Avoid order bias by setting the start position of slider scale

QuestionPro offers 40+ question types you can use to create a survey. They range from basic questions like multiple-choice, matrix questions, constant sum to advanced types like NPS, Conjoint, MaxDiff, and more. The slider question is one of the graphical question types. It allows respondents to rate an option on a textual or numerical scale by dragging a slider. 

To offer the best experience to our users and respondents, we have enhanced the slider question with more options to customize the scale.

What’s new?

  1. Change the default start position of the slider

The interactive sliding scale starts from the left end by default for all the left-to-right languages. For the right-to-left languages, it starts from the right.

However, the default slider might introduce order bias. Respondents tend to drag and drop the slider that is close to the starting point. It leads to biased data and insights that do not much value.

To negate the bias, you can configure the slider to start in the middle of the slider scale. You can set the slider for both numeric slider and text slider questions.

For numeric sliders, you can set the slider start position from one of the below:

  • Default
  • Left
  • Middle
  • Right
  • Custom

The custom position allows you to set the slider to a custom number between the minimum and maximum value.

For text slider question, you can configure the slider to start from one of the below positions:

  • Default
  • Column name

For instance, in the below text slider question, you can set the slider to start from one of the columns – Poor, Below Average, Average, Good, Excellent. 

interactive slider question

Here the default starting point of the slider is set on ‘Average’.

 

  1. Show/Hide selection

You can now choose to show or hide the display of answers selected by the respondents. By default, it is off for both text and numeric slider questions. You can toggle it on to let the respondents know their selection explicitly. 

It is particularly useful in case of interactive numeric sliding question where it can be difficult to judge the change if the step size is small.

Learn: How to configure slider start position and show/hide selection

How does setting the start position of the sliding scale benefit our users?

  • Avoid order bias: At times, respondents get influenced by the options they see first and may not submit their real feedback. It leads to biased data and insights that cannot be trusted. By setting the slider to a neutral position, you can negate the bias.
  • Get honest feedback from lazy respondents: Some respondents might be too lazy to drag the slider and drop to a polar opposite position. By configuring it to a middle spot, you are more likely to receive honest opinions from them.
  • Avoid nonresponse bias: This bias stems from the data when respondents do not answer the questions. The respondents might skip questions if they don’t feel like dragging the slider. The configurable slider start position reduces fatigue and improves the experience.