People undertaking research can use two types of data. These are:
Quantitative data – which is about numbers and things that can be counted.
Qualitative data – which is about opinions and peoples’ views.
Both are important when investigating the quality of the customer experience provided by tourism organisations.
Another way of classifying data is into primary and secondary data.
Primary data – is data collected by the researcher (you!)
Secondary data – has been collected by other people and has been published somewhere, usually on the internet.
So, there may be lots of websites where data which is relevant to your study of customer service provided by a tourism organisation might be found. Much of this data might be qualitative (opinions) but some might be qualitative (numbers).
It’s important to understand that there are different types of website that might provide different types of information.
The list below will give you some idea of the types of website which might be useful.
- The website of the organisation you are studying should be useful. It might contain data that you can use and there might also be education resources which provide background information.
- The website of the tourist board in the area where the organisation is located might also provide data on visits to attractions in the area.
- Online guidebooks to the area in which the tourism organisation is located may well contain some information about the organisation.
- Review sites such as Trip Advisor invite people to rate their experiences. This might well provide useful data.
- Tour operators could offer tours which include visits to your chosen organisation.
- Students might have studied your chosen organisation as part of their degree course and have posted their work online.
- Online newspapers might have articles and other information relating to the organisation you are studying.
- You Tube could have video clips posted by customers of the organisation.
You will need to develop a log of the websites you visit and the information you find by accessing each site. It might be a good idea to produce and develop a table, using the following headings to make a log or record of your searches:
- Website name
- Qualitative data found
- Quantitative data found
- Usefulness of the website
- Word (.docx): U1-3.1-R8-Secondary-Research-Logs.docx