Questionnaire is the most popularly and widely used tool for collecting the primary data. It suits to any kind of research problem. In today’s marketing research activities, the questionnaire has become indispensable tool. It is not used only in marketing field, but also all types of social research projects.
Steps in Questionnaire Design
The task of composing questionnaire may be considered more an art than a science. It needs a great deal of experience, expertise, and creativity.
- Determine the Data to be collected.
- Determine the Method to be used for Data Collection.
- Evaluate the Contents of the Question.
- Decide on Type of Questions and Response Format.
- Decide on Wording of Questions.
- Determine on Questionnaire Structure or Physical Format.
- Pretest, Review and Final Draft.
Types of Questionnaire
Questionnaire can be classified on the basis of several criteria as stated below
- On the basis of structure and distinguishes, there are four types of questionnaire:
(i) Structured Undisguised
This type of questionnaire involves structured and undisguised questions. Response is limited to certain options. A structured means that answers of the questions are predetermined. Respondents have to select answer from the given list of answers. Undisguised means questions are open-ended. They are asked directly. Respondents can know what the researcher wants to know. For example, there are four products a, b, c, and d. Customers are asked to select the most preferred product.
(ii) Unstructured Undisguised
Unstructured means free questions are asked. Their response is not limited to certain answers only. They have full freedom to answer the question. In short, answers of the question are not decided in advance. For example, customer is asked to name the most preferred products in particular category.
(iii) Structured Disguised
Structured means the answers of the questions to be asked are determined in advance. Disguised means indirect way of asking questions. Customers do not know the exact purpose/intension of question but can answer easily. For example, which of the following products is more harmful? Why?
- Unstructured Disguised
Here, the response is not fixed. Respondents have full freedom to answer the question. Disguised means something hidden. For example, which motorbike is more risky? Why?
- On the basis of use/purpose of questionnaire, there are three types of questionnaire
(i) Questionnaire for Personal Interview
This questionnaire is prepared to administer for personal interview. It may involve more questions and indirect questions which requires explanation or clarification.
(ii) Questionnaire for Telephone Survey
This questionnaire is prepared to collect information via telephone. Obviously, such questionnaire involves a limited number of short and simple questions.
(iii) Questionnaire for Mail Survey
This questionnaire it meant for the mail survey. This questionnaire is sent to respondents with a request to return it dully filled. It also involves short and simple questions. However, it consists of more questions.
- On the basis of administration, there can be two types of questionnaire:
(i) Interviewer-administered Questionnaire
When this questionnaire is to be administered, the presence of both interviewer and respondents is essential. Here, questions are asked to respondents one by one. Their response is recorded either in the same questionnaire or in the separate form. For example, picture or cartoon are shown to respondents and are asked to describe it. Personal interview and telephone survey are based on this type of questionnaire.
(ii) Self-administered Questionnaire
It is given to respondent by the interviewer to fill in her/his answers. This is possible even in absence of interviewer. For mail survey, this type of questionnaire is used.
- On the basis of type of questions, there can be two types of questionnaire:
(i) Simple Questionnaire
This questionnaire involves certain number of questions of the same type. It may involve only dichotomous, multiple choice, or otherwise. It has limited utility.
(ii) Multiple Questionnaires
Obviously, it involves variety of questions. Such questionnaire consists of certain questions of different categories. It is a popular questionnaire.