Paired comparisons
Big Business
Paired comparisons
Paired comparisons
Sole Trader

Paired comparisons
A rating mechanism for deciding between different alternatives

The big idea

Paired comparison is a technique that originates from some of the earliest psychometric tests and has been used by psychologists for many years (Fechner, 1860; Mueller, 1986). It is now a well-developed method for considering a range of different options and it simply involves pairing each item with each of the other items in the set. All you then have to do is make a choice between two items. The result of these paired choices is a set of items, rank-ordered in terms of which items you have chosen more often.


The purpose of paired comparison analysis is to allow you to determine the relative importance of a number of options. It works particularly well when these options are quite different in nature. It is designed to help you set priorities where there are conflicting demands on limited resources.

The Tool

The tool takes you through the steps for using the paired comparison technique. It can be done on your own or with a group. The tool is suitable for any business that has to make choices between different options. The time required will vary depending on the number of comparisons and could be done quickly or take several hours.