The last few decades have seen a rise in the importance and the use of focus groups. They are used for a number of reasons and by a number of organisations. The extent of the desire for people’s opinions by businesses and political parties among others has grown, as they realize that the difficulty of delivering what the public wants decreases massively when you actually go and ask the public directly. Paid online surveys are a massive part of this, and they are an increasingly sophisticated way of gathering and analyzing opinions.
When you start an online survey you get the option to give some details about yourself. You are not asked for your name, as the system is based on anonymity, but you can give your age, sex and your occupation. This is what is known as a profile – by doing this, the company carrying out the survey know how to attract different sections of the population. It makes sense that a woman in her fifties working as a self-employed financial advisor will have some different tastes from a nineteen-year-old man who is in full-time education.
The importance of paid online surveys is massive for the companies and organisations who commission them. The fact that someone is getting paid to do this survey means that they are more likely to treat it seriously, give honest answers and think about their reasoning. To ensure a correct, honest response for a question is important, because if someone treats a survey with less seriousness they are sure to give flawed answers and this will have less value for a company.