Types of research and their applications



Earlier chapter shows the literature review of the sales promotion and its impact on brand loyalty and brand choice. The objective of this chapter typically is to explore important ways engaged in the research method. The chapter commences with the discussion on various research concepts and after that justifying the best suited beliefs to be utilized for this specific study. As chapter continues the research layout, facts collection techniques, sample concerns, questionnaires, data evaluation procedures, credibility and dependability are usually reviewed stage through stage. The logical for picking various research procedure pertaining to this study are also mentioned in detail.

3.2: Research philosophy

Philosophical viewpoint can be fairly significant regarding carrying out any kind of study. Easterby-smith et al cited by Proctor(2003, p.6) has explained the significance involving philosophical point of view by proclaiming that the entire research layout can easily be guided by the support of philosophy, the beliefs additionally gives guidance to obtain assortment of evidences as well as decryption in order to acquire responses of the "question(s) asked". Research objectives decide the suitable research pattern to become picked and pinpoint any constraint of any research process.

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Research philosophies have three basic types: Positivism. Phenomenology and Realism

3.2.1: Positivism

According to Proctor (2003, p.6) the research workers of the natural sciences makes use of this tactic for describing purpose and effects connection of the activities. Saunders et al (2007, p.103) state that analysis based primarily on positivism guide to the formation of a laws associated to that designed by natural researchers. They further more claim that a investigator adhering to positivist approach is not affected by values, she or he simply gathers and examines facts regardless of thoughts, alternative , the study is "value free". For example a researcher are not able to alter the truth that there are 5 pickups and 12 computer systems. The part of positivist investigator is similar to an "objective analyzer, coolly creating separate design concerning those facts that has been compiled apparently in a worth free mode, and generally depend on quantitative data which direct to statistical analysis"( Saunders et al 2007, p.103) ."A positivist technique is consequently deductive in nature-for instance using a concept from a literature and also exploring it to validate or refute the proposition". Proctor (2003, p.7)

3.2.2: Phenomenology

Proctor(2003, p.6) believes that Phenomenology strategy contradict positivist viewpoint and this technique is mostly used in the analysis of societal and management sciences , Phenomenology is an interpretavist strategy, Saunders et all(2003) disagree that interpersonal and management sciences are really complicated, and can't be examined on the layout of natural sciences analysis.

3.2.2: Realism

Based on Saunders et al(2003, p. 84 ) "realism is not dependent on human ideas and beliefs and that the based of realism".

People are not aware of the fact that they are affected by processes and distinct social forces revealed by business and management science analysis.

Realism allocate same thought like philosophies of phenomenology and positivism.

For instance, Saunders et al (2007,p.105)

state that realism alike positivism as "it advocates scientific access towards the enhancement of knowledge", therefore supporting the "collection and evaluation of data" this technique is referred to as direct realism,

but like phenomenology that information are usually higher achieved as a result of " sociable conditioning", at this point realism argue that our mental process and sensations understand and define the issues, which is named as critical realism

According to Proctor (2003, p.7) Every researching is different by its certain features, advantages and limitations. Research philosophies can not guarantee the answer of research and most of Scholars agree with that reality. Although selecting appropriate research philosophical background is the important part of the study:

For my research positivist philosophy more preferable by me and I have some reasons for adopting this philosophy.

First thing as highlight by proctors "nature of positivist philosophy is deductive", and Saunders et al (2003, p.90) mentioned that research topics with vast background literature can get desire results by using deductive approach. Whereas research topics that have contracted background literature require lots of discussion for getting appropriate results and use inductive approach.

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Massive literature background is already available for my topic of research; "Are Brand loyalty and brand choice affected by Sales Promotion in the context of Discounting Tools".

Secondly, according to Saunders et al (2003 p 90), positivist solution is much better for testing concept or hypothesis. Chapter 2 on literature review shows background theories that brand loyalty and choice is elevated by sales promotion, and it also induce consumer to spend more, trial of product and also to take decision of buying product due to sales promotion. Now by adopting positivist approach I will investigate this hypothesis.

Third, Saunders et al (2003, p.90) state that to complete the research in time, I am using deductive approach which allow me to collect data quickly and analyze it in predetermined time frame.

Fourth, due to the adoption of positivist approach I am able to collect large amount of data (quantitative) by approaching large number of respondent at superstores to get better insights for research topic.

3.3: Research design

Appropriate Selection of research design is a significant decision of any research activity.

According to Chisnall (1997, p.31), Appropriate technique of taking best research instrument like quantitative or qualitative type of data or both and sampling plan can be explain by research design. Correct research design guarantees that "collected information is according to research objectives and procedures and more importantly it is relevant" ( Green,et al (1975 ) cited by Chisnall 1997 p31). A poor design is cause to ruin all research efforts but good design ensures intact all parts of research by appropriate use of resources.

Three types of research design are: Exploratory design, Descriptive design, and Causal design.

3.3.1: Exploratory design

Chisnell (1997, p.32) State that, "nature of research problem can be aims to identify or explore the Exploratory design". It helps to understand the research problem. The development of complete research provides an insight to exploratory investigation. According to Malhotra (2004, p.76), Following objectives can be achieve by exploratory research

Description and identification of detailed problem

Identification of different research options to resolve problem.

Development of hypothesis

For further evaluation variables and relationship are separated

To treat the problem by getting good judgment

Suggestion of course of action for advance research.

3.3.2; Descriptive research

Detailed investigation explains the industry features or purposes. According to Malhotra (2004, p.78), following functions can be performed by descriptive research

To demonstrate the characteristics of the organization, consumers, sales force or superstores.

To calculate the ratio of specific inhabitants in a certain section showing a particular conduct.

To discover out consumer perspective relating to the attributes of the product or service

To assess the degree of association between promotional factors

To examine the potential of the industry accurately

In the course of detailed analysis the earlier formulation of theory is essential. Information and facts is already explained therefore descriptive analysis is "well-structured pre-planned as well as centered on significant representative samples. A descriptive style needs a very clear requirements of the who, what, when, where, why, and way (the six Ws) of the research." Malhotra (2004, p. 78)

3.3.3; Causal research

Malhotra (2004, p.85) states that for acquiring relationship of the insight the grounds and effect casual research is a valuable research method.

To realize independent and dependent factors of an observation

To identify the character of relationship among the causal factors and the impact to be forecasted

Malhotra(2004)claims that," comparable to the descriptive research, designed and organized concepts are needed for causal research as well". Descriptive research is incapable to evaluate the causal relationship among factors. "It mainly inspects the level of affiliation between factors," although causal research may verify the causal relationship. Malhotra(2004, p.85) states that "examining causal connections require causal layout, in that the causal or impartial factors are altered in a fairly managed environment", the environment in which the one variable impacting dependent variable may be controlled or examined by highest level is called comparatively manipulated environment. "Casualty is then deduced by calculating the impact of this manipulation upon one or more dependent factors." Analysis is the major technique of causal research.

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Appropriate research design for this research is descriptive design find out after in depth discussion.

First, Malhotra (2004, p.78) declares that descriptive research is employed to locate skills of consumer decision, market features, and the degree of relationship between market parameters. As described previous that my research is designed to discover customer reaction to sales promotion, so descriptive design and style is the ideal choice for my research. Second, Malhotra (2004, p.78) suggests that clear hypothesis as well as a decent variety of literature track record is required for descriptive research, as compared to exploratory research that is indicated by undefined goals with weak provision of literature; while all details and aims of this research are well-defined, therefore descriptive research is much more acceptable for the research and then exploratory research.

Causal research may also not be picked due to the fact causal research wants to carry out tests through skilled individuals in an organization; these techniques require time frame, funds, and keenness of organization. Because of limitation of time period and monetary sources causal research won't meet to this research as well.

3.4; Data collection methods

When the research design has been picked the upcoming phase is the gathering of data in order to carry out analysis, there are two main sources of data collection: Secondary data and Primary data.

3.4.1; Secondary data

Data which is collected by some others person then author and was collected for specific purpose (Kotler et al. 2005). Churchill(2002,p.199) states that "Secondary data lead good marketing research". There are different external and internal sources of secondary data. External data include directories, financial records, periodicals and Audit data etc, while internal data consist on warranty cards, sales invoices, credit memos etc. (Churchill 2002,p. 200)

Figure 3.1 Displayed various resources for secondary data

Government Sources e.g. Census Report

Census Report


Indexes guides


Abstracts, etc

Secondary Data

Internal Data

External Data

Industry Sources

Commercial Sources e.g. Nielsen, BMRB, Starch, etc

Other Sources e.g.

