Online Surveys = Ongoing Insights

Top 5 Monkey Insider Tips

Top 5 Monkey Insider Tips

Survey Privacy, by Heather

There may be times you want to keep your survey private and available only for a discreet group of people to take. For example, when you’re conducting an internal employee survey or you have sensitive information in your survey.

Customers often contact us to ask how to keep their survey private and specifically how to prevent their survey from being found by search engines, such as Google. Here’s the information I like to share to help with these issues.

How to prevent your survey from being indexed in search.

Google has a program that goes to a web page and “crawls” all of the links on the page to index those links and enable them to be found when people search Google for information. This is essentially how Google “maps” the Internet. If your survey link is posted on a web page that is indexed, then there is a good chance that your survey may be found in search. For example, if you post a survey link on your company website, that survey may end up being found in Google search.

The best way to prevent your survey link from being indexed is to only send your survey web link by email and ask your recipients not to post the link on any web pages, including sites like Facebook and Twitter.

How to add security if you need to post your survey to a webpage.

Currently, we do not have a way of “hiding” survey links from the indexing process. If the best way for you to gather feedback is to post your survey link to a web site and it is found in search, you can take these additional steps to keep it private:

  1. Include a password for your survey. Learn how here.
  2. If you’re concerned that non-valid responses have been gathered due to your survey link being found in search, close your current collector and then create a new one. Ideally send that one out only by email. Or if you need to, post the new web link (with a password) to your site.
  3. Add a page to the beginning of your survey and include an introduction that lets people know you want ONLY specific respondents for your survey and ask recipients not to post or forward your survey link.

In general, we’ve seen that it’s pretty hard for people to search for a specific survey on Google and find it. The measures above are simple steps you can take if you really want to make sure your survey is private.

Adding Video, by Steve

One of my favorite tips to share with customers is how to add a video to your survey. Even though SurveyMonkey doesn’t currently provide a specific video question type, with a little HTML and the use of our descriptive text question type, you can quickly add a video (or two) to your next survey. If you want to get fancier and compare feedback on different videos, simply use random assignment to do so. Here’s how…

First, enable HTML in your SurveyMonkey account.

  1. Go to your My Account page (you can find this by clicking on your username on the top right of the site when you’re logged in).
  2. In the “Preferences” section, click “Edit” and select “Enable HTML.”

Then, when you’re designing your survey, follow these steps to add a video:

  1. Add a question.
  2. From the question type drop-down menu, select Descriptive Text.
  3. In the Descriptive Text field, add the embed code provided by your video hosting provider (such as YouTube, Google Video, Yahoo Video, or Vimeo).

To see a real live survey with a video, check out our video demo survey here.

If you want to test responses to different videos or find out which video is most effective based on respondent feedback, use random assignment. Read our handy FAQ on random assignment here. Then simply use the “Text Variable” random assignment type and follow the instructions above to add your video snippet. That’s it!

Custom Reports, by Colby

I often tell customers, “Don’t forget about the Custom Report feature that can be found in the Analyze section of our site!” This feature is available in all of our premium plans. Custom reports let you save special filters and cross tabs, only see responses from certain people who completed your survey, and hide sensitive data before you share results using a share link. Using custom reports can save you a lot of time when you’re analyzing your survey results, especially for recurring surveys, surveys with many questions, and surveys with a lot of responses.

To create a Custom Report, click on the “Analyze” tab in SurveyMonkey. Click on “Add a Report.” From here you can choose the questions you want included and save or export your data. In the example below, we create a report that includes only responses to Question 1 and Question 5 of our survey.


Multiple Languages, by Florian

Working on our International Customer Operations team, I often get the question, “I want a survey in multiple languages–what do I do?” Based on working with many customers on this issue, my advice is that it’s easier to design a separate survey for each language instead of using Skip Logic to direct customers to different languages within a single survey.

Let’s say you want to create your survey in four languages. Currently, we aren’t able to tell that you have multiple language versions of the same survey combined in a single survey. When analyzing the results, if you have used Skip Logic, you’ll just have a file with many, many rows of data. This is different if you create four separate surveys. The numbering will make it easy to tell which question is which, in each language. Also, you can take advantage of our survey languages (we offer 55!) to make sure navigation text, error messages, and help text is automatically provided in the right language. When your results are in, you can export the results for each of the four surveys and pretty easily merge them all into one spreadsheet file to analyze. So go ahead, go global and survey your customers, fans, and employees in their native language.

