Mobile web is a link-based survey that can be taken on a smartphone or a very basic mobile phone browser, such as those common throughout emerging markets. The mobile-web survey technique can be dispatched through a few different channels. The technique that GeoPoll uses most often combines SMS and web-based surveying. We send a single SMS text to potential respondents directing them to a webpage where they opt-in to complete the survey and self-report their answers. There are other ways to dispatch mobile web surveys, including through email and online advertisements such as on social media.

Mobile web’s reach within a country’s population depends on how the link is initially sent. If sent via SMS, those with basic mobile browsers can participate. However, surveys must be set up to be viewed correctly on all mobile browsers. Mobile-web always requires that participants have Internet connectivity or a data plan, which means that most respondents through mobile web, especially in emerging countries, are middle class or higher.

The chart below compares mobile web to the other modes that GeoPoll offers:

Survey Modes Comparison for Emerging Markets mobile web

In recent years, online surveys have become essential for businesses and organizations seeking valuable feedback from their customers and stakeholders. However, traditional online survey methods in many emerging markets are not always practical due to low internet penetration rates, limited computer access, and language barriers. That’s where mobile web-based surveys come in – a solution that enables researchers to reach a wider audience quickly and cost-effectively.

Link-based mobile surveys, in particular, have proven to be a cost-effective and efficient way to reach a large and diverse audience in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

So, what are the benefits of link-based mobile surveys, and how can you effectively conduct them in emerging markets? Let’s explore.

Benefits of Link-Based Mobile Surveys

  • Low Cost: Link-based mobile surveys are typically less expensive than other types of surveys, such as phone or in-person interviews. This is because there are no costs associated with travel, venue rental, or hiring interviewers. Additionally, online surveys tend to have a higher response rate, as they are less intrusive and can be completed at the respondent’s convenience.
  • Question Flexibility:  Mobile web surveys are popular because they allow for more complex question types, including video, picture, and matrix questions, and they are not character-limited.
  • High (and increasing) Reach: Mobile phones are pervasive in emerging markets, with many people owning smartphones or feature phones. Link-based mobile surveys can be sent via SMS, email, or social media, making it easy to reach a large audience.
  • Cost-Effective: Traditional survey methods can be expensive due to printing, mailing, and data entry costs. Link-based mobile surveys can be created and distributed quickly and at a lower cost, making it a cost-effective option for businesses.
  • Speed and Real-time Data: Link-based mobile surveys can be conducted quickly, with results available in real-time. This allows researchers to make data-driven decisions and adjust their strategies accordingly. GeoPoll provides dashboards for clients to monitor the progress of their field research projects in real time.
  • Increased Response Rates: Mobile web-based surveys offer an easy and convenient way for respondents to participate, increasing the likelihood of getting a higher response rate.
  • Scale and Diversity: Mobile web surveys can be conducted on a large scale, allowing researchers to reach a diverse audience across different regions and demographics. This is particularly useful for conducting research in emerging markets, where access to technology and internet connectivity can vary widely.
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Mobile Web Surveys made for Emerging Markets.

Alongside SMS and CATI, mobile web is one of the core modes that GeoPoll has built and perfected over the years in our work across Africa, Asia and Latin. Here are the factors we practically consider ensuring the success of the surveys.

First, it is essential to ensure that the survey is mobile-friendly. The survey should be designed with a mobile device’s screen size and capabilities in mind. It should be easy to navigate, and questions should be short and straightforward.

Secondly, mobile web surveys must be short and simple. In emerging markets, mobile data comes at a premium and the success of a mobile web survey largely depends on its design and length. Keep the survey short and straightforward to increase participation rates.

Third, it is important to consider the target audience. In emerging markets, it is crucial to consider the target audience’s language, literacy level, and cultural norms. The survey should be translated into the local language and pre-tested with a sample of the target audience to ensure the questions are understandable and locally appropriate.

Then, it is important to incentivize participants to complete the survey. Incentives can include cash rewards, airtime credit, or other non-monetary rewards. GeoPoll’s partnerships with mobile network operators enable us to incentivize our surveys immediately upon completion directly via mobile airtime or mobile money.

Finally, it is important to consider data security and privacy. Data security is a primary right, which more and more people are conscious of and more and more governments are enforcing. According to GeoPoll’s Chief Legal Office, Timur Nusratty, surveys should be run on reliable platforms and hosted on secure servers in a manner that complies with local data protection laws, which GeoPoll closely monitors. Participants should be informed of their rights and how their data will be used.

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How GeoPoll conducts Mobile Web Surveys

Questionnaire design – As stated earlier, the survey’s design can make or break its success. Guided by our client’s objective, the first step is questionnaire development. Fortunately, our mobile web platform supports multiple question types, including open-ended, matrix, video, picture, and select all that apply. It also allows for respondent screening survey routing, enabling us to add skip patterns and design complex surveys.

Sample – with the largest database of respondents across Africa, Asia and Latin America, GeoPoll can hyper-target most audiences for a survey by location and demographics such as gender, age, socioeconomic class, and more. We can also send the surveys to mobile phone numbers or email addresses provided by clients.

Survey sending – We mostly send out surveys via text messages, made possible and affordable by our direct integrations with most mobile network operators, with a link to the survey, which the respondents then complete the mobile web survey via a phone browser.

Data analysis – GeoPoll provides data in your chosen format, including pivot tables, raw data, written reports, custom dashboard visualizations, or infographics.

Mode fallback – Due to our mixed method capabilities, we can quickly fall back into other modes if we face challenges with mobile web.

To learn more about our capabilities for Mobile Web and other mobile-driven research solutions, do not hesitate to get in touch.