Free Research Methods for Business Essay Sample

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  1. Learnt methods. The research methods can be divided into qualitative and quantitative. Qualitative ones include ethnographic, narrative, and phenomenological methods, as well as case study, and grounded theory. Qualitative methods are used when the phenomenon cannot be measured numerically. For example, the ethnographic method focuses on context of the issue to explain its nature, and due to this feature scientists usually use it in social studies. In order to apply the narrative approach there should be two participants and only then it allows to form a case from two different points of view. The phenomenological method is an interviewing one. It helps to understand the story of witnesses, who participated in a phenomenon. This method is appropriate when  a hypothesis has to be formed through the research, rather than at the beginning of it, and confirmed with the research’s outcomes. The grounded theory is opposite to the method mentioned above. It uses accurate data to develop a theory. The method is applied when there are no participants of the event. The case study can concern organizations as well as individuals, as it aims to find links between previous case experience and contemporary situation in search for solution. The quantitative methods are used to investigate specific sets of numerical information with the help of statistics. In order to apply specific norms to sets of data, scientists use statistical methods. The method of descriptive design is used to isolate from different factors. In case the factors are important and have to be taken into account, then correlational design is relevant. If due to some specific circumstances one has to hold over the research, it is appropriate to use  quasi-experimental and experimental design. Thus, depending on the theoretical grounds of the research, it can be either quantitative or qualitative.
  2. Research methods and research techniques. Despite the fact that these notions  have  similar meanings and in some cases  can be used interchangeably, the term ‘research technique’ refers to a specific variation of research method. As research method is an established procedure of conducting a study, the technique appears to be  a part of that procedure. For example, survey research is a research method. It includes mail surveys, visitor surveys, polls etc. Thus, these two terms do not differ considerably.

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  1. Research methods and research methodology. Research methods are procedures and techniques that facilitate the process of doing the research. However, being a broader category, the research methodology includes all of them . Initially, it is a science about study approaches, which helps us to gain knowledge and to determine the direction of the research development. Thus, there is a difference between research methods and research methodology, as far as the first notion is a wider field that includes the second one. For example, on the one hand, the study concerning market share, may need an application of quantitative method. On the other hand, methodology suggests studying of such issues as what data has to be collected, why researching market share is important, how the data will be analyzed etc.
  2. Theoretical and applied methods. Theoretical research methods are used for a wide range of data with no specific contemporary application. The outcomes of theoretical research are new ideas of general interest. The methods of theoretical research include literature analysis, observations, experiments, and other methods. Applied research lead to outcomes which are applied immediately and precisely into specific area. For example, as far as the results of those studies can be used in company’s activities, they are important for business researches. Such approaches include survey, interview, modelling, calculation, statistical method, forecasting, and other, with the help of which one can obtain needed information. Applied methods demand high accuracy and rapidity, as they have to allow to do the researches very thoroughly, providing all the necessary  information.
  3. Theory and experiment. While conducting any kind of research, , one can do  them only theoretically, without experimental base, or using  those two approaches together, although they differ considerably. For example, if the hypothesis is made,  it can be either confirmed or refuted with the help of both theory and experiment. Theoretical knowledge helps the researcher to establish circumstances for an experiment. Thus, it is a process of working a theory in some specific environment. The critical category that helps to distinguish between theory and experiment is the state of information. If the data is stated and confirmed, then it is theory. If one proves the information, then it is an experiment. Those notions are important for scientific and non-scientific researches.
  4. Importance of theory in basic and applied researches. One conducts basic researches due to application of the theory. As they are also called theoretical, such researches not only have theory as a key element, but they also aim to improve theory. However, such researches have a common nature. On the contrary, one does the applied researches to find a solution for the specific problem and uses their outcomes immediately after finishing the research. Nevertheless, both kinds of research are connected with each other, and with basic research forming the foundation of the applied research, which improves the theoretical base of basic resources. Thus, theory is important for both basic and applied researches.
  5. Importance of business research. Research plays a key role in non-scientific fields, such as business. It reveals causes of everyday problems, and their probable solutions. If there is a problem, one should  identify and solve it with the help of the research. Business research is a base for the important decisions in the organization. To solve a problem effectively, or to make the right decision, an organization has to conduct a research, and base all the decisions on its results, otherwise they are ineffective. . For example, the organization has decided to extend its product range. It has to do a research on market trends, and thus define what product is in demand, what the prices for it are, how it is positioned etc. In this case, the organization can develop a strategy on how to differentiate its products. Business research is also useful in the field of new manufacturing technologies and  productivity raise.
  6. Questions in the subject, investigation of which forms business/market research. Such questions form a market research, subject of which is the advertising:
  • Is the advertising of the company effective?
  • Is the competitor’s advertising effective?
  • How do the communication channels function?
  • What kind of advertising is the most effective?
  • How does market react to new product?
  • How is the price strategy adapted to advertising?
  • Does advertising affect market share of the company?
  • What are the modern tendencies in advertising?
  • How do consumers perceive the company’s advertising?
  • Does the advertising affect the consumer’s attitude towards the company?

These questions include both quantitative and qualitative parts of research. All of them are solved and applied during the process of market research.

  1. Interpretation of business research results and expectations on the outcome. Interpretation of business research results is the last step in the research process which implies chaining of the outcomes to each other, and finding a link between them. Proper interpretation is a necessity, as it is a final and one of the most important stages of the research. It is a measure of research’s utility. Moreover, with the help of interpretation, it is possible to identify a problem that business will possibly face later. The outcome – the new information about the subject of the research - is a logical prolongation of its purpose. One states the purpose with some kind of expectations, so that the outcome also faces them. , For example, a firm`s  expectation of the product popularity can be either fulfilled or suppressed.

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