Primary Research Methods


From direct contact Location of data source: 

Home, streets, shopping centers, workplaces etc Observation Approach Communication approach 


Observation Approach 

TV, Video-camera in shopping centres Monitoring RFID Radio frequency identification device a new technology under trial By company personnel ( DEPARTMENT OF THE ORGANIZATION DEALING WITH EMPLOYEES )or their representatives at shopping centres

Communication Approaches 

Through questionnaires 

Disguised: concealing the purpose of the study 

May find resistance from respondents 

Structured & formal: Guides different interviewers to ask questions in a sequential manner. The same questions gets asked to the sample subjects

Communication Media 

Interviewer is face to face with respondents  Favorable factors: clarifications to respondents can be provided, Information obtained at the time of administering itself  Unfavorable factors: Travel time & expense, Interviewers presence may bias respondent, difficulty in finding capable interviewers 

Communication Media 

Most convenience means  Favorable factors: Dialing efficient if callbacks are needed; personal travel avoided; respondents does not open door to strangers; rapid coverage of wide sample; central interviewing with close supervision & training  Unfavorable factors: communication can not be observed; limited to audio materials; long interviews difficult; respondents suspicious of interviewer that he can not see; only homes with telephones can be reached 

Communication Media 

Can be reached at any place with an address with anonymity assured  Respondent may divulge sensitive matters  Favorable factors: answers not influenced by interviewer; responds whenever convenient without pressure; addresses widely dispersed can be reached; visual materials can be used  

Combination media:  Mail and telephone  Telephone and personal

Comparison of Questionnaire Administration Methods
Ranking of methods


No of questions Amount/variety of information Presentation of stimuli

Personal Personal Personal Web Web

Mail Tel Web Tel Mail Tel Mail Tel Mail

Web Web Tel Personal Tel Mail Tel Web Tel

Tel Mail Mail Mail Personal Web Personal Mail Personal

Time Cost Accuracy Sampling control Supervisory control Opportunity for clarification Respondent Convenience

Personal Web Personal Web

Instruments & Methods used for Primary Search   

Instruments to conduct Voice-pitch Analysis People Meter to monitor TV viewing behavior TV recording cameras DoubleClick US online ad company uses cookies to track consumer movements on web


Is an instrument for participant communication Levels: 

Management question Research question Investigative question Measurement question

Steps for Developing Questionnaire 

Determine specific data to be sought Determine the interview process: 


Interviewer administered Self administered Informal interviewing 

Telephone Mail

Framing Question Content 

Should this question be asked? 

Purposeful vs interesting Incomplete or unfocused Avoid double-barrel questions Correct interpretation 

Is the question of proper scope/coverage? 

Framing Question Content 

Can the participant answer adequately? 

Time for thought Accuracy Knowledgeable Recalling old data Balance general vs specific Objectivity (avoid leading questions)

Framing Question Content 

Will the participant answer willingly? 

Sensitive information Shared vocabulary/wording Frame of reference Personalization Adequate alternatives

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