Branching, or redirection, is a technique during a questionnaire’s construction which allows you to lead respondents around different parts of a questionnaire, according to how they have answered it so far. This allows you to create a much more complex questionnaire, and a more fluid experience for your respondents, keeping them engaged!
Eval&GO allows a number of different types of branching: basic branching, advanced branching, hide/show trigger (same page), and hide/show logic (between pages). In this post I will go over each of these different branching types and briefly show how they can be used and how to integrate them to your questionnaire.
This form of branching allows you to send a respondent to another page according to their answer to a question (ex: if the answer to question 2 is “yes” then redirect to page 3). You can also use this type of branching to redirect the respondent from page to page without following a sequential order (ex: if page 3 answered then redirect to 5).
An example of how this can be used: Let’s say that you sell 3 products and you wish to know your clients satisfaction by embedding a survey into your company’s website. Instead of creating three separate questionnaires you can create a single questionnaire and include Basic Branching.
Click on this questionnaire to see this process in action. First choose “Product A” and complete the questionnaire, then click on the link above again this time select “Product B”. You will find that the type of product you choose takes you through distinct paths within the questionnaire.
In this way your respondent will only see questions that pertain to their situation.
Here is a video tutorial for this type of branching (there’s a bit of bla-bla – about 25 secs – at the beginning of the clip which you already know from reading this post so you can skip it if you want):
This type of branching allows you to establish complex branching logics tailored to your specific needs.
You can – for example – add branching logics to each page of your questionnaire. These logics can be as simple or as complex as your survey needs are.
For example you can keep it simple: “IF the respondent scores their satisfaction for product X as less than 5 out of 10 THEN the respondent will be redirected to page 3”.
Or you can make it more specific and complex:
Mrs. Jones answers that she likes dogs, that she frequently uses the city’s public parks, and she notes her satisfaction of these parks and the services available to be 3 out of 10. She is redirected to page 5 where she is asked a series of questions to determine the source of her dissatisfaction as well as questions concerning changes she would like to see in the parks.
Mr. Smith responds to the same questionnaire and answers that he has no pets, that he rarely visits the city’s public parks, and indicates his satisfaction to be 6 out of 10 concerning these parks and their services. He is branched to page 6, where he is asked whether he would like to give his email in order to receive a newsletter containing additional information on the events and happenings related to the public parks in his area. He is then redirected to the end of the questionnaire.
In this example the logics are: “IF yes to pets AND visits parks regularly AND satisfaction of less than 5 out of 10 THEN send respondent to page 5. IF no pets AND doesn’t visit parks regularly AND satisfaction superior to 5 out of 10 THEN send respondent to page 6. And IF page 6 completed THEN redirect to the end.”
It is really important to test the questionnaire before sending it to respondents to make sure that they won’t run into problems while filling out their survey.
There are infinite ways to make this type of branching work for your survey creating needs, so be creative!
Here’s a video tutorial for Advanced Branching:
Hide/Show Trigger (on the same page):
This type of branching can show or hide a question according to the response to a trigger question on the same page. This can also be seen as asking a question within a question, meaning that instead of having follow-up questions which begin with “If yes, then…” or “If no, then…” you can simply set a branching condition that will show (or hide) the follow-up question depending on the answer to the previous question.
For an example, answer the question bellow:
This is the only type of branching that can be done on a single page. All other types of branching require a minimum of 2 pages.
Hide/Show Logic (between pages):
This branching type allows you to condition whether or not certain questions are shown on a page based on the answer to a question on previous pages.
It is the same concept as the aforementioned hide/show trigger branching type but between different pages.
Branching is an extremely useful tool to optimize your questionnaire and improve your respondent’s experience. It is therefore essential to anticipate their possible uses when building your questionnaire.
It is also extremely important to TEST all your branching logics and options! There’s no point adding branching logics to improve your respondent’s survey taking experience if it’s just going to get them stuck in a loop on page 2 because of a badly configured redirection.
You must test every eventuality of respondent responses to make sure that each respondent will be lead through the questionnaire exactly as you want them to and so that they don’t find any errors which would reflect badly on you or your company.
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