What are the Pros and Cons of Qualitative Research?

What are the pros and cons of qualitative research and what exactly is it? Qualitative research is a method researchers use 4seohunt.com to find out information. It is sometimes used for market research purposes, but is used more often in the field of social science, and is typically used to gauge whether a hypothesis is supported.

Unlike quantitative research, qualitative research is interested in the how and why of decision making as opposed to the what, where and when. Instead of questioning large cross sections of people, researchers conducting qualitative studies will stick to a much smaller focus group in order to obtain more detailed information on a particular case study. What are the pros and cons of qualitative research and is such a method capable of producing accurate information?


What are the pros of qualitative research?


1.    Qualitative research can add validity to any results or conclusions drawn in a case study or research paper and you will gain a far greater level of understanding as a result.
2.    By using qualitative research as opposed to quantitative research, you will be able to obtain far greater detail in your responses, which will add considerably to the final results.
3.    Because of the detailed nature of responses gained from qualitative research techniques, the answers you receive may help to throw up new information you had not previously considered while formulating your hypothesis or research study. Such research can be used to provide an excellent source of new ideas for marketing and creative teams, particularly in the field of advertising.
4.    Qualitative research can penetrate the more superficial responses gained from mass quantitative research campaigns. Instead, you are likely to gain more in-depth and rationalized responses.
5.    Qualitative research conducted across a smaller cross section of respondents can often give quicker results and cost less.
6.    Qualitative research is open-ended, flexible and dynamic, and in the case of marketing and advertising, it is capable of tapping into consumer creativity.


What are the cons of qualitative research?


1.    Qualitative research can be very time consuming, so you will end up with far fewer respondents than if you had conducted quantitative research.
2.    If you use an external agency to conduct your qualitative research, due to the nature of the research, the process may cost you more money due to the greater amount time required.
3.    Because of the detailed nature of the information obtained as a result of qualitative research, the results cannot be generalized in the same way as those obtained via quantitative research.
4.    It could be argued that results obtained from qualitative research techniques are not always reliable since the likelihood of obtaining a completely different set of answers from subsequent interviews is quite high.
5.    Interviewers conducting qualitative research need to have a certain level of skill and experience in order to obtain worthwhile results.
6.    Results gained from qualitative research are dependent on the interviewer interpretation and orientation.
7.    It will sometimes be necessary to follow up qualitative research with a larger scale quantitative research study, which makes it a costly exercise.


Sources


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qualitative_research

http://www.katewillis.co.uk/articles/2009/qualitative_research.htm

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