Lighthouse Studio Software Reviews

FrontRunners 2021

User Review Highlights

Overall Rating

4.60

Ratings Breakdown

Secondary Ratings

Ease-of-use

4

Customer Support

4.5

Value for money

4.5

Functionality

4.5

  • icon"Very user friendly, has great customer support and statistical rigor. Sawtooth has great name recognition in the industry and is accepted as a go to software for choice modelling."
  • icon"The features I like most about using this software are the ease of learning the program, and the quick and responsive customer service."
  • icon"I appreciate that Sawtooth is a quality product with a robust feature set and is appropriate for our business needs."
  • icon"My largest negative about the software has to do with how complicated the surveys are that I had to deal with."
  • icon"So having a chart / problem troubleshooter somewhere could enable people to use Lighthouse more, for more analysis."

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Showing 1 - 25 of 168 reviews

User Profile

Tatiana

Verified reviewer

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: Less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

March 2019

Our Main Tool for Survey Programming

This is the main tool we use to program surveys of any level of difficulty. Once you have done enough projects, all past surveys serve as excellent templates, on the basis of which it is possible to solve similar tasks, at the same time - customizing for specific needs.

Pros

Super versatile, completely customizable, love the endless options of implementing PERl, Java, HTML by themselves and with the help of SSI Scripts. Can look overwhelming for somebody who needs simple SurveyMonkey-style surveys, but works as a real powerhouse for those who want more. Customer support is exceptional - very responsive, can create specific pieces of codes tailored for your task. Great response time both via the phone and email.

Cons

Just sad that the standalone version of Sawtooth Web is slowly going away and probably will seize to be at some point.

Justin

Company size: 11-50 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: Less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

March 2020

Lighthouse Studios Review

Overall, I am still extremely happy and satisfied with the Sawtooth and the new Lighthouse Studios program. The customer support is second to none and the team is always available when needed. The employees are also very knowledgeable and answer any questions we have with a solution. After using Sawtooth for all 8 years of my employment at AMG Research, I do not think there is another company that could meet our needs as well as Sawtooth.

Pros

We have used Sawtooth Software for many years. Recently, we upgraded to the Lighthouse Studios version 9. I really enjoyed some of the new features like a drag and drop rank, the increased mobile responsiveness, and the next to none learning curve from the original Sawtooth Software. I could go on and one, but overall it is a very easy to use program.

Cons

With all of the good Lighthouse Studios offers there are some things I would really like to see improved; mostly with the market simulator conjoint. In the past, Sawtooth had a program called SMRT. With SMRT, I was able to make banner variables and analyze multiple segments all at one time. That function was not added to the market simulator. Segmentation is not as easy as it had been in the past. Also, while you can customize your layout surveys, it is difficult to change the .css style sheets to change font colors, text sizes, spacing, and text styles. I have a intermediate knowledge of css and it was still very difficult for me.

Reasons for choosing Lighthouse Studio

Past familiarity with Sawtooth, the ease of making constructed list, and the simplicity of the skip logic. Our surveys are very complex and with Lighthouse Studios, I was able to do everything I needed.

Silvo

Company size: 51-200 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

2

VALUE FOR MONEY

2

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

1

FUNCTIONALITY

2

March 2020

Expensive

OK for what we use it for.

Pros

Efficiency for choice modelling. Not much beyond that.

Cons

Expensive and few usability improvements over the years.

Reasons for switching to Lighthouse Studio

Efficiency

Maxwell

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

3

March 2020

Deep Software That Empowers Users

It's been our bread and butter survey publisher for over 10 years! We love it! What else is there to say.

Pros

Nothing is impossible. While many of the new slick, glossy software competing with Sawtooth prioritize aesthetics and wide-spreading integrated functionality, they sacrifice the deeper levels of customization and flexibility that Sawtooth enables with it's native scripting language, unverified perl, and advanced skip logic functionality. While many other softwares offer you a "boxed" solution that may be easier to use for casual users, Sawtooth rewards those willing to learn by empowering them to be able to do whatever they want.

Cons

Some interface items could be streamlined (nested menu only enable you to interact with whatever window is in focus) and the styles could be more robust with animations - Although this has never been Sawtooth's comparitive advantage, in my opinion.

