Better Feedback: Benefits of Using Open-Ended Questions in Surveys

Man answering a surveyCompanies gather feedback by conducting a product or service survey. However, when they rely mainly on closed-ended questions to drive the survey, they limit the freedom of their respondents. Thus, companies miss the opportunity to obtain unique valuable opinions. MyView suggests balancing the use of open-ended and closed-ended questions to maximise the effectiveness of their survey.

In addition to attaining useful opinions, there are other reasons why including open-ended questions can improve feedback quality:

Collects More Details

Open-ended questions allow respondents to answer a question in as much detail as they please. This could lead to more useful information and actionable insight. Researchers who review these survey responses may discover unique and unexpected responses that were previously not on their company radar. Knowledge gathered from this has the potential to boost a brand or improve a product or a service.

Empowers Respondents

Open-ended survey questions draw out the respondent’s thoughts, making them feel confident about expressing their opinion. They will not be afraid to speak their mind and report a bad experience or share a good one. In addition, a bond of trust is built between a business and their consumers.

Gathers Contextual Information

When respondents are asked to explain their answers, they may reveal mental models such as beliefs, hopes, fears, and problem-solving strategies that could be used in a secondary analysis. With this information, the research team can help the company calibrate their products and services to their target market.

Promotes Critical Thinking

Open-ended questions make respondents think on their feet and answer the questions seriously. It prevents respondents from disregarding the questions by simply completing the survey with the same answers.

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Open-ended questions are effective in gathering honest and valuable customer feedback. Businesses who will disseminate surveys in the future should keep these benefits in mind when formulating their questions.