Using online polls is great way to conduct elections or ask audience for instant feedback on just about anything. Asides aiming to get feedback from your audience, online voting are more reliable and faster than paper voting for elections, especially in democratic societies and other forms of voting systems.

An online poll can reveal customers’ honest opinions and enable them share ideas with you without revealing their identities.

The world is, indeed, moving away from a paper-based system to internet systems that seem to be safer than ever. This is why we are giving this seven-step guide to help you understand the essentials of online polls and why it is a preferable option. 

No doubt, many Internet users prefer online polls to paper polls. With an online poll, participants can pick a moment that suits them best and the time needed to complete the poll is much shorter.

What is Online Voting?

The term used to describe voting and counting technologies has not been authoritatively defined. A similar phrase like “e-voting,” is used confusingly used by different organizations and experts. We will, however, not fail to say what we know.

Online voting, also known as e-voting or electronic voting makes use of the Internet and electronic machines to cast a vote. It is described as an electronic means to mark a ballot paper. Online voting systems are often used in typical democratic systems to increase voter turnout in local, state or national elections. Online voting is increasingly used within political establishment for elections, referendums,, surveys and even for societal or educational uses.  

Online voting involves casting a ballot through the Internet. Normally this involves logging on to a website through any computer or mobile devices with access to the Internet.. Votes are not stored in the machine used to cast the vote, but on a central vote server that tallies votes at the end of the polls.

Signup on Formplus Builder to create your preferred online poll for product & academic research, surveys and online voting. You don’t need any special coding experience! Start now to create your online poll with Formplus. 

Electronic voting vs Online Voting

Electronic voting uses electronic means to mark and collate ballot choices while online voting uses the internet. A typical electronic voting machine in a polling station would collate ballot choices and analyze results at the end of a poll. There are, however, electronic voting solutions that produce a paper ballot, which can then be counted either by hand or electronically.

Online voting is a form of electronic voting. Online voting can be conducted using voting kiosks. These kiosks contain computers installed in public places for the purpose of online voting but are not supervised by electoral officials. The use of kiosks is still up for debate.

Voting kiosks have not been totally absorbed in the United States, other countries, including Brazil and India, rely on them entirely. Brazil’s success with voting kiosks has inspired other countries to follow in its footsteps.

Here’s how to create an online poll in 7 simple steps

  • Register or signup on Formplus form builder to start creating your preferred online poll. You can sign up with either your Google, Facebook or Email account in less than 30 seconds.

Formplus gives you a 21-day free trial to test all features and starting accepting responses from online polls. Pricing plan starts after trial expiration at $20 monthly, with reasonable discounts for Education and Non-Governmental Organizations. 

Signup to start creating your online voters form with Formplus.

  • Use the easy-to-use builder options to develop your poll. The input sections lets you insert features such as small texts for names, numbers, date, email, long text for general feedback.

  • The advanced input section lets you create a table, add calculations and signatures. The digital signature option is a great way to collect online signatures for petitions and polls.

  • Use the Choice Options to create “ Single selects, Multiple Select or Image choice” for online voting options. Ensure you use validation when using multiple select to ensure voters can’t choose more than one option at a time.

  • Add Rating Options if you’re creating an online poll for product surveys, market surveys, customer feedback, research etc. 
  • With the File Upload section, you can ask respondent or voters to upload required files format such as identification cards, passports, etc. I.e. words, pdf, png, jpeg, mp3, videos etc.

  • The Media & Structure can be used to add images, video, descriptions if it’s needed in your online poll. 
  • Multi-Page forms performs best for online polls. Ask one or two questions per page. User can easily click on the Next Button for other poll

  •  Beautify your online voting forms with the “Customise” sub-header.

  • You can change theme colors to suit your brands need, add a background image and logo where necessary. 
  • Change the form width and layout as you wish
  • Play around the form buttons, colors and font until you get a perfect form for your online poll. 
  • Do you have a private custom CSS for your brand? Use the CSS section to style your online voting forms better.
  • Edit your online poll settings for your specific needs.

Choose where you choose to store your files and responses. Select a submission deadline, choose a timezone, limit poll responses, enable Captcha to prevent spam and collect location data of voters. 

Set introductory message before voters starts your online poll, tweak the “start button”post final submission message or redirect voters to another page when they submit their online polls. 

Change the Email Notifications schedule and set an autoresponder message to all your online poll respondent. You can also transfer your forms to other users who can become poll administrators

  • Share links of your online voting page to expected respondents. 

