Ranking Question

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The Ranking question asks respondents to compare items to each other by placing them in order of preference. In the Analyze Results section, an average ranking is calculated for each answer choice, allowing you to quickly evaluate the most preferred answer choice.

To add this question type:

  1. Drag and drop Ranking into your survey from the Build section.
  2. In the question text field, write instructions that ask respondents to rank the answer choices in order of preference, 1 being the highest. It may also help to include what all the choices have in common. For instance, "Rank the following ice cream flavors in order of preference, 1 being your most preferred flavor."
  3. In the Ranking Choices fields, enter the answer options you want respondents to rank. You can add up to 250 answer options.
  4. Configure any additional options.
  5. Click Save.

TIP! Try to limit the number of ranking choices to about 5. Asking respondents to rank too many items in relation to each other can be overwhelming.

Under the Edit tab, you can choose to add an N/A column, and customize the label. When you add an N/A option to a Ranking question, it will add an N/A checkbox at the end of each row. If a respondent selects an N/A checkbox, that row will be greyed out and will not be included in that respondent's ranking order.

It's important to make sure that even the lowest ranked options still apply to that respondent. If a respondent doesn't have the option to declare that a ranking item does not apply to them, they will be forced to include that choice in their rankings anyway, which might produce bad data.

Before you send out your survey, preview your survey design to see what your survey will look like to respondents. Respondents can drag and drop answer choices in the order of preference. When the N/A option is enabled, you can also use the dropdowns to rank.

Ranking questions calculate the average ranking for each answer choice so you can determine which answer choice was most preferred overall. The answer choice with the largest average ranking is the most preferred choice.

The average ranking is calculated as follows, where:

w = weight of ranked position
x = response count for answer choice

1w1 + x2w2 + x3w3 ... xnwn
Total response count

Weights are applied in reverse. In other words, the respondent's most preferred choice (which they rank as #1) has the largest weight, and their least preferred choice (which they rank in the last position) has a weight of 1. You can't change the default weights.

For example, if a Ranking question has 5 answer choices, weights are assigned as follows:

  • The #1 choice has a weight of 5
  • The #2 choice has a weight of 4
  • The #3 choice has a weight of 3
  • The #4 choice has a weight of 2
  • The #5 choice has a weight of 1

We apply weights in this way to ensure that when the data is presented on a chart, it's clear which answer choice is most preferred.

If you chose to include an N/A option on the Ranking question, any N/A responses will not factor into the average ranking.

The Depth display option allows you to choose between the following options:

  • Weighted Average: Charts the average ranking for each answer choice
  • Distribution: Charts the absolute number or percentage of respondents that selected each answer choice

The chart types available depend on the question type, and the display options you configure. Learn more: Custom Charts & Data Tables