Text-based Focus Groups
The text-based online focus group module is a popular part of Collabito. It provides an easy way how to conduct a live chat session with a moderator and respondents.
Collabito is a cloud software, participants need only a browser, no need to install anything.
The moderator leads the discussion with respondents based on the text chat. He writes questions and comments to all participants or send messages to a specific person only.
There are many tools to make the online focus group session more engaging and get more insights: a whiteboard for media presentation, moderator’s guide, silent mode and whispering options or drawing on pictures.
Whiteboard is a space on the respondent’s panel where stimuli can be presented by the moderator.
Respondents can draw on images on the whiteboard to highlight some image areas.
Card sorting activity is available on the whiteboard.
Video evaluation tool and audio evaluator available on the whiteboard.
Live focus group tools and features
Clients cannot write messages to respondents directly. Instead, they can chat with the moderator.
The moderator can prepare questions in advance and quickly use them during the session.
If this function is on, respondents can’t see the answers of other participants to avoid respondent bias.
Moderator can mark interesting messages with an asterisk.
You can see who is typing a message in real-time.
The session transcripts are available instantly and you can download them as a Word file, too.
You can assign one or several moderators to your projects. He can discuss with all other participants, mute or kick out anybody, and has some administrative privileges.
Collabito provides an easy way how to add and administer all respondents in the project. There is also an email module for sending bulk invitations and reminders.
You can invite your clients or colleagues to observe the project and send messages to the moderator.
The account owner and his team members can create new projects and edit them, moderate discussions or assign external moderators, and much more.
Respondents can see each other and talk to the moderator and to other participants.
Every participant can have a specific text color. You can use nicknames instead of their real name.
If the moderator activates the silent mode, new messages of other respondents are hidden until the silent mode is switched off again.
There is a whiteboard space on the right side of the panel. Pictures, videos or youtube videos can be shown here.
Frequently asked questions for focus group chats
How many respondents can be present in the text room at the same time?
There is no technical limit. The recommended size of a text-based online focus group is 6-20 respondents.
Can respondents see the clients?
No, the clients are observers, only the moderator knows about their presence. Clients can type text messages to the moderator during the session.
What is the best length for a text-based focus group?
The typical length of a chat session is 90-120 minutes in Collabito. After 2 hours, participants can be tired.
Can I conduct IDIs / individual interviews in your text chat tool?
Yes, you can conduct IDIs, dyads, triads, too. If you have more moderators, you can run many simultaneous individual interviews at the same time.
Can I export the texts after the discussion?
Yes, transcripts are available instantly, even during the session. You can download them as Docx word file.
Do I need respondents’ consent for sharing transcripts with the client?
The privacy laws differ from country to country. If the respondents use nicknames instead of real names and there are no ways how to personally identify them from the transcript, you don’t need to have their consent to send the transcript to your client. Learn more about GDPR for qualitative research.
Are text-based focus groups better than online video focus groups?
The video-based focus group is closest to a classic focus group. In some cases, a text chat can be a better option – for example when you need to conduct an anonymous focus group, or when you plan to ask very sensitive topics.
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