You can also customise your form link to reflect your creatives. There’s an option to copy and share the link as “Popup, Iframe Embed and Embed Facebook page”. The form builder automatically create a QR Code for your online poll where you can download and share as appropriate. 

Upload or add email data to send respondent direct links to the online voting form. In cases where you can, pre-populate the form with existing data such as Name, Email, etc. so your respondents don’t have to fill in their details repeatedly.

  • Want to activate offline voting through SMS? Use the SMS feature to ask people to vote with their mobile phones. This works without internet connection and would be perfect for reaching areas with little or no internet connection.

Congratulations if you’ve made it to this stage. You can start sharing your link to online voting page. However, poll responses and analytics are one of the two most important parts of an online poll or survey.

With online form builder analytics, poll administrators can determine;

  • The number of times the online poll was visited
  • The number of visitors (Unique Visit)
  • Abandonment Rate: The rate at which people exit the form without submitting. 
  • Conversion Rate: The percentage of respondents who completed the online form
  • Average time spent per visit
  • Location of voters/online poll respondent.
  • Type of device used by respondent to complete the online vote. 

Still don’t know how to use Formplus’ Builder for online polls? Checkout the ready-made online voting form template or contact support for any other enquiry. 

Types of Online poll 

Consumers expect an extraordinary experience with your business, and unfortunately, people will focus more on bad customer experiences more than they will for positive experiences. Feedback is an essential tool that every business/establishment should use to get better.

Surveys are an easy way to gather valuable feedback and information, from both anonymous and known users.

The information collected through surveys can be used to advance processes, operations, product and marketing initiatives, along with the customer and employee experience.

Surveys are like a demonstration to your audience or customers that you value their opinions and aim to use their feedback to boost your organization, its products or services.

The purpose of a customer satisfaction poll is to determine what customers feel about a certain product or a service. A survey will provide valuable intuition that your business can use to effect changes to get more customers and retain loyal customers.

Event feedback is a gauge that tests if attendees enjoyed the experience or not. The idea is to give the organizers clues on what to do well or change. This kind of poll can assess everything from the venue to refreshment, to entertainment, to the quality of speakers and networking opportunities.

Whether you are hosting a dinner night, a conference, a seminar, fundraising, a company’s end of the year party, an award ceremony, you should care about the impression you have left on guests.

Post-event surveys are a great way to capture attendee feedback without selling yourself negatively. They are simple to create and distribute, and they reveal a lot when done well.

With a post-event survey, you could ask attendees or guests how their experience was, accessibility of the venue, the speakers’ relevance and the agenda, the entertainment and much more. 

According to Clay Christensen’s book, “Milkshake Marketing”, 19 out of every 20 new products that launch, fail. Understanding what your customers-to-be think of an upgrade to a product/service or a new product helps to increase your chances of success and minimize the risk of failure.

Whatever your product/service may be, large or small, sold locally or globally, running a new product market research survey is an important tool to ensure progress. It should be part of the planning process and must not be left out.

They can be used to access key demographic information, and then you can find out just about anything—from what customers like about your brand to what kind of product your market needs; also, if they will readily accept changes to a product. 

Education surveys are a smart way to get honest feedback from students, parents/guardians, and educators. This kind of survey can be used to import activities or ideas that ensure success.

School boards and administrators can enhance educational outcomes by assessing instructors, gathering their feedback, or by sending student surveys to understand their needs.

Student success starts at home. As an instructor or administrator, you only know what happens inside the classroom. By asking parents/guardians to fill online surveys, you can understand students more, know how much interaction parents have with their wards and, how they relate with other parents.

Knowing more can give you ideas for ways to let parents help their children achieve their academic goals. It can also let you know if parents and students are happy with the learning environment.

  • Opinion Poll

An opinion poll an activity in which many people are asked the same questions to find out what the general population think about an idea. It is described as a human research survey of public opinion. Use opinion polls to represent the opinions of a population by conducting a series of questions and then deducing generalized ideologies. Opinion polls are like vox pop which entertain person-to-person contact.

Opinion polls have developed to become an important tool in public relations. According to Wikipedia, the 1920s saw public relation experts describe their work as a two-way street. Their job would be to present the misinterpreted interests of large institutions to the public. They would also gauge the typically ignored interests of the public through polls.

Election Polling is one of the most prominent applications of an online survey. They give ideas about the citizenry’s active participation (or not) in the elections, opinions about the candidates, views of the campaign strategies, and voter preferences.

Although election polls attract a great deal of attention for their ability to predict the outcome of elections, their most important function is to help journalists and citizens understand the meaning of the campaign and the election. Polls help to explain, among other things, what issues are important, how candidate qualities may affect voters’ decisions, and how much support there is for policy changes.