Reports from Institutes, Academia

Internal Data

Trade Publications

Figure 3.1 Sources of information for Secondary Data

Source; Proctor (2003, p . 70) Essential of Marketing Research

Some of the benefits of secondary source of data are:

According to Churchill et al(2002, p. 196 ), secondary data collection is one the most cheap way of collecting data, websites, libraries, online journals and information portal are good source of secondary data. In some condition secondary data is good enough for the research problem and very little amount of primary data collection is needed.

There are some problems associated with secondary data.

For example researcher may not be able to find required data, may not appropriate, may not according to research objectives or may be wrongly interpreted.

In short, secondary data can offer the foundation for forming and determining research problem and objectives, but at the same time research need primary data collection for widespread information.

3.4.2; Primary data collection

According to Kotler et al (1999 p 324), "collection of information for specific purpose by hand is called primary data".

Primary data collection is time consuming method of data collection, it need time and great care. Impartial and appropriate data collection can lead to correct and valued solution of research problem.(Kotler et al (1999, p.326)

There are two types of Primary data: Quantitative and Qualitative

Kotler et al (1999, p.326) states that, for collecting data from small group of people or sample of customers qualitative research is used, while with large number of people or respondent quantitative data is used that shows behavior large number of customer.

Differences between quantitative and qualitative research can be shown by table 3.2

Comparison dimension

Qualitative research

Quantitative research

Type of questions



Sample size



Information per respondents




Requires interviewer special skill

Fewer special skill required

Hardware required

Tape recorder, projection devices, video, picture


Ease of replication



Researcher training necessary

Psychology, sociology, consumer behavior, marketing, marketing research

Statistical, decision models, computer programming, marketing, marketing research

Type of research


Descriptive or causal

Table 3.2; Quantitative and Qualitative research Comparison

Source: Proctor (2003, p.208) Essential of marketing research

Proctor(2003, p.208) explains that preference will be given to quantitative research over qualitative research because executive don't want to make decisions on small number of respondent of small data collection, they like to take their decision on large number of sample and respondent with the use of diagram and charts to get strategic decisions. However, qualitative research still been expanding because that require little funds, it is a great device to evaluate the customer actions, mind-set and ideas and it strengthens the usefulness of quantitative research. although qualitative research is not free from defects .for example good quality relies on the researcher's ability, as qualitative approach include debate and the person can handle the conversation leading to the progression of biased viewpoint. Proctor (2003, p. 209)

Researcher is using quantitative method due to the following reasons

Response from large number of people or size of sample provide better understanding of customer buying behavior

Response is needed for testing theories of sales promotion not for the creation of theory.

Low risk of delay that ensure research completion on time.

3.5: Questionnaire design

According to Chisnall (1997, p.128) "In designing of questionnaire professional competency is required for obtaining exact information about research problem so that after analysis of data we can get better result of problem"

Two forms of questionnaire are: Structured and Unstructured

Structured questionnaires comprise of appropriate questions targeted to generate confined reaction, almost all participants are requested to answer the "standard questions"( Chisnall1997, p.128)

According to Malhotra (1993, p.290, 291) structured questionnaire might be "multiple choice", dichotomous or a scale"

Multiple choice questions provide a listing of responses to participants, from that they choose one response that is closest to their own perspective. Multiple choice questions reduce interviewer error and can be rapidly carried out and are likewise less costly.

Dichotomous questions offer you a list of two answers to respondents out of which they choose one ideal answer: yes or no, agree or disagree, some time one more question is also compounded with these two question by a neutral answer, such as "no opinion", "do not know, or none.

According to Saunders (2003) ,scales are type of questionnaires in which opinion of respondent is used to measure by points like 4,5 6, or 7 point rating scale.

Unstructured Questionnaires

These are the questions in which respondent are free to express their idea. Malhotra ( 2004, p.288). For example

What is your Profession

What do you think who support the discount department stores

Who is your desired political leader

Malhotra (2004, p.288) states that, unstructured questions permit the participants to share openly his opinions and perspective and that is good for exploratory research, however it has drawbacks. For example probabilities of developing interviewer's opinion are usually high and much time and money is required for coding of results. Some time unstructured questions may not be appropriate for "self fed questionnaires", because respondents generally like to write shorter replies, but provide detailed reply in speaking.

