Primary Market Research Method – Observation

Session 4 by Section (B) _Group 3_Alok Jyoti Paul_Roll no(13PGP060)

Observational research do not have any specified process or steps defined.  Usually, there are 2 types: strict observation with no direct involvement or interaction with the subject at all, or observation with little intervention or involvement between the subject and researcher.  In this technique the researchers can measure actual behavior as the subjects are unaware of the fact that they are being observed. As these observations are reflection of reality it is reliable and very useful.

Few examples of observational research are as follows :

Trace Analysis :
1.Track users’ web views and visits –
This involves analyzing the cookies on computers. There are tools available in the market to achieve it. Top 5 available tools in the market are as follows :

  1. AWStats
  2. eLogic
  3. Google Analytics
  4. ShinyStat
  5. SiteMeter

2.Garbology – This involves analyzing the garbage of subjects to find their purchasing patter.

Usability testing – The practice of observing a subject while using a prototype device is extensively used in the software industry.

Mystery Shoppers – It involves a regular person who will be pretending to be a customer/shopper and go into a store .  They will report their experience, such as store interiors and cleanliness, behavior of staff, etc.

Eye Tracking – It involves using eye tracking technology to form a “heat map” of where users’ eyes go on the website.  This study and help in redesigning the website in a more effective way. Apart from websites this technique can be used to track consumers’ eye movements at a display to determine what attracts their attention.

The following mechanical tools are often used :
1.oculometers – what the subject is looking at
2.pupilometers – how interested is the viewer

In-Store Observation – It involves simply watching and observing shoppers/customers inside the store to ask these basic questions:  What do shoppers get excited by? How do they go through a store and notice? etc.

In-Home Observation – This involves studying a family member’s daily routine to find pain-points. This method can help in coming up with value propositions to address those issues.

Contextual Inquiry – This involves observing the subjects in their natural environment while they are being interviewed. This method can be termed as a hybrid method.

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