Test and validation of data collection strategies used in applied social sciences: a marketing study

Evandro Luiz Lopes, Eliane Herrero, Luis Hernan Contreras Pinochet, Otávio Bandeira De Lamônica Freire


The adequacy of samples used in empirical research is a frequent theme in the discussion sections of scientific articles. Several questions about the use of online (versus offline) data collection tools, the use of rewards for respondents completing a questionnaire, the obligation to respond to all items of a survey, the use of non-response options, and the adequacy of samples made up of university students (versus non-students), for example, are issues that have long been debated but have not yet been adequately answered. In order to identify the influence of data collection strategies (online versus offline), the use of different samples (students versus non-students) and different strategies for formulating questionnaires / data collection instruments, we conducted four studies, using 10 surveys, in which responses were obtained from 3,280 participants. Through structural equation modeling, which analyzed the independent variables of the Retail Service Quality scale and three dependent variables (satisfaction, word-of-mouth and repurchase intention), we identified the adequacy of the use of samples composed by university students, the great similarity in the results obtained by collections online (versus offline), and the similarity in response rate and dropout rate of several strategies for data collection instruments. In the end, we present study limitations and recommendations for researchers.


Data collection strategy; Type of samples; Structural equation modeling.

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