Task 2: Written Report (35 out of 45 mar.)
This assignment helps you to apply marketing research principles and practices to design and implement the marketing research project. You are highly recommended to build on the feedback you receive on your video presentation (Task I).
Flow to write the research proposal? Writing a re.arch proposal requires .s of time and attention to detail. You arc expected to act as a re.archer. You cannot find the answer to all of your questions in the textbook and .minars/workshops. You have to explore to find the answer to any probable questions you may have or deal with. Use the knowledge that you have accumulated throughout your course and prior to that. The followings arc some tips to help you write your research proposal.
• Identification of re.arch problem and developing a research qumtion and research aim: in general, identification of research problem requires studying the company you are writing your research proposal about. However, the company you write your proposal Is an imaginary company. Therefore, you need to study the industry and the market to get a better understanding occurrent problem that is linked to your case and formulate the problem. Studying industry and market (customer and competitors) helps you to highlight the significance of the study and get a good grasp of the current situation in the market. This information is usually statistical (objective data) information. • Understanding the current market: Competitors and customers are important actors in the mathet. As such. you have to understand who they are. what they do, and what they like. You can adthess these in the identification of the problem and signify the importance of your study. • However, studying thc company, industry, and market does not help you to design your study and address the research problem. You have to learn from the literature and understand what other researchers before you have done and how they have done it. Literature review helps you to overcome obstacles and avoid pitfalls in designing your research and implementing It. • Design your qualitative study and report your findings. After reviewing the literature and developing an initial understanding of the current literature and market, you have to rcach a point to understand what we do not know and need to know to solve the research problem. Design and develop your questions for interviews, identify your sample, interview your mmple and record whatever they my. Transcribe the interviews and uy to makc sen. of what all of your interviewees said, find the common words among all speeches. and put them in an appropriate category.
• Your quantitative study is built on thc findings of the qualitative study. You usually the quantitative study to validate the andinp of qualitative study and ensure the relationships found in the qualitative study stands in the real world. • Developing the literature review: Literature review is one of the most important parts of the research. It allows us to team from others without experiencing and implementing the study. Literature review tells us what we know and what we need to lasow. You have to find related peer-review publications and anal, thcm to understand thc commonalitim and differences between different research studies. • Designing the quantitative study: Draw a conclusion of what interviewees told you and develop a research model with dependent and independent variables. Develop a new reseatch question and research objective for the quantitative parts. Develop a theory and set of hypotheses for the quantitative study. You have to provide a short rationale for why the proposed relationships between variables are jtmified. To do this, you can rely on the literature or qualitative findings. You have to explain your research method for quantitate study. You have to idcntify the best sample who can help you to address rr.arch question and have the restriction on a sample (e.g.. fcmalm between 20-24 years old). After that. you have to identify how many respondents you need to comply with discipline rules. How do you plan to access your sample? What is the best method to select your sample? Design your survey. U. the literature and see how others measure thc construct of interest you included in your research model. Follow the lute for designing the survey. What is the scale pole? W.t is the anchor point? Thcn define your data collection method. How do you wish to collect data? Do you vAsh to usc intercept? Drop and collect? Online methods? • Budget: How much money do you need for designing and implementing your research? You have to identify all activitim included in your research and find a price for them. Accumulation of all costs in both qualitative and quantitative study forms your total budget. • Timeline: You have to identify all activities included in your research and find the proper time to accomplish either of those tasks in the highest quality. Develop a Gant chart to show the timeline.
Structure of the research report: • introduction: The introduction is the summary of what you are doing in your research and how you do it. you have to look at the following: o What is the big issue that you try to address it? Is it a social issue? Political issue? Cost issue? What is it? o Why is it important? You can do it using statistic information. industry report, government report, etc. o What do we know at the moment about the problem? o What we dont know at the moment. Develop your research question (s). o How you plan to address research question(s). Get ready for qualitative research. • Qualitative design: based on Mtat we do not Imow you identified in t. literature review or industry report. design your qualitative study. o What arc the research problem research question(s) and re.arch objective(s)? o Qualitative research design: How do you address research problem, research question(s) and research objective(s)? • Who is your sample? Why do you think this is the best sample to select? Provide the rationale for selection of interviewees • What interview method do you select? Focus group, one to onc interview. etc? Why do you think your .lected method is the most appropriate • How many interviews do you conduct? Why do you think this is the best number? • How many people do you interview? Why do you Wink this number is enough? • What questions you will ask from your remondents. You have to attach the questions you asked your respondents and the content of at least 4 interviews to your proposal as an appendix. o Provide detail of your findings from interview(s). use tab., graphs. etc.
