FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions

The Most Frequent Questions

What is SurveyCircle – and how can it be beneficial to me?
SurveyCircle is a research platform based on the principle of mutual support. It helps people find participants for their online surveys and online experiments outside their own circle of friends. In addition, SurveyCircle gives everyone a chance to experience and support current online research projects by participating in them.

Main functionalities for Survey Managers:
  • Find participants for online surveys and online experiments
Main functionalities for Research Enthusiasts:
  • Experience and support current research projects by participating in online studies
  • Support research projects of friends: Collect points for them and help them attract even more participants
Who can sign up for SurveyCircle?
Currently, you can sign up for SurveyCircle in these countries:

Region 1:
  • Germany
  • Austria
  • Switzerland
Region 2:
  • USA
  • Canada
  • Australia
  • New Zealand
  • England
  • Wales
  • Scotland
  • Northern Ireland
  • Ireland
  • Netherlands
  • Belgien
If you are located in a country not listed above and want to benefit from SurveyCircle, just contact us!
How can I find participants through SurveyCircle?
SurveyCircle is based on a well-known social principle: on mutual support. The more you support other users of SurveyCircle (by participating in their studies), the more support you get back (by others participating in your study). For this to work, we have developed a special social incentive system for SurveyCircle. It ensures that mutual support not only works theoretically, but also in practice. Say: If you take part in other studies, you should in fact also win participants for your own study.

And this is how it works:

For each study you participate in, you get points. They will be credited to you as soon as you have redeemed the Survey Code, which is displayed on the last page of each study. How many points you get from participating in a study depends on the placement of the study in the Survey Ranking. The better the placement of the study you participated in, the more points you get.

The higher your score, the higher your study will be in the Survey Ranking – and the more likely it is that other SurveyCircle users will participate (because participation in better ranked studies will earn more points than participating in studies with poorer placement).
How can I improve the position of my survey in the Survey Ranking?
There are several options how you can improve the position of your survey:
  • Take part in studies from the Survey Ranking, redeem the corresponding Survey Codes and collect points.
  • Ask friends and family to log in as your Supporters and take part in surveys. Points collected by your Supporters go straight to your account as a Survey Manager. Note: The Supporter feature should be used by people who want to collect points for you just once or sporadically. No registration required.

    Supporters can use a limited set of features:

    – Participating in surveys
    – Redeeming Survey Codes (points go directly to the supported Survey Manager's account)
    – Share and recommend surveys
  • Ask friends and family to sign up as Research Enthusiasts, to take part in surveys and to send you the points they have gathered (available under "My Points"). Note: Your family and friends should sign up as Research Enthusiasts if they intend to support you on a more regular basis, i.e. more than once and more than just sporadically.

    Research Enthusiasts have access to all features:

    – Participating in surveys
    – Redeeming Survey Codes (points can be sent to any Survey Manager)
    – Share and recommend surveys
    – Get notified about new studies (optional)
    – Share and recommend studies
    – Search for keywords
    – Bookmark interesting studies
Can I earn points in the Survey Ranking before publishing my survey?
Yes, this is possible and highly recommended. You may use free time in the run-up time to your research project to earn points and, thus, start with a good position in the Survey Ranking when your survey goes online. Your points do not expire so you can start collecting points as early as you wish.
Can friends and family collect points for me as a Survey Manager?
Generally, everyone can support you, if they share their country of residence with you. There are two ways others – e.g. friends and family – can collect points for you, thus improving your position in the Survey Ranking:
  • Your friends and family can log in as your Supporters and take part in surveys. Points collected by your Supporters go straight to your account as a Survey Manager. Note: The Supporter feature should be used by people who want to collect points for you just once or sporadically. No registration required.

    Supporters can use a limited set of features:

    – Participating in surveys
    – Redeeming Survey Codes (points go directly to the supported Survey Manager's account)
    – Share and recommend surveys
  • Your friends and family can sign up as Research Enthusiasts, take part in surveys and send you the points they have gathered (available under "My Points"). Note: Your family and friends should sign up as Research Enthusiasts if they intend to support you on a more regular basis, i.e. more than once and more than just sporadically.

