A Research Design can be defined as a plan outlining how information is to be gathered for an assessment or evaluation that includes identifying the data gathering method(s), the instruments to be used or created, how the instruments will be administered, and how the information will be organized and analyzed. In other words or in my own words, a Research Design is a plan that shows the format or procedure that a research should or is going to take. This can be in terms of methods of gathering data, evaluation of data collected, sampling technique chosen and many others.
Formulating a research design has to do with developing a logical and systematic plan that would guide a researcher to successfully undertake a research project. The research design serves as a guide to performing the research. It does not suggest how the identified problem can be solved or the ways through which the problem can be solved.
Nonetheless, developing an approach to the problem is the second step in the marketing research process. The components of the approach consist of objective or theoretical framework, analytical models, research questions, hypotheses, and specification of information needed. It is necessary that the approach be developed based on objective or empirical evidence and also be grounded in theory.
The major difference between formulating a research design and developing an approach to the problem is that, whereas formulating a research design is aimed at giving direction to the researcher, developing an approach to the problem is aimed at specifying how the research is going to be carried out in order to find possible solution(s) to the problem.
Exploratory research is a type of research undertaken to provide insights and understanding into an issue or topic. Exploratory research is also known as a formulative research. It is a preliminary study of an unfamiliar problem about which the researcher has little or no...