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Differences Between Primary Research and Secondary Research

Primary Research vs Secondary Research

All of us are told to do some research, whether it is for our homework or for our workplace. Researching  makes it very important in gathering authentic data. Though some of us are not good researchers and some have the talent for it, there are still some ways on how we can find the most suitable researching skills for us. Generally, research is divided into two main categories which are: primary research and secondary research.

The differences between primary research and secondary research are from their sources. When you hear the word “primary,” what comes into your mind? “Initial. The very first.” When combined with “research,” primary research includes sources from the people you have made contact with – the people who gave you your needed information which initially came directly from their mouth. To be able to get the primary data, you have to do a lot of hard work. You have to interact and ask people who know about your project. You gather information from scratch. No support, nothing. All you need is to get the necessary information directly from the concerned people.

Doing primary research is never easy because the information you gather is not yet finalized. It is still raw and unrefined. After getting the information, you have to carefully analyze all your data which is relevant in establishing your goals.

On the other hand, secondary research includes sources from already printed materials like documents, newspapers, reports, etc. patiently made by other people. If you are a researcher and you don’t want to undergo the difficult task of primary research, you may opt to do secondary research instead. Though the steps are the same with primary research, the difference is that you only gather data from secondhand information like recorded interviews, news reports, etc. Since the data are already analyzed, the researcher can easily select the most relevant information needed.

Regarding the difficulty level of which type of research is easier to conduct, secondary research is undoubtedly a lot easier than doing primary research. Primary research entails most of your time looking for the right people while secondary research is openly offering you the data which you already need. However, some people still prefer primary research because it’s more accurate. You know where the data actually came from and the data is trusted.

Nevertheless, using both of these types of research is useful. Your research data will become more solid and relevant if you have properly collected information from the right sources. All you need is a little patience and dedication when conducting your research.


  1. Primary research involves firsthand information gathered directly from the target population while secondary research involves the use of secondhand information which comes in the form of published articles, newspapers, news reports, recorded interviews, videos, books, and other printed or recorded resources.
  2. Primary research can be conducted through the form of interviews or surveys from the target population.
  3. Primary research entails more work to do than secondary research because you have to gather the data by yourself. After gathering all the data, you have to analyze them to be able to meet your goals. Whereas secondary research already presents you analyzed data.
  4. Primary research involves more time while secondary research does not. A lot of preparation is entailed in primary research.
  5. Both primary research and secondary research follow the same steps, but they come from different sources.
  6. In the end, careful analysis is needed when conducting research be it primary or secondary.

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1 Comment

  1. very helpful article. First time i am knowing about research with this detail.
    I also want to add that if you have a analysing power you can research with secondory also with very accuratly.

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