Survey Vs Questionnaire : Difference You Need To Know

You may be wondering the difference between questionnaires and surveys because of a school project. Or look at it from a business perspective. It is easy to confuse these two words. The difference may seem confusing at first, but don’t worry. We are here to answer your set of questions and define these qualitative research to help you understand the difference.

There is an online questionnaire going on in McDonald’s Survey Website, We Welcome You Share Your Experience by answering all the multiple choice questions and Win Free Chicken Sandwich or a Bagel Sandwich (Purchase Required).

Why is it important to understand the difference?

When you do any qualitative research, you interact with the public. They are also called research participants. Research participants can be selected by purposive sampling or randomly from the street. In any case, the researcher must understand the meaning of the phrases used.

If you understand these two terms, you are more likely to be successful in collecting data. Simplicity is everything when you make it clear what you need from your participants. Explaining the difference between a survey and a questionnaire is no different.

What is a questionnaire?

Definition of Questionnaire

A questionnaire is a set of questions that are asked of participants in your research. The purpose of the questionnaire is to collecting data from the target group. It contains open-ended questions, closed-ended questions or a combination of both.

When participants complete the online survey, they provide valuable information. Collecting accurate data can be quantitative or qualitative. Quantitative data is numerical and measurable. Qualitative data is non-numerical, written information that requires further analysis.

Individual results from online survey provide information for one participant. Merely filling out a questionnaire is not considered a research survey. This is because information gathered from questionnaires is only valuable when interpreted as part of a larger study.

It can be helpful to imagine the questionnaire itself as a physical piece of paper. There are many other ways to handle questionnaires, such as online. But picturing a questionnaire as a piece of paper containing all the open-ended questions is an easy way to define it.

What is a survey?

A survey is a combination of questions, processes and methods that analyze qualitative data obtained by others. A survey research always contains questionnaires. However, one questionnaire is only a small part of the survey.

The ultimate goal of a pre-test survey is to get more information about a certain group of people. This is done for several reasons. For example, fast food restaurant surveys use to learn more about certain consumer behaviors and product availability. They also want to know, how customers think about their menu items, food prices and food quality.

Now we know that a questionnaire is a set of questions asked to know consumer behavior. The questionnaire is not automatically included in the pre-test survey. For an inquiry to become an inquiry, a few things must happen. Collecting data from the target group. It should then be organized before organized data and interpretation.

The whole process of doing this is a question. Our definition of inquiry is not entirely logical. That is why we have included below an example of how to use the pre-test survey in a strategic research methods.


Let’s revisit the example we used earlier when discussing questionnaires. Suppose a company like fast food restaurant surveys used a questionnaire as the primary survey. The purpose of free online survey is to find out customer experiences of food quality, menu items and product availability. It is not just about your own experiences, but about the speed of service and food prices.

We filled out the survey with our personal information, so it doesn’t mean much. It would not help your fast food restaurant learn more about the food quality. That is, until it is combined with many closed-ended questions like speed of service, food prices and product availability as small part of the survey.

The survey management process is not a survey. Collecting accurate data , collecting it in a useful (quantitative) way and combining it with other forms of data collection in strategic research methods.


We hope this article helped you understand the difference between questionnaires and surveys. This may involve organizing quantitative data such as numbers or statistics. It may also involve redefining qualitative responses (descriptive, emotional responses) into quantitative factors.

This organized data is then analyzed as a whole. Interpreting the collected data from the target group. These insights give us more information about how a particular target audience might behave or feel..

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *