Mobile surveys: What they are and why they’re important

From shopping online to looking up directions to talking to friends on social media, people use mobile phones throughout each day for a variety of basic purposes. In fact, 70 percent of the total time Americans spend engaged with digital media is on mobile phones. And worldwide, there are a whopping 6.8 billion smartphone users — an impressive number considering that the world’s population is roughly eight billion.

So, when organizations — regardless of the industry they’re in — want to gather feedback from consumers, it only makes sense to tailor the survey for mobile devices. It’s not only convenient for consumers since they’re frequently on their phones, but it also helps the surveying organization get a higher response rate.

“Creating a mobile-optimized survey can be a great way to ensure that you get the most accurate and valuable feedback from your target audience,” says Noel Griffith, CMO of SupplyGem, a website that offers reviews of digital business platforms.

In this article, we look at what mobile surveys are, how organizations use them, and how to create them using Jotform.

The background on mobile surveys

In the simplest terms, a mobile survey is a survey that respondents complete on a mobile device, such as a smartphone or tablet. However, there’s a little more to this interaction than meets the eye.

True mobile surveys are designed to be displayed and completed on mobile devices, meaning they’re mobile-optimized in all respects. Their structure, design, and content all take the mobile user experience into account.

Mobile-optimized surveys are short, typically composed of no more than a handful of questions. The text is clear and easy to read on a small screen. The questions included in a mobile survey are usually in closed-ended formats, like in multiple-choice or yes/no. This makes it easy for the respondent to answer, as they don’t have to type in any text.

The visuals in a mobile-optimized survey follow suit: They should be appropriately sized for the screen. In addition, any buttons within the mobile survey, such as the submit button, should be large and touch-enabled so the respondent can easily tap them with a fingertip.

“You’ll want to consider the overall design of your survey,” says Griffith. “Make sure it looks good [in] both portrait and landscape mode, and use intuitive buttons and navigation controls so that users can easily answer questions and move through the survey.”

Examples of mobile surveys

When you’re creating mobile surveys, it’s vital to consider the internet speeds at the locations where users will be accessing the survey.

“Make sure that the survey is optimized for speed,” says Griffith. “Mobile devices often have slower internet speeds, so it’s important to keep your survey short and optimize it for faster loading times. Additionally, you should consider making the survey optional for users who are on slower connections.”

There are many different use cases for mobile surveys. They are particularly useful for these purposes:

  • To get real-time responses: Mobile surveys are great for getting real-time feedback at events. A speaker can prompt and guide guests to answer survey questions during the event, and the speaker or the event organizers can tabulate their responses and show them live at the event. For example, in a lecture, a professor can ask students questions as the class listens to or discusses the course material, and the students can answer via their mobile phones.
  • To pose a single question: If an organization has one question they’re focusing on, a mobile survey is ideal for getting customer feedback. It’s simple and quick, encouraging people to respond. Categories for this type of survey can include customer satisfaction and customer experience. For example, a public library may ask patrons a question as they’re leaving — on a tablet placed right next to the exit — about how satisfied they were with their experience that day.
  • To gather action-triggered feedback: When a customer has completed an interaction with a business, such as making a purchase at a store or attending an appointment at a clinic, the business can immediately send them a mobile survey. This encourages the customer to fill out the survey while the business is still top of mind. For example, shortly after a massage therapy session, the client can answer a satisfaction survey on their smartphone.
  • To collect location-specific data: In some industries, employees and customers need to be on site for specific business processes, such as inspections or approvals. With mobile surveys, both parties can collect the necessary data for the business process without having to lug around a laptop. For example, in real estate, a customer may provide feedback to a realtor about a location they visited.

Jotform: The effective way to create mobile surveys

No matter what kind of survey you need to create, you can optimize it for mobile with Jotform Mobile Forms. Jotform offers hundreds of mobile survey templates, simplifying data collection on the go for everything from customer satisfaction surveys to event surveys and more.

Each template is designed for use on mobile devices. Not only are the text, design, and structure of the form optimal for a smartphone or tablet, but users can also add geolocation tags and upload pictures to the survey.

Griffith offers some final advice for mobile survey success: “It’s important to keep the survey focused and relevant. Don’t ask questions that are off topic or irrelevant to what you’re trying to learn. Make sure you’re asking for specific feedback about the topics you’re interested in, and make sure that the questions are relevant to the user’s experience.”

Photo by Paul Hanaoka on Unsplash

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