In designing questionnaires for this dissertation some important characteristics of customer were taken into account:

Gilbert and Jackaria (2002) explains that, When customers are shopping at superstores they take decision of buying product along with how much quantity to buy.

Store design has large affect on all these decision along with personal characteristics (age gender, education, status and income)

For example: Consumer with large family induces to buy large quantity due to purchase discount but consumer without family will not induce to buy large quantity.

Similar to Gilbert and Jackaria (2002), Five type of multiple choice questions has designed by researcher for each of the four promotional tools (Price discount, Coupon, Buy-one-get-one-free, Free sample); Four statements of questions were taken from Gilbert and Jackaria. (2002) research work and fifth one is self designed.

"Are brand loyalty and brand choice affected by sales promotion" this is intension of researcher to know the affect by four promotional or discounting tool (a) coupon, (b) price discount, (c) free sample, (d) buy-one-get-one free.

Sample of dissertation questionnaire are:

A. Due to discount i bought the other brand or product which I don't buy regularly.

[ ] Strongly Agree [ ] Agree [ ] Neutral [ ] Disagree [ ] strongly disagree

B. Due to discount i bought the other brand or product which I hadn't planned to buy.

[ ] Strongly Agree [ ] Agree [ ] Neutral [ ] Disagree [ ] strongly disagree

C. Due To Discount I Bought More Quantities Of Same Product Or Brands

[ ] Strongly Agree [ ] Agree [ ] Neutral [ ] Disagree [ ] strongly disagree

D. Due to price discount i bought a product or brand which i haven't tried before

[ ] Strongly Agree [ ] Agree [ ] Neutral [ ] Disagree [ ] strongly disagree

E. Due to discount I expend further each visit to the supermarket

[ ] Strongly Agree [ ] Agree [ ] Neutral [ ] Disagree [ ] strongly disagree

3.6; Sampling

The subsequent measure for the researcher right after resolving the matter of data collection is to "obtain the sample of participants that is representative of the targeted population of interest" Proctor (2003, p 99).

According to Proctor(2003, p 99).Sample is a element of population whose analysis in the particular field of interest leads to get the character of the conduct of entire population in that domain. Sampling is utilized since it is hard to look at the entire population

Sample is picked randomly to prevent one-sided conclusion, the subsequent example exhibits the concept of random sampling

"If the population is (1, 2,3),the samples can be (1,2), (2,3), and (1,3).

Each of them has a one-out-of-three chance of being drawn. Proctor (2003 p 101

According to Proctor (2003), For drawing up sample plan three points must be considered;

First, "to identify the target population",

Second, the number of people to be examine, and

Third, criteria of choosing respondents.

Proctor states that non- probability samples are mostly preferred by the researchers. "Particularly quota sample" Proctor (2003 p.101,102)

The figure 3.2 shows the steps involved in developing samples

Define the target population

Develop a frame

Select the sample design

Determine appropriate sample size

Select the appropriate sample members

Figure 3.2; steps involved in developing sample

Source: Proctor (2003 p102) Essential of Marketing Research

3.7. Data analysis

Proctor (2003, p.265-266) states that, the evaluation of research data to determine a significant information is fairly essential. A formal information analysis strategy must be formulated within the early stage of your project.

Important components of such plan are:

key factors meant for research

methods utilized for computing the factors

Which research techniques must be implemented to convert gathered data into thoughtful information?

The research of promotional research can be described by applying tabulation and also statistical analysis. Synopsis of records is inserted into table that is simple to understand. If data of table is displayed by graphs, that becomes simpler to understand as well as assess. "Statistical evaluation is carried out to recognize structures that are not simple to see in the table". It is performed when research of significant quantity of data is needed.

The researcher has gathered market data by using questionnaire statement. The information was then loaded into tables, so that the data obtained can be simple to understand and analyzed with earlier work. The researcher has made use of descriptive research, i.e. frequencies and percentages pertaining to examining the data. This data has been compared with prior research work and on the bases of this particular research the final result was drawn

Reliability and validity

Proctor (2003, p.194) states that "If the measure is made again and again and it generates the same result then its is called reliability, which also refer to as consistency"

Although "validity pertains to the level to which the query measures exactly what is intended to be measure. A correct measure is always reliable; a reliable measure is not always a correct one"

An attempt to enhance the validity had been made by initial screening of the questionnaire. There was regularity in the response of participants which increased the dependability of our results.