What is an Online User Survey?


What is a user survey?

An online user survey is similar to a structured interview with users but completed online and without an interviewer. A list of questions is displayed online and users’ responses are recorded.

 When should it be used?

Online user surveys can be used anytime during a product or website design and development lifecycle. They are a fast and affordable way to collect large amounts of data from a large number of participants. However, it is helpful to have very specific questions that need to be answered and you should be more interested in collecting the who and what such as demographics and quantifiable opinions, preferences, and/or behaviors as opposed to learning the why.

Results can be used to help inform product and website design based on users’ or groups of users’ responses. Online user surveys are used to determine demographic information to better detail the user population. They can also focus on users’ opinions and overall impressions or be used as benchmark studies.  For example, the same online user survey can track opinions over time by being launched every year.

 What do you get?

The output from a user survey typically includes a report that details:

  • The primary goals of the user survey
  • Questions asked to achieve those goals
  • Findings in terms of answers to the survey questions, common themes, and trends
  • Descriptive statistics as well as tabular and graphical displays to help clarify findings
  • Recommendations based on findings