Reasons for choosing Lighthouse Studio

All other publishers are boxed solutions without the robust scripting capability of Sawtooth.

Phil

Company size: 1,001-5,000 employees

Industry: Computer Games

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

March 2020

Best software for choice modeling

Use for product feature prioritization, pricing research, brand equity. LOVE working in it. It's my favorite tool.

Pros

I love the amount of customization you can do with this software. The options available for doing choice modeling are the best of any available software. The expertise behind the product is amazing as well. Customer support has helped me numerous times. The information available on the website is comprehensive and helpful. The forum is particularly well moderated.

Cons

Not quite as user-friendly as Qualtrics for some things such as survey flow.

Reasons for choosing Lighthouse Studio

Qualtrics still has a long way to go. Although it has a randomized first choice, there aren't near as many ways to work with it. You also can't do Alternative-specific designs, partial profile designs, conditional displays, and conditional pricing (I think). There's also no way to test your design and look at things like standard errors. They also don't talk about hold-out tasks or make it easy to incorporate them. Have also talked with Saurabh at Knowledge Excel but am so used to using Sawtooth that I just wanted to keep using it.

Duncan

Company size: 51-200 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

March 2020

My review

We are most often looking at price, but also other features and benefits of products and services. We haven't used the full functionality of the software (a) because we have our own interviewing and scripting software that our team uses (Dimensions) and (b) because we create our own simulators.

Pros

It is just so easy to use. And there are a number of options available when creating a design so that if one doesn't work I can try something else. Also the ability to include my own designs for modelling if I need to, which I do sometimes.

Cons

The time taken to design and/or analyse large or complicated experiments. Sometimes it's longer than I have available, but there are other options available to me in the software which I use instead.

Reasons for switching to Lighthouse Studio

Ease of use - I was quite familiar with the SAS product but it wasn't easy for complex designs or for new users

Julien

Company size: 5,001-10,000 employees

Industry: Transportation/Trucking/Railroad

Time used: Less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

March 2020

Very sound software, constrainted interface

That was our first use of Lighthouse. We have made some design choices that made the analysis of the results complicated: instead of using levels adjusted to the context of the respondents, we duplicated CBC questionnaires with updated levels. Due to lower responses that expected we had to regroup the responses, that could not be done with the tool but with the help of the support we could do it separately and feed it back in the Analysis tool. Although not recommended that saved our analysis and we could get reasonably good results. The flexibility of the tool was a real plus here, though there is a great margin of improvement still.

Pros

Extensive documentation. Well defined steps (Design, Run, Analysis, Simulation) with csv input/output between last 3 steps to allow adhoc processing in the middle.

Cons

The interface of the questionnaire design is the weakness, some particular points: - impossible to keep the documentation opened while editing the questionnaire - Not possible to copy-paste CBC questions within a questionnaire - UI design of the surveys is fastiduous. we had difficulties to use standard javascript libraries in survey. Also the use of a format easier to process for the .ssi files (XML ?) would enable to update questionnaires by script.

Reasons for choosing Lighthouse Studio

More extensive and better documented analytics. Sawtooth trainings and workshops

Greg

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Management Consulting

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

5

March 2020

Comprehensive Survey Software - Sawtooth

We rely on Lighthouse Studio for our product optimization efforts, enabling us to do scenario planning, product development prioritization and alignment to customer segment targets.

Pros

If you are in need of sophisticated analyses (e.g. conjoint, MaxDiff, etc.), there is no comparable to Sawtooth in terms of feature breadth, sophistication of exercises, and overall flexibility in survey design incorporating these complicated exercises.

Cons

The overall UX is built for hardcore programmers, and while there is seemingly infinite flexibility, this is often too much for the modest user, and is not comparable to the other SaaS software options like Qualtrics, SurveyGizmo, Decipher or Dynata.

Reasons for switching to Lighthouse Studio

The implementation of conjoint within the Qualtrics platform was not sophisticated (e.g. did not allow for the configurations and flexibility we need) and Lighthouse Studio was significantly more comprehensive.

John

Company size: 11-50 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

4

March 2020

Lighthouse Studio Review

Overall good experience and I would recommend and continue using myself.

Pros

MaxDiff and general ease of use. I will be using the simulator as well once I have a better handle on it.

