Best demographic questions for online surveys

15 Best Demographic Questions for Online Surveys

Do you want demographic questions for your surveys?

Demographics are population characteristics, and, in turn, demographic questions aim to gather in-depth background information on survey participants.

We’ll outline the most critical demographic questions and why we ask them below.

Why Do We Ask Demographic Questions?

Demographic questions aim to gather specific information on survey participants to determine what factors influence answers, habits, and opinions. From a business perspective, the more you learn about your customer, the better you can tailor your business to suit their needs.

You can easily make your questionnaire with WPForms’ Surveys and Polls addon.

Our plugin has extra fields such as the Likert Scale, Net Promoter Score, and Star Rating. It also gives you more tools on the backend to analyze your entries, like charts and tables, to easily collect and accurately analyze your survey data.

WPForms is the best WordPress Form Builder plugin. Get it for free!

Best Demographic Questions for Online Surveys

Here are the demographic survey questions we’ll cover from a business point of view:

    1. Age
    2. Location
    3. Gender
    4. Ethnicity
    5. Sexual Orientation
    6. Marital Status
    7. Education
    8. Religion
    9. Household Composition
    10. Language
    11. Employment
    12. Hours per Week
    13. Household Income
    14. Political Affiliation
    15. Voting Status

Let’s jump in!

1. Age

Age demographic question

Finding out the age of the participant is key. It will give you insight into your survey participant’s knowledge and experience and clarify if they’re your target audience or not. In addition, you can also review the survey data and see if there’s a correlation between age groups and opinions.

Some people may not want to disclose their exact age, so we recommend adding age ranges, eg 45-54.

WPForms also has the option to restrict content by age and this could be particularly useful after you’ve analyzed your results.

2. Location

Location Demographic Question

Location is an essential factor in a demographic survey because it can impact a person’s life perspective. For example, if you know where the participants are from, you might be able to predict their product buying preferences.

Additionally, having locations (whether it’s the continent, country, region, or city-specific) can also indicate if there’s a new market you could expand in.

To reduce the size of your form, use WPForms’ Geolocation addon to capture a user’s location automatically and eliminate the need to ask this question.

3. Gender

Gender demographic question

As an ever-important demographic question, asking for a participant’s gender should be approached with slight caution. The concept of gender has evolved over the last few decades and although this information is valuable, phrasing the question correctly is important.

Ask it openly as we don’t want anyone to feel uncomfortable. Try using “What Gender Do You Identify As?” or “Do You Identify As:” and then list the options.

Finally, add a ‘Prefer not to say’ option as our last tip. We don’t want users to feel forced to answer the questions, especially potentially sensitive ones.

4. Ethnicity

Ethnicity demographic question

Asking your participant’s ethnicity will open a few doors for you. You’ll see different cultural backgrounds will show different habits, overall affecting their attitudes, opinions, and even their buying habits.

However, asking someone about their ethnicity can be sensitive and should be treated with caution. You should ask your question like ‘Please specify your ethnicity’ and the answers should be in checkboxes, allowing users to select multiple choices.

Tip: always add a Prefer not to say option.

5. Sexual Orientation

Sexual orientation demographic question

Sexual orientation has become an essential demographic question over the last few years as it can provide important insight for consumer-focused campaigns. It’s also a staple question in health, economic, and social surveys.

The question is relatively straightforward: What’s your sexual orientation? Then, list the options and remember to add a prefer not to say option.

6. Marital Status

Marital status demographic question

Understanding who your participants interact with daily is useful and should be included in your demographic questions. It’s beneficial because a married person’s buying habits and the places they frequent will differ from a single person, for example.

7. Education

Education demographic question

Education is another important demographic factor. You’ll be able to gather what type of job they’re in and estimate income. Furthermore, people’s beliefs and life views often differ depending on their levels of education, influencing many other things.

With this information, you can accurately target specific groups of people with specific campaigns. For example, someone who has a Master’s degree indicates that they’re an analytical thinker, so a logical promotional email (as opposed to an emotional one) will appeal more to them.

As well as including the relevant degrees and diplomas in your answer options, ensure you also add apprenticeships/traineeships to include those in other industries.

8. Religion

Religion demographic question

Another factor that influences a person’s values and general life decisions is religion. From this question, you can identify correlations between religion and other answers in the survey. Remember that not everyone is religious, and there should be an option to reflect that.

9. Household Composition

Household composition demographic question

Understanding who resides in the participant’s household is another essential demographic question. Why? Because if the participant has children in their house, their buying habits and values will differ from those who live by themselves.

Ultimately, those with children versus those without kids require separate marketing campaigns as they’ll have different needs.

10. Language

Language Demographic Question

Language is another essential demographic question.

Firstly, businesses care about this answer as they’ll want to speak the same language as their customers to build stronger relationships.

Secondly, and in line with various questions above, the participant’s language will also show differences in customer needs, values, and goals. From that, you can analyze the data from your survey as it could indicate if there’s a new market you could open.

11. Employment

Employment status demographic question

Learning if your survey participants are employed or not is significant for two main reasons. Firstly, someone employed will answer differently from someone currently unemployed. Secondly, if someone ticks employed, you’ll understand their buying power.

12. Hours per Week

Hours per week demographic question

Leading on from employment, seeing how often a person works per week gives a more detailed picture of their employment status. The answer can provide an insight into household income and subsequently buying power.

13. Household Income

Household income demographic question

Household income includes the total sum of personal income, partners, and anyone else who lives in that house. It will, like employment status and hours per week, give you a better understanding of the household’s buying power.

And again, survey participants may not want to share this personal information, so be sure and add a ‘prefer not to say’ option.

14. Political Affiliation

Political stance demographic question

There are two ways to approach this question to get the answers you need. Firstly, ask it straight: Which political party are you a member of?

Secondly, if you’re looking for a more broad answer like general political views, ask it in a more generic fashion: ‘How would you best describe your political views?’

15. Voting Status

Voting Registration Demographic Question

Now that you’ve understood where your participant leans on the political spectrum, it doesn’t always mean they’re actively voting. Asking this demographic question is designed to see if someone is affiliated with local and/or national politics.

This question can be asked in general, ‘Are you registered to vote?’ Or, you can specify the question by adding the specific area you’re interested in: ‘Are you registered to vote in Utah?’

Next, Explore the Surveys and Polls Addon

Ready to create your effective demographic survey?

With WPForms, you can use survey fields to make your forms more effective. Add a Likert scale to your WordPress form and accurately measure your survey participant’s experiences or opinions.

Or add a Net Promoter Score to your form and collect valuable customer perceptions of a specific topic.

Finally, Build Your Survey

So what are you waiting for? Get started with the most powerful WordPress forms builder. Afterward, quickly install the surveys and polls addon and create your simple survey form! We also have several templates that you can fully customize to get your survey started.

Follow our complete guide and create your perfect demographic questionnaire, including the questions mentioned above. We can also help you write a full summary of your survey results by walking you through some handy hints and tips with real examples.

Create Your Survey Now

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