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Data Collection Instruments

Discuss Data Collection Instruments within the Marketing Research forums, part of the Resolve Your Query - Get Help and discuss Projects category; Data Collection Instruments 1) PERSONAL INTERVIEW An interviewer asking questions generally face-to-face to other persons conducts personal interview. This sort ...



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Data Collection Instruments
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Sunanda K. Chavan
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Data Collection Instruments - September 27th, 2010

Data Collection Instruments


An interviewer asking questions generally face-to-face to other persons conducts personal interview. This sort of interview may be in the form of direct personal investigation or it may be an indirect oral investigation. This method is particularly suitable for intensive investigations.


This method of collecting information consists contacting information consists contacting respondents on telephone itself. It is not a very widely used method, but plays important role in industrial surveys in developed regions.


Commercial surveys can be divided into three types: Periodic, Panel and Shared surveys. Each of them are discussed below

Periodic surveys

Periodic surveys are conducted at regular intervals, ranging from weekly to annually held surveys. They use a new sample of respondents for each survey, focusing on the same topic and allowing the analysis of trends over a period. Periodic surveys are conducted by mail, personal interview and telephone.

Panel surveys

Panel surveys, sometimes called interval panels, are conducted among a group of respondents who have agreed to respond to a number of mail, telephone or occasionally personal interviews over time. These need not occur regularly. But a continuous panel or panel data (explained more in panels) refers to a group of individuals who agree to report specified behaviors over time.

Shared surveys

Shared surveys, sometimes referred to as omnibus surveys, are administered by a research firm and consist of questions supplied by multiple clients. Such surveys can involve mail, telephone, or personal interviews. The respondents may be drawn from either an interval panel or random selection. The main advantage here is the cost factor.


Audits involve the physical inspection of inventories, sales receipts, shelf facing and other aspects of marketing mix to determine sales, market share, relative price, distribution and other relevant information. The different types of audits are store audits, product audits and retail distribution audits.


A panel is a group of individuals or organizations that have agreed to provide information to researcher over a period of time. A continuous panel, the focus of this section, has agreed to report specified behaviors on regular basis.

There are 2 types of panels: retail and consumer, consumer further divided into diary panels and electronic panels.


A mail questionnaire is free from any interviewer’s bias and errors, which may undermine the reliability and validity of the results emerging from the survey.

A mail questionnaire will not have any distribution bias as it will not show any particular preference or dislike for a certain individual or household. When the questions asked to the respondents need time to be answered and needs some thinking, mail questionnaire is ideal.

Mail Questionnaire saves time in collecting the desired information as a large no. Of respondents can be approached all over the country.

It saves money as cost of traveling, boarding and lodging of interviewers is not to be incurred. There is no difficulty in having central supervision and control over the survey operations over a large region.

It avoids the bias arising from any inhibitions in answering questions. (During some personal questions the respondents may hesitate to answer them in the presence of the interviewer).

It will not have the problem of non-contacts in the strict sense, as might be the case in personal interviews when the interviewer finds that the respondent, being away from home is not available.

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Re: Data Collection Instruments - July 8th, 2015

Advantage of Data Collection

1) Identify and verify issues, theories

2) Good data can help to proactively address issues

3) Good data can gain trust

4) Good data can reduce risk
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