    Research Enthusiasts have access to all features:

    – Participating in surveys
    – Redeeming Survey Codes (points can be sent to any Survey Manager)
    – Share and recommend surveys
    – Get notified about new studies (optional)
    – Share and recommend studies
    – Search for keywords
    – Bookmark interesting studies
Can SurveyCircle guarantee that I find a certain number of respondents for my survey?
No. SurveyCircle's approach is one of mutual support, not of paid participation, so we cannot guarantee that you will reach a certain number of respondents. How many people you reach by using SurveyCircle heavily depends on you and your willingness to help other users of SurveyCircle with their research.

Other factors that can positively influence your own success include the quality of your survey, a correct indication of the processing time, and possibly your promise to raffle coupons or to make a donation to a good cause.
Will I get a representative sample by using SurveyCircle?
You will not likely achieve a representative sample by using SurveyCircle. Yet you might get a more representative sample using the heterogeneous group of SurveyCircle users than by only recruiting from your own circle of friends or on social networks.

If you need a very large sample that is representative of the whole population, you should turn to a market research company.
Can I recruit respondents from several countries?
Yes, this is possible. Your survey will automatically be published in all countries that belong to the region of your country of residence ("primary region"). For instance, if your country of residence is England, Region 2 (USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Ireland, Netherlands, Belgien) is your primary region. In this region, the position of your survey in the Survey Ranking depends on your score, therefore the more active you are, the higher your ranking. To earn points, you are able to participate in all of the surveys listed in your regions' Survey Ranking.

To attract additional respondents from other countries, you can unlock your survey for one additional region. Note, in the additional region your survey will be listed as “noncompetitive” in the lower parts of the ranking. If you choose, for example, Region 1 as an additional region (Germany, Austria, Switzerland), that means that your survey will only appear behind all of the surveys from Region 1.
What is the maximum number of respondents I can recruit through SurveyCircle?
As a Survey Manager, you can currently recruit up to 100 participants through SurveyCircle (regardless of the number of surveys). After that, the survey of yours which is online at that time will automatically be removed from the Survey Ranking.

If you like our research platform and mention SurveyCircle in a post on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or in a discussion board, we can increase your participant limit by 10% to a total of 110 participants. Just write us an email at support@surveycircle.com.

UPDATE: In the future, it will be possible to find more than 100 participants through SurveyCircle. As soon as the option is available, you will find more information here and in the news section.
How can I make my survey attractive to potential participants?
  • Take part in other people's studies to climb up in the Survey Ranking.
  • Publish a good survey! Well-made and interesting surveys normally get many stars and thus also more respondents.
  • Ideally, the duration of your survey should not be longer than recommended in the relevant literature.
  • Raffle vouchers or other prizes among the active respondents.
  • Make a donation to a good cause for each completed questionnaire.
Can I influence the composition of the sample?
In the step-by-step process of publishing your survey on SurveyCircle, it is possible to define a preferred group of respondents. Remember, though, that this information cannot guarantee that only people from this group participate in your survey. We do appeal to all respondents to respect the intended circle of respondents.

To recruit as many respondents as possible, you should define your circle of respondents as broadly as possible.
If I participate in a survey, will my data be passed on to the respective Survey Manager?
No, the data lodged with us will not be passed on to Survey Managers or other third parties. If you participate in a survey on SurveyCircle, you remain just as anonymous as if you were participating in a survey in the conventional way.

By the way: SurveyCircle does not have access to the answers you give when responding to a survey. Neither will we ever ask for access.
Do I have to participate in the surveys of other people, if I am registered with SurveyCircle?
No. Participation in surveys is always voluntary. As a Survey Manager you can publish your survey without taking part in the surveys of others. Of course, by failing to participate in the surveys of others, you omit the chance to collect points to work yourself up the ranking. If it is important for you to find participants on SurveyCircle, you should participate in surveys of others.
Can I use my smartphone or tablet to participate in the surveys posted at SurveyCircle?
Generally yes. The entire SurveyCircle website is available on mobile equipment. And many surveys of our users are already mobile-optimized and can be answered from a smartphone wonderfully. However, some surveys should still be processed on a desktop computer or tablet. It is in the hand of the respective Survey Manager whether or not they mark their study as mobile-optimized.

We do recommend creating surveys that smartphone users can participate in seamlessly.
Is there a SurveyCircle app on the App Store or on Google Play?
No, but the SurveyCircle website is mobile-optimized and runs well on smartphones and tablets. So you can use SurveyCircle on the go whenever you want.
Can I use my account together with others (e.g. fellow students)?
Each user account can only be registered under the name of one person. If you want to post a survey as a group project in the Survey Ranking, you must decide who will open the user account; that person will officially become listed as Survey Manager.

This does not mean that only the Survey Manager can collect points: All other group members can also collect points for the joint project as "Research Enthusiasts" – and then send them to the Survey Manager's account via the "Send Points" feature.
May companies, start-ups and registered associations post surveys on SurveyCircle?
Yes. Surveys of companies, start-ups and registered associations are very welcome at SurveyCircle.
May I recruit additional respondents for my survey by means other than SurveyCircle?
Yes, you can! You can post and distribute the link to your survey anywhere outside of SurveyCircle.
Does SurveyCircle offer a toolkit, with which I can create my questionnaire?
No, SurveyCircle only helps you find respondents. The design and drafting of the survey is up to you. Note there are many good suppliers of survey toolkits you can choose from.
How much does it cost me to use SurveyCircle?
SurveyCircle is free to all users. As Survey Manager you can make a voluntary donation to help run the website.
Can I make money by participating in surveys on SurveyCircle?
No, SurveyCircle is not a platform to earn money by taking part in surveys. SurveyCircle is based on the principle of mutual assistance among the Survey Managers, their Supporters, and Research Enthusiasts.
What are the basic rules I must observe as a user of SurveyCircle?
  • Rule #1: Fill out each questionnaire as truthfully as you'd like someone else to fill out your own questionnaire. (i.e. take all the time you need to read questions, response options and scenario descriptions thoroughly, to respond with free text answers in all conscience, etc.)
  • Rule #2: Only participate in studies when you are part of the target audience.
  • Rule #3: Redeem Survey Codes only if you earned them by following the rules. When redeeming codes, make sure to asses the studies in relation to other studies that you have taken part in.
  • Rule #4: Don't share Survey Codes with others. And refrain from taking part in schemes where you profit from someone else breaking the rules.
  • Rule #5: Don't let anyone else take part in studies from your user account and don't pass on your login details to others.
You can find the complete Terms and Conditions here.
What happens if I do not stick to the Terms and Conditions and the associated Basic Rules?
SurveyCircle is based on the principle of mutual, voluntary support, and it works best if everyone adheres to the rules. Should we have reason to believe that a user has violated the rules, we will exclude them from further use of the platform.

Taking Part in Surveys & Collecting Points

How many points do I earn for my account when I participate in a survey?
That depends on the position of the survey in the Survey Ranking. The higher the position in the ranking, the more points you get for participating. The number of points you can earn appears in the column "Reward Points" of the Survey Ranking.
Can I send points to other users?
That depends. If you are a Survey Manager, you cannot send points to others. If you have an account as a Research Enthusiast, you can send points to Survey Managers, provided they have the same country of residence as you.
I accidentally missed the Survey Code at the end of a survey. Is there a way to receive it?
No, unfortunately this is not possible.
Do Survey Codes expire after a certain time?
You can redeem Survey Codes as long as the corresponding survey is listed in the Survey Ranking and up to 24 hours after it has been de-listed. After this, it is no longer possible to redeem the code. To prevent valuable codes from expiring, we recommend that you always redeem them immediately after participating in a survey.
I want to redeem a Survey Code, but it does not work. What happened?
  • You might have forgotten a character when copying the Survey Code.
  • You may have redeemed the same Survey Code before.
  • The Survey Code may already have expired. Each code is valid only as long as the corresponding survey is listed in the Survey Ranking and up to 24 hours after it has been de-listed.
Do my points expire after a certain time?
No, your points do not expire.
I took part in a survey, but did not get credited for the points displayed in the Survey Ranking.
How many points you get credited to your account depends upon the position of the survey at the time you redeem the Survey Code. We recommend redeeming Survey Codes immediately after participating. The longer you postpone redeeming Survey Codes, the higher the probability that the credited number of points will differ from the number of points originally displayed.
What should I do if – while completing a survey – something prevents me from completing it?
If something prevents you from completing a survey, please continue later or cancel it. Do not start to fill in answers at random; doing this spoils the data of the Survey Manager and impedes the research instead of supporting it. Moreover, it is one of the basic rules of SurveyCircle that all surveys ought to be answered in good conscience – from the first to the last question.
Can I buy points to climb in the Survey Ranking?
No, this is not possible. Just take part in surveys of others and points will be raining down on you :-)

