Survey Tabulation

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Survey data is a very unique data structure to analyze in comparison to other types of data structures that might hold sales or product related data. Additionally, formal market research as well as social research trends to analyze their survey data with by create a very large number of tables that show each survey question cross-tabulated (aka "Cut") by other key variables in the survey data. As a result of the specialized needs of survey professionals, there are very specific approaches employed to provide the analysis typically used. These specialized analyses are commonly referred to as "Tabulations."

In this context, Tabulation is a process whereby all or most of the questions in a survey are cross tabulated against other key questions in the survey. These other questions are located across the top of the table and is referred to as the "Banner" or the tabulation. Each variable in this banner is a banner point. The process of creating these very large number of tables is called tabulation. There is specialized skills and software used to do this tabulation work in a high quality, efficient and accurate way.

Survey Applications:

  • Market research survey tabulation
  • Social research survey tabulation
  • Customer satisfaction survey tabulation
  • Political survey tabulation
  • Public opinion survey tabulation

Appian Analytics is a highly specialized firm with the skills required for this type of tabulation survey analysis. Some of the specialized approaches in survey tabulation can include data weighting as well as coding of data and arrangement of data for use in the special software used. Lastly, most survey tabulations will include statistical significance testing which is a specialized analysis of the difference between two values which takes into account the volume of observations, the standard deviation in the two distributions as well as the actual magnitude and difference in the two values. The resulting significance score identifies whether or not the two measures are truly different at given level of statistical probability or "confidence."

This type of tabulation of survey data is performed in particular business areas and particularly when compiling survey data from market research studies. This studies include brand tracking, market assessments, product placement review, customer satisfaction, and many other types of business marketing oriented projects. Additionally, there is a wide range of academic research performed especially in the area of social research where survey data is collected and then a large number of tables created.

While the tables required in a survey tabulation analysis can be built in simple software such as Excel, often times because of the high volume of tables needed or the complexity of the data weighting and significance testing, specialized software is used. This specialized software is specifically designed to compile survey data and built the large volume of tables with weighting and stat testing included.

Tabulation Software used at Appian Analytics:

  • MarketSight
  • Qualtrics
  • SPSS Desktop Reporter
  • IBM SPSS tables
  • Q Software
  • WinCross
  • Quantum
  • Quanvert
These specialized survey tabulation software packages are very effective for projects especially when these projects are one-time, infrequent, or custom jobs. In some cases, your survey tabulation project is an ongoing project such as a tracking study where the tabulation output is required on an ongoing basis such as weekly, monthly or quarterly. In these cases, there is other software (or approaches) that can be used to compile the output you require. In some cases, an automated tabulation system can be developed using a highly programmable statistical analysis environment.

The benefits of an automated survey tabulation development is that you can re-use the software to compile the results of the ongoing survey quickly and with minimal quality issues. This approach is fast and cost effective and will allow you to turn around the insights you need from your survey faster. In these cases, the team at Appian Analytics might also choose from a programmable statistical tool such as those shown below.

Tabulation Automation via Statistical Software:
  • STATA Data Analysis and Statistical Software
  • SPSS Syntax Development
  • Python with Scipy, Numpy and other core statistical libraries
  • R Statistical Computing
  • SAS Software Analytics Software
  • Windows software stack such as Microsoft C# .NET along

Appian Analytics can help you with your survey tabulation project and can go the extra mile by leveraging software and systems to automate the process. This can help on a one time or recurring project.

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