Cons

Can be pretty expensive, and support can be challenging.

Reasons for choosing Lighthouse Studio

I have both.... XLSTAT great with some features where Sawtooth not ideal. But for higher level analyses such as MaxDiff & DCM would prefer to use Lighthouse. COST is the biggest hurdle-

User Profile

Sumit

Verified reviewer

Company size: 11-50 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

4

March 2020

The software is very user friendly. Conjoint and maxdiff analysis is very powerful and recommendable

Overall experience is very good that's why I have associated with this software for last 5 years.

Pros

Output of conjoint and maxdiff is very user friendly. Making customized survey is very easy. The best part is data collection in different mode like online/offline and can integrate with other platform is also helpful to sustain in market. Some desired questions are not there by default but can make it using Jquery/CSS/HTML like text highlighter/Heatmap.

Cons

Sometimes data lost for any particular question which should not but we can find the same in history table which is good.

Claudio

Company size: 51-200 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

3

FUNCTIONALITY

4

March 2020

Solid package, especially if you'd like to customise or if you're into Conjoint, MaxDiff etc.

Compared to other survey software, Lighthouse is a solid product that has a lot of capabilities and helps develop great surveys. Sure there is a lot that could be improved (and hey, Sawtooth, if you'd like some input or ideas, you're welcome to get in touch;) but in comparison it is one of the better solutions if you are looking for a certain degree of freedom and know your way around JS, CSS, Perl etc.

Pros

Highly customisable. Tailored towards people who are developers or have a strong tendency towards developing and therefore more intuitive than other products that do have more pleasing UIs yet more cumbersome UXs. It's one of the few solutions that provide good functionality when it comes to all types of Conjoint studies, MaxDiff etc. Backwards compatibility in terms of "the interwebs" is pretty deep (supports browser and platforms way back) although that's also something that holds the software back more than it should. Offline functionality works ok - although only on Android.

Cons

Innovation is lacking a bit. The overall architecture, look and feel of the software is almost unchanged in the past decade. Still relying heavily on jQuery and other libraries (which is totally unnecessary since almost everything can be done with vanilla JS and much reduced overhead!). The DOM and the structure comprises of a lot of jank. After all it's a web-experience and there are many things that can be improved upon to rise up to modern days web-standards to provide decent loading times, UXs for the respondents and make use of modern APIs and browser capabilities. I wish there was a more open dialog with developers in terms of roadmaps, development cycles, including suggestions etc. Offline functionality for iOS would be nice!

Paul

Company size: 1 employee

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

March 2020

Why Lighthouse Studio should be in your consideration set

I have been using the Lighthouse Studio since 2006. It has steadily grown in that time with more and more features / improvement included constantly across the journey. The Sawtooth Software team listen to their clients. They encourage you to voice your opinion. They regularly seek out your feedback for the good of their products. They really do get it right.

Pros

It contains all the standard survey question types and many of the more complex / customised question types that other software includes. It has the ability to add customised features / programming via HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Perl, etc. As with any software you become familiar with, it is easy to navigate your way around the menus and features within. The Sawtooth Software support is world class. It consists of a vibrant online forum and a generous and friendly help desk direct from Sawtooth Software themselves. I rely heavily on their ongoing support.

Cons

I guess self interest kicks in here. There are a couple of features I would love to see included such as a bulk emailer, carousels (programmed by Sawtooth Software rather than me) and file uploading within a survey.

Reasons for choosing Lighthouse Studio

Lighthouse Studio was reasonably priced for small-medium-large users (it catered for all shapes and sizes). I also heard their support tools (e.g. forum, help desk, etc.) was outstanding, and from experience, this became fact.

Reasons for switching to Lighthouse Studio

Surveycraft catered for CATI, CAPI, CADE and scanning projects. It did not have the ability to cover web surveys. My colleague and I reviewed a number of other software options at the time (such as Plenari, Dimensions, Confirmit, etc.) but found these to be too expensive and lacked ongoing support.

Steve

Company size: 11-50 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

March 2020

With you for the long run

Lighthouse, although we don't fully utilize every feature, is exactly what we needed to accomplish the MaxDiff tasks for both our research teams and clients. If you're not sure how do do something, call them. I can almost guarantee they have the exact something you need and will definitely help you through everything. They are among the smartest in the industry and know the ins and outs of everything they give us the ability to accomplish. So even if you get everything set up, but just don't fully understand the results, they can easily help with that as well. If you're on the fence, I would highly recommend this side as the greener one.