Posting a Survey on SurveyCircle

Does SurveyCircle check my survey before I can publish it in the Survey Ranking?
No, we do not check your survey before publication. Neither do we change its content and design. You alone are responsible for your survey.

However, your survey must meet certain minimum requirements to be posted on SurveyCircle. You can find these requirements in our Terms and Conditions (§4). By posting your survey you acknowledge that these minimum requirements have been satisfied.
May I post a foreign-language survey on SurveyCircle?
Yes, you may! At present, however, English and German surveys have the best chances of attracting respondents.
Will my email address be published when I post my survey in the Survey Ranking?
No, your email address will not appear in the Survey Ranking. Nor will it be published elsewhere.
Can I specify a start date and an end date for the publication of my survey in the Survey Ranking?
You can determine when your survey gets into the Survey Ranking, and, of course, when it is to be removed. For the former, simply click "Publish Survey" in your user account. For removal later on, simply click “Close Survey”.
For how many days/weeks/months will my survey remain published in the Survey Ranking?
If you wish, your survey can stay in the Survey Ranking until you reach the maximum number of participants for your user account (now set at 100). However, you must actively extend it from time to time in your user account.
What happens if I have reached the limit of 100 participants for my user account?
Once you have reached our (current) limit of 100 participants per user account, the survey of yours which is online at that time will automatically be deactivated and removed from the Survey Ranking.
Can I reactivate my survey after it has ended, so that it re-appears in the Survey Ranking?
No, once you have stopped your survey manually, you cannot reactivate it. So before you close your survey, you ought to be sure that you really want it to end.
I am signed in to my account, but cannot find a way to post my survey. What's wrong?
If you are signed in, but you do not see a button labeled "Post a Survey" in the menu bar, you have registered as a Research Enthusiast – and not as a Survey Manager. Only when registered as a Survey Manager you can publish surveys in the Survey Ranking. And only then the "Post a Survey" button will appear. If you write us an email at support@surveycircle.com, we can convert your account from a Research Enthusiast account to a Survey Manager account.

User Account & Data Privacy

At what age may I register with SurveyCircle?
The minimum age for registration with SurveyCircle and use of the “Supporter” feature is 16 years.
Must I register with SurveyCircle under my real name?
Yes, you have to use your real first and last name when registering.
How private is my data?
  • All your data is stored on servers in Germany.
  • We handle your data responsibly and do not pass them on to third parties.
  • There is no data exchange between SurveyCircle and the suppliers of survey toolkits.
Can I use my SurveyCircle account for several research projects?
Yes, once you have taken your first survey out of the Survey Ranking, you can publish a second survey there (and so on). Please note: After you have reached SurveyCircle's (current) participant limit of 100 participants per account, you cannot post another survey.
Can I create several user accounts?
No, each person may only create one account.
I have forgotten my password. What should I do?
No problem, use the "Forgot your password" link offered to you in the "Log In" window.
How can I delete my account?
To delete your account, sign in with your credentials, click the user icon in the upper right corner and then select "Settings" >> "My Profile". There you will find a button to delete your account. Note: The deletion cannot be undone. By deleting your account you forfeit all your accumulated points.

Do you want to delete your account as a Survey Manager because your research project is completed? If so we, however, would appreciate your staying connected to SurveyCircle even after your active time as a Survey Manager is over. If you maintain your account you could continue to support other interesting research projects from time to time.


Can't find an answer to your question? Then send us an email at support@surveycircle.com and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.