The Side-By-Side (3D Matrix) Question – A Tutorial

FluidSurveys comes equipped with numerous question types to ensure that our users are able to receive the most in depth and accurate feedback possible. One of the most useful tools we offer is the Side-By-Side Matrix (3D Matrix) question.  It allows individuals and businesses to survey their customers with questions that have multiple variables. This could become useful in several instances: perhaps you’d like to find out how satisfied your customers are with your service offerings as well as how much they value each offering. Or perhaps you’d like respondents to rank a product on several attributes, for example, a running shoe in terms of comfort, appearance and durability. You could do all of this in just one question using the Side-By-Side Matrix.

In this tutorial, we’ll go through the process of constructing a Side-By-Side Matrix question to demonstrate the power of the feature. To do so, we’ll use an example scenario:

Say you’re a dental office and want to evaluate your service offerings on four points: quality of service, speed of service, helpfulness of staff and cleanliness of office. You want to find out how satisfied your customers with each point, but also, how much importance they place on each point. A Side-By-Side Matrix question would be the perfect tool to use to find out this information.

Creating a question like this is a fairly simple process using FluidSurveys’ easy to use interface.

Here is a video tutorial:

Step 1

The first step is always to choose your variables and the points by which they will be measured.

In our example, the variables will be quality of service, speed of service, helpfulness of staff and cleanliness of office. The measurement points will be satisfaction and importance, on scales of 1-5.

Step 2

Open up your survey and drag the 3D Matrix button from your questions menu onto your survey page.

Step 3

You can now enter your question and question description into their respective fields in the menu.

Step 4

Now it’s time to add our measurement points, which we have specified as satisfaction and importance. (1) Enter “satisfaction” into the first “Columns” field, (2) click the add button, and (3) enter “importance” into the second field. Using this add button, you can add in as many columns as you want.

Step 5

For each measurement point, we now have to input the choice options. We’ll be rating each variable on a scale of 1 to 5. In order to do this, first (1) highlight the “Satisfaction” column field, and then (2) enter 1 to 5 into the choices fields (click “Add” to add fields). Repeat the same process for the “Importance” column.

Step 6

We also have the option of changing the choice type between a drop down menu, a text response or a multiple choice. For this particular question type, we’ll use drop down menus.

Step 7

We can now add the variables we plan on measuring. Repeat the same process as in Step 4, only this time enter the information into the “Rows” fields. If you have more than two variables, click the “Add” button to add fields.

We can also set whether each respondent is required to rate each variable. If we check the “Optional box”, respondents will be able to leave certain variables blank. However, if we uncheck the “Optional box”, respondents will have to rate each variable before submitting.

Step 8

At this point, we have created a valid Side-By-Side matrix question. If we save our survey and then click on view, this is our result:

Additional Options

There are also other additional options available to slightly modify the created question.

By checking the “Show as Radio Buttons” feature, we could have our choices appear as check boxes instead of a drop down menu.

We could also add a “Not Used Column”. This would add an additional column that respondents could select if they had not used a particular aspect of the service and weren’t in a position to evaluate it.

Finally, we could add a top left label. Simply type in what you want to appear above the top left column into the field.

And that explains the Side-By-Side (3D Matrix) question type. It is a very powerful tool that can be used to gather data about services, products, etc in terms of multiple variables. It can be used from anything from assessing how customers perceive a product to how students would evaluate their teacher.

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