• Quantitative study: you have to build the quantitative study on the basis of the fmthngs from qualitative study. o Literature review review the current literature and idanify what we know and what we do not. o Develop a ncw research question and objectives for this section based on your findings in the qualitative study and literature review, o Develop a research model that help you to answer the research questions including dependent and independent variables. o Develop hypothe.s and explain why you thirth the proposed relationship exist (develop a theory for each hypothesis), o Designing the quantitative study (sample size. method of data collection, etc) • Timeline and budget
Important notes: I. Do not write any parts of your proposal in bullet point, provided that you have no other choice. This is especially true for literature review. 2. The 10 peer-reviewed journal articles can be uscd across different sections of your research report. 3. You do not need to collect data for quantitative part of your marketing proposal. 4. The following arc very important and you have to address them all but they are not included in the word count. Please locate them in your appendix: a. Survey/ questionnaires b. ilse content of at least 4 interviews c. Reference list
TASK 2: INDIVIDUAL WRITTEN REPORT
Topic: Online shopping in comparison to offline shopping: from the customers’ point of view
This paper has enabled the researchers to apply marketing research principles and practices on a marketing research project. For this research, researchers have decided to adopt both qualitative and quantitative study that is based on the problems faced by the customers in both the online and offline medium of the retail sector in Australia.
1.1 Research issue
In this research, researchers have analysed the customer's issue regarding online and offline shopping. It has been observed that customers face several difficulties in the buying process. Researchers have divided the online and offline shoppers view into four categories such as location, convenience, knowledge and price. Offline shoppers face difficulties in order to find stores nearby to their localities. Online customers also face issues as e-commerce sites provide excessive shipping charge as per the location. In the area of convenience, offline shoppers face issues to find all the essentials from a store. The convenience of online shoppers depends on the detailed design and the content of the online stores. Along with that in the store shopping, customers do not get discounts which are provided by the e-commerce site. On the other hand, it is easy for online shoppers to search for a particular product by staying in one place where offline shoppers have to visit multiple stores in order to find out their essentials.
This is a social issue as it is faced by most of the customers of Australia. Social issue defines a common problem of the society and which is strived by many people to be solved. Customers face issues in their buying process whether it is offline or online. That is why this research issue has been considered as a social issue.
1.2 Importance of the research
It is necessary to understand the customers' difficulties in the shopping process. Therefore, marketers have been aware of the market and can establish a business to keep in mind the customer's problems. In the retail industry of Australia, there are around 140,000 businesses which represent around 4.1% of Australian GDP (GOV, 2020). In 2019, online shopping was around 9% of the total retail sale in Australia. Along with that in 2019, there were about 20.3 million online shoppers in Australia (WebAlive, 2020). Considering the number of Australian customers for online and offline shopping, this research issue is important in order to set up a business in Australia.
1.3 Current situation of the issue
Customers often face issues regarding the shopping process. Most of the customers prefer online shopping these days. However, in this process customers face several difficulties these days. Security issues are one of the major issues regarding the online shopping process of recent days. Apart from that, in the area of offline shopping, customers evenly face difficulties. It has been observed from several market research that offline stores provide very less discount to the customers than the online stores. That is why offline shoppers face problems in their shopping nowadays.
1.4 Research question
The research questions are:
1. What are the views of people towards online and offline shopping or how they found
online and offline shopping different?
2. Is there a requirement to introduce e-commerce sites by the companies to show them
variety to customers?
3. How important is a user-friendly interface for an e-commerce site?
1.5 Addressing the research question
In order to address the research question, qualitative research has been adopted by the researchers. This research issue needs both methods to be analysed profoundly. With the help of qualitative research methods, researchers have been able to get the answers to their research topic.
In order to get the answer to the research questions, researchers have generated qualitative study for this research. Qualitative research has followed the focus group interview and semi-structured interviews. This is cost and time effective for which it is chosen by the researcher.
