The methods used to collect survey datahave evolved with time. Researchers have increasinglymoved away from paper surveys to using smart, online surveys. Each survey data collectionmethod has it’s pros and cons and the researcher has to in most cases, use different methods tocollect the requisite data from a sample.The survey response ratesof each of these methodsvaries as multiple factors like time, interest, incentive etc. play a role in the datacollectionprocess.In the section above, we have looked at survey data collection methodson the basis ofdesign, cross-sectional surveysand longitudinal surveys. In this method, we will look at the fourmain survey data collection methods on the basis of their actual implementation. They are:Online surveys: Online surveyshave now become the most widely used survey datacollection method. This method is now widely being used because the reach of the surveys hasincreased to wherever there is internet access, which is everywhere. There is no limit tothe types of questionsthat can be asked in online surveys and the data collection and dataanalysisis now structured and easy to manage. The survey response rate of online surveys isvery high compared to other survey mediums.Telephone surveys:Telephone surveys are a cheaper method than face-to-face surveys andless-time consuming too. Contacting respondents via the telephonic medium requires lesseffort and manpower but the survey response rate could be debated as respondents aren’tvery trusting to give out information on call. In this survey data collection method, theresearcher also has less scope to digress from the survey flow.Face-to-face surveys:Face-to-face surveys are on the most widely used methods ofsurvey data collection. The survey response ratein this survey data collection method isalways higher because the respondent trusts the researcher since it is in-person. The surveydesignin this research methodis planned well in advance but there is so scope to digress tocollect in-depth data.Paper surveys:The least used survey data collection method that is now being usedmostly in field research, are paper surveys. Since they are logistically tough to manage and
tough to analyze, researchers and organizations are moving away from using this method.These surveys can be used where laptops, computers and tablets cannot go and hence they usethe age old method of data collection; pen and paper.Survey Data AnalysisWhen you conduct a survey, you must have access to its analytics. While manual surveys basedon pen and paper or excel sheets require additional man-power to be analysed by experienceddata analysts, it becomes much simpler when using an online surveyplatform.
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