Codes & Standards
Incentives are material or nonmaterial inducements that are offered to respondents in
exchange for their participation in studies. A number of theoretical frameworks have
been proposed to explain the effectiveness of incentives to increase response to a study.
While some incentives are still awaiting a thorough assessment of their effectiveness
when used in various types of Web studies, some recommendations can already be given:
When facing the choice whether to employ incentives at all, it is advisable to offer some
incentive, as incentives demonstrably promote response and retention. However, when
picking a particular incentive from among several possible ones, its possible impact on
response and retention should be weighed against the cost of the incentive itself and its
distribution in terms of money and manpower. As regards the type of incentive to be
employed, redeemable loyalty points are more efficient than lotteries, but only in the long
run, for example in online panels. Donations to charity, if effective at all, are less efficient
than lotteries. Quite surprisingly, if the incentive is a lottery, the amount of payout and
the splitting up of the prizes do not seem to matter much.
segments of the population reaching the Internet and technological innovations
coming up, the results of the present review are not final. Readers are invited to send
me experimental results that were not included in the present review or to fill out the
form at http://www.goeritz.net/incentives.htm.
Codes & Standards (13)
- Ethical Issues
- Components of "Total Errors" in traditional surveys
- Inference in Web surveys
- Internet Access Panels
- Standards in Online Surveys. Sources for Codes of Conduct, Ethical Guidelines and Quality
- Usability and Implementation Issues in Online Surveys
- Incentives in Web-based Studies. What to Consider and How to Decide
- Choosing survey software. How to decide and what to consider
- Weighting in Web surveys
- Which open source software?