The proliferation of mobile devices has opened up a number of new opportunities for marketers to communicate with their customers.

We tend to focus mainly on m-commerce and mobile advertising as that’s where the bulk of the revenue is, but new data from eDigitalResearch shows that mobile is also a great way to conduct market research.

Around 10% of eDigitalResearch’s surveys are currently completed on mobile, a figure that has doubled since July 2011.

With this in mind, it interview 649 UK respondents through mobile devices to find out more about how mobile users are taking part in research studies.

It found that almost three-quarters (72%) of respondents had previously completed a survey on a mobile device and 82% said they were likely to take part in survey from their mobile in future.

A further 72% said they ‘strongly agree’ or ‘agree’ that it is more convenient for them to complete a survey on their mobile device.

While the results of this survey show that mobile is increasingly important in market research, you need to bear in mind that all the respondents completed the surveys on their mobiles.

This means the results are biased in favour of mobile users and they are likely to be far more positive about mobile surveys that the general population.

Best practice for mobile research

Like mobile shoppers, mobile survey respondents rate functionality and usability above the design, layout, look and feel of a survey. Almost three quarters of respondents (71%) believe that it is ‘very important’ that pages load quickly.

In comparison, just 15% feel that a survey design that looks appealing is ‘very important’, and similarly 15% think that it is ‘very important’ that a survey design reflects a brand.

Feedback from respondents shows that 15% of mobile device users had struggled to complete surveys on mobile because of the use of Flash Player.

To avoid these issues and make mobile surveys more user-friendly eDigitalResearch has published the following tips:

  • Use condensed and unambiguous question text with simple and easy to understand answer set.
  • Make sure the layout has been clearly optimised and fits the screen.
  • Remove more complicated questions, such as drag and drop, from mobile optimised versions of a survey.
  • Use clear, large font that is easy to read, even when the screen is dimmed.
  • Don’t use content that relies on Flash Player.
  • Limit the number of text boxes to reduce the amount of typing required by respondents.