Intercept surveys serve as invaluable tools for gathering on-site feedback from various audiences, whether at events, airports, bus routes, restaurants, conferences, or shopping malls. These surveys provide organizations with immediate insights into patron perceptions while their experiences are still fresh in their minds. However, to ensure the success of an intercept survey project, it’s crucial to follow some essential guidelines. Here are three tips to consider when preparing for an intercept survey:

  1. Keep It Short and Sweet

Intercept survey respondents are often on the move, whether they’re grabbing snacks during halftime or making a connection. Therefore, it’s vital to keep the survey concise and efficient. At RMS, we aim to design intercept surveys that take no more than five minutes to complete. Crafting clear and concise questions, along with employing innovative survey techniques, allows us to gather maximum information in minimal time.

  1. Embrace Flexibility

Flexibility is key when conducting intercept surveys, especially concerning technology and survey administration methods. Interviewers must be equipped with the necessary tools, such as tablets, to adapt to various survey environments. For instance, in venues with unreliable Wi-Fi, wireless hotspots ensure uninterrupted survey connectivity. Additionally, offering an offline survey option enables interviewers to capture responses seamlessly, regardless of internet availability.

  1. Incentivize Participation

Providing incentives significantly boosts intercept survey response rates. While incentives need not be extravagant, even small rewards can make a difference. At RMS, we’ve observed positive outcomes by offering incentives such as coffee shop gift cards, free movie rentals, bus tokens, or coupons for venue concessions. Timing is crucial when distributing incentives; aligning survey completion with opportune moments, like halftime at a football game, enhances the likelihood of participation and ensures patrons have ample time to redeem their rewards.

In conclusion, by keeping surveys brief, embracing flexibility in survey administration, and incentivizing participation, organizations can maximize the effectiveness of intercept surveys. These strategies not only enhance data collection but also contribute to a positive survey experience for both respondents and survey administrators.

RMS is a full-service market research firm with a long history of conducting intercept surveys in a wide array of settings. If you are interested in learning more about our research capabilities, please contact Sandy Baker, Vice President of Corporate Development at

Relational RMS Blogs:

Recruiting the Right Participants for Your Focus Groups: Best Practices
How to Design Your Next Feasibility Study
How to Overcome Common Barriers to Employee Satisfaction Surveys

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Interested in conducting a market research project with RMS?

Contact our Vice President of Corporate Development, Sandy Baker at or call 1-866-567-5422.

About RMS

Research & Marketing Strategies, Inc. (RMS) is a full-service market research firm in Central New York. Formed in 2002, RMS helps organizations that are looking to know more about their customers and/or potential customers. They conduct surveys, focus groups, mystery shopping, studies and analysis. Each project is customized and gets personal attention by the best in the business. RMS has a reputation for getting results and offers an independent means to conduct telephone, on-line and mail surveying, In-depth interviews, intercept interviews, and participant recruitment as well as focus group hosting through QualiSight, its onsite call center and focus group facility. Taking advantage of the region’s reputation for being a great market study barometer, RMS recruits and moderates for focus groups, community forums and town meetings.