Client Services > Qualitative

Qualitative Research

It’s the best way to clearly understand how your customers think and feel. And it’s the best way to find out why they feel the way they do. Depending upon your research objectives, Harris Interactive’s Qualitative Research Practice (QRP) can work on your behalf independently, or as an integral part of our full-service research organization.

We believe the first and most critical step in the process is to choose the right approach given your specific needs. It’s a best-fit analysis that matches your objectives with our comprehensive research options to ensure we’re on the right path before we get started.

Traditional Qualitative Research

Traditional qualitative enables you to:

  • Allow customers to physically examine and manipulate products
  • Extensively probe and explore individuals' thoughts in a group setting
  • Examine and observe non-verbal behaviors
  • Add value at any point in a product’s life cycle, including idea generation, product concept testing, branding, advertising, and market segmentation
  • See your company through the eyes of your customers
  • Determine when the synergy of group dynamics will add value to your decision-making process

Online Qualitative Research

The benefits you gain from our unique capabilities are:

  • Insight into low incidence populations.
  • Representative sample for hard-to-reach populations. Allowing for greater geographic dispersal, which gets you a wider variety of respondents participating in the same session at the same time.
  • Respondents’ participate at their convenience, thus increasing response rates.
  • Control of group dynamics. Minimizing the opportunity for individuals to dominate / persuade other respondents.
  • Candid responses and reactions to concepts and research questions.
  • Honest dialogue that is direct, and less constrained by the social conventions present in traditional face-to-face focus groups.
  • Opportunities to test your web-based products, services, and concepts in their natural environment.
  • Savings in travel, time and money.
  • Convenience for you—observe from your office, home, or anywhere.
  • Access to a virtual "back room" where client observers can follow the discussion and debrief.
  • Shorter turnaround time than traditional qualitative research.
  • Instant results with session transcripts.

Online Techniques

Focus Group Recruiting—Whether your focus group is online or offline we can find recruits for you in hours, not days. By leveraging our Harris Poll Online multimillion member panel, we recruit even the most difficult to reach populations in the least amount of time.

Chat-Room Format—Think of this as a "virtual version" of traditional focus groups. These groups are held in real time over the Web with everyone logging in and participating during a set time frame. A moderator logs in and the group is conducted in the same way groups are conducted offline.

Online Focus Group Demo


Bulletin Board Format—This is unique to the Web. Here, a group is conducted over a longer period of time than the one or two hour Chat-room format. Participants are pre-recruited and agree to come into the site when convenient for them. Once they enter, they respond to moderator questions and the comments of other participants. The dialog here usually extends over a 4-5 day period. This allows respondents, who would not otherwise be able to participate, to share their opinions.

Bulletin Board Focus Group Demo

Online Communities

Online Communities allow you to understand and learn from your customers with greater convenience, speed and value than you’ve ever had before.

Online Communities utilize a wide variety of specially designed and timed activities to keep participants engaged and insight pouring in:

  • Brainstorming
  • Bulletin boards
  • Chat-style focus groups
  • Multimedia gallery
  • Polling

You can use Online Communities for:

  • Product, service and advertising concept evaluation
  • Idea generation
  • Product and market sampling
  • Competitive evaluation
  • Brand assessment
  • Employee satisfaction/collaboration
  • Total voice-of-the-consumer

Your Results are:

  • Input from loyal customers—provide your customers and prospects with a strong connection into your company
  • Recognize new opportunities—discover new product and service needs and decrease your time to market
  • Instant gratification—get answers to specific questions literally overnight
  • A window into the competition—see and hear how your customers and your competitors’ customers compare you with your competition
  • More bang for your buck—conduct multiple studies within the community with no need for recruitment

Qualitative and Youth Research

In some cases, the best way to understand a youth audience is to engage them in qualitative research. Harris Interactive's moderators are specifically trained to work with youth markets, and have spent countless hours doing so. They'll work with you to determine the best qualitative method to use when targeting this market, and implement specific techniques designed to elicit open and honest opinions from this growing segment.

International Qualitative Research

The dedicated professionals on our international team recognize the importance of cultural differences and the need for local knowledge when conducting international research. Our knowledge of international markets allows us to design projects that are appropriate for each country of interest.

Our International team members are all bilingual, and all have traveled extensively and have lived outside the U.S. They have ongoing relationships with our Global Network Members and preferred suppliers, and are familiar with the varying policies and procedures for each country.

Our Global Network is present on every continent, which means we are prepared to conduct your research anywhere in the world. Our members are all full-service market research consulting firms with regional capabilities and content expertise. They provide insight into questionnaire design, translation, and analysis of findings.

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