Research on Research – Comparing Mobile and Online Qualitative Responses
Gilles Gauthier, vice president for Product Development at itracks, presented at the 2013 Market Research in the Mobile World North America conference that was held in Minneapolis, USA. His talk centered on comparing the various responses generated from market research conducted through mobile and online methodologies. Gauthier also discussed the effect of mobile technology on consumer engagement.
Gauthier’s IT background has helped him leverage user experience to encourage consumers in responding to mobile surveys. He then cites an itracks study that aims to understand how mobile impacts the way online qualitative data is collected, as well as to examine the impact of having an inevitably much-shorter mobile text response than one that is coursed through a web browser.
In the itracks study, both mobile and web-based options are offered to the participants, an approach termed by Gauthier as “organic growth with mobile”. With the freedom to choose how to reply to the market research survey, majority of the participants chose to go the mobile route. Interestingly, iOS participants opted more than twice the Android users. In terms of participation level, there was not much of a difference between mobile and online engagement.
After sampling 250,000 open-ended responses, text responses were observed to be shorter than their web-based counterparts, a finding that is pretty much predictable as typing on a small-screen device is not as easy as when using the computer. Another telling result was also discovered: mobile responses were an average 72 percent shorter than the length of web responses.
Since longer responses are likely to give a much deeper insight into the minds of consumers, Gauthier said that his firm thought of a possible resolution that is in line with helping participants become more comfortable typing their answers in a mobile device. The way the questions are phrased was also scrutinized.
To increase consumer engagement, moderators sent automated app notifications for follow-up questions. Moderators were encouraged to be vigilant and proactive in pinging automated app notifications to ensure a smoother back-and-forth discussion with the respondent.
All in all, the itracks presentation showed that knowing and adapting to mobile platforms preferred by consumers are keys to enhancing text-response rates.
You can view the full video presentation below