The Importance of Providing Respondents with an Opt Out Option

Different types of surveys are used to learn opinions and recommendations of target groups on products or services. There are different questions and answer options included in modern surveys. The opt out option is considered an important feature of surveys, especially in email surveys.

When respondents are sent surveys via email, they can choose whether to continue to fill them or ask to be removed from the list of people invited as survey respondents. There are two ways in which they can do that. They are opt out option variants.

The first is by clicking on the opt out link in the original message, as this link is uniquely connected with their email address. When recipients receive the confirmation email, they can choose to opt out of these surveys altogether, or only from the account that has sent the particular message. Another way is provided by links on company home pages – but such link provide only the global opt out option.

These two variants illustrate why it is important to provide respondents with the opt out feature on email survey software. Thus they are provided with more choices about survey filling, depending on their mood, needs, etc. Sometimes respondents would like to opt out of a particular survey only, if they feel it is not closely related to their needs, interests etc. However, they may be willing to continue to fill future surveys and contribute their opinions and suggestions. The first option outlined above meet such needs of respondents. In other cases, people who are invited to respond to surveys may be unwilling to do such surveys at all, and the global opt out option is the adequate solution for them.

Another benefit of the flexibility offered by the opt out option is that respondents may be provided with opportunities to sign up for survey responding again, when companies provide opt in and opt out links on their homepages. Opting in is also confirmed by email, and then such researchers’ address books and email lists are immediately updated to include the email addresses of respondents who have opted in again.

In recognition of the importance of the opt out option, most modern companies use remove links in invitation email messages sent to invite people to respond to surveys. The requests by respondents to unsubscribe, or opt out, are actively managed and duly processed, and then address books and email lists are updated to reflect the changes after the opt out requests have been processed.

No matter whether email surveys are sent internally, or with known audiences, the opt out link should be labeled, to give to respondents the possibility to opt out of future invitations for email surveys, if they prefer to do so. The wording of the opt out option can be customised according to the company conducting the survey, to impress audiences more effectively. But in all cases the opt out feature should be clearly marked in order to be easily visible by those who choose to opt out of a survey.

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