Valid consequences in market research are achieved non so much by the pick of method employed, but by how good they are used. Market research is a concern activity that discovers information of usage in doing selling determinations. There are two chief types of research methods. Quantitative research focuses on obtaining informations that can be represented numerically and analysed statistically. However, qualitative research is research aimed at roll uping deep and elaborate information about the attitudes and feelings that conveying about the behaviors that qualitative research identifies. It has been determined that in the past, market research workers have been numbering chiefly on quantitative research. Both market research methods, if used good, can lend to selling by supplying valuable information to market research workers. The similarities and differences of each market research attack will be closely examined through diary articles and legion books.
Major Schools of Thought
History plays an of import portion behind the contention between the functions of quantitative and qualitative market research. The two major schools of thought include positivism and idealism. Positivism follows the quantitative attack whereas idealism supports the qualitative attack ( Patton 1978, 1980 ) . Many bookmans have different positions on each type of attack. Well known psychologists Charles Reichardt and Thomas Cook ( 1979 ) found that qualitative research is more suitable for theory coevals while quantitative research is more appropriate for theory confirmation. Their thought indicates that persons have been utilizing the incorrect research attack during state of affairss, ensuing in a “ methods prejudice ” in marketing research. Their suggestion besides has resulted in market research workers utilizing both attacks in an probe as theory building is every bit critical as theory confirmation. Reichardt and Cook ( 1979 ) besides stated that the quantitative attack is said to be nonsubjective and being fixed to what happens at the terminal of the procedure whilst the qualitative attack is subjective and tied to executing a set of undertakings. Each attack has resulted in two viing research groups, one admiting the power of elaborate experimental informations and the other accepting the qualities of study informations ( Sieber, 1973 ) .
Qualitative Market Research
In qualitative research methods, the inquiries provide respondents limitless chances to show their feelings and ideas. Qualitative methods provide opportunities for bettering the research workers ‘ cognition and obtaining valuable penetrations. The cardinal qualitative attacks include interviews and focal point groups. Sellers are going certain that qualitative research can lend significantly to the success of their market probe ( Satlow, 1989 ) . If used efficaciously, these methods provide users with the apprehension to do informed determinations refering the research job. To accomplish this, an absolute apprehension of 1s ‘ feelings, motivations and the grounds behind their behavior is needed. Many bookmans believe qualitative research to be more flexible than quantitative research as it involves detecting unexpected findings. This is because research workers can impact the way in which conversations with persons are heading. Qualitative research provides valuable penetration which can be obtained through a pattern of analysis and the combination of beliefs expressed by persons ( Spiggle, 1994 ) .
In relation to qualitative research, the concluding consequences can be affected by the research worker ‘s personality, such as their communicating accomplishments, and their ability to understand the persons ‘ behavior ( Marshall and Rossman, 1989 ) . Therefore, valid consequences are achieved by how good qualitative methods are employed by the research worker instead than the pick of method employed. Furthermore, qualitative research consequences might be of concern due to the fact that that certain consequences may hold been different with a different research worker. Qualitative research obtains information about consumer behavior which provides penetrations into emotions. The research worker experiences this apprehension through a personal confrontation with the respondent. Penetrations are non presented through graphs or statistics but develop as research workers face up to existent consumers. The value of qualitative research is non determined by how many consumers say something but by what is being communicated and how it is being communicated. For valid qualitative consequences, the research worker must carefully take an appropriate scope of people to do certain that assorted positions of consumers are collected.
The classical strengths of qualitative research methods include concrete word picture of item, portraiture of procedure in an active manner, and attending to the positions of those studied ( Patton 1980 ) .
Quantitative Market Research
Quantitative research places its accent on fixed measurings, hypothesis testing and a signifier of fieldwork engagement. The chief quantitative market research approaches include experimentation and observation. Quantitative research involves the numeration and measurement of events and set abouting the scrutiny of the statistics found ( Smith 1988 ) . Quantitative research is able to exemplify a form that stretches across a great figure of fortunes. He believes that each one should be used depending on what type of job is being addressed. The point of involvement relating to the quantitative paradigm is that measuring is dependable and valid in its clear computation of cause and consequence ( Cassell & A ; Symon, 1994 ) . Unlike the qualitative method, the research workers ain rules and prejudices do non play a function in the quantitative attack. A strength of the quantitative research attack is that it strongly follows the original aggregation of research aims, it arrives at nonsubjective decisions and is able to prove hypothesis.