Customers find online shopping more convenient as with the help of technology they can shop their essentials without any hassle. As per the view of Tomar et al., (2018), online sites provide attractive facilities to the customer in order to increase the revenue of their business. The offers and discounts are the procedure to grab the attention of the customer by the online shopping sites. However, Qayyum et al., (2018, March) reveals that customers face security issues also regarding their online purchasing. According to the view of Sarkar & Das, (2017) that customers who buy products from the offline store face issues in their shopping process. The major problem for offline shoppers is to get their essentials from one store.
On the contrary, the offline shopping process is less preferred by the customers because there are a lot of issues in this medium of shopping. Location issues are one of the major problems as customers have to find the stores near their locations for shopping. Apart from that, offline shoppers do not get the opportunity to shop for products by huge discounts like e-commerce websites. Moreover, online shopping can be conducted by staying in one place, there is offline shopping, customers have to be physically present to the store to buy products.
2.1 Research problem
The research problem is the view of people towards online and offline shopping and their convenience while shopping. This has been placed in four categories that are convenience, location, knowledge and price. Offline suffers the issue of nearby location, product availability, waiting time. Online faces the problems of placing the website on e-commerce platforms, classification of the products, price like having discounts and convenience in finding products in a large range of products.
The research question of the qualitative study of this research topic in order to investigate this issue more profoundly, are as follows:
With the help of the proper research objectives, researchers ensure what they want to achieve through the research study (Russo et al., 2016). Therefore, according to the researchers of this topic, the research objectives of the qualitative study of this research issue follow:
2.2 Research design
For generating this research, ethnographic research has been adopted by the researchers. Ethnography research is a qualitative research study. In this research method, researchers make interaction with the respondents and analyse the real-life environment (Shagrir, 2017). Ethnographic methods provide natural observation to the researchers rather than the observation of the laboratory. The research topic has been conducted through this research method as it is justified with the topic. The research topic needs real-life observation that can be generated by ethnographic research. Along with that, as per the researchers, the research objectives of this qualitative study has been followed precisely with the help of ethnographic research.
The sample of this research has been the online and offline customers of Australia. Researchers have decided that the respondents have been 18 to 30 years old in a sample size of 500. As from their market research, researchers came to know that people of these age bars are attracted towards shopping rather than the people of another age. Along with that researchers have found that people of these ages are more concerned about their presence and 500 sample size has been a good amount to get the relevant solution. Interviewees are selected based on their problems and shopping habits.
The interview method has been chosen by the researchers to collect qualitative data in the focus group interview. There are many advantages to focus group interview methods. This interview process is less time taking as it is conducted in groups (Tijdink et al., 2016). Along with that, it is an easy process that can be conducted in a small budget too. According to the researchers, the interview process of the respondents has been semi-structured. A semi-structured interview is used in the area of research, especially to find out the qualitative data for social issues. The current research topic represents the social issue; therefore, it is appropriate to gather data by the semi-structured method. In a semi-structured method, the interview questions are followed by the interviewers rigorously. It has helped to provide exact and variety of information.
Number of interviews
Researchers have decided that they have arranged 2 to 3 interview sessions to collect qualitative data for this research. This is the best number because it has taken less time and is cost-effective too.
For conducting this research, the sample size was 500. The respondents have been from top shopping centres in Australia like Westfield. For the focus group interview working individuals from 18 to 30 years old. Total of 500 surveys across Sydney have been done and this has been the best number to reach a better result in large numbers of varieties.
In the earlier section, it has been mentioned that the researchers have adapted a focus group interview process for this research study. The interview question of the adopted semi-structured method of this research has been:
4. Do you feel more convenient on online or ecommerce sites for searching offers and discounts than the offline store?
The researcher has analysed the research issue through quantitative research too. The quantitative method focuses on the statistical data of research that helps the researchers to get appropriate outcomes. Therefore, through a quantitative study, the researcher has generated numerical data in order to find out the information regarding the current research issue.
As per the view of Attaran & Gunasekaran (2019), the retail industry consists of supermarkets, departmental stores, franchise stores and others. The retail process allows the sellers to sell consumer goods or services to the consumers with the help of multiple channels. Retail business process is generated by online and offline both mediums.