Your customers are not only those who buy your product or service, we also have internal customers, who are your employees – and their satisfaction is paramount. Human resource and employee surveys guide your business towards employee engagement and satisfaction.

This kind of survey will help you understand the happiness level of employees, their relationship with their supervisors and team members, what they think about the company, what they think of the HR programs and processes.

Essentially, these surveys are used as an in-house tool to gather feedback from employees to help the organization move forward. They have a very wide application and can be extremely valuable for HR.

Advantages of Online Poll

Online surveys are a great way to reach and engage with a target audience or your customers. Find below the advantages of the online polls:

  • Speed

The time spent to complete an online survey is on average two-thirds shorter than that of traditional research methods. Information is gathered instantly; you don’t have to wait for paper questionnaires to come back to you later. Online marketing experts say that more than half of responses are received within the first three days of the research project.

  • Cost Effectiveness

Online voting systems saves costs of producing papers for ballots, postage or other printed material. Since it is electronic, there is relatively no problem of logistics. Online voting systems are automated — no time or resources needed for manual hand counts. You can also conduct multiple votes annually without worrying about the costs.

  • Accuracy

The margin of error is greatly reduced with online surveys because participants enter their responses directly into the system. The system analyzes received data without human interference and human oversights.

  • Easy to use for Participants, Researchers

With an online survey, participants can pick a moment that suits them best and the time needed to complete the survey is much shorter. For researchers, it increases productivity by saving time. Data is instantly available and can easily be transferred into specialized statistical software or spreadsheet when more detailed analysis is needed.

  • Environmentally Friendly

Electronic voting is 100% green friendly — not a single tree is harmed in this easy to use electronic voting process!

We surely want to stop global warming, and this is one way.

Why Online Voting is better than Paper Ballot Voting

As news of election hacking continue to break every time an election is held anywhere in the world, many are calling on a return to paper ballots. Glenn Harlan Reynolds of USA Today argues efforts to strengthen cybersecurity aren’t enough—paper offers a completely hack-proof means of ensuring everyone’s vote is counted.

However, we must not throw out the fact that paper balloting relies on the meticulous nature of ballot staff to enter all the details correctly, and naturally human error can creep in whenever a person must perform a repetitive task.

The primary advantage of online voting over paper balloting is the speed at which results can be tallied and reported. With the traditional method, ballots must be collected from various polling locations and fused at a central location before a team of individuals scrutinizes through them manually.

Another major plus of online voting is the potential for increased engagement.

7 Best Online Poll Makers & Online Voting Sites

Formplus is an online form builder that gives you access to a wide variety of options for your online forms. You can basically do anything to your online form templates, including storing data, form customization, file sharing, accessing received data and much more.

The online form builder allows you create forms you can use for feedback, e-voting, surveys. You can share these forms on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or embed on your website.

No matter the industry or business, Formplus forms offers you great tools to create online polls with limitless possibilities.

With an online poll created through Formplus you can randomize options in questions and use custom links to add your brand identity on the online poll.

  • EasyPoll

EasyPoll is regarded as one of the easiest, user-friendly tool to create online polls. It allows you conduct polls with anonymous participants and limit the number of votes.

EasyPoll’s other features include showing results in an easy to understand horizontal bar chart which can be downloaded as a file for archiving or further distribution.

Timing polls on EasyPoll is quite easy and the polls automatically complete when the time has ended.

With this online poll service, you can have your polls in multiple languages.

EasyPolls is free to use for everyone, but there are premium features that cost a little.

If you want to create an instant, quick and anonymous poll for your friends, family, colleagues or followers, Strawpoll is good. Straw poll is completely free and works on any device.

With Strawpoll, you can analyze the results of the polls, but remains anonymous. You can’t see who voted for who or what.

  • PollMaker

Like Strawpoll, PollMaker is good for simple polls. This poll service gives you the opportunity to change themes and style. You can also copy the URL of the poll to share to your voters or embed on your website.

PollMaker gives you easy to understand live graph to show polls results immediately. But final results don’t always reveal the whole picture. The longitudinal graph provides a visual representation of poll votes over time.

Heatmaps show where your poll generated votes by location. Zoom in to the city level or out to see poll vote traffic by country.

No sign up is required but you have to create a free account to manage all your polls in one place. This way you can edit existing polls, view and print reports, change options after you have published and download your responses to a spreadsheet.

