Introducing Yazi's Revolutionary WhatsApp-based Market Research Tool.

Oct 1, 2021 – Today Yazi, an innovative data collection company, is excited to announce the launch of a ground-breaking market research tool designed specifically for WhatsApp. This revolutionary tool significantly builds upon the strengths of traditional in-person surveys, simultaneously overcoming their inherent limitations in regions with low internet penetration.

In-person surveys have been a cornerstone of our data collection process, particularly in Africa. They provide us with broad accessibility, cater to cultural and literacy differences, build trust, handle complex issues, and assure high response rates and quality control. However, with the rapid digitalisation of Africa, we believe it is time to adopt a more inclusive, efficient, and user-friendly approach to data collection.

Our WhatsApp survey tool is a unique leap forward, offering several key advantages:

  1. High Response Rates: Our WhatsApp surveys have seen an industry-leading response rate of 62%, suggesting that participants find this platform more engaging and user-friendly than traditional online surveys.
  2. Reach people that otherwise can't be reached digitally: WhatsApp allows us to connect with individuals who may not have reliable access to the internet or digital devices. 
  3. Reduced mobile data expenses: Conducting a survey on WhatsApp consumes only 10 cents in data, making it affordable for participants. Many individuals already have WhatsApp data bundles, further reducing any potential financial barriers.
  4. No phone storage barrier: Since WhatsApp is a widely used messaging app, most participants already have it installed on their phones. This eliminates any concerns related to phone storage limitations.
  5. Nationwide Representation: WhatsApp's popularity in South Africa - boasting 95% penetration of the internet population - ensures a diverse and representative sample size, critical for accurate market research.
  6. User-friendly and familiar: WhatsApp is deeply ingrained in people's everyday lives in Africa. It serves as a central platform for managing relationships and communication. This familiarity and everyday use lead to a higher level of participant comfort and engagement in our surveys. 
  7. Convenient Completion: WhatsApp allows for easy pause and resume functionality, ensuring participants don't lose their survey progress. This feature is especially handy given the interruptions that can occur in our daily lives.
  8. Rich Data Collection: The WhatsApp API upgrade allows us to capture multiple forms of media - video, images, and voice notes - enriching the quality of data we collect without significant data costs to participants.
  9. Longitudinal Studies: The context and history preservation feature of WhatsApp enables us to build upon previous research, facilitating longitudinal studies or diary study methodologies.
  10. Personal Engagement: Our researchers can personally engage with participants, provide reminders, clarification, and even encourage completion or restarting of surveys.
  11. Habit-forming Nature: As described in the 'Hooked' theory, the habit-forming nature of WhatsApp's integration into daily lives in Africa makes it an excellent channel for ongoing and longitudinal research.

This move is not to downplay the value of in-person surveys but to provide an innovative and more effective tool for our research purposes. By utilising WhatsApp for data collection, we can leverage the platform's strengths to further our goal of gathering comprehensive, authentic, and high-quality data.

"We're thrilled to integrate this new tool into our data collection process," says Timothy Treagus, CEO & Founder. "With the growing digitalisation of Africa, this is a significant step forward in providing an innovative, inclusive, and effective platform for our research purposes. We're committed to gathering comprehensive, authentic, and high-quality data, and we believe our new WhatsApp tool will allow us to do just that."

Extra data

WhatsApp is one of the most widely used mobile applications in the world, owned by Meta. It has a massive user base of 2 billion users (excluding China where WhatsApp is banned), making it highly popular. Each day, over 100 billion messages are exchanged on the app, making it the most widely used mobile messaging platform globally.

  • WhatsApp has 2 billion active users worldwide.
  • WhatsApp is ranked as the most used mobile messenger app in the world.
  • More than 100 billion messages are sent each day on WhatsApp.
  • The average WhatsApp user on Android spends 59 minutes per day on the app.
  • Over 90% of android users are active daily
  • On average, its users return to the app 22 times a day
  • India has the most WhatsApp users (487.5 million).

