Business Research Design

Topics: Scientific method, Research, Exploratory research Pages: 18 (5288 words) Published: December 3, 2013

Topics to be covered
Business Research Design : Exploratory, Descriptive & Causal Research Exploratory Research: Meaning, suitability, collection, hypothesis formulation Descriptive Research: Meaning, Types of Descriptive studies, data collection methods Causal Research: Meaning, various types of experimental designs, types of errors affecting research design

Business Research Design - A research design is a framework or blueprint for conducting the marketing research project. It details the procedures necessary for obtaining the information needed to structure and/or solve marketing research problems. A research design lays the foundation for conducting the project. A good research design will ensure that the marketing research project is conducted effectively and efficiently.

A research design involves the following components:
Define the information needed.
Design the exploratory, descriptive and/or causal phases of the researches. Specify the measurement and scaling procedures.
Construct and pretest a questionnaire (interviewing form) or an appropriate form for data collection. Specify the sampling process and sampling size.
Develop a plan of data analysis.

Classification of Marketing Research Designs

Comparison of Basic Research Designs

Exploratory Research
The major emphasis in exploratory research is on converting broad, vague problem statements into small, precise sub-problem statements, which is done in order to formulate specific hypothesis.

Characteristics of Exploratory Research:
Exploratory research is flexible and very versatile.
For data collection structured forms are not used.
Experimentation is not a requirement.
Cost incurred to conduct study is low.
This type of research allows very wide exploration of views. Research is interactive in nature and also it is open ended. Purpose of Exploratory Research
Formulate a problem or define a problem more precisely.
Identify alternative courses of action.
Develop hypotheses.
Isolate key variables and relationships for further examination. Gain insights for developing an approach to the problem.
Establish priorities for further research.
Appropriate to any problem about which very little is known. This research is the foundation for any future study. Exploratory Research Methods
Literature Search – This refers to “referring to a literature to develop a new hypothesis.” The literature referred are: trade journals, professional journals, market research finding publications, statistical publications, etc. Example: Suppose a problem is “Why are sales down?” This can quickly be analysed with the help of published data which should indicate “whether the problem is an industry problem or a firm problem”.

Three possibilities exist to formulate the hypothesis.
1. The company’s market share has declined but industry’s figures are normal. 2. The industry is declining and hence the company’s market share is also declining. 3. The industry’s share is going up but the company’s share is declining. If we accept the situation that our company’s sales are down despite the market showing an upward trend, then we need to analyse the marketing mix variables. Expert Surveys – In expert surveys, it is desirable to talk to persons who are well informed in the area being investigated. These people may be company executives or persons outside the organisation. Here, no questionnaire is required. The approach adopted in an experience survey should be highly unstructured, so that the respondent can give divergent views. Example :

1. A group of housewives may be approached for their choice for a “Ready to Eat” product. 2. A publisher might want to find out the reason for poor circulation of newspaper introduced recently. He might meet a) Newspaper sellers b) Public reading room c) General Public d) Business community etc. Focus Group – Another widely...
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