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Nine things to know about app vs. email in survey notifications

Dead End Signs

Email can hurt you.

No, we’re not talking about certain Democratic party luminaries.  

We’re talking about market research, where email is the road to nowhere when it’s used to invite people to take surveys by clicking a link to an online questionnaire.

 Here are four facts documenting the dead-end dysfunctionality of email invitations:

  • Users of mobile devices open only about one third of the emails they receive.
  • Just one in 10 of those who open an email invitation will click to access the survey.
  • Consequently, only 3% of the potential mobile respondents approached by email are engaging with the survey. Even fewer will actually complete it.
  • A different study, by a division of IBM, shows the same 3% response or “click through” rate for emails received on all devices, not just mobile.

It doesn’t have to be that way. You can avoid driving down the dead-end street of email-enabled online research. Take the all-mobile, native app route instead, where app-based notifications for in-app survey-taking engages panelists at a far higher rate. 

Which leads us to the five other things to know in making the app vs. email comparison — then acting accordingly.

  • More than one million active panelists in the U.S. have MFour’s Surveys on the Go® app on their smartphones or tablets.
  • They get their survey notifications with an in-app push.
  • The push arrives with a distinctive “ca-ching” – the sound of a cash register – which signals exactly what this is about: a chance to earn by taking a survey.
  • Consequently, 50% of those pushes get the reaction our clients want – engaged respondents embarking on their surveys, which 95% of them go on to complete. 
  • Result: App-based mobile notifications are nearly 17 times more effective than email alerts (50% vs. 3%).

Conclusion: We’ll leave it to you.

For more on how mobile app surveys compare to online surveys, check out this essay in GreenBook by Michael Smith, our Chief Product Officer & Director of Panel.