Pros

I have used Sawtooth Software since their first days of Ci2 back in the 90s. I've used their interviewing software (CATI/CAPI), went with to Ci3 and then Sensus as they entered the Web space. Their software has always been on point, giving you all of the features needed for a complete market research system. Since the early days, I have morphed to different systems with different companies, but have come back to Lighthouse for its ability to help run MaxDiff designs. We set everything up in Sawtooth, transfer the design to our interviewing software, import it back to Lighthouse, run the scores and upload it to the online analyzer. Our teams, and even some clients really love the ease of the online analyzer that also includes TURF analysis side-by-side with the MaxDiff analysis.

Cons

They have SO many choices for researchers, sometimes it can be difficult to know which is best for you, but if you tell them what you are trying to do, they'll get you to the exact product/service/logic you need.

Reasons for choosing Lighthouse Studio

It was the best solution for our needs and it doesn't hurt to have a 30 year history with using the company's software. With the wealth of knowledge they have, and have shared with the industry, this is not just a software company. They are a partner in research.

Nico

Company size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

March 2020

Essential product for our business

Has been an everyday part of our business for years. Couldn’t live without it.

Pros

Flexible and robust - does everything we need to conduct research and analyses. Excellent customer service. This product helps us provide essential services to our clients.

Cons

Does everything we need. No concerns at all.

Reasons for choosing Lighthouse Studio

Ease of use, price, capabilities, service

Reasons for switching to Lighthouse Studio

Ease of use, price, service, capabilities.

Daniel

Company size: 51-200 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

March 2020

Lighthouse Studio makes my job a joy to do.

Overall I find Lighthouse Studio to be one of the easiest platforms to use that doesn't sacrifice features in the name of usability. Our company uses another platform for programming surveys (Voxco) and the client software for it is clumsy, and the web app lacks many of the basic features I uses for almost all surveys I program.

Pros

The built in questions and functionality are reason enough to find Lighthouse Studio worth the price, but the support and flexibility of the software are why I think it is almost the perfect solution for programming surveys. The Perl and JavaScript support gives me the ability to create almost anything a client requests. Add in the user forums and the question library, and there isn't much I cannot do with Studio.

Cons

The only 2 features that the software is missing (at least I have not found a way to implement them) are the ability to assign custom values to items in a list ( example: on a 3 item list, such as 'yes' 'no' and 'none', the value of 'yes' will always be 1, 'no' will always be 2, and 'none' will always be 3) and project managers sometimes want that, since it is possible in another platform our company uses(Voxco). And the other is the ability to tie it into our dialing solutions for over the phone interviews. But these are not mission critical, just features that would allow us to use Studio for more projects.

Anonymous

Company size: 2-10 employees

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

February 2022

Powerful survey and conjoint tool, but needs updating

I have been using Lighthouse Studio for at least 7 years and it amazes me how powerful and customizable it is. Granted, to take full advantage you need at least some familiarity with CSS, JavaScript and Perl, but with some pretty basic knowledge you can create truly beautiful surveys. Over the past 18 months or so we have been moving more and more toward systems integration. For example I have a custom panel of participants living over in Database A. I want them to move into/thru a survey on Lighthouse, then depending on their responses send them to Database B or Database C, or send them follow-up SMS or email messages. Lastly, we have switched to reporting from a Dashboard and want pull data directly from lighthouse to the dashboard. While all of this is do-able, it requires a great deal of work and could be improved to make it easier and more fluid.

Pros

Lighthouse is an incredibly powerful survey tool that allows for a great deal of customization. It also has a very strong Conjoint exercise creator.

Cons

It is built on an older programming language (perl) which limits the ease of doing things such as connecting data to a dashboard or working with API's.

Reasons for choosing Lighthouse Studio

Customizability, strength of conjoint

Response from Sawtooth Software

Thanks for your fair and honest review. We've shared it with the team, so they can be aware of your desire and need for data integration improvements.

Replied February 2022

Steven

Company size: 11-50 employees

Industry: Market Research

Time used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT