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Quotas

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About Quotas

Quotas allow you to keep track of how many respondents meet a condition in your survey. You can also specify what will happen to your respondents once a quota has been met, such as ending the survey prematurely or deleting the extra responses.

The purpose of a quota is to make sure that you gather only the exact amount of data required for your study.

Example: You could use a quota to keep track of how many males and females have taken your survey to make sure you have gathered a balanced sample.
Warning: Quotas aren’t always foolproof. Quota information is not saved until the respondent submits their survey, giving respondents time to change their answers or deliberate over their choices. Because more than one person can enter the survey at a time, there is a chance that multiple people submit answers at the same time, possibly resulting in going over quota. For this reason, we caution against users relying exclusively on quota data for providing any monetary rewards / compensation to survey respondents.

Creating Quotas

  1. In the Survey tab, click Survey options.
    In the survey tab, left chose last icon which is survey options, select quotas at bottom of list of sections
  2. Select Quotas.
  3. Click either Add A Quota or Add Quota.
    Quotas window has an Add a Quota button in the center and an Add quota button on the bottom towards the left
  4. Click the New Quota text to rename your quota.
    Naming the quota on the left and choosing between simple or cross-logic quota on the right
  5. Next, you may be asked to choose between a simple logic and cross logic quota. If you don’t have a choice, then that means you only have simple logic quotas.
    • Simple Logic Quota: Define when a respondent meets your quota. The quota count will be incremented each time a respondent comes into the survey who meets the conditions you set. Despite the name, you can actually build quite complex conditions, if you need to; however, simple logic quotas won’t have the percentage-based capabilities of the cross logic quota.
    • Cross Logic Quota: Use percentages to define how respondents are distributed in your quota. Specify which percentage of respondents should match each criteria, and then Qualtrics will do the heavy lifting of figuring out how many respondents are needed for each combination of conditions.
  6. Set your quota conditions according to simple logic or cross logic.
    Right side of page, conditions built out that say things like, if the respondent said they were married and male. Below that, a dropdown for slecting what happens if they meet that condition. To the left, can edit the number of people you want to meet this condition. Bottom-right, save button
  7. Determine what will happen when the quota is met. See the linked section for more details.
  8. Set the quota limit, determining the maximum number of people you want to meet the conditions you set. See the linked section for more details.
  9. Click Save.

Qtip: You can also make new quotas from copies of existing ones. Click the dropdown next to any quota and click Copy.

Dropdown next to a quota expanded to show the copy option just mentioned

Qtip: Users with access to Advanced Quotas can create multiple quotas at once. See linked sections for details.
Qtip: You can organize your quotas into groups. To create a new group, click Add Group at the bottom-left. You cannot move existing quotas into new groups; you have to rebuild them inside the new group. This feature is part of Advanced Quotas, which is not available to all customers. If you have question about getting this feature enabled, reach out to your Brand Administrator. Along the leftmost menu, the Add Group option creates a new quota group

Setting Quota Counts and Limits

Next to every quota, you’ll see a pair of numbers – for example, 0/100. The number on the left of the slash (e.g., 0) is the quota count. The number on the right (e.g., 100) is the quota limit.

Quota Limits

To ensure that you gather only the exact amount of data you require for your study, it is important to set a number limit for your quota. The quota limit is the maximum number of respondents you want to take your survey who fulfill the quota conditions.

To set the quota limit, all you need to do is click the current quota limit and change it.

Middle menu where quota name is displayed, can modify quota limit

Quota Count

The quota count is the number that indicates how many respondents have taken your survey and met the conditions for the quota. This number automatically changes as new respondents take your survey and meet the specified conditions.

You can also manually adjust the quota count. This can be useful in circumstances where the quota was added after you already started collecting responses, or where the quota was created before launching the survey, but it was set up incorrectly. You might also use this option to reset your quotas to zero before starting another round of your study.

To change the quota count:

  1. Click Reset to bring the current quota count back down to zero.
    Beneath the quota limit, Reset button
  2. If desired, click Set Count to specify the new current quota count.
    Once set to 0, Resrt is replaced by Set Count
  3. Fill out the new count in the dialogue box, then click OK.
    Dialog box where you can enter a new count for the quota
  4. Your new count is set, and will increment whenever a new respondent who fulfills the quota completes the survey. For example, the next man to answer the survey would change the quota to 43/1000.
    The new quota count

You can also automatically reset your quotas after a certain amount of time. This can be useful if, for example, you need to collect a specific number of responses each month.

