What are the question features & routing options of SurveyMR?

SurveyMR offers a range of question features and routing options such as skips, avoids, excludes and prevent duplicates.

Routing can be added to questions in the form of ‘question features’ to control which questions, sub-questions and answers respondents see based on their responses, for example, if you want people to only answer certain questions depending on their answers to earlier survey questions.

Question features are usually added before a survey is made live, but can, if necessary, be added and edited after a survey has gone live (NB – do this with care!).

In order to add question features you need to select ‘Add question feature’ on the question list page  (the question features available for that particular question type will be shown).

Skip question feature

This feature skips from one question to another if a certain answer is selected. It is activated after a respondent has selected the answer which the skip is based on. You can skip from a question based on whether the answer to the question matches or does not match a certain value.

In the example below, if someone answers that they are decorating their home with kitchen paint, we don’t want to ask subsequent questions about wallpaper, so we’ll skip them to later in the survey:

Skip Question

Avoid question feature

The avoid question feature allows you to avoid a question on which it is placed (and any number of subsequent questions) based on the answer to a question asked earlier in the survey. You can avoid a question or questions based on whether the answer to the previous question matches or does not match a certain value.

In the example below, we don’t want to ask question 23 about where did they buy wallpaper if they choose in an early question that they have not bought any lately, so we’ll route them round this to the next question:

Avoid Question

You can specify a range to base an avoid on by clicking on +range:

Avoid Question If

Avoid question features can be combined in two ways:

1. If you add two separate avoid question features to a question, this is activated if either of the conditions are met. To do this, you click on the ‘add question feature’ icon, add an avoid question feature, click on ‘Add Feature’, then click on the ‘add question feature’ icon again to add a second avoid question feature.

    In the example shown below, if Question 23 matches ‘None of these’ or Question 3 matches ‘Kitchen paint’ the respondent is routed to Q.24 

    Avoid Question

    2. If you click on ‘Add another condition’ both conditions must be met for the ‘avoid’ to take place. In the example below, the respondent would avoid Q.23 and go to the end of the survey if they had answered 'Kitchen paint' AND 'Bathroom paint' at Q.4:

    Avoid Question If 2

    Avoid based on user type feature

    This allows you to use the same survey for both respondents within the platform, who you hold information for (e.g. age, gender etc.) and don't want to ask for this information again, and those without accounts on the platform who you hold no information on. You can avoid for internal (those within the platform) or external (those without a platform account).

    In the example below, those respondents within the panel wouldn’t answer the age question, external respondents would see this question:

    Avoid User Type

    Avoid based on user field feature

    This allows you to avoid questions based on information already held in the platform user fields. For example, you would be able to avoid questions relating to clothing size so that males/females would only answer the question relevant to them without having to ask a gender question within the survey itself.

    In the example below, respondents who live in London would avoid this question:

    Avoid User Field 

    Randomise answers and subquestions

    To avoid response bias which may result from presenting a list of answers to all respondents the same order (for example, so that they always pick the first few answers), you can randomise answer choices and/or sub-questions.

    Randomising answer choices applies to multiple/single choice questions or the column headers in grids. Randomising sub-questions applies to the answer rows grids and scale questions.

    You can select one or more answer choices or one or more sub-questions to remain in position. This is useful in the example shown below, where we would not want to include the last option ‘None of these’ in the randomisation:


    Exclusive answers

    An exclusive answer feature placed on an answer means that it cannot be picked alongside another answer – when the respondent selects the exclusive answer, other selections are cleared. For use in a multiple choice question where one (or more) options cannot be picked with others:

    Exclusive Answer

    Prevent duplicate answers

    This feature can be added to number range, grid and scale questions. It means that respondents need to give a different response to each sub-question.

    For number range questions, this is a very useful way of obtaining a ranked order of preference from respondents:

    Prevent Duplicate Answers

    Previous answer feature

    The previous answers feature shows only answers picked in a previous question. To use it, you need two questions with the same answer options. The previous answers feature is applied to the latter question for which you want to limit the answer choices shown. Only those answers selected in the first question are then shown again in the second question:

    Previous Answer P1

    Previous Answer P2

    It can also be activated by certain answers from a grid (e.g. Q.1 is a grid question about frequency of purchase of certain items, Q.2 is about where these items are purchased at, only about items with a frequency of more than monthly are shown in this question).


    The quota feature allows you to force respondents out of a survey because either they are not suitable for the survey or you have sufficient responses from people giving a particular answer. If you want to force respondents out, you select the relevant answer choice and add a quota of 0; the respondent will receive a message which says ‘I’m sorry but you are not suitable for this particular survey’:


    If you want to restrict the number of responses from the number of people answering a question in a certain way, you can add a quota instruction with the number of responses you want from people giving that answer, the respondent will receive a message with says 'I'm sorry but we have all the responses we need to this particular survey':

    Quota Feature

    Sum feature

    The sum question feature means that you can ask respondents to give an answer to numeric or percentage questions which have sub-questions which require answers to add up to, be greater or be less than a specific number. NB. for percentage questions, respondents must give their answers as a whole number (so 50%, 25%, 25% to add up to 100% rather than 0.5, 0.25, 0.25 to add up to 1):

    Add Sum

    On the Sum feature pop-up, just specify whether you want the total to be less than, equal or more than, and the total number you want:

    Add Sum Feature

    Randomise question order

    You can randomise the order in which questions are asked using the Randomise Question Order feature, simply select the number of the last question you want to be included in the randomised sequence from the ‘Up to’ drop down. If you want to only ask a certain number of questions picked at random from the sequence, select the number of questions you want to ask from the ‘Maximum questions’ dropdown (in the example in Screen shot 49, we may only want to ask 2 out of 6 questions):

    Randomise Question Order