Response rate to surveys that are not anonymous

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  • #6042
    Ann Jopson
    Participant

    Hi, does anybody have any data or information on response rates to self-completion postal surveys that can be linked directly back to households, although not necessarily individuals (unless they voluntarily give their name). We need to know how different (if at all) the response rate is compared with an anonymous survey. The questionnaire asks for a fair amount of personal information.
    Thanks
    Dr Ann Jopson

    #6048
    Berkay Ozcan
    Participant

    Dr. Ann Jopson,

    So you want to compare the response rates of anonymous surveys versus non- anonymous surveys. Then the condition is both of them should be mailed (postal surveys) because mailing itself also affects response rates regardless of it being anonymous or not. Am I understanding, right?

    #6047
    Ann Jopson
    Participant

    Yes, that’s right. The surveys are identical in all respects, except one is anonymous, and one isn’t.

    #6046

    Hi

    I don’t have any numbers to back me up, but from my experience I think anonymous surveys will have a higher response rate (there are other variables but if they are identic anonymous should have a higher response rate).

    Cheers
    Vera

    #6045
    Berkay Ozcan
    Participant

    Based on my experience, I can say that the follow-ups and personalized reminders increase survey response rates considerably. As long as you can send them reminders and follow ups, anonymous surveys always better, not only because you might get a bit better response rate but also the answers become more reliable. But the key issue here is how you can send reminders to a respondent via mail while keeping your survey anonymous.

    #6044
    Katie Metzler
    Participant

    You could try these articles:

    Does anonymity increase response rate in postal questionnaire surveys about sensitive subjects? A randomised trial.
    http://jech.bmj.com/cgi/content/abstract/44/1/75

    Increasing response rates to postal questionnaires: systematic review
    http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=111107

    #6043
    Ann Jopson
    Participant

    Great, thanks Katie. That’s really useful!

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