The method of observation consists in recording and describing the practices and actions of people in natural conditions. During the observation, behavioral habits, reactions and actions of the target audience are studied, for example:

  • selection of products at points of sale;
  • perception of novelties at sales points;
  • the process of product consumption (for example, at home, in the office, etc.);
  • the process of using products (for example, lawn mowers, smart home systems, car washes, etc.);
  • behavior in certain situations (for example, at a concert, rally, in line, etc.).

Observation can be inclusive or non-inclusive, as well as combine these techniques.

Excluded observation

The researcher secretly observes the representatives of the target audience and records the necessary data (for example, the selection process, the reaction to the characteristics of the object under study, etc.). The subjects have no idea that they are being watched.

Observation with secret inclusion

During the observation, the researcher can come into contact with the subject as a person interested in the same item and ask clarifying questions about it, for example "Have you been buying ____ for a long time? How do you like it?".

Included observation

In this option, the subjects of observation agree on their participation in the research. The observation takes place in the open, the researcher immerses himself in the natural environment. For example, processes of choice or use, participation in an event or work process are observed.

Combined observation (not included + included)

In this variant, the observation begins as non-involved, and then the observer introduces himself to the respondent, reveals the purpose of the study and can ask a series of questions on the topic.