Understanding the Essence of Online Panels

In today’s dynamic world, technology has enhanced the quality of the research industry. For instance, mobile phones can now conduct research surveys and gather data more quickly and easily compared to traditional surveys. An Online Panel is a group of panelists who have given their consent to participate in an online survey. The data collected from the panelists include details such as household income, employment status, and more.  

With the option of managing your own panelists, you can even reap more benefits from partnering with online survey panels.  

What Are the Different Types of Online Survey Panels?

Market Research Panel Companies usually classify online panels into three categories, and they include:

B2B 

B2B surveys are surveys for companies who want to gain insights for how their service or product is percieved. B2B panels cover different segments across industries, including business owners, business decision-makers, and business experts who provide accurate and detailed responses. B2B online research panels can help you when you want to expand into new markets and improve your hold in existing markets by providing genuine data and crucial insights into products and services. This data will help you in the decision-making process. 

By targeting key personnel like HR decision-makers, B2B Panel Company can help you stay updated on local and global business dynamics. 

B2C

B2C online research panels involve target consumers and end users for direct to consumer services or products. These panels encompass varying groups of people, such as music fans and hotel guests. Depending on the study requirements, the range can be set to very specific or diverse parameters. You can also ask participants about the target consumer’s behaviors and opinions about topics that are relevant to the products and services you offer. 

In this category of online panels, you can get feedback about your products or services to improve decisions and enhance brand performance. 

Healthcare

This is a niche category that covers both patients and medical practitioners. Market researchers in this category can ask about the patient’s conditions and treatment. They can also ask doctors about their diagnoses and prescriptions. The panels in these categories are smaller compared to others due to the circumstances. There is also compliance to consider for healthcare research.

How Are Online Panels Managed?

Even though technology has made it easier for market researchers to conduct surveys, it has also made it easier for fraudulent respondents to create different profiles in order to get more incentives from online surveys. Some of the ways in which people can commit fraudulent survey responses include:

  • Misrepresenting themselves by obtaining random directory details
  • Obtaining free email addresses
  • Using different IP addresses to avoid being detected
  • Using bots to automate responses

For this reason, online providers should manage, screen, and verify their panels to avoid getting fraudulent panelists and come up with genuine, verified data. Genuine online panels providing honest input help create the foundations of data quality, which is why developing a proper survey panel verification process is essential. To verify panelists, you must double-check the information a potential panelist provides when joining. In addition, you should check cookies and IP addresses when answering surveys. 

Other methods used to verify panelists include in-survey results checks. Panelists who violate any of these verification processes may be removed from the database. Another aspect Quantitative Research Providers must manage and avoid are duplicate panelists. The providers can put safeguards on online surveys’ registration, execution, and incentive phases. 

This helps in avoiding duplicate responses. Finally, providers must also be aware of the drop in respondents in a study. There is a high possibility that this might happen due to the topic of study and the survey design. Therefore, the providers should think of a short and well-thought survey combined with the right amount of incentives so as to encourage participation and minimize attrition. 

Should You Manage Your Own Panel?

Building and verifying your own panel is a great alternative if you have a very specific niche you want to target. However, this takes a lot of time and resources. On the other hand, getting an online research panel provider removes the hassle of maintaining your own panels and gives you genuine results. There are panel providers that have ready databases of verified panelists.

By hiring such providers, you can start your market study immediately. Therefore, you can save money and time by using these databases instead of managing your own panel.