Adding Images, by Andrew

Even though we provide a handy image question type, sometimes you may want to add images to other question types or in your response options. You may also have images that are larger in file size than what we currently allow.

If you’re able to host images on your own website, or through services like Flickr or Photobucket, you can use HTML to easily add images (including large ones!) to different parts of your survey.

Just like in Steven’s tip above, you first need to enable HTML in your SurveyMonkey account.

  1. Go to your My Account page (you can find this by clicking on your username on the top right of the site when you’re logged in).
  2. In the “Preferences” section, click “Edit” and select “Enable HTML.”

Then, you can insert the HTML for your image in the text area of your question (or responses) where you want the image to be displayed.

Here is an example of what your image the code might look like: <img src=””/>. Remember to preview your survey when adding image URLs as you may need to re-size your image to fit in the area for your question or response option.

What do you think?

We hope you’ve enjoyed these insider tips from a few members of our awesome Customer Operations team. If you like these and want more, please tell us what other tips you’d like the team to provide in the comments below.

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  • Nice tips, especially video and image tips. Keep ’em coming!

    • Hi Mark–thanks! So glad you found these to be helpful.

  • Yup..helpful. However, you really do need to work out the embedded video in SM, AND fix the graphic formatting so that column widths can be set for entire document to eliminate the wonky text wrapping. This is the only thing making SM look like an amateur survey tool. It takes way too much work to format SM graphically.

    Keep up the good work….CM

    • Hi Charles–thanks so much for the feedback. We really appreciate it. Will make sure this gets to our design and product team as they’re constantly working on improving how our surveys look and work. Please keep the suggestions coming. They really help us to know how we can serve you better!

    • MychalH

      Thanks for the feedback Charles!

  • Thanks for the information.

    Just wondering, why would anyone want their survey to show up in Google?

    Why doesn’t SurveyMonkey put a META tag on all their surveys?

    Also, suggest adding rel=”nofollow” to the Anchor tag going to the Survey.

    • MychalH

      That is a good question Gerry; something worth looking into.

  • donna

    How can you add bullets and italicize or bold certain parts of the questions?

    • Hi Donna–if you enable HTML in your surveys, you can use the following HTML tags for bold and italicize:
      for bold: “your text here”
      for italics: “your text here”

      Hope that helps! Let us know what else we can share.

    • MychalH

      Hello Donna, take a look at this FAQ on how to use HTML coding on certain sections:

      This website is a great resource for all-things-Html:

  • Thank you for these insightful tips. It would be great if you could publish these in a pdf and I could download for future reference.

    • Hi Patrick–thanks for the great suggestion! Let us work on that and follow up with you. It’s a terrific idea for future tips as well (and the team has lots, so let us know if there are areas you’re most interested in learning about!).

    • MychalH

      That’s a great idea! Thanks for your feedback Patrick!

  • Love it.

    • Lorraine–we’re so glad you like these! Let us know what else you’d like to learn and we’ll post more great tips from the team.

  • Thanks for the tips. I will take a close look when I am setting up my next survey.

    Blessings and Happy Holidays!

    • Hi Thomas–you’re so welcome! Happy Holidays to you too :)

    • MychalH

      You’re welcome; happy holidays to you as well!

  • Helpful tips anyone can use – sometimes we need to be reminded throughout the year of these tips.

    • MychalH

      Thanks Linda!

  • Sue B.

    I wanted to use SurveyMonkey to put my quizzes in with images — ECG strips for example — how do I or can I do that? Would I have to post it on a web page and then get the HTML code first?

    It would be helpful as an assessment tool for my nurses. Thanks!

  • Nam Nguyen

    no thanks

  • These tips are so well done, guys. I would like the pdf idea so I might be able to download it and use it whenever the matter comes up in my day to day work. Excellent!

    • Susan – Great idea! We’ll do that and keep you posted. We’ll do these tips a few times a year so you might have a collection soon!

  • mohmmad

    Sometimes monekeies dicover more of datas very imprtant than the datas of more of people


    thanx for information

  • Phil

    In terms of securing surveys, it would be great if Survey Monkey offered a way of uploading unique passcodes for closed sample surveys. We currently have to use a different package for this. It’s easy for a password to spread, but a unique passcode is much more secure.