Customers face difficulties in the buying process, both online and offline. Liu & Liu, (2016) stated that in the online shopping process, there are a lot of issues that are facing the customers these days. In digital medium customers do not get the opportunity to analyse the quality of the product, therefore customers face issues in this case. Along with that e-commerce websites need to be user friendly as customers can shop from there without any hassle.
In the context of Venkitachalam & Ambrosini (2017), adaptation of latest technologies is the feature of business practices of the organizations these days. For this purpose, the number of online stores is increasing day by day. Lim et al., (2016), stated that customers are more fascinated in online shopping as this shopping medium provides utmost facility to the customer with the help of technology.
The researchers focus on the separate research questions which have been helpful to conduct the quantitative study of this research precisely. Therefore, the research questions of quantitative research are as follows:
The research problem is the integration of online and offline shopping for increasing customer retention. From their market research, researchers have seen that customers of both medium online and offline face difficulties in their shopping process. Therefore, it is needed to integrate the online and offline shopping to increase customer retention.
Research model enables the researchers to decide which are the appropriate data that need to be collected from various sources to generate a research study. Researchers have adopted an ethnographic research model to analyse this research issue. Entheogenic research discusses a worldview which is governed by the perceptions of the research study. In short, entheogenic research focuses on individual experiences and helps to understand the customer's trusts. This research model has been used in this research because, in this research, researchers also emphasize on the individual experiences of the customer in order to collect quantitative data for this research on the basis of which the retail industry has been examined. That is why this research model has been appropriate in order to conduct this study methodically. The dependent variable of this research has been the retail industry of Australia. On the other side, the independent variable of this research has been business practices of organisations, their adaption to the latest technologies and the latest trends in marketing used by businesses.
H1: There is a positive relationship between customers trust and convenience while buying
It has been useful to integrate the online and offline shopping process as it has been convenient for the customer to shop from any medium. The proposed relationship exists because customers trust increases when they found the product conveniently and exact on both online and offline platform
H2: There is a positive relationship between integrating online and offline shops and providing the customer's convenience while shopping.
It has been useful to integrate the online and offline shopping process as it has been convenient for the customer to shop from any medium. The relationship exists because this has been helpful to find the same product which customers have seen on the online platform and could help to provide convenience in searching for products.
For the quantitative study of this research, research has adopted a descriptive research design. Researchers have selected correlational methods as it demonstrates the relationship between two variables. As the correlational method is a part of descriptive research design, therefore, this research design has been appropriate for conducting this research study.
Data collection method
The cross-sectional survey has been chosen by the researchers which show the primary data collection method. It allows the researchers to gather data by making inferences about a population that is related to the research topic at a single point of time (Kostovski et al., 2019). Cross-sectional methods have been easier for the researchers of this topic as researchers have decided to gather their required quantitative data from the population of customers. The data collection method of this research has been the primary data collection method from 6-7 shopping stores. In a quantitative data collection method, researchers have adopted the correlational method to collect data. Therefore, this method has been justified for this research.
Data sampling method
The researcher has adopted a convenience data sampling method in order to collect the quantitative data for this study. Convenience data sampling method is a type of non-probability data sampling method which allows the researchers to select samples for the research from a population which are nearest to the researchers (Park et al., 2019). This sampling method is appropriate because researchers have selected their respondents from the 6 to 7 shopping centres of Australia. Researchers have provided a gift card of $25 to each customer to attract and maintain their interest in the survey. In order to collect the required quantitative data, there have been arrangements for 2 to 3 survey methods.
Researchers have selected 500 customers from the 6 to 7 online and offline to identify the shopping habits of the Australians. Along with that researchers have decided to select customers from 18 to 32 years old because from the market research, researchers have observed that people of these ages are concerned most about shopping.
In order to analyse quantitative data, researchers are required to adopt quantitative data analysis methods as collected data like correlation method and cross-sectional surveys. For this purpose, researchers have used tables, graphs and others to present the data properly.
4.Timeline and budget
|Activities||Month 1||Month 2||Month 3||Month 4 ||Month 5||Month 6|
|To get the confirmation for the research questions.|
|Research about the background of the issue |
|Qualitative study and analysis |
|To research gathered data|
|End of the project|
The total budget of this research has been $15,345 for the qualitative study and total budget for the quantitative study has been $14,500. [Referred to appendix 6]