Primary data collection methods LEARNOVITA

Most Effective Data Collection Methods | A Complete Beginners Guide | REAL-TIME Examples

Last updated on 03rd Nov 2022, Artciles, Blog

About author

Jamie (Senior Data Analyst )

Jamie provides in-depth presentations on various big data technologies and the role of the data analyst. She specializes in Docker, Hadoop, Microservices, Commvault, BI tools, SQL/SQL server/SSIS, DB2, Control-M, Oracle Workflow, Autosys, DB2, MSSQL Server, Oracle, and Microsoft Office, including Excel, Visio, and PowerPoint.

(5.0) | 19384 Ratings 2165
    • In this article you will learn:
    • 1.Introduction.
    • 2.What is a Data Collection?
    • 3.Primary Data Collection Methods.
    • 4.Secondary Data Collection Methods.
    • 5.Conclusion.


Before creating the any new product, organizations need to collect a data to research demand, customer preferences, competitors, etc. In case these data are not be collected in an advance, the rate of failure for a new product is 80 percent or even higher. Even after a product is launched, more companies continue to the collect their customers’ data to get feedback and identify ways to improve an overall customer experience.

What is a Data Collection?

Data collection is a process of collecting, measuring and analysing a various types of information using a set of the standard validated techniques. The major objective of data collection is to gather information-rich and reliable data, and analys e them to make critical business decisions. Once the data is be collected, it goes through a rigorous process of a data cleaning and data processing to make this a data truly useful for businesses. There are two major methods of data collection in research based on a information that is required, namely:

  • Primary Data Collection
  • Secondary Data Collection

Primary Data Collection Methods:

Primary data refers to the data collected from first-hand experience directly from a main source. It refers to the data that has never been used in the past. The data gathered by a primary data collection methods are generally regarded as a best kind of data in the research.The methods of a collecting primary data can be further divided into the quantitative data collection methods (deals with a factors that can be counted) and qualitative of data collection methods (deals with factors that are not be necessarily numerical in a nature).

Data Collection

The most common primary data collection methods:

1. Interviews:

Interviews are the direct method of a data collection. It is simply the process in which the interviewer asks a questions and an interviewee responds to them. It provides the high degree of flexibility because questions can be of adjusted and changed anytime according to situation.

2. Observations:

In this method, researchers are observe a situation around them and record findings. It can be used to an evaluate a behaviour of various people in controlled and uncontrolled situations. This method is more effective because it is straightforward and not directly dependent on the other participants. For example, person looks at a random people that walk their pets on the busy street, and then uses this data to decide the whether or not to open pet food store in that area.

3. Surveys and Questionnaires:

Surveys and questionnaires offers a broad perspective from a large groups of people. They can be conducted a face-to-face, mailed, or even posted on an Internet to get respondents from anywhere in a world. The answers can be a yes or no, true or false, a multiple choice, and even open-ended questions. However, the drawback of surveys and also questionnaires is delayed response and a possibility of ambiguous answers.

4. Focus Groups:

A focus group is similar to the interview, but it is conducted with the group of people who all have something in general . The data collected is similar to in-person interviews, but they are offer a better understanding of why all certain group of people thinks in a specific way. However, some drawbacks of this method are lack of a privacy and domination of an interview by the one or two participants. Focus groups can also be a time-consuming and challenging, but they are help reveal some of best information for the complex situations.

5. Oral Histories:

Oral histories also involved for asking questions like interviews and focus groups. However, it is explained as a more precisely and the data collected is linked to the single phenomenon. It involves collecting an opinions and personal experiences of people in the specific event that they were involved in. For example, it can help in studying an effect of a new product in the particular community.

Secondary Data Collection Methods:

Secondary data are refers to a data that has already been collected by a someone else. It is much more inexpensive and simpler to collect than primary data. While a primary data collection provides more be authentic and original data, there are the numerous instances where secondary data collection provides great value to the organizations. Most common secondary data collection methods:

Data Sources

1. Internet:

The use of an Internet has become one of the most famous secondary data collection methods in a recent times. There is a big pool of free and paid research resources that can be simply accessed on an Internet. While this method is the fast and simple way of data collection, and should only source from the authentic sites while collecting an information.

2. Government Archives:

There is lots of a data available from government archives that can make use of. The most important advantage is that a data in a government archives are be authentic and verifiable. The challenge, however, is that data is not always readily available due to the number of factors. For an example, criminal records can come an under classified information and are complex for anyone to have access to them.

3. Libraries:

Most researchers are donate several copies of their academic research to the libraries can collect the important and authentic information based on various research contexts. Libraries also serve as the storehouse for a business directories, annual reports and the other similar documents that help businesses in research.


Primary data is high accurate and reliable because it comes from the direct source.It’s faster and simpler to collect primary data than a secondary data, which can take weeks or even months to be collect.Primary data can be collected in a real time, which makes it ideal for the tracking events or monitoring processes.Primary data is less likely to be a contaminated with an errors or inaccuracies.

Are you looking training with Right Jobs?

Contact Us

Popular Courses