Have you noticed that Google appears to want to challenge Microsoft more and more as time goes by? Remember when Microsoft Office used to be the only game in town at one time and the ubiquitous Word software was on everyone’s screen? Today, Google Docs has a suite of word processing and analytical programs that you can access very simply through your browser. While there are other options available and some custom made commercial software packages, if you want to create some online surveys right now you can do this rather easily by using Google Docs.
If you don’t yet have a Google account, get with it and sign up. This is really straightforward and free and you will be able to access a host of their services including the awesome Google Analytics, AdSense, AdWords, GMail etc. When you have created your account, you can navigate to Google Docs, which for future reference is located at docs.google.com.
Within the menu you will see that you can open a variety of different documents including spreadsheets, but you should choose “form” and either create your own or use a template. Title your survey and provide a description to give instructions to your target audience and help them understand what you’re looking for.
A number of questions may be posed, together with accompanying help text if necessary and you should then specify what type of question you are asking – is it text, paragraph text, multiple choice, “scale” or check box? If you require them to answer that particular question as part of your survey, check the box accordingly.
As you complete your questions, you can re-order them and move them around to your heart’s content. It is a good idea to save your work as you go. When you get to the end, you can edit the confirmation message sent to your survey participants, should you wish.
Once your survey is complete you have the option of e-mailing it, either as an embedded option or as an accessible URL that you can distribute. You can embed the code on your website, as well.
Participants complete the survey and Google stores the results within a spreadsheet. You may find that you want to edit your form as you review some of the information that is coming in, and this option can be accessed by clicking “edit form” while you browse your returns.
The layout is designed to be very straightforward and user-friendly and you will find that you can have your survey up and running in no time at all. Google to the rescue once again.
Surveys can be a powerful form of marketing and are generally quite popular with consumers. This is a way to spur interaction and to get feedback at the same time to help you improve the quality of your product or service.
Do you complete surveys or just click somewhere else?