefore, it’s essential to carefully consider research objectives to determine the most suitable method. Armed with these insights and best practices, researchers can embark on a journey to unlock the full potential of survey data collection.

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