Best Ways to Choose the Right Online Survey Incentives

What are the best ways of choosing the right incentives for your online survey?


  1. Analyze your budget
  2. The right incentive for the right population
  3. Method of delivery


Conducting a survey doesn’t always promise a high response rate. Just because you think you have a well-built survey that can gather useful data doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to do that. People may or may not answer your survey for several things like a lack of a clear purpose, difficulty, or just plain laziness. Always use your WordPress survey tool effectively. One tool you can use with it is the incentive tool.

Incentives are things that can motivate a given individual to do something which in this case is to answer your survey. What is common across different kinds of available incentives is that they all offer some sort of value to the person you are giving them to.

To help you boost your response rate from your online survey, here are some of the best ways to choose the right survey incentive.

Analyze Your Budget

Analyze Your Budget

For starters, your budget will be the most important factor to consider when choosing the right incentive for your online survey. You have to know how much money you are working with to find out what you can afford and what you can’t. Based on that, you can then set a quote for your response so that you do not accidentally go over-budget.

Here’s a good example: if you offer a redeemable gift certificate to your first 150 respondents then you need to make sure that no more than 150 can answer your survey. You can also try to make sure that starting from respondent number 151 onward won’t be able to see the incentive message.

Examine your budget, set a target, and make sure you reach that target while properly maintaining the response quota. That way you can have a feasible and controlled response rate that is operating within your budget (if you even have one).

The Right Incentive For The Right Population

Best Ways to Choose the Right Online Survey Incentives

After analyzing your budget, you need to decide if every respondent will get the incentive, or if only a certain population who passed a set of parameters will get it. That being said, there are different types and styles of incentives you can offer.

You can try going for a monetary incentive which can take the form of a gift check or a redeemable discount card for a certain store. Another form of monetary incentive is a donation. Usually, this would entail an amount to be donated to a certain charitable organization every time someone answers your survey. Tickets for a show or event are also not out of the question. It all depends on your budget (see above) or the target of your survey. Tickets to an opera will be more appealing to a lesser number of people than, let’s say, a discount card at a local boutique or department store.

Non-monetary incentives also exist, but they have a lower impact or value when compared to their monetary counterparts. This type usually takes the form of information such as data regarding the survey results or even access to an academic journal that your respondent didn’t have access to otherwise.

Analyze your target respondents and their size and adjust what you are offering accordingly. As long as what you are offering has some sort of value, then it could help you get a bigger response rate.

Method of Delivery

Method of Delivery


There are a lot of factors to consider when thinking about the method of delivery. First, you have to decide if your incentive is a guarantee or a lottery style. Studies have shown that lottery incentives have about the same impact as guaranteed ones. Do keep in mind that it can still affect the willingness of your respondents to answer your survey faithfully.

After that, you have to check if your incentive is easy to deliver and redeem. For example, a gift or discount code may be easier to deliver when compared to something like a brand-new pair of headphones. One can be sent digitally while the other needs some form of shipping or freight service. Again, it all still depends on your budget so try not to exceed that.

Key Takeaway


Incentives are effective tools to gather a bigger response rate from your survey. If you employ the tips stated above, then you may have a more successful time conducting your survey and getting quality data.

It’s important to note here that your incentive does not need to be expensive or pricey. You are almost always better off using a low-cost incentive to make your survey feel natural and rewarding instead of making it look like a bribe. Be as transparent and honest as possible, and be a man of your word and deliver your incentive once it’s time to do so.

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