ComScore Starts Online Survey Unit

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Internet measurement and research firm comScore Networks yesterday announced the launch of an online survey unit.


ComScore Survey Solutions will tap into 1.5 million panel members that opted to have their Internet use tracked and to participate in surveys. The survey unit offers the chance to survey consumers based on observed behaviors. For example, a business could survey visitors to a competitor's site. Surveys are done through either a pop-up or e-mail.


ComScore, Reston, VA, named Randy Smith, a former president of survey firm NFO WorldWide, to lead the unit. Smith said the Internet probably would make up 30 percent of the survey industry by the end of the year.


"The core problem is the rank-and-file citizenry is not responding to telephone interviewing," he said. "The response rates have been declining for a decade."


Instead, more research has moved online, which has proven cheaper and quicker. The trend probably will accelerate with the adoption of the federal no-call registry, despite its exemption for survey calls.


"The researchers can argue till they're blue in the face, but most consumers believe that market research is not exempted," Smith said.


Harris Interactive reported in late October that it saw increased demand for Internet-based research services over telephone surveys. Harris said the no-call registry might drive telephone response rates down further and speed the adoption of Internet surveys.


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