Terms and Concepts

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Understanding Business Research Terms and Concepts: Part 2

Which type of research design— exploratory, descriptive, or causal—is appropriate for the following examples? Explain why.

• The goal of this research is to discover the real nature of the problem and to suggest new possible solutions or new ideas. - Exploratory because the problem is not known.

• A food manufacturer wants to know the demographics of people who purchase organic foods. – descriptive because the data gathered will provide exact figures.

• A firm is considering hiring American celebrity Paris Hilton to endorse its products. – Casual because nothing has been done yet, it is still in the idea stage.

• British Airways would like to test in-flight Internet services on one of its regular flights from New York to Tokyo. The company charges $30 one week and $15 the next week. – Exploratory because they are experimenting to find a good set price that pleases customers and maintains a healthy profit margin.

• This type of study attempts to discover answers to the following questions: who, what, when, where, or how much. – Descriptive

• A manufacturer investigates whether consumers will buy a new pill that replaces eating a meal. – Exploratory, because the company will first find the barriers to entry.

• Cosmopolitan magazine sends out a cover in selected markets featuring a female model to half of its readers and a cover with a female and male model to the other half of its readers to test differences in purchase response between the two groups. – Descriptive because the data collected will show exact numbers.

• A hair-care manufacturer interviews wholesalers, retailers, and customers to determine the potential for a new shampoo package. – Casual as the product is still in the idea phase.

• This type of research attempts to capture a population’s characteristics by making inference from a sample’s...
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