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Multilingual Surveys: how to create and manage different translations

by | Jun 30, 2021 | Research world

When you work with international markets you should consider creating a multilingual survey to improve your data collection.
A multilingual survey will allow the respondent to select the language to answer the questionnaire with. For example, you might offer a bilingual survey in English and Spanish and automatically set the language based on the browser’s settings or parameters of the user. The respondents will be able to switch language by selecting the preferred one from the language menu.
Moreover, you can share the same survey link across different channels such as social media, SMS, email, etc. and your audience will be able to switch from one language to another choosing the one that they feel most comfortable with.

What are the main benefits of creating a multi-language survey?

Multilingual surveys can bring many advantages to your research:

  • Better interviewer experience: you will offer your audience a better survey experience and this will directly influence the data you collect. Your sample will be more engaged with your survey if you give them the chance to answer questions in their native language.
  • Higher response rate: interviewees prefer to answer a survey if it’s available in their language.
  • More accurate data: the quality of the data you are collecting will be higher because you can be sure that your audience understood all questions.
  • Better survey management: if you’re using multilingual survey software, you can manage all translations and data in one place.

How can I create a multilingual survey?

Professional multilingual survey software allows you to seamlessly design surveys in different languages. To create the multi-language survey questions you have to follow a few easy steps:

1 Create the questionnaire in your main language

You create questions and answers in the main language of your survey.

2 Export your questionnaire to be translated

Export your questions and answers as an Excel file and ask your translators to add the translations in the different languages.

3 Import translations

Now that you have your file complete with all translations import it back into the software!

The respondent will be able to select the preferred language with a question at the beginning of the survey or using the languages button.
Professional survey tools save the language that was used to answer the questionnaire in the survey database making that available also for complex logic conditions or dynamic text. All raw data are stored in one project but you’ll be able to filter them by language if needed.

If you want to know more about how to design and create a survey in more than a language with a professional software, check this IdSurvey’s article.

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