Quality as a key factor when choosing a data provider for sampling

For market research companies, the quality of data in sampling is undeniably a crucial aspect. This makes it possible to assess whether the information collected by a data provider will fulfill its purpose in a specific project. But, how do you determine the quality of a set of data? There are certain characteristics that you should take into account.


First and foremost is the use of cutting-edge technologies to collect the data. Secondly, by using a high quality panel. Below, we provide a thorough review of what Project Managers and research agencies should know when it comes to choosing their data providers.


The data provider and their role in the procurement of sampling

In the past, research surveys were carried out using traditional door-to-door methods. In these, the answers provided by the panelists were stored on paper and were rarely consulted again afterwards.


However, over time, this has been changing to a style of research where the data provider is a crucial element in a project’s success. It is now common for data provider companies to have unique tools and methodologies (particularly digital), as well as the different techniques available to them, in order to respond to any research challenge.


Despite this, until recently, people were often reluctant to use these methods, due to reasons like the ones below:


“Dealing with a person in the real world is not the same as in the digital world”

It is a proven fact that people tend to lie about various requirements just to meet the profile requested. Fortunately, companies like Netquest, are experts in providing online research solutions and know how to get around these challenges.


Using cutting-edge tools, today, automatic checking protocols can be put into place making it possible to identify the main demographics of the panelists. So if there is a discrepancy between their registered data (e.g. gender and age) and their responses, an alert is launched to contact them and check they are not lying. Otherwise, they run the risk of being expelled from the panel by the data provider.


“People lie online”

People often fear that data collected using online methods is of poor quality, due to the supposed lack of control over not having the respondent there face-to-face.


However, digital surveys have found that the courtesy bias has been eliminated, as by not having an interviewer in front of them, the person has no inhibitions in answering what they truly feel. In addition, there is a rewards scheme which is tailored to participants, which values the time spent and the information provided.


“The answers are generated by bots”

In this case, data providers like Netquest have several checking mechanisms. Let’s use reCAPTCHA as an example: that box with random images that has to be activated in the correct sequence at the start of each survey. In this way, it is possible to check that the panelist is not a bot and that the answers provided come from a truthful source.


How important is quality when choosing a data provider for sampling?

We know that in the world of market research, if data collection is done with integrity and reliability, it generates a relationship of trust between the customer and the data provider. Therefore, being realistic, this is something that should be reinforced as a basic principle of good practice.


With this in mind, it is important to create procedures that lead to the evaluation of the data quality. This is due to the need to guarantee this quality has increased as new collection methods are created.  Therefore, whether for offline or online methods, in order to guarantee the quality of the data submitted, the data provider is the first point of call in carrying out these evaluations.


So, how can data providers guarantee quality data? Let’s take a look.


You may be interested in: How to successfully obtain quality data for a collection project 


Mechanisms used to guarantee a high quality standard in the sampling

High quality data should be collected using a set of strict guidelines that guarantee its consistency and accuracy. With this as a premise, here at Netquest we work hard to guarantee the maximum quality standard through the following:



The ISO 20252 certification endorses Management Systems for Market and Opinion Research. This governs the parameters and standards that guarantee the reliability of data.


Thanks to this, our customers have the peace of mind of knowing that we implement the best practices in each study undertaken and that we also comply with the highest quality standards in terms of panels.


Loyalty programme

Rewards play an important role in recruiting and maintaining the relationship with panelists. At Netquest, for example, we have designed a points program that can be redeemed in a gift store. This system enables the avoidance of a phenomenon known as the “professionalization of participation”.


Precisely to prevent our panelists from seeing their participation as an alternative source of income, they can only receive a maximum of two invitations per month to collaborate on any project. 


However, an important point to highlight is that all the participants receive rewards. Hence panellists don’t need to lie on surveys, thereby providing genuine opinions.


Security locks

To prevent poor-quality responses and to guarantee the reliability of the data, at Netquest, we have a variety of security locks. Some examples are “trick” questions which help us to make sure that panelists are paying attention when they respond.


Another type of lock that we manage is the speed at which a survey is answered. Using speeders, we identify people who are responding in a time that is much faster than estimated so that we can disqualify them. Additionally, from the drafting and approach of the questions in the questionnaires, we perform a thorough review to prevent bias in the answers. 


More than a data provider 

With over 20 years of experience in collecting quality data using genuine and consolidated panels, here at Netquest we help you to develop any type of research project, adhering to the strictest standards in the world.


Beyond being merely a data provider, our mission is to be the perfect supplement to your research agency, to ensure every project is a resounding success, and to boost the satisfaction of your customers. Contact us and find out about all the services we have for you!

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