Secondary research is the research method of collecting all the data and documents available from other sources. Some major companies or statistics written in some books or information gathered from some newspaper or thesis or individual research all these data are eligible to be secondary data.
It is a convenient and powerful tool for researchers looking to ask broad questions on a large scale. It benefits researchers as all the data are already taken down so it can be time-consuming but the area where it takes time might be if those data are ideal for the researcher’s goal or not.
A large amount of information can be gathered with a small effort and summarizing and relating it increases the effectiveness of research. Some pros and cons of secondary research are pointed out below.
Table of Contents
- Pros Of Secondary Research
- Cons Of Secondary Research
Pros Of Secondary Research
A few years ago when you needed to collect some data then going to libraries or particular organizations was a must. And it was even impossible to gather such data by the public. The Internet has played a great role in accessing the data so easily in a single click.
The problem here will be your patience to search where it is, it’s accessed for free. Some market research or the poll by the organization or product or comment on some of the sites about the product or some news. Anything necessary for your analysis will be available you just need to search in the right place.
2. Low Cost
When the data already exists and is collected and summarized. The large sum of money is saved where you don’t need to pay the institution for the data or organize some workshops to know the people’s opinion, you can easily use social media platforms which saves you the manpower and its cost. Researchers are easily tempted by secondary data, which can be easily accessed and prepared in a short period of time without any investment.
3. Saves Time
The data are collected or documented already on the social platform in magazines or on the internet. Using internet large numbers of data are gathered by the researchers without their own effort.
The data are already been documented by the organization or the researchers which you can just collect directly and start analysis over it. This saves lots and lots of time for you where you can study the variables and ups and downs regarding the data.
4. May Help Clarify Research Question
Where primary research is most expensive because it requires both the effort and time. Secondary research tips lots of important questions that are needed while conducting primary research.
The data collected through secondary research gives an organization or the personnel an idea about the effectiveness and the overview of the issue without conducting the primary research. This saves lots of money and time here.
5. Government & Agencies
There are many database analysis performed by the government itself for the census, for health issue protocols and other general information about the citizens. This research are being carried out for a long period of time and covers almost the entire population.
Likewise, many NGO’s and INGO’s conduct such data collection during their campaign in some scarcity or spreading awareness. Including such information provided by the government publicly increases the authenticity and accuracy of your secondary research data.
6. Understand The Problem
The secondary researcher needs to analyze and examine the data they collect from the source. In this process, the researcher goes deep into the procedure of how and when were the data collected and the difficulties encountered while gathering the data.
Some reports of multinational companies while attempting the large market research already includes the obstacles faced like the people declining and people interested during research.
These data are useful to plan how’s your research feedback is going to be or how to conduct or what to change during the research to get the desired outcome or what area to cover to make our outcome more subtle or accurate.
7. New Conclusion Or Data
The data analyzed and collected are very vast varied and shows the perspective of lots of issues with different variables. This continuous and frequent analysis of these data may develop or give the statistical graph of the new variable.
For example, knowing how many hospitals are there and the number of aware citizens about healthcare gives us the data about how many doctors are needed to carry the campaign and how many connected district, city or province is going to need new hospitals and new technology.
This helps us come up with a new conclusion while verifying and confirming how the previous research was carried out.
Cons Of Secondary Research
1. Quality of Research
As we know the secondary research is derived from the conclusion of the primary research, how hard we analyze it depends on the quality of the research conducted primarily.
If the originator is concerned about organizations or institutions those data might be false and may have been shown to attract clients or shareholders. Thus the validity of the data is necessary but reliability on other’s data prevents it.
2. May Not Fulfill Researcher’s Need
Secondary research data does not show exactly how or what the researcher was looking for. It is the collection of lots of data from lots of perspectives and people, some may be easy to ignore and some may be hard to validate and find its authenticity.
The researcher will be looking for data with some concern or with some particular question in mind but the data might not be collected regarding the particular issue or agenda. Meanwhile, all the data studied are not collected by the researcher they have no control over what the secondary data set may contain.
3. Incomplete Information
Not being able to get complete information about the data he/she wants to collect will affect the researcher’s study. As they are unable to know exactly how and when the procedure went wrong during execution.
It will not only be difficult to continue the research process but also confuses the researcher about where the issue is leading them.
4. Outdated Information
The most important thing one must consider while using secondary data is to note the date when the information was collected. They must be aware of how are those products and companies doing in the current situation.
It helps them to verify and ignore the achieved data. It is not possible to get all the updated reports or statistics of the data. One must be aware of not using the most outdated information in their research.
5. Lack Of Quality Data
The mindset of the researcher will be something else, they have to work on the data collected or data found in the research process. Since they are not able to carry out primary research, they should be depending on someone else’s data disregarding its quality.
As we know data are available in many forms and we are unable to know who performed the research we are forced to note down and analyze the data compromising its quality and validity.
(Last Updated On: March 11, 2021)