The Procedure of Triangulation
Marketing research workers have learnt to triangulate the qualitative and quantitative market research. Triangulation is defined by Denzin ( 1978 ) as the combination of methods in the probe of the same event. Triangulation involves utilizing an appropriate mix of both quantitative and qualitative methods so that the strengths of each method can be incorporated together and any failings be eliminated by the strengths of the other method. Triangulation is able to supply what qualitative or quantitative research entirely could non hold found. Blending methods can besides take to new penetrations and guarantee that the user is confident and convinced with their findings. In peculiar, the procedure of triangulation requires creativity from the research worker. It responds to an observation suggested by one sociologist ( Phillips, 1971 ) who stated that research workers must non go on to execute the usual dull probes which have been used over the past. Rossman and Wilson ( 1984, 1991 ) suggested three grounds to fall in qualitative and quantitative methods. These included enabling confirmation of each method, to supply increased item and to try new ways of thought. There has been a move towards uniting qualitative and quantitative methods “ to supply a richer footing for reading and formalizing consequences ” ( Cook and Reichardt, 1976 ) . Roll uping different types of information by different attacks from different beginnings provides a wider scope of coverage that consequence in a clearer apprehension of the probe ( Bonoma, 1985 ) . Because of this, an increasing figure of bookmans have pushed for the combination of qualitative and quantitative attacks ( Mertens ( 2005 ) ; Creswell ( 2003 ) ; Tashakkori and Teddlie ( 2003 ) ; Newman and Benz ( 1998 ) ) .
The differences in the function of each method do non change by reversal the position that there are grounds for taking peculiar methods in specific state of affairss ( Patton, 1980 ) . Each method can supply different sorts of information. Therefore, each attack can do a part to an probe without being wholly committed to one method. However, some people accept the Incompatibility Thesis ( Howe, 1988 ) , which recommends that quantitative and qualitative methods should non be assorted. On the other manus, some bookmans consider qualitative techniques as non detailed plenty to supply dependable consequences ( Richards ( 2004 ) ; Lilford and Braunholtz ( 2003 ) ) . Qualitative procedures involve advanced and different methods that may turn out difficult to understand. The quality of the result relies on how efficient the research worker is in analyzing qualitative stuff. A thorough procedure for obtaining and interrupting down informations contributes to the cogency of research that combines qualitative and quantitative techniques ( Miles and Huberman ( 1994 ) ) .
Differences between Qualitative and Quantitative research
There are certain differences between each type of market research. Cassell and Symon ( 1994 ) identified six differences between the quantitative and qualitative research attack. The first difference is the fact that there quantitative research is based around Numberss whilst qualitative research is based around words. They besides believe that qualitative research workers use their ain subjective apprehension to the perceptual experience of their probe whereas quantitative research workers are nonsubjective. Cassell and Symon determined that qualitative research workers support flexibleness in their probes whereas quantitative research is more rule-driven. This is because quantitative research workers begin their probes with a set theoretical account of their program such as a study while qualitative research workers do non normally have any programs to follow. Thus, qualitative research workers have the flexibleness to cover with unpredictable research jobs, which is indispensable in contemporary selling, and are even encouraged to take side paths which may take to new penetrations. The research worker besides ensures that subjects of selling significance are brought up. Quantitative research workers are able to take any jobs before they occur, which can be achieved by utilizing a elaborate research design. Qualitative research is to a great extent grounded whereas quantitative research is more general. Qualitative research workers focus more on understanding procedures and less on predicting results where quantitative research workers do rather the antonym. Qualitative research workers are more unfastened about participant ‘s responses than quantitative research workers as they are looking to obtain information about the persons ‘ emotions and feelings that conveying about the behaviors that qualitative research identifies ( Cassell and Symon 1994 ) . Quantitative research workers use statistical analysis ( Elmore & A ; Woehlke 1998 ) , while qualitative research workers use battle with the person and changeless observation ( Lincoln & A ; Guba, 1985 ) . Quantitative research steps whereas qualitative research provides insight. This penetration is achieved during the procedure including analysis and utile apprehension of sentiments expressed by respondents ( Spiggle, 1994 ) .
Similarities between Qualitative and Quantitative research
Much of the competition between quantitative and qualitative attacks has separated instead than united market research workers. However, there are assorted similarities between the two research methods. Each attack involves the usage of observations to look into research inquiries. As noted by Sechrest and Sidani ( 1995 ) , both methods illustrate their informations, signifier statements from their research, and see grounds why the results received were as they were. Newman and Benz ( 1998 ) stated that quantitative and qualitative research represents an synergistic country. Furthermore, the function of theory is indispensable for both methods. In qualitative research the most common intent is that of theory coevals, whereas for quantitative research the purpose is theory confirmation ( Newman & A ; Benz, 1998 ) . Hence, neither method is independent of the other and nor can either attack cover the whole research procedure entirely. Therefore, both research methods are necessary to derive a more complete apprehension from the probe. ( Johnson & A ; Onwuegbuzie, 2004 ; Newman & A ; Benz, 1998 ) . Nevertheless, all research in the societal scientific disciplines represents an attempt to understand human behavior.
It is clearly apparent from the functions of each research method that valid consequences in market research are achieved non so much by the pick of method employed, but by how good they are used. In the yesteryear, there has been great argument about quantitative and qualitative research methods. Unfortunately, this has resulted in a division between quantitative and qualitative market research workers, who believe they are in competition with each other. Both methods play an of import function in selling and both methods can accomplish valid consequences if they are used efficaciously. The function of quantitative research and qualitative research do non merely hold differences but besides similarities. There must be greater importance placed on cognition of qualitative methods and understanding their relevancy in today ‘s market place. This has resulted in the pattern of triangulation where each market research attack is used together in an probe to guarantee the success of the research result. Cogency can be best measured with multiple methods.