As such, categories are equally wide and each data point can only fall in one category.
At Check Market we generally use the following categorisation: ‘18-24’, ‘25-34’, ‘35-44’, etc.
First of all, should you ask about them and why (not)?
Second, if you decide to ask about them, which ones should you ask? Socio-demographics are nothing more than characteristics of a population.
For instance, if your survey targets a specific audience, it allows you to determine whether you are actually reaching your target audience and whether or not you are gathering the information you are effectively seeking.
Furthermore, if you aim for a representative sample of a population, knowing the distribution of the demographic characteristics of your respondents will help you in determining how close the sample replicates the population.As many researchers have already shown, the dropout rate of a survey correlates positively with the length of the survey. In short, adding (too many) socio-demographic questions might make it more difficult to gather a substantial sample size.Especially if, thirdly, respondents might become concerned by having to answer a large number of (identifying) demographic questions.In other words, a variable which you can express differences in magnitude with.For instance, “respondent A is forty years old and is twice as old as respondent B”.There are also various reasons not to ask about socio-demographics.First of all, you need a substantial sample to draw any statistically meaningful conclusions.For instance, you might conclude that your employees are generally satisfied with their career opportunities in your organisation.Nevertheless, the aggregate data might hide the fact that the employees of the IT department are not at all satisfied with their career opportunities.They might feel that these questions compromise the anonymity of the survey or experience these questions as an invasion of their privacy.So, to summarize, it is imperative that you strike the right balance.