A few months ago, an important symposium was held on device convergence and its effects on market research. The link between this an online survey appearance may not be immediately apparent, but it is definitely there. It isn’t that long ago that online survey content was stagnant. Respondents sat behind a computer and completed the survey and that was that. However, computers moved to laptops, laptops moved to Smartphones, Smartphones moved to tablets and so on.
If you are involved in online questionnaire content, it can be an absolute nightmare. You can no longer expect certain respondents to be on certain devices, so the online survey appearance has to be right for all devices. The distinctions between the various devices are blurring and it is believed that this will only get worse, which means online survey content has to follow suit.
If you are wondering how much worse it will get, consider that more than 70% of the population has a mobile phone. 7% of the world’s inhabitants access the internet through their mobile. In fact, it is believed that mobile internet will be greater than regular internet access within just a few years. This means that online survey appearance has to be right for these devices, but also for those on other pieces of technology.
The biggest problem with this is that it is almost impossible to accurately test the effectiveness and design of the online survey content across all the different types of devices. However, with changes in internet standards, it is believed that online survey content will soon be able to adapt to various devices, meaning designers no longer have to make manual changes. At present, however, the biggest problem remains around resolution and screen sizes, two very different but very important issues.