About Yazi

Yazi is a data collection company dedicated to providing accurate and comprehensive market research. Through innovative technology and deep cultural understanding, Yazi strives to illuminate the diverse experiences, opinions, and needs of individuals across Africa.
This is how we work

Start your Research Journey in Emerging Markets today!

Frequently Asked Question

We have gathered the answers to common queries about how Yazi facilitates revolutionary market research through WhatsApp, alongside a host of other insightful information.


How does Yazi Work?

Yazi is a Market research platform built on top of WhatsApp. You have the ability to script, design, edit, launch and analyse your results on our webapp. The questions are sent via WhatsApp and the participants interact with them there as if it is a normal conversation.


How is Yazi's Data Protection?

Yazi prioritises data privacy by anonymising information, employing robust encryption, and allowing database access only to authorised personnel through password and 2FA protection. We adhere to stringent security standards including ISO/IEC 27001, NIST, PCI SSC, and GDPR, ensuring no data sharing with external third parties. Our comprehensive Data Security Program encapsulates physical and logical security measures, data access controls, encryption, along with data backup, recovery, and a well-structured incident response framework. In adherence to GDPR's principles, we process user data with utmost transparency, and address data deletion requests promptly as delineated in our Terms of Service, providing you with control over your data.


Why WhatsApp

Our WhatsApp surveys boast an impressive response rate of 62%, showcasing superior engagement compared to traditional online surveys, especially valuable in reaching individuals with limited internet access. The low data cost of 10 cents per survey, alongside the prevalent use of WhatsApp in South Africa with a 95% penetration rate, facilitates nationwide representation, reducing financial and phone storage barriers.

The familiar and user-friendly nature of WhatsApp enhances participant comfort, while its pause-resume functionality ensures convenience in survey completion. Moreover, the recent WhatsApp API upgrade enables rich data collection through various media forms without incurring significant data costs, paving the way for nuanced longitudinal studies. This platform's habit-forming nature, reinforced by personal engagement from our researchers, makes it an exemplary channel for continuous and detailed market research.


How is Yazi's data quality?

  • Speeding - A completion time that is too fast indicates the respondent has not sufficiently comprehended the questions.
  • Gibberish checker - Checking that open text answers are not “gibberish” and can be understood as a sentence.
  • Straight-lining checker - Checking that the sequence of answers does not follow the same pattern - e.g. A, A, A, A, A, A
  • Red herring question - Intentionally placing “oddball” questions into the survey to see if the respondent was paying attention. We also ask questions that correspond with previous answers but are categorised or worded slightly differently.
  • Evidence question - Where we specifically need an audience that exhibits a certain behaviour or matches a certain demographic, we ask respondents to send a picture that proves they match/meet requirement.
  • Panel recalibration & assessment - We recycle demographic and behavioural questions every 4 months to compare against historical answers.

What types of Questions do you support? 

Question Types Supported: 

  • Multiple Choice
  • Image
  • Video
  • Voice Notes


  • Grid Questions
  • Ranking Question

How many questions can I ask via WhatsApp?

At Yazi, we employ a multifaceted approach to recruit diverse and reliable survey participants. Our strategies include:

  1. Social Media Engagement: We actively recruit through various social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter/X, and TikTok. This broad approach helps us reach a wide demographic spectrum.
  2. Partnerships: We collaborate with companies possessing extensive databases of customers or members. Through these partnerships, we invite individuals to participate in our surveys, ensuring a rich pool of respondents.
  3. Local Presence: In an effort to connect with communities, we've placed QR codes in spaza shop locations across South Africa. These QR codes direct individuals to our WhatsApp number, facilitating an easy sign-up process.
  4. Referral Program: We believe in the power of word-of-mouth. Hence, we have a referral program where existing participants can refer friends, family, and their network. We incentivise these referrals to encourage a broader participation.
  5. Demographic Information Collection: To mitigate bias and the incentive to provide untruthful responses, we gather demographic information before showing participants our surveys. This ensures the quality and reliability of our data.