  • Poll Everywhere

This poll service gives you the opportunity to ask as many questions as you want. There are, however, limitations to the number of responses you can get depending on the plan. There is a free plan but that allows only 25 responses on a poll.

Poll Everywhere analyzes the responses received, identifying who responded and what they said. You can customize your URL inserting your brand name. You can also change the color scheme, add a background image and keep your questions private.

With Poll Everywhere, you can collaborate with sub-users, and control participant access.

  • Simply Voting

Simply Voting has many advantages and comes with an array of features you can choose from.

Simply Voting provides you with an exclusive voting website for your elections with a URL. The voting website is branded with your logo and colors and works with all modern browsers. You have the option of publishing voting results to your voting website.

With the security of an independently managed server and service, your voters can rest assured that their votes will be counted properly. Simply Voting provides several options for voter authentication.

This poll service provides a system to create and manage multiple administrator users, so that your staff and external auditors can safely access voting event information. You can assign different access permissions for each user, specifying the features they can use and the polls they are allowed to access.

Once you created the poll, you can share to social media. Participants can also share once they are done voting.

  • VoxVote

VoxVote contains all the features you expect from a worldwide lading Audience Response System. No tech assistance needed, or any installs. It’s all browser based, and there’s are a free trial.  

The features are not limited to secure and anonymous voting, unlimited audience, single and multiple response question types, live graph results, personal access codes for participants, option to add company logo and so on.

You can also customize the URL of the poll to insert your company name. There are other voxvote features that come with the paid plan.

  • Opavote

Opavote provides an incredible experience for both voters and election managers with a clean and simple user interface for voters. OpaVote is fast and works on mobile devices.

It comes with a top-notch security system that encrypts voting pages, runs on Google servers for fast responses.

With Opavote, voter privacy is maintained. Voter emails are used only for your election.

This service is much less expensive and promotes the use of better voting techniques. OpaVote specializes in ranked voting.

Why Choose Formplus as the best Poll Maker and Online Vote Platform?

  • Save and continue later

Formplus gives you the opportunity to save your progress on a poll and continue when you want. Enabling the Save & Continue later feature allows participants to save partially filled forms. They can choose to save their progress on the poll and send the personalized link to their email.

  • Offline feature

This feature allows the participant to fill in their responses without a reliable internet connection. The poll automatically submits once the internet comes back to normal. Using conversational SMS, you can conduct your polls on phones, tablets, and other devices. All Formplus forms can also be accessed offline by default.

This is quite useful for online polls. With the user’s consent, the Geolocation feature to determine the physical location of the person responding to your poll. This feature uses Google Maps Web Services to pinpoint the nearest physical address as well as the longitude and latitude.

  • Sharing options

When you create a poll using the Formplus form builder, you can share on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or embed on your website. You can also send email invitations to a targeted audience. The link to the poll can also be downloaded into a QR code and places on a business card, banner or any other accessible platform.

There is so much you can do when you create polls on Formplus; one of such features is randomization. In the case where you do not want participants to see the same options all on the same page or question number, you can randomize the options.

  • Customization using the pre-built features

Formplus’ form builder allows you customize your polls using pre-built themes. You can change the font type, size and color, add a background image, logo, layout, width and so on. If you understand CSS, you can tweak pre-built themes and stylize your forms using your own CSS.

  •  Autoresponder

With autoresponders, you can send out a custom message to participants as a confirmation email upon successful poll completion. To eliminate miscommunication and mix-ups, you can also include submitted responses in the confirmation email. This also helps you take out several steps in your communication process, as you can send submission receipts immediately to their inbox.

  • Analytics

The analytics dashboard on Formplus displays live statistics the country where responses are coming from, and the devices used. You can also view metrics like total form views, unique views, abandonment rate, and conversion rate. Formplus also lets you build custom visual reports in a few clicks with the robust report summary tool. Select the data(field) you would like to display, and instantly view beautiful graphs and charts. There’s no better way to get results to your polls!

  • Intro and Post Submission

Formplus lets you include some instructions for your poll respondents before they begin responding and add a custom final message to be displayed after a successful form submission. With this, you can communicate instructions, terms, and conditions, or any information participants/voters need to know. The post-submission message gives users other information; also, you can add an appreciation message.

  • Custom link

Formplus allows users to create or auto generate a shortened URL for polls. You can also include your brand name in your shortened links. This gives a friendly URL look to your polls and adds brand value to it. 

Signup on Formplus Builder to create your preferred online poll for product & academic research, surveys and online voting. You don’t need any special coding experience! Start now to create your online poll with Formplus. 

  • busayo.longe
  • on 20 min read


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