Knowing where participants live can help you identify population segments that have participated in your project and population segments that might be missing. Participant location can also be a useful way to assign segments to your results and filter your data.
There are several ways you can collect participant location data.
Method 1: Inferred User Location Data
By default, participants in any online engagement activity have an internet IP Address that their device provides when they request a web page.
Using publicly available GeoIP data, the system will automatically infer their approximate location using this IP address data.
GeoIP is good for getting a general idea of where participants are coming from, or for doing analysis by area for initiatives with at least 50 participants.
More information about GeoIP can be found here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geolocation_software
Method 2: User Location Questions
You can use different location question types that allow users to provide either a specific a location or a general area: Location (address), or Location (nearest cross streets).
With each question, the response can be assigned to home, work, or other. Responses get attached to the participant's CRM profile, and can be reported with inferred lat/long and zip.
This information also populates your participants map. If the participant provided an address in the search bar, that text will also be provided.
Method 3: Zip Code Entry
This is lightweight and useful if you need a general location rather than neighborhood or address-level specificity.
See more about zip code collection here.
Method 4: Participant Contact Form
This approach is ideal if you need specific information, like addresses. In the question type selector, choose Collect Contact Info.
Be sure to only check "Required" on information you absolutely need. Adding multiple required questions can be a barrier to completion, so if you only need zip code, it's best not to require the other fields.
Reporting location data visually
One of the fastest ways to understand participant geography is in the Participants tab via the map:
Exporting location data
For granular responses to location questions, such as participant address, use the data output tools in Results and Data tab:
The raw response and comment outputs are accessible as spreadsheets complete with each participant's response, their calculated Lat & Long coordinates, address if provided, and zip code. These data formats are ideal for exporting to other analysis tools like Esri and Google Earth.
Understanding the source of participant location data
If you're looking to understand the source of location data, scroll down to the participants list and click Download Participant List:
The participants data output includes the original source of the participant location data, such as GeoIP, or user-provided along with our most specific location data: