Economics is a social science according to the foundations of economics. Just like anthropology, law, geography, sociology among other disciplines of social sciences, economics deals with linking the consumer with the producer. The relationships between these two entities in economics constitute marketing. Market research involvesconsumers of goods and services rendered by an enterprise. Market research focuses on the customers, the public domain and the marketer through supply of information. This paper explains how different types of market research methods would helpful in identifying whether there would be a market for an internet cafe business in London.(Russel, 2006)
The market for any goods and services is very dynamic. Information from the market research is, therefore, imperative in identifying and defining existing opportunities in a market. Market research will be paramount in identifying the problems, evaluate market actions, monitor the performance of the internet café and also understand the process of marketing the café. This information once systematically analyzed after collection of data will be the cornerstone towards identifying the availability of a market for internet café in London. Microeconomics is a cornerstone of business. It is a branch that systematically focuses on the behavior of individual consumers and firms. The analysis of this firms and consumers is paramount in understanding how firms and households go through decision making. The main concern is the interactive business association between buyers and sellers. The centers of focus for microeconomics are the patterns of supply and the demand. The determination of the prices and output in individual markets is a key part of microeconomics. The information obtained from market research both quantitative and qualitative is paramount in determining these patterns on the market. Microeconomics’ basis is the study of individual decision making while macroeconomics studies the wide economic phenomena that results from group decision making.(Mooi & Sarstedt, 2011)
Qualitative studies will involve description of what consumers feel. This is through filling of questionnaires, focused group discussions, interviews and systematic gathering of information from the people of London. Qualitative research methods, also called descriptive studies will be key in understanding individual feeling of the consumers. Consumers will be free to express their need or demand for an internet café. Descriptive studies are the best in developing a market oriented business. If the market does not need a certain facility such as an internet café, the questionnaires, interviews or focused group discussions will reflect it. In other words, qualitative studies as a market research strategy are a cornerstone of marketing research. The echo opinions and desires of the consumer since implicit knowledge of the available market will be helpful in identifying whether locals in London need an internet café or not. This will reflect on the availability of a market for an internet café in London. Demand is directly proportional to the available market.(Nykiel, 2007)
Quantitative marketing research methods are indispensable. They reflect on explicit knowledge obtained from data in the field. Collection, recording and analysis of qualitative data gives actual information about the available market. Marketing research using quantitative data is prominent in assessing the dynamics that affect the marketing mix and the resultant reaction from of the consumers. The availability of a market for an internet café in London will be assessed by using parameters such as the population in London, the number of internet cafes in the city, the number of internet cafes per certain unit area and consideration of other dynamics of the market. In the ultimate, this explicit data is what determines the market behavior and patterns. If there are scarce internet cafes in London, this will shift the market in favor of the investor.(McNulty, 2006)
Economics is a social science based on the social scientific model. Alongside anthropology, political science, law, geography, education, linguistics and history remains among the subcategories of social sciences. This is because economics explores the way of life of individuals, their interaction in terms of buying and selling of products and services. Economics seeks to organize world problems, explore concepts, and develop a model in order to address issues in the society. Economics’ focus on humanity, human behavior, human society and their relations offers a common ground for economics as a social science. Microeconomics explores human behavior, emerging patterns between individual firms and households. It is on this basis that data obtained helps formulated fundamental theories in economics.(Carson, Gilmore, Gronhaug, & Chad, 2001)
In the formulation of theories and development of hypotheses, use of both quantitative and qualitative research methods is paramount. In quantitative research methods, researchers deal with explicit data (numbers) while in qualitative research methods, researchers deal with implicit data (collection of opinions and description of experiences from narrations). International economics encompasses both microeconomics and macroeconomics. Quantitative data summarizes the explicit data concerning certain parameters in business. The aspect of economics that focuses on the economics of development in the developing world is called development economics. It entails economic theory, econometric methods, sociology, anthropology, political science and demography. This is the most active area of research. An economic model refers to a hypothetical or theoretical framework which constitutes processes that cause dynamism in economics based on a set of variables and also logical relationships in the construct. An economic model simplifies the complex processes using mathematical techniques(forms the basis of quantitative research methods in marketing) but sometimes uses other techniques to represent the construct. Models consist of parameters that predict future outcomes and helps predict the role of interventions in place. Economic models are important in focusing and figuring out social issues. The models are also important in strategic planning and prediction of the future. Ceteris Paribus is a concept applied in developing economic models. Since economic models cannot include all variable in a construct, the developer of the economic model assumes that the other variables as constants. This phenomenon is called Ceteris Paribus. Ceteris Paribus is an assumption that allows economic models to predict outcomes and relationships between variables by assuming other variables are constant. The quantitative data will reflect on the distribution of businesses such as an internet café, their approximate number per unit area and the available population. The number of people in a certain location or area is directly proportional to the available market. In establishing an internet café in London, the investor will rely on the number of consumers to effectively run the business.(Bradley, 2007)
Qualitative research will describe personal opinions of individuals in the locality. Through focused group discussions, interviews and questionnaires, investors willgauge the opinions of the individual consumers. This method will capture people’s choices and preferences concerning the internet café project which cannot be captured in its salience, timeliness and actual form by quantitative research. Qualitative approach only looks at the numbers while quantitative approaches focus on individual consumers. The population may be high in London (quantitatively) but the number of Londoners who actually need an internet café may be disappointingly low. Therefore, a blend of both qualitative and quantitative approaches must be used. Qualitative approaches cover the weaknesses of quantitative approach by paying attention to human factors such as disinterest in the business entity, affordability of the services, inaccessibility and other human behaviors that affect a market.(Bradley, 2007)
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Nykiel, R. ,2007,. Handbook of Marketing Research Methodologies for Hospitality and Tourism. London: Routledge.
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