    Any plans to develop this functionality.

    Another badly needed thing is the ability to copy questions from one Survey Monkey to another.

    Great work though – it’s getting better and better! Keep it up.

    • MychalH

      Phil -This would be a great feature.

      For now, you may want to consider the Email Invitation collector as it only allows one response per email address. Using this method for distributing the survey and a password is quite secure:

  • Dear sir,
    I have very good gift your meses your kindly to the survey is the good like

  • Dear sir,
    I have request to the good survey is very gift my enjoy your sir Thanks

  • Laura

    Great tips, now to be tested

  • nhan

    i think very good

  • I use your surveys (as a business customer) for creating reviewer feedback forms. It works really well for my small journal. It would really help if my clients were able to upload word or PDF files with their responses. Do you have any plans for this?



    • MychalH

      Thanks for the Feedback. There is no immediate plans to offer this feature but hopefully down the road we can. You can currently do this with our sister site

  • Colin

    Can we host video on our own website for purposes of tip #@

    • MychalH

      Colin – Yes, you can hot a video on your own website and point a link to the video in a surveymonkey survey.

    • Great post. I was checking continuously this blog and I am impressed!
      Extremely helpful info particularly the last part :) I care for such information much.

      I was looking for this particular info for a long time. Thank you and
      best of luck.

  • tame

    I love #1 monkey and all of you.

  • Ronnie

    Thanks useful details

  • lv

    good job!

  • Dan

    These are VERY HELPFUL, thanks!

  • شكرا لهذا الأقتراح العظيم

    • MychalH

      You are welcome!

  • Joe

    How about adding rss feeds for results– I would love to get notifications when people fill out my surveys. Wufoo does it, I know you guys don’t want to set email notifications, but how about a rss feed for results?

    • MychalH

      That’s great feedback Joe; we’ll look into it!

  • Darlene

    I would like some tips on how to identify respondents on their survey. I would use this to match to demographic data in a master file for example.

  • Shannon Lee

    This is so useful! Is there an article about how to change the font size and and font type of the survey questions?

  • Vic

    Great tips. Wish I was more computer literate!!

  • jim

    Yes I like the tips and would like to see more of them.

  • Vai

    great tips, as a saying goes, ‘actions speaks louder than words’

  • Vai

    great tips, love to read them all, thanx.

  • selwan Al-kebsi

    Thanks a lot for this feedback, it is really good to have help from others as well as suggestions.

  • Fantastic ideas which I will use in the future with my customer database. I would also like to have a pdf version of these ideas. Thanks

    • MychalH

      Thanks for the Feedback Sofia; that’s a great idea!

  • foday

    These tips are very educative and helpful in real social life life; especially in this modern time. I may like to receive more of them on constant basis. Thanks for your efffort.

    • MychalH

      Thanks! We will try to send out more!

  • Vivek Kangesu

    Thanks for the information. Can we import and excel spreadsheet please?

    • MychalH

      We do not have this capability at this time (besides uploading email lists) unfortunately.

  • David

    I got excited when I seen the headlines ‘not meant for everyone’s eyes’ and ‘Don’t let language barriers get you down’.

    I was expecting to be told how to hide surveys within your survey list in Survey Monkey. We share our account across the authority and sometimes don’t want other people seeing what surveys are about to be carried out!

    Also, I was expecting to get some really good tips on doing surveys in different languages but instead was told to just do two seperate surveys……… isn’t this really obvious??

  • azam

    tnx so much

  • pham thi hue

    yes!all right!

  • Catherine

    Very useful. I’m freelance and often carry out work on behalf of more than one organisation so I would also like to know how to add muliple logos to a survey. Thanks

    • MychalH

      Catherine – To add more than one image into the survey header, you must do the following in a separate photo editing program like Photoshop or Paint:

      Create one file.
      Combine as many logos here as you want.
      Then save it as one image file.

  • Jim Gilroy

    Survey Monkey is a very awkward tool to use when surveying in multiple languages. Specifically, the back end analytical tools are generally very adequate when working with a single language. However, when using more than one language you cannot use these analytical tools that are a major feature of your product. This situation really needs to be rectified and I brought this to your attention more than a year ago.

    • Jim – We’re glad that you and many other customers are creating surveys in multiple language on SurveyMonkey. We’ve spoken to many of them to learn what they require to improve both the survey creation and survey analysis tools on our site. We are currently in the process of major improvements to our Analysis tools, which will include features directly related to your situation. When these features are released (expect them in 2012), it will be easier to compare and/or consolidate results across surveys, especially in the case of the same survey in multiple languages. Till then, have a great holiday. Thanks for your feedback and patience.

  • We use Facebook to talk to our consumers, and use the website for static data that doesn’t change often, so knowing how to hide a survey from search engines is quite useful. Other than bookmarking this page, I’d sure love to have these tips in a pdf format for future reference. I can share that with my colleagues a lot easier. Thanks!

    • MychalH

      Barbara – We will see what we can do; thanks

  • khalid

    Thank you very much

  • 王剑


  • Great tips – and particular thanks for all your help over the last few weeks with my download problems. All ok now. Best wishes to you all.

  • Ebonhi

    wow nice tips they could come in handy in the future thankz!!! :)

  • Ebonhi

    how could i actually sendd the surveys and does it cost money??? :/

    • MychalH

      The BASIC plan is completely free! Your surveys don’t expire if you choose to never upgrade to a paid plan. We also do not delete surveys nor responses if you choose to stay as BASIC. Create and administer as many surveys as you want for as long as you want! They are stored indefinitely. Take a look at this FAQ for more information:

  • Thanks for the tips. Good to know about the video and image ones.

  • Ashutosh

    I like thease types of tips And i Thing that its All right

  • prabudhanandan .v

    i am very happy great tips i would like more of them

  • Adavi Abraham

    Beautiful programmes, I feel they are basically designed for America and British audience. Comments or opinions from Africa especially, Nigeria do not count, perhaps.

    • Adavi – Thanks for your comment. We very much believe that surveys are important internationally, which is why we have invested in offering the ability to build surveys in 55 languages. You can read more about how to use the languages here. While we don’t have all the African languages, we do offer Swahili.

  • Cathy


    I work in training and have a platinum account.
    Sometimes we send through a pre-training survey to access baseline knowledge and follow-up with a post-training survey to ascertain knowledge transfered.

    It would be useful to be able to cross-tab between the pre and post surveys.

    Is this a possibility or could you suggest a work around?

    Kind regards,


    • MychalH

      Cathy – I agree that this would be a useful feature. As a Work around you may want to consider using the same survey for both surveys and have a multiple choice (only one answer) question type that asks the respondents if the survey is a “Pre-” or “Post-” survey. This would then allow you to create a cross tab based upon that question and prepare those two answer choices. Hope this helps!

  • Kevin Molumphy

    Thanks a lot, you guys must have worked hard

  • Rowel Miranda

    good tips…

  • It is in point of fact a great and useful piece of info. I’m happy that you shared this useful info with us. Please stay us informed like this. Thanks for sharing.

    • Hanna J

      Thanks for your nice feedback! We’ll continue to post insider survey tips, tricks, and ideas, so check back in for the latest. Have a great week.

  • charanya

    Any update on the consolidated back end analytical tools for administering same survey in different languages? You have last mentioned in Dec 2011 that it would be out by 2012..

    • Bennett P

      Charanya –

      No update yet. Keep checking back though.

  • We are a group of volunteers and opening a new scheme in our community.
    Your website provided us with valuable info to work on. You have done an impressive job
    and our whole community will be grateful to you.

    • Kayte K

      We’re so happy to hear this. Thank you for reading!

  • Pretty! This has been an incredibly wonderful post.
    Thanks for providing this information.

  • It’s appropriate time to make some plans for the longer term and it is time to be happy. I have learn this put up and if I could I desire to recommend you few fascinating issues or tips. Perhaps you could write subsequent articles regarding this article. I desire to learn even more things approximately it!

    • Kayte K

      Thanks for the feedback! Keep on the lookout for even more tips, like our latest- Survey Tips and Tricks for the New Year.

  • Jessica

    Hi guys, I have a basic/free account and was just wondering is the HTML option in the preferences section just for paid accounts? I’m trying to embed a Youtube video in my survey but the HTML option is not coming up in my account preferences :(


    • Kayte K

      Hi Jessica! Yes, the HTML option is available beginning with our Select plan holders. You can take a peek at all of our Plans & Pricing page for the full list of options:

      Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any other questions!

