How to Design a Great Survey - 10 Practical Tips

 How to design a great survey - 10 practical tips

A good survey is a great source of data. Survey questions play an important role in the success of a survey. We’ll dig into how to create good questions in this blog with 10 practical tips.

1. Keep your survey short

Don’t use more than 20 questions if you want to maximize the response rate of your survey. If a survey is longer than that, it’s quite hard to get busy people to take the time out of their day to finish the survey.

2. Keep the questions short

Questions should be short and concise. Make sure that the respondent can understand your questions easily, and avoid anything that could potentially be misunderstood.

3. Use statements instead of questions 

It's easy to answer by agreeing or disagreeing with a statement. It also makes the questions feel more personal to the respondent.


4. Ask yourself "why" upon adding each question

Only add questions that truly matter. Make sure your survey only includes questions that deliver the data that you need. And not just "nice to know" – data, but instead data that actually makes a difference when you make the decisions on what to improve in the future.

5. Avoid using ”and” in your questions

Only ask one thing per question. Here's a bad example: ”The customer service representative was kind AND professional.” What would you reply if she was kind but not professional?

6. Use different kinds of question types

Keep your respondents alert with different kinds of question types. Use sliders and two dimensional questions to keep the survey interesting.

7. Ask about importance

If you know what your respondents consider to be the most important, it helps you make much better decisions and sharpen your focus. If you ask about importance, your survey will actually become a prioritization tool.


8. Use the description field to add meaning

Keep the questions short but use the description field to help respondents understand the meaning of each question. This means that you can add descriptions to questions, explaining what you are after. This will help you get better data.

9. Group your questions

You can easily make the survey clearer by grouping questions. Smart grouping also decreases drop out rates.

10. Use free text questions

Even though free text questions should only provide back up data for the survey, they stand their ground in a survey. You might get good written points with free text that help you understand the main data better. The respondent might also have something they want to say, give them the opportunity to do so. Our pro tip: only use one free text question per survey.

We strongly recommend for you to measure employee enthusiasm instead of employee satisfaction. Download a free guide and a survey template!