Face-to-face surveys are a form of market research that involves interviewing respondents in person. A face-to-face survey involves a researcher or interviewer going directly to the respondent’s location and conducting the interview. During this type of survey, the interviewer can observe the responses directly and ask follow-up questions as needed.
Face-to-face surveys can be used for qualitative and quantitative research, allowing researchers to explore deeper topics with a wider range of opinions. The ability of the interviewer to visualize body language and expressions allows for more accurate data collection, which leads to better insights into consumer behaviour. Additionally, it is almost always easier than telephone interviews because it doesn’t require complex scheduling or dialling capabilities.
When conducting face-to-face surveys, many considerations must be taken into account to ensure the successful execution of the research, including determining appropriate locations; developing questionnaires; deciding on interview formats; recruiting suitable participants; establishing incentives to ensure response rate; timing and number of interviews planned per day or week; training interviewers; allocating sufficient resources including budget and personnel resources; accommodating language differences when necessary; analyzing data collected from surveys including coding options, coding definitions and setting up weighted variables when required; interpreting results accurately considering any nonresponse bias that may exist during the course of the survey; effectively reporting results.
Face-to-face surveys have benefits such as providing richer qualitative data through detailed observation by interviewers who interact directly with respondents in their own environment and enabling more complex studies due to greater flexibility in questionnaire design. However, face-to-face surveys come with big time and expense costs since fieldwork is often expensive and takes longer than other methods. Furthermore, cultural differences between respondents must be considered so that privacy protocols are not unintentionally breached. Lastly, there may be instances where sampling bias occurs if they are not aware of hard-to-reach segments like low-income families or ethnic minorities who may not participate in such types of surveys due to self-selection bias concerns or lack of access or familiarity with the internet.