  • Jennifer

    Andrew, thanks for the great image answer response feedback. I have HTML enabled, but was curious if there are any other requirements besides size when coding. I am unable to get my images to load. As an evaluator, I often work with young children who have the questions read to them and then choose the best pictorial answer. This is a feature that I need.

    Thanks, Jennifer

    • Kayte K

      Hi Jennifer- We’re glad you got some good info from our post and we want to definitely help you with your question. If you send a note to, they’ll be happy to get you the info you need!

      Thanks for reading. :)

  • Outstanding post!!!You write well.Carry on

    • Kayte K

      We appreciate the support! Thanks for reading and have a great week.

  • Van

    This article, “Top 5 Monkey Insider Tips | SurveyMonkey Blog” hy-vee-stores was in fact terrific.
    I’m producing out a clone to present my personal close friends.
    Thanks a lot,Dave

  • Eliane

    Hi Florian,

    I just closed 4 surveys (same questions, different languages) and I don’t know what to do with them to merge the result to be able to analyze them. Could you explain the how to merge them all into one spreadsheet file to analyze?


  • inwammataini

    Hi, thought I should introduce…. me!

  • It’s remarkable to pay a quick visit this web site and reading the views of all friends about this article, while I am also zealous of getting know-how.

  • Chin Sims

    Thank you, Colby!

  • niel

    Thanks for all the helpful tips, especially on survey privacy..!

    • KTsurveymonkey

      Glad it was helpful, Niel! Thanks for reading.

  • Andrea Blackburn Purdie

    can someone tell me how long you have to wait for the email address verification to expire, as I used this as a tester and it will not now allow me to send the actual survey.

    • KTsurveymonkey

      Hi Andrea!

      The email link itself shouldn’t expire. It could be that you haven’t verified the email address yet. You would need to send a new verification to another address, or go into the email that you sent the test email to and verify that email address.

      Hope that helps!

  • Melanie Abdel Massih

    Hello, concerning adding a video : I went to my account and couldn’t find in the “Preferences” the HTML formatting button to enable the HTML. Can you help me or tell me why it is not there ?

  • Amanda McKenzie

    Is there a way to include word documents as attachments? I have people to vote for and want to include their bios.

  • Mani

    Hello, I had a question regarding using custom logic. Is there any way in surveymonkey where I can write my custom code to change the behavior of the forms. The answers to the questions lead to specific list which ONLY depend on the different combination of answers and then pushed onto a mailing portal. Is this possible using surveymonkey? If not then maybe any other form based web app which allows me to do that. Any kind of help would be highly appreciated.Thanks.

    • KTsurveymonkey

      Hi Mani-

      Thanks for reaching out to us. With Skip Logic you can lead respondents through a particular path based on specific answer choices or pages they visit. It may be that the logic you’re attempting to create is a bit more complex than this? If you’d like us to take a peek, please feel free to reach out to our support team:

      In the meantime, here are more details on using Skip Logic:

  • Mary

    I want them to be able to choose more than one answer. How do I do that?

  • USAMaid

    My question is how do I create a hyperlink on my website that, when clicked, will open Survey Monkey in a new window?

  • crunchmonkey

    It would be awesome if there was a way to see a map of my survey logic. Is that something you folks could offer?

    • MFsurveymonkey

      Hi there!

      We do not offer this option just yet, but it’s a great idea. We’ll pass on your feedback to our Product Development team!

  • chakrapani mandava

    Is it possible to send surveys to user with names and email ids being picked from excel sheet in adjacent columns, autofill a few columns (again from columns on excel e.g. employee ID) on the survey? The reason I need to do this is, we need to send the survey to 5-10 people every day and then track who completed the survey and who did not.

    Essentially, this will be similar to mail merge option on outlook.

    • MFsurveymonkey

      Hi Chakrapani! We do offer several tracking methods that you can use in your survey.

      I believe the one that would be closer to what you’re describing is the Custom Variables (allows you to track data about respondents by passing values, like employee ID, through a survey link and into your survey results). This is available with the Platinum or Enterprise plan.

      You can find all about tracking methods here:

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