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Costs Per Survey Response. Tyson Fujikawa Ryan Palmer Nadia Vega. Different Types of Surveys. Internet Drop-off Questionnaire Self-administration Fax Mail Telephone Personal Interviews. Advantages Low cost Requires minimal staff Respondents have time to give thoughtful answers

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costs per survey response

Costs Per Survey Response

Tyson Fujikawa

Ryan Palmer

Nadia Vega

different types of surveys
Different Types of Surveys
  • Internet
  • Drop-off Questionnaire
  • Self-administration
  • Fax
  • Mail
  • Telephone
  • Personal Interviews

Low cost

Requires minimal staff

Respondents have time to give thoughtful answers

Respondent can accomplish on their own time


Internet users do not represent the population as a whole


Unrestricted internet sample (anyone who wants to complete the questionnaire can do so)

drop off questionnaire

Interviewer can explain the study

Response rates tend to be like those of personal interview studies

More opportunity for thoughtful answers


Costs about as much as personal interviews

A field staff is required

Drop-off Questionnaire
self administration

Ease of presenting questions requiring visual aids

Asking questions with long or complex response categories

Respondent does not have to share answers with an interviewer


Especially careful questionnaire design is needed

Open questions not useful

Good reading and writing skills are needed by respondents

Interviewer is not present to exercise quality control

fax surveys

Relatively low cost

Requires minimal staff and facilities

It is fast

Technology is improving

There is time for thoughtful answers

Can send and receive by computer

More reliable than mail in some countries


Costs increase with minutes

Cost varies by time on line, time of day, distance, and telephone carrier

Limited to organizational population

Loss of anonymity

Fax surveys

Relatively low cost

Requires minimal staff

Provides access to widely dispersed samples and samples that for other reasons are difficult to reach by telephone or in person

Time for thoughtful answers


Various disadvantages of not having interviewer involved in data collection

Need for good nailing addresses for sample


Lower costs than personal interviews

Random-digit-dialing (RDD)

Shorter data collection period

The advantages of interviewer administration (in contrast to mail surveys)

Required smaller staff which is easily managed

Likely better response rate from a list sample than from mail


Sampling limitations (omit those without a phone)

Nonresponse associated with RDD sampling is higher than with interviews

Limits on response alternatives, use of visual aids, and interviewer observations

Possibly less appropriate for personal or sensitive questions if no prior contact

personal interviews

Most effective way of enlisting cooperation

Easier to probe for answers

Observation, visual cues, and self-administered sections are feasible

Rapport and confidence building are possible

Probably longer interviews can be done in person


More costly than alternatives

Trained staff of interviewers geographically near the sample is needed

Total data collection period is likely to be longer

Personal Interviews
hey listen up


This is when you get out your pens and write down this vital information. This is what our presentation is really all about…



Cost per Response

*Based on a numbers from 1997 (Marketing Research, 8th ed.)

in conclusion
In conclusion…
  • Survey costs depend on a multitude of factors which include:
    • Amount of professional time required to design the questionnaire
    • Questionnaire length
    • Geographic dispersion of the sample
    • Availability and interest of the sample
    • Callback procedures
    • Respondent selection rules
    • Availability of trained staff…etc