2016 WebSM blog overview (as of May 2016)

May 18 2016

We overview here the 2016 situation with blogs related to web survey methodology (so far, by "May 2016" we mean the period between the first of September 2015 and the first of May 2016). During an update 27 blogs were removed. The deleted blogs were no longer accessible or posting relevant content. On the other hand, 26 new blogs were added. The list of blogs can be found here:

The list of blogs in the WebSM database

Like before, the blogs are sorted into four categories:

  • Experts: These are professionals dedicated to survey methodology and marketing issues who (sometimes) also reflect on topics related to web survey methodology.
  • Associations and media: We talk here about organisations with a mission to reflect/discuss topics objectively; they are not directly involved in either selling software or methodology or in the supply of survey research services.
  • Software vendors: According to a recent WebSM study on web survey software, more than 100 vendors also produce their blog. Of course, this is basically an element of their marketing/PR/sales strategy, yet to be readable to a broader audience they must provide interesting and relevant material - and often they do. This is also the first place to learn about interesting new features.
  • Market research companies: Here we chiefly have market research companies doing empirical research, but also organisations from the public and non-profit sectors. They all have a lot to say about web survey methodology, particularly about its nesting into the research and the survey industry. Similar to software vendors, they write blogs primarily to promote their organisation and their core activity but, in doing this, they also provide certain added value also for readers interested in web survey methodology.

Blogs can sometimes belong to more than one category. there are currently 29 blogs in the Experts category, 18 blogs in the Associations and media category, 32 blogs in the Software vendors category and 49 blogs in the Market research companies category. 

Top blogs sorted by the relevance of posts

The blogs were sorted by the number of relevant posts in the 9 months between September 2015 and May 2016. Relevant posts are all posts directly related to web survey methodology. In the table below the blogs are sorted by the number of relevant posts in 2015. Only blogs with nine or more relevant posts can be found here. Because the difference between the number of relevant and quality posts is usually very small, we only upload the picture of blogs sorted by the number of relevant posts. The number of quality posts can be seen next to the number of relevant posts in the table below. Blogs with the most relevant and quality posts are in the last overview. QuestionPro is no longer on this list because we were unable to determine how many posts they had posted since September 2015, because there is no date next to the post anymore.

A table with a higher resolution can be seen HERE.

Selection of the top 10 blogs

According to the above criteria, plus some WebSM subjectivity, we list the top 10 blogs in alphabetic order:

Greenbook Blog (categories: Associations and media; Experts) just has to be here. One of the leading sources for all market researchers, it is full of quality content from top researchers from around the world.

Infosurv (category: Market research companies) is a survey and marketing research company with great knowledge in the field of survey methodology. They share some of it on this blog.

Mrxplorer's (category: Experts) real name is Zontziry Johnson. She currently works for Ipsos and has some great comments and posts on her blog.

Peanut Labs (category: Software vendors) is an innovative software vendor. The blog is updated almost daily and is usually very interesting.

Qualtrics (category: Software vendors) is in a way similar to the Peanut Labs blog. They are both interesting and dedicated to providing quality posts about survey methodology and other marketing topics.

QuestionPro Blog  (category: Software vendors) remains one of the best blogs for survey methodologists and researchers. New content is uploaded every day.

Survey Gizmo (category: Software vendors) had the most quality and relevant posts since the last update. The content is excellent, interesting and frequent. 

SurveyMonkey (category: Software vendors) is one of the leading survey software providers in the world. This blog offers many tips and hints on how to best utilise the SurveyMonkey software and also general survey methodology tips and hints.

Survey Sampling Blog  (category: Software vendors)
 was created as a place for Market Research professionals to share insights. Many contributors from across the SSI organisation collaborate to produce the content shared here.

Versta Research (category: Market research companies). Versta Research is a full-service research firm specialising in customised market research and public opinion polling. On this blog they share tips and expertise from the field of survey methodology and certain other topics.

The list and statistics

The list of all removed blogs with their URLs and a list of new blogs with their URLs can be found HERE (Word document).

Some statistics:

  • There are  now 117 blogs in the WebSM database. 65 of them posted at least 1 relevant post in 2015, 53 have posted at least 2 relevant posts in 2016 and 47 at least 3 relevant posts between September 2015 and May 2016. There were 52 blogs that had not yet posted a directly relevant blog post since the last update. 27 blogs were removed during the update.
  •  26 new blogs were added to the 2015 list and, out of the 26 new blogs, 17 blogs posted at least 1 relevant post between September 2015 and May 2016, 17 at least 2 relevant posts, and 14 at least 3 relevant posts.
  • The 10 blogs with the most relevant posts posted almost 50% of all relevant posts monitored in our database and the 10 blogs with the highest quality posts posted almost 50% of all quality posts monitored in our database.
  • 65 of 117 blogs (55%) posted at least one relevant article in 2015 and 73 of 117  (54%) blogs posted at least one quality post in 2015.

Reasons for non-activity are different. Some blogs were simply inactive, but had posted relevant articles in the past and were therefore not removed. Some were active, but their content is not directly relevant to web survey methodology. These blogs mainly post marketing-related topics that might still be interesting to someone interested in web survey methodology, but not directly. One of the blogs is just a calendar of events from the market research industry. Some websites are not blogs per se, but more like news sites for the market research industry. Some blogs offer only survey and poll findings and results without actual methodology. Those sites are useful and interesting, but their posts cannot be considered WebSM if they do not share their methodology and tips on their blog. After this update, some blogs that focus mainly on statistics can also be found. Finally, there are some blogs that write no dates next to their posts and the number of relevant and quality posts for 2016 could not be identified. 

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