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In the world of surveys, research people know how essential it is to keep the response rates high and the drop out low. Actually, the average response rate for most online surveys, excluding internal surveys, is around 25%. This is a great percentage, especially when compared to telephone surveys, which usually have an average response rate of around 10%. Higher response rates are always the name of the game!


To achieve higher rates when surveying the general public, it’s important to find ways to motivate responders and keep them engaged during the sections of the survey. Nothing stimulates a responder to complete a survey more than the feeling that the questions are relevant to their lives and that they can proficiently express themselves with a properly designed and individualized survey structure.

Researchers know that developing dynamic survey questions can increase responder engagement by delivering questions customized to particular interests or characteristics. This creates an enjoyable and unique experience for each responder, which in turn results in a higher response rate.

PowerSurveyPlus, PowerObjects’ robust new surveying solution, can easily build dynamic surveys right from within a Microsoft Dynamics CRM system and send them directly to accounts, contacts or lead records. Using PowerSurveyPlus, users can add tags to survey questions and reference these tags when building expressions. Expressions show or hide predefined sections or questions based on a specific answer to a previous question.

In today’s blog, we will go through the process of creating dynamic surveys using PowerSurveyPlus in a hypothetical scenario.

Your company is hosting a training event. Lunch and beverages will be provided. You want to send a survey to your prospects in order to evaluate their interest in the event, ask about their preferences for possible topics to be covered, and survey their cuisine preference. You are planning to offer four different types of cuisine. Based on the responder’s preference, a specific menu will be displayed.

A Dynamic Survey in Action

On the first page of our survey, we ask only one question:

“Are you interested in Learning CRM?”

If the answer is No, the rest of the survey will not be displayed and the survey is considered 100% fulfilled.

If the answer is Yes, the rest of the questions will be displayed so that the responder can continue to answer them and complete the survey.

After the responder answers the questions, they click Next, and the second page of the survey will be displayed. The next set of questions will ask the responders to specify their cuisine preferences by selecting from a drop-down list of options.

As we did before, in the first window we will initially display only one question:

Based on the type of cuisine selected, the relevant food order menu will be displayed. For example, if Italian cuisine is selected, an Italian food menu will be presented, if Chinese cuisine is selected, a Chinese food menu will be presented, and so on and so forth for all the other cuisine options.

Building the Dynamic Survey using the PowerSurveyPlus Add-on

Now that you’ve seen a dynamic survey in action, let’s see how easy it is to build this survey through CRM using the PowerSurveyPlus add-on (read here how to import and use PowerSurveyPlus).

After creating and saving the new survey in CRM, a button labeled DESIGN will appear on the ribbon in the add-on, allowing us to use the survey designer with drag-and-drop functionality to build our survey.

After creating the survey pages and adding the relevant sections and questions to them, we will use the appropriate tags needed to build the expressions and branching in the survey.

Expressions are the key to the show/hide functionality in PowerSurveyPlus that we use to create dynamic surveys. Every page, section, or question can have expressions associated to it. An expression references a previous question on the survey by using the tag “Question Tag Name” and uses the answer provided to build the dynamic logic. An expression can only reference tags that appear before it on the survey. Let’s see how this all works!

For the first page of our survey, we will create a simple question, “Interested in Learning?” A radio button will display two options: Yes or No. We will use expressions to determine that if Yes is selected, the rest of the survey will be delivered, and if No is selected, the survey will end.

The logic for the first question on the first page is:

We need to add all of the questions to the first page, initially set the questions to invisible (do this by unchecking the Visible Check Box), and then set it so that the questions are visible if Yes is selected.

1. Select the Expression tab, located vertically on the left side of the window. Here we will build the expression: If “Interested in Learning” equals Yes, set the question visible.

2. Select Interested in Learning as the Question Tag from the drop-down options.

3. Select Equal Sign “=” as the Condition.

4. Set the Response as Yes.

5. Set the Question as Visible.

6. Click Save.

Repeat the same steps for the other questions on the first page. Similarly, for the second page, we will show/hide specified sections.

First, we will create our first question, “Please tell us your favorite Cuisine,” that will be connected with a drop-down list displaying several cuisine options. We will tag this as “Favorite Cuisine”. Now, we will create a different section for each cuisine option and then use the question tag to check in our expressions the cuisine that the responder chooses. Based on that selection, we will change the status of the relevant section to Visible.

In the Menu section we created, we will add all the questions and initially we will set these sections to invisible (uncheck the Visible Check Box). You can access the Settings Window for each section and question by clicking the gear button on the right side of the section or question name.

Next, in the same Settings Window, follow the listed steps:

1. Select the Expression tab, located vertically on the left side of the window, and build the expression: If “Favorite Cuisine” equals “Italian Cuisine” set the section as Visible.

2. Select Favorite Cuisine as the Question Tag from drop-down options.

3. Select Equal Sign “=” as the Condition.

4. Set the response to Italian Cuisine.

5. Set the section to Visible.

6. Click Save.

Repeat the steps for the other food order menu options.

Want to see these features in action? Download PowerSurveyPlus and begin your free 30 day trial today! And keep checking our website and blog for more updates and features coming soon for PowerSurveyPlus!

Thanks for stopping by our blog today! And as always, happy CRM’ing!

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Joe CRM is a CRM superhero who runs on pure Microsoft Dynamics CRM adrenaline. As the face of PowerObjects, Joe CRM’s mission is to reveal innovative ways to use Dynamics CRM and bring the application to more businesses and organizations around the world.