To schedule an automatic Quota reset

Qtip: Scheduled Quotas are included with the Advanced Quotas feature. Advanced Quotas are an add-on feature not included in the standard Qualtrics license; please contact your Qualtrics Account Executive for more information.

You can schedule when your quota resets its count to zero. This can be useful for studies where you send the same survey and plan to use the same quotas over and over again.

  1. Click on the dropdown arrow to the right of your quota name and select Scheduled Quota.
    Dropdown arrow next to quota reveals Scheduled Quota option
  2. Select the frequency of the reset, the start date, and the number of months the automatic reset should end after.
    Scheduled Quota window

    Qtip: Quotas will reset at midnight on this date according to the timezone set in your account.
  3. Click Save.
    Save button in lower-right
Qtip: You can change your scheduled quota counts by clicking Set Count below your quota count. The Default Quota refers to the quota count outside the parameters of your scheduled quota. In the below image, the scheduled quota is set to end on September 30. Starting October 1, the quota count will begin at 40.
image of the set counts screen with the default quota highlighted
Warning: You may change your scheduled quota frequency and dates at any time. However, changing the conditions will reset your quota counts to zero.

Setting Quota Conditions

The next step in setting up a quota is to specify conditions that must be true for a respondent to increment the quota. Your quota will be incremented when a respondent meets the condition(s) you have set and finishes the survey.

Qtip: Incomplete responses and imported responses will not increment the quota count.

Above every quota it says Increment the quota when a response is submitted that meets the following conditions
In the example above, only female respondents will increment the quota count.

This section will discuss setting conditions for basic quotas. Your account might also include the option to create what is called a cross logic quota. Refer to the cross logic quotas section below for information on setting logic for this type of quota.

To set Quota conditions

First field where what the quota's based off (eg, question) is selected, second field where the specific item (eg, Q1) is selected, and the last fields where the choices are selected

  1. Select whether you want to base your quota off of answers to survey questions, embedded data, or other quotas from the first dropdown menu.
  2. Then fill out the menus that follow with your specific criteria.
    Example: We want to limit how many women come into the survey. So first, we choose the question where we ask the respondent’s gender, Q1. Then the next fields specify that if “Female” is the gender the respondent “Selected,” they will count towards the female quota.
  3. If desired, click the green plus sign ( + ) to the right of the condition to add another condition.
Qtip: Need help setting up more complex quota logic? Check out our page on Using Logic. Here you can learn about how to set up multiple conditions, troubleshooting, and advanced condition sets.

Specifying What Happens When a Quota is Met

A quota action specifies what should happen to your respondents once your quota has been met. The option to set a quota action is found directly underneath your quota conditions. The available actions are described below.

End Current Survey can be dropped down for more options

End Current Survey

“End Current Survey” does exactly what its name tells you. If a respondent meets the conditions for a quota and that quota has already been filled, the respondent will immediately be directed out of the survey.

You can set a customized end of survey experience for respondents who leave the survey because a quota is full. For example, you could show a message that says something like, “Thanks for your willingness to participate. Unfortunately, we have already filled our target response limit.”

To specify your termination settings, click Customize below “End Current Survey.” This menu gives you the same options  available in an end of survey element.

Customize button appears when End Current Survey is selected

Although there are many termination settings available, there are two settings in particular that you may want to consider as you are using this quota action:

Customize end of Survey window appears

  • Do not increment quota counts: By default, a respondent who is terminated from the survey due to the quota being full will still cause the quota to increment. Check this box to prevent over-quota respondents from incrementing quota counts.
  • Do not record survey response: Selecting this option will prevent all over-quota responses from being recorded in your data, potentially saving you from using up unwanted responses. For more information on screening out respondents, see our Screen-Out Management page.

Prevent All New Survey Sessions

Prevent All New Survey Sessions prohibits new respondents from entering the survey once the quota is filled. You can select Show custom inactive survey message to adjust what message is shown to respondents trying to enter the survey.

When Prevent New Survey Session is selected, more fields appear

You can add a new message in this window, or you can create a message in your library with the message type set to Inactive Survey.

Do Not Display a Question

The “Do Not Display a Question” option allows you to hide a question once the quota has been filled. You can hide this question for all respondents or check the box to only hide it for those that meet the quota condition.

When Do Not Display a Question is selected and question is specified, option for Only do this if the current respondent meets the quota condition

Qtip: For more advanced question display options, such as hiding multiple questions or adding multiple conditions for a question to be shown, consider setting your quota action to “None” and hiding your questions using display logic.

Do Not Display a Block

“Do Not Display a Block” allows you to hide a question block once the quota has been filled. You can hide this block for all respondents or check the box to only hide it for those that meet the quota condition.

Do Not Display a Block also has the Only do this if the current respondent meets the quota condition option

Qtip: For more advanced block display options, such as hiding multiple blocks or adding multiple conditions for a block to be shown, consider setting your quota action to “None” and hiding your block using branch logic.

Trigger Web Service

“Trigger Web Service” causes the survey to access a web service URL as soon as the quota has been filled. For more information on web services, visit our Web Services page.

When Trigger web Service is selected, a link for Edit Web Service appears

None (For Skip Logic or Survey Flow)

If “None” is selected, no preset action will occur when the quota is filled. This option is designed to let you use branch logic, skip logic, or display logic to create your own actions once the quota is filled.

When None is selected, it says This quota can be evaluated with Display Logic or the Survey Flow, or you can choose an Action. This last option is linked and allows you to switch out of None to some other action

The most common use for this setting is in a situation where you need to mimic the behavior of the “End Current Survey” or “Prevent All New Survey Sessions” actions but would also like to record embedded data in the response.

A branch that says if the male quota is met and a respondent says he is male, they go to a screened out embedded data, an exit block, and an end of survey element
We are screening out respondents who meet our demographics conditions once the quota has been filled. Normally, “End Current Survey” would meet this need, but in this case we want to record embedded data about the response.

Website / App Feedback Actions

This option will only be available to a user if they have access to the Website / App Feedback project type. For more information, visit the Survey Quotas section in the Website / App Feedback pages.

A quota. On the right under When the quota has ben met, then... Website / App Feedback is selected and the user is choosing between Activate and Deactivate intercept in the next dropdown menu

Over quota options

In addition to specifying what happens when your quota is met, you also get a chance to specify what should happen to over quota responses. Over quota responses are responses that meet the requirements of your quota after it has been filled. You can either keep and record these responses, or delete them. This allows you to be more efficient when setting up branch logic for your quotas.

A quota with "None: skip logic or survey flow" selected has an extra set of options underneath it that say "over quota options". The options are keep & record or delete

“Over quota options” appear for all possible quota outcomes except “End Current Survey.” This feature is available to any users with access to quotas.

Using Quotas in Other Parts of Qualtrics

In addition to specifying what happens to respondents in the quota editor, you can also use quotas in other contexts.

  • As a condition in your branch logic.
    Branch that says if the male quota has been met and the respondent says he's male, he goes to an embedded data element, then a block, then an end of survey element

    Example: If the demographics quota has been met and the respondent qualifies for that quota, then end the survey for that respondent and tag the response with a special embedded data field.
  • As a condition in your display logic.
    Display logic that says if a quota hasn't been met, a descriptive text question with a coupon code will appear

    Example: Using our quota as a condition in display logic, we can specify that this question only displays if our survey’s quota hasn’t been met yet.
  • As a way to limit the number of total responses for your survey. See the Limiting Total Responses to a Survey section.
  • As a way to show a current quota count to your respondents via piped text.
    Piped Text for quotas

    Example: We can use a Total Visitor quota count to keep track of the number of respondents. This number will be displayed to the respondent so they know how many other visitors the survey has had.

Qtip: Are you looking for examples of how other Qualtrics users commonly use quotas? Check out these support pages:

Limiting Total Responses to a Survey

Quotas can be used to limit the total number of individuals who respond to your survey. This may be helpful if your account has a response limit. In the below example, we set a quota for a survey that can only have 100 responses, regardless of the respondents’ demographics or how they answered the other questions in the survey.

  1. In the Survey tab, select Survey options.
    In the survey tab, left chose last icon which is survey options, select quotas at bottom of list of sections
  2. Select Quotas.
  3. Click either Add A Quota or Add Quota.
    Quotas window has an Add a Quota button in the center and an Add quota button on the bottom towards the left
  4. Click the New Quota text to rename your quota. For example, Total Response Limit.
    Naming the quota on the left and choosing between simple or cross-logic quota on the right
  5. If asked to choose, select Simple Logic Quota.
    Qtip: If you are not given a choice between simple logic and cross-logic, then you are working with simple logic quotas.
  6. In the first field of the Quota Condition, select Question.
    Setting quotas steps 6-12
  7. In the next field, select a question that everybody in the survey will see. It is best to use a question that requires a response or a descriptive text question used for an introduction.
  8. Select any answer choice.
  9. Select Is Displayed. By using a statement that will always be true, you can ensure the quota with increment correctly.
    Qtip: Quotas are incremented upon survey submission. Although unlikely, it is possible to over-quota. This may occur if two individuals submit their survey at the exact same time.
  10. Select Prevent All New Survey Sessions. This will prevent anyone else from taking your survey once the quota has been met.
  11. Quotas are incremented upon survey submission. Although unlikely, it is possible to over-quota. This may occur if two individuals submit their survey at the exact same time. In this event, decide whether you want to record or delete the over quota response.
  12. Click Save.

Creating a Public Quota Dashboard

There may be situations where you wish to allow others to keep track of your quota counts. Public quota dashboards are webpages that display your quotas’ progress. You can link anyone to this page, regardless of whether they have a Qualtrics account.

To create a Public Quota Dashboard

Each group of quotas can have its own public quota dashboard.

  1. Once you’ve opened the quotas page, click the dropdown arrow to the right of the quota group.
    Dropdown next to quota group reveals public quota dashboard
  2. Select Public Quota Dashboard.

As soon as this is selected, your public quota dashboard has been activated. You do not even need to save the quotas page to view this change.

To access a Public Quota Dashboard

  1. In the Survey tab, select Survey options.
    In the survey tab, left chose last icon which is survey options, select quotas at bottom of list of sections
  2. Select Quotas.
  3. Select Click here to access Public Quota Dashboard.
    In upper-right of Quota window, Click here to access Public Quota dashboard
  4. Copy the URL in the new browser tab that opens and send it to others so they can access this dashboard.
    A public quota dashboard as a series of gauge charts
Qtip: The name of the quota groups and the quotas themselves are displayed exactly as written on the Public Quotas Dashboard, so be sure to name these clearly and professionally!

The public quota dashboard displays a series of gauge charts. The gauge chart changes color as the quota gets closer to being fulfilled. To use the images above as an example, the “Dallas Location” only has 15 responses out of 100, so it is red. Because the “No High School/GED” has 19 out of 20 and is nearly complete, it is green.

Simple and Cross-Logic quotas are shown in separate sections on the dashboard.

Using Advanced Quota Options

Qtip: Advanced Quota features are only available to DesignXM customers. If you’re a Brand Administrator, please contact your Account Executive or Customers Success Representative if you’re interested in getting access.

The following features are only included with Advanced Quotas:

  • Creating Multiple Quotas: Allows you to create multiple quotas at the same time, using the answer choices of the selected question.
  • Cross Logic Quotas: Use advanced logic based on percentages when setting up your Quota.
  • Multiple Match Handling: Specify how your quotas should be incremented if a respondent meets the conditions of multiple quotas.
  • Scheduled Quotas: You can schedule quotas to automatically reset after a certain period of time. See the To Schedule an Automatic Quota Reset heading under the Setting Quota Counts and Limits section.
Qtip: Once enabled in your Qualtrics license, access to these features is controlled by the Use Advanced Quotas permission. By default, this permission is only enabled for Brand Administrators, but administrators can enable this permission for other users, types, groups, or divisions as needed.

Creating Multiple Quotas

Qtip: This feature is part of Advanced Quotas, which is not available to all customers. If you have a question about getting this feature enabled, reach out to your brand administrator.

Have you ever wished you could create all your demographic quotas at once? Or while building a cross-logic quota, wished you could favor some subcategories more than others? Our Creating Multiple Quotas tool allows you to do just that. The below steps detail how to create multiple quotas at the same time.

  1. In the Survey tab, select Survey options.
    In the survey tab, left chose last icon which is survey options, select quotas at bottom of list of sections
  2. Select Quotas.
  3. Click Create Multiple Quotas.
    Create Multiple Quotas button along the bottom
  4. Click the green Add a Question button to select a question.
    Create Multiple Quotas window has an Add a Question button
  5. Click Add a Question to add another question to your quotas.
    Add a Question button in upper-left

    Qtip: Adding another question to your quotas allows you to specify what subcategories you’re most interested in. For example, let’s say your survey asks for both marital status and gender. You can use the “Multiple Quotas” feature to specify that you want more married women in your sample than married men.
  6. Under Please select a logic type for your batch, choose whether the multiple questions will be joined by an AND or an OR. For example, the Yes-Male quota pictured above will apply to those who are of Hispanic/Latino descent AND are male.
    modifying count for each choice, the names for these quotas, and the quota actions that result form the quota being met
  7. Click the X next to a question to remove it from the quota.
  8. Under the Count column, specify the number of people you want to fit each quota. You can set a Default value at the top.
  9. Name your quotas.
  10. Under the dropdown for Quota Met Action, decide what happens when each quota is met. See our Specifying Quota Actions section for more information on these options.
  11. Depending on the “Quota Met Action” you chose, you may have to determine what happens to responses that meet the quota after the quota has been met. You can keep and record them or delete them.
  12. Check the box next to those subcategories you wish to Exclude, or not create a quota for.
  13. Click on the green Create Quota(s) button.
  14. Feel free to select each quota and double-check their settings. Once you are satisfied, click Save.
    Green save button in lower-right
Qtip: The maximum number of questions you can have at a time is three. To add more conditions to a quota, you must edit it individually.

Setting Conditions in Cross Logic Quotas

Qtip: This feature is part of Advanced Quotas, which is not available to all customers. If you have question about getting this feature enabled, reach out to your Brand Administrator.

Unlike a simple logic quota, a cross logic quota uses percentages to define how respondents are distributed in your quota. This quota type is ideal when you have multiple groups of conditions. With cross logic quotas, you simply specify which percentage of respondents should match each criteria, and then Qualtrics will do the heavy lifting of figuring out how many respondents are needed for each combination of conditions.

Example: If you wanted to create quotas that would keep track of male and female respondents, 6 age brackets, and 7 marital statuses, simple logic quotas would need 84 separate quotas to track these groups. With cross logic quotas, we can condense all of these into one comprehensive quota, as shown in the following screenshot.

A massive list of quota conditions broken down by what percentage each choice should be of the overall quota

To create a Cross Logic Quota

  1. Create a new quota and select Cross Logic Quota.
    Cross logic quota option when creating a quota
  2. Create a set of conditions for your quota. To add conditions, click the plus sign ( + ) to the right of each condition.
    Minus and plus signs tot he right of each statement

    Example: Let’s start off with adding two conditions in our first set: Male and Female.
  3. Set the percentages to reflect how you would like the respondents to be distributed.
    Example: In this case, 50% of the total respondents for this quota will end up being male and 50% will be female.
  4. Select Add Logic Set to create another set of conditions.
    Add Logic Set button centered beneath the logic
  5. Use condition sets to create groups of conditions that are mutually exclusive from other groups of conditions.And separating two sets of quota logic
    Example: We’ve added another set focusing just on age groupings. In keeping with our earlier example, we would also want to create another set of conditions for just marital statuses.
  6. Add as many conditions and logic sets as you need for your survey.

Qtip: By clicking the dropdown arrow, you can adjust whether you are connecting statements by And, connecting statements by Or, or specifying a percentage.

Dropdown next to a quota percentage allows you to switch to Or or And instead of a percentage, thus separating logic sets

For example, this allows you to build percentages for more dynamic conditions, as seen below.

Two separate percentages, highlighted to show where each ends and begins

At the bottom of your logic is a distribution table showing how many respondents each combination of conditions gives you, based on the total quota limit and the percentages set above.

At the bottom of the cross logic quota is a tables that breaks down the count for each choice by percentage

Attention: Be careful when editing your quota counts in a cross-logic quota! If you change the overall quota total for a cross-logic quota, then the “Current Counts” numbers will adjust as appropriate for your quota conditions. However, if you manually edit one of the “Current Counts” numbers, then this number will no longer adjust automatically if you change the overall total.

Setting Up Multiple Match Handling

Qtip: This feature is part of Advanced Quotas, which is not available to all customers. If you have question about getting this feature enabled, reach out to your Brand Administrator.

Sometimes your respondents may meet the conditions for multiple quotas. By default, a respondent will increase the count for all of the quotas they meet the conditions for. Multiple match handling can adjust how Qualtrics handles these multiple-match respondents.

Qtip: Make sure all the quotas you want to set multiple match handling for are in the same quota group. You can make a new quota in a group, but you cannot move quotas between groups.

Quotas shown in the same group

To change how multiple matches are handled

  1. Click the dropdown arrow to the right of the quota group (not the quota itself) on the main quota window.
    Dropdown arrow next to quota group on leftmost menu
  2. Select Multiple Match Handling.
    Dropdown menu reveals Multiple Match Handling
  3. Select how you would like the system to handle respondents who meet the conditions for multiple quotas.
    Multiple Match Handling options
  4. Click out of the menu to exit and select Save to finish.
    Save button in lower-right

Troubleshooting Quotas

We’ve designed this section for those who have read the material covered in this page and are still having issues with their quotas. Even though quotas can seem complicated, most problems can be diagnosed